Tonight is our last night at the Prince Resort & Hotel (AKA Club Patara) and we are glad to be leaving. We made our reservations months ago through RCI but unfortunately we did not do our homework. The moment we arrived, we sensed problems. The next day we checked the TripAdvisor ratings only to discover that this resort is one of the lowest ranked resorts at Kalkan. We can now say from firsthand experience that the dismal ranking is richly deserved.
Kalkan is beautiful and so is the resort. The problem is management, or specifically the manager (Oğuz BOZKURT). The manager was well aware of our booking and he knew we were to arrive late. Indeed, twice we contacted the manager about our late arrival. Because he did not respond to our initial email, I had a Turkish colleague call him on the phone and speak to him in Turkish about our late arrival. He assured us that our late arrival would not be a problem.
Well it was. When we arrived there was no one here except a security agent and a night grounds keeper, and they had been given no information about our arrival. To their credit, they made some calls and discovered that we indeed had a booking. They let us in to the only apartment they had access to: a tiny apartment, closed for the winter, being used for storage. And that was our first night at what is supposed to be a first class resort.
The next day we go to see the manager. Without a word of apology, he showed us three apartments and also offered two rooms at the hotel. Seeing the apartments, it was clear that they had been closed for some time. Thus, not only did the manager not prepare for our late arrival, he did not prepare for us at all!
The hotel rooms were the only acceptable option (and I must add that the rooms are nice with great views of the bay), but even these needed a rush cleaning. It soon became apparent that we were the only ones at the hotel, and at the entire resort, there was only one other couple.
That evening we had five more surprises. First, the Internet service was not working. I asked about this and the next day it was turned on. That night we discovered a sign in our bathroom that the tap water is not drinkable. This is not too uncommon in Turkey, but other hotels provide water for their guests. At Patara, we were neither warned about the water nor given bottled water to drink. By the time we discovered the problem, the staff had left for the night—so no water until morning. The third surprise was that all the hallway lights had been turned off including the lights over the stair case! Fourth, we discovered that there was very little hot water for showers. Complaints the next morning got the hallway lights turned on for the next evening and the water thermostat turned up. The lights and internet problems stay fixed, but a day later the water was back to being warm at best, and once again we had to complain. And, last, while we expected the outdoor pool to be closed for the winter, we discovered that they had also closed the indoor Jacuzzi.
What we realized is that the manager had basically shut the resort down for repairs and improvements, and preparations for a large number of guests expected for New Year’s. A respectable manager, under these circumstances would not have taken any reservations for the last week of December—but not this manager.
If you are thinking about a vacation in Kalkan, for sure it is a great place! But, if you are thinking about the Patara, learn from our mistake, think again, and book at any of the other resorts that are here. As I said, the dismal rating at TripAdvisor was right on target.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC