We booked this through a travel website as part of a package and enjoyed the stay in this slice of Victoriana. This is a great hotel in principle, and we loved it, but they need to work on a few areas.
Things to be aware of:
• The Victoria shares many facilities with the Palace hotel. When you want something on the 9th floor, you have to take the lifts to the 7th floor and walk through the residential part to the Palace hotel lifts to get to the 9th.
• On arrival, €20 per person will be added to you bill to cover the pool towels (these are not the same as those in your bathroom). You get a voucher that can be exchanged for a towel on the 9th floor and vice versa. The €20 will be refunded on check out on return of the vouchers.
• Also on arrival, a one-off €5 'environment' charge is added to your bill. I din't discover this until I checked the bill on the TV. I asked about it and, apparently, it's a contribution towards making the hotel more environmentally friendly and you can ask for it to be waived if you wish. Now, I don't mind supporting this, but I feel I should have at least been told first. I cannot find any information on their website specifying this cost (if it's on there, it's not easy to find). It just felt a bit underhand and is contradictory to the rest of the experience we had.
• This hotel doesn't really cater for children explicitly.
• The tap water isn't suitable to drink (it's sea water with the salt removed). The hotel places mineral water in the room, for which they charge. You can get cheaper mineral water (and a selection of local wines and liqueurs) at the shops on the seafront. Turn left out of the hotel, left onto Triq Il-Kbira then right onto Triq San Vincenz and you'll be on the promenade in about 5 minutes. This also takes you to the Sliema-Valletta ferry.
+ The staff is by far the biggest asset this hotel has: extremely friendly and willing to help. Particularly one of the older receptionists (whose name escapes me), Alfred at the Penny Black bar and Marija in the Copperfield's restaurant. Honestly, the friendliness was like being in a B&B and really enhanced the stay.
+ If you book breakfast in advance you can get it at a reduced rate. The buffet was good, comprising hot and cold options with a couple of Maltese treats thrown in here and there. The only real let-down here was the quality of the juices and coffee.
+ We booked a room with no balcony because it was cheaper and we thought it wouldn't suffer from street noise. We were upgraded to a room with a balcony on check in and realised just how quiet the location is!
+ Parking is free. If you're insane enough to want to drive in Malta (we clearly were) then the hotel shares three levels of underground parking with the Palace hotel (the entrance is just to the left of the Victoria hotel).
+ The dining options are pretty good with various offers on certain days (e.g. Monday is Maltese night). The Copperfield's Restaurant is a daily buffet with a selection of meat or fish and the Penny Black Bar offers pub food à la carte. If you don't want to dine in, there are plenty of excellent restaurants within walking distance along Sliema seafront.
+ Tea and coffee facilities are provided fee in the room.
+ The range of spa and pool facilities was amazing. The indoor pool (7th floor) wasn't as busy as the two roof-top pools (8th and 9th floors).
- Firstly, and most importantly, the air conditioning does NOT work. Well, it does, but it cannot seem to cool below 25 °C (despite us setting it to 16 °C). We eventually got used to the stifling heat as we felt complaining wouldn't achieve anything unless they were to replace the aircon unit altogether. I can't see this being done any time soon.
- Internet is not free and expensive for what you get.
- There are no minibars in the room, you had to order it via the list (I can't see how that could work really). We guessed they wanted to remove the fridges in the rooms to stop them getting hotter!
- You have to pay €1.60 per day to use the in-room safe. Fine in principle, except it wasn't screwed down! Anyone could have walked off with it.
- The rooms are showing their age and ours smelt musty, but it was tolerable. The maids didn't quite get into all the corners with the vacuum cleaner.
- The bath showed signs of rust and the shower leaked (slightly) onto the floor.
In summary, I would stay here again but I would make sure that the aircon was fixed before booking. Otherwise, I found the Victorian theme charming and the staff really made it worthwhile.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Victoria Hotel revels in comfort and charm with the loyal staff’s help embracing a harmonious feeling of the homelike environment. Elegant Rooms, Luxury Spa Facilities and multi-purpose Conference Halls with free Wi-Fi and underground parking facilities for your ultimate convenience. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Victoria Hotel Sliema
- Victoria Hotel Malta
- The Victoria Hotel Malta/Sliema