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“Reviews can be so subjective” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Hotel Phoenicia

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Hotel Phoenicia
Ranked #2 of 13 Hotels in Valletta
Certificate of Excellence
Los Angeles
Level Contributor
39 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“Reviews can be so subjective”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 October 2011

After receiving a particularly nasty and negative review about my own establishment and with a guest book overfowing with positive comments, I decided that it was time to write my own review of the Hotel Phoenicia since so many people write about the negatives rather than praising the positives although I think in the case of the Phoenicia, the positive reviews definitely outweigh the negatives.

I stayed at the Phoenicia for a week at the beginning of August with my sister. I love old hotels. I would much prefer to stay in a hotel with "character" than some brand new multi-story establishment. Although we passed by the other 5 Star hotel, the Excelsior, which I am sure was perfectly adequate, we didn't like the look of it as much as the Phoenicia. I am not sure that the Phoenicia is truly a 5 Star hotel, maybe 4 to 4.5 stars but we loved its proximity to the city wall and to the bus station. Although we signed up for two full day tours, we could have easily gotten around by bus on our own. The 2.60 Euro per day bus pass was such good value and the new fleet of buses are sleek and air conditioned, having just been introduced a month or so prior to our arrival.

We loved our room at the Phoenicia with its view of the port where we could see the ships in harbour that day and watch them leave. The breakfast buffet kept us going until dinner time when we would enjoy a wonderful fish or seafood dinner at one of the local restaurants. The room was clean and comfortable and the staff very accommodating. In particular, there was always someone at the concierge's desk with helpful recommendations.

We would wander down to the pool after a day of sightseeing and sit in the shade.. There were always plenty of people there and you could order cocktails and snacks from the bar. The ground were beautifully landscaped and we enjoyed the walk between the hotel and the pool.

In fact, we were so enthusiastic about the hotel that friends in London have booked a trip there in November.

We had a wonderful time in Malta and would certainly come back and stay at the Hotel Phoenicia.

  • Stayed August 2011, travelled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank mazkira
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (593)
Date | Rating
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English first
Belfast, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 October 2011

Hotel Phoenicia is a luxurious old hotel very well located in Malta. The staff are very friendly and helpful. The rooms are missing some modern mod-cons but nothing too important. There are plenty of excellent restaurants etc. in Valletta.

  • Stayed September 2011
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank finbarc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hampshire, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
105 reviews
43 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 29 September 2011

This is an excellent hotel for those who, like us, want a comfortable hotel very close to all the places to visit in the historic city of Valletta. Everywhere within the city was within walking distance. A room with a harbour view and a balcony is very desirable and only the rooms on the first and second floors have balconies. The swimming pool is a walk through the gardens but is ideal for relaxation with a good poolside cafe. The main hotel restaurant was good and there are many good places to eat in Valletta - our favourite was Malata Restaurant in Palace Square which was exceptionally good. The hotel staff were friendly and helpful and the concierge staff were able to arrange anything including an excellent driver Tony Cutajar who took us on a trip round the island. The Phoenicia is well suited to the older traveller which suited us just fine.

Room Tip: Harbour facing with a balcony so on floors 1 or 2
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  • Stayed September 2011, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Douglas C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
UK
Level Contributor
12 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 September 2011

After having read the almost ubiquitously superb reviews of the Hotel Phoenicia online, we decided it was the place for us and booked a four night stay in a balcony room. When we first arrived at the hotel, we were impressed by the frontage and the grand, airy interior which exudes art-deco glamour. As we were early for checking in, the receptionist kindly phoned up to make sure our room was serviced quickly so we could get in as soon as possible and the concierge looked after our bags whilst we ambled into Valetta, grabbed some lunch and then had a drink in the hotel bar. So far, so good- just what you’d expect from a 5 star hotel charging about £120 per night (room only) for a balcony room.


When we were given the keys to our room, however, the charade of the sophisticated frontage and lobby became clear. We were given a room on the first floor which is the only floor in the hotel where smoking is permitted, despite the fact that at no point were we asked if we’d like a smoking or non-smoking room. To describe the room as basic would be an understatement. Of course, we had all of the furniture that we needed but it was all old and tired; the beaten-up old armchair was particularly comical! Our balcony was just big enough for a coffee table and two chairs and offered us a generous view of a busy dual carriageway and five-aside football pitch in the near distance with the harbour off to the right and the grand dome of Mosta church in the middle distance. Had we been paying £80 or £100 per night for our room, this all would have been absolutely fine but I can not understand how the £120 per night (room only) could possibly be justified.


What was perhaps most shocking, however, was the state of our bathroom. For a five star hotel, charging £120 per night for room only, the bathroom was an absolute disgrace. The shower was a little nozzle poking out of the wall over the bath with a flimsy white curtain around. I don’t think expecting a separate shower cubicle with a solid door and power shower head is unreasonable given the amount of money the hotel charges. The bottom of the bath was stained brown and the yellow non-slip matt that was provided wasn’t really an appealing alternative.
The grouting around the bath and in the corners of the shelf was desperately in need of redoing as it had gone black or just come away altogether. Another major issue was that there was no window or extractor fan in the bathroom which meant that morning showers left everything in the bathroom covered with a layer of water and meant that towels took an absolute age to get dry. This is not to say that the bathroom was dirty. In fact, the housekeeping staff did a great job of keeping the room clean but the whole place really needed the attention of a good handyman for a few days.
Again, my issue isn’t that the bathroom was like this per se- my issue was the fact that if I am paying £120 per night for room only, I expect everything to be of an excellent standard, and it simply was not.

Another issue that we had with the hotel was that the housekeeping staff begin their rounds of guest rooms at about 8.00am. This means two things. Firstly, if you didn’t hang your ‘do not disturb’ sign on the handle, you could expect a knock at about 8.30am asking if you want your room doing. Secondly, even if you did leave the sign on the handle, the noise of several housekeeping staff chatting and laughing in the corridor at 8.00am will rouse you from your bed anyway. Whilst being up and about at this time may not be an issue for business guests or travellers who get up and explore early, for those who like a bit of a lie in, it is annoying to say the least.

On the plus side, the pool area of the hotel is absolutely stunning and never busy for such a large hotel. We sat around the pool for three afternoons whilst we were there and there were never more than six people in the pool at any one time. Similarly, the landscaped gardens are stunning with plenty of hidden benches and tables to sit and have a drink. It’s just a shame that the gardens close at sunset.

The location of this hotel so close to the bus terminus and within thirty seconds walk of the main gate to Valetta is perfect for exploring Valetta and Malta as a whole. I’d particularly recommend heading out on the number 51/52/53 bus to Rabat to have a wander around the ancient city of Mdina.

Room Tip: Make sure you're not on the first floor, which is the smoking floor. Try and get a room facing V...
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  • Stayed July 2011, travelled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Bunnytwoshoes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cheshire
Level Contributor
102 reviews
71 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 61 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 24 September 2011

We stayed half board at the Phoenicia for five nights in September. The location is excellent for exploring both Valletta and Malta and even though it is very close to the bus terminal hotel quiet. The gardens are a joy and the service and food first class.

We explored Valletta for two days, took the North tour on-off bus, used the water taxi to cross to Sliema and the bus to the Three Cities. The on-off bus offers a free additional trip round the harbours but we found it overbooked and were not prepared to wait two hours.

  • Stayed September 2011, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank randjcheshire
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London
Level Contributor
18 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 23 September 2011

We stayed for four nights in one of their 'Superior Rooms'. It was a spacious room, extremely comfortable, with two balconies. Very effective air conditioning and double glazing. Palm court bar/lounge very large and airy, great place for a drink and to relax. Restaurant very acceptable. Grounds phenomenal, like a botanical garden! Good location. Absolutely superb staff who did everything they could to make our stay memorable. NB Do not bother to book a taxi from airport to hotel; there are plenty at the airport at a very reasonable fixed rate

Room Tip: Get a 'Superior Room' if budget allows.
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  • Stayed August 2011, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank GanganLondon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Scotland
Level Contributor
32 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 57 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 September 2011

This was my first trip to Malta. We were going to stay in St Julians, but the hotel we wanted was fully booked. The Phoenicia was another 5 star hotel on offer, so we went with that. 

It was about 20 mins from the airport, and on arrival it looked very nice. We had booked a deluxe room - which was on the 4th floor (top). The room was quite spacious for a city hotel. A super kingside bed (2 singles joined together), a desk, chair and a nice flat tv on the wall. There was ample storage space and the bathroom was a decent size too. The room had both British 3 pin sockets and European 2 pin sockets!

We decided to check out the pool since it was mid afternoon and we'd spent half the day travelling. Again, for a city centre hotel, the pool was excellent. It was quite a walk through the hotel gardens to get there though! Plenty of loungers, great poolside service, and not particularly expensive for a 5 star hotel. It had a snack bar (sandwiches, burgers, pizzas etc) which was also well priced. 

We tried the hotel restaurant twice during our weeks stay and it was excellent both times. The reception staff recommended us a few local restaurants too - which were also amazing. We didn't have a bad meal in Malta!

The location of the hotel is excellent. It's a 2 minute walk into the city centre where all the shops and tourist attractions are. It's also just 5 mins walk from the ferry that takes you over to Slimea should you fancy something a but more modern. A 5 min 1.50 euro boat trip - or a 3.5 mile walk round the harbour!

The main bar in the hotel had free wifi, but there was nothing to be found in the rooms. 

My only gripes about the hotel was it only had one lift which could only hold 5 people (or 6 at a tight squeeze!). This lift was also used by the bellboys to transport cases - so sometimes was a long wait at peak times. Our shower was hit or miss - sometimes flowed fine, and others was like someone squeezing water through a pin hole in the top of a coke bottle!  We spoke to reception about it - it seemed to be fixed for a few days and then went back again. 

In summary, an excellent hotel in an excellent location. I'd definitely return if I was going back to Valetta - however I think if I was to return to Malta I would check out St Jullians instead. 

  • Stayed September 2011
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank p3eps
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel Phoenicia

Property: Hotel Phoenicia
Address: The Mall, Valletta, Island of Malta FRN 1478, Malta
Phone Number:
Region: Malta > Island of Malta > Valletta
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Romantic Hotel in Valletta
#2 Luxury Hotel in Valletta
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:5 star — Hotel Phoenicia 5*
Number of rooms: 136
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
5 star luxury in Malta’s historic Art Deco hotel. Hotel Phoenicia, one of the leading 5 star hotels in Malta, is located at the City Gates of Valletta, Malta’s capital city and UNESCO heritage city. Just 50 meters from city gate, it is perfectly placed for discovering the historic walled city, feasting on Caravaggio’s paintings and exploring the magnificent harbours. The hotel also boast magnificent 7 acre garden. The island's central bus terminus is just meters away civing the possibility to explore the whole island by bus. A stay at the Hotel Phoenicia is an unforgettable experience. Our charming staff will ensure your every whim is catered for. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Phoenicia Hotel Valletta
Phoenicia Hotel Malta
Hotel Phoenicia Malta/Valletta

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