Have just returned from a most enjoyable holiday break in Malta. This trip was organised by the Belfast office of 'THE TRAVEL DEPARTMENT', who were very easy to deal with, accepting changes in room bookings before we paid our final instalment with no quibble. I had originally booked as a single traveller but was able to change to share when another traveler dropped out.This saved me the single supplement!!
Flight was from Belfast International Airport with easy jet and only a slight delay in scheduled departure time, which was almost made up by a following wind. Service was excellent on plane though the legroom for a 6ft 4ins overweight gent was less than ideal, and certainly not anywhere near the 34" that would be comfortable for me.
Pick up from hotel and coach transfer was accomplished with minimum of fuss. Hotel was very "old world" with a double sweeping staircase from first floor to hall, which we were told had featured in 007 movie ,"DIAMONDS ARE FOREVER". Room was large with very high ceiling, comfortable beds,adequate storage, and a safe which required rental of lock and key from reception. Tea and coffee facilities in the room, but wifi was an extra. Excellent shower with clean,often new towels, provided daily.
Breakfast was buffet style with three juices, tea coffee or chocolate, hot or cold breakfast as desired. I loved their muesli with heaps of fresh fruit and avoided the sausage bacon and egg etc. The bread was something else, almost sweet brioche style, with an efficient toaster .A good breakfast leaves one well set up for the rest of the day.
Tours were arranged daily, with just two free days for local sightseeing and shopping. We had the most friendly, handsome, knowledgeable guide that one could have hoped for. I learned so much about the strategic position of Malta from pre-biblical, biblical times, the middle ages, the papal inquisitions, Carravagio and his masterpiece,'Beheading of John the Baptist', the only painting that he signes with his own name of "Michaelangelo ............". The stories of his life are legend and the number of times he was rescued by the Archbishop, suggesting he was the `archbishops "special friend", confirming my suspicions that child clerical sexual abuse did not begin in 20th century Ireland. It was like an episode od "Murder,mystery and suspense"
Too many other highlights to describe here.
Hotel had a Malta night and a Bar-B-Q night with freely flowing Marsovin, and other liquors to allow one to forget about November, December and January in freezing Norn Iron.
No rain in Malta since June!
Temperatures of 90 degrees in the shade with balmy nights for walking on the lovely promenades.
I found the food excellent,with good choice from three every night in both starter and main courses.
Good company , many new friends and photographs of a beautiful island steeped in history, and I have not even mentioned the Knights of Malta....but then this is meant to be a short review not a DK guide book.
Would love to go again, would go back to Imperial and hope readers will find this review helpful.
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- Also Known As:
- Imperial Hotel Sliema
- Imperial Hotel Malta/Sliema