We have been having a bad run and wondering how much faith we can put in Tripadvisor reviews when a hotel can seemingly score so brilliantly and yet be so lacking when we are staying (and we are not generally negative reviewers).
This was the case for our weekend stay at Qurum Beach which is an otherwise great location with other hotels in the vicinity that probably offer more but were also similarly affected by our big complaint of the weekend we stayed - Noise! The reason why everyone in the area would be affected is that the noise in the garden 15 metres from our room could be heard over 1km up the beach from 2.30 pm until 3am the next morning.
When we heard the sound checks in progress soon after check in we asked reception when the noise would stop and were assured it would not go later than 11 pm. It was so loud we decided we couldn't laze by the pool and relax so headed up and up the beach trying to escape the bad 80s covers that went on relentlessly interposed by some congratulatory speeches. We returned to our room at 11pm but still it did not stop. We thought there was no point seeking another room as obviously the whole suburb could hear and we kept thinking it must stop soon, surely by midnight. But no. Apparently the embassy involved in this function received special permission to destroy everyone's peace until 3 am.
If we had any inkling of this and also the fact that the show continued all the next afternoon, we would have never checked in and would have found another place to stay. Even if it had not gone until 3 am, we were booking this location for a resort (therefore relaxation) stay and to have to spend the whole time away from the resort, we could have stayed at a lesser location. We were too tired to drive to do a day trip as well so it was a wasted weekend. Shame on the hotel for accepting a two day function booking without informing guests and without blocking out the rooms for those days to prevent this kind of negative feedback.
On the last morning, the music was packed up but then while we were sitting outside eating breakfast, the angle grinder breaking up the metal sound stage frame was making a huge racket 15 metres to the left and there were two fellows with mallets breaking up the pool tile surrounds 15 metres to the right. Stereo of the worst combination. I must say my nerves were shot. In fairness when we talked to the manager he was willing to consider a reimbursement of a night's stay but in retrospect we did not get very good value for our time and it was not a good impression of Muscat. A friend was staying at Grand Hyatt the same weekend and said he had a jackhammer a few metres away at breakfast so maybe it is just what happens in Oman!
The room was otherwise comfortable and very clean, there was water provided in the room and tea and coffee making, the breakfast very simple (no choices and served outside the restaurant), the desk staff not particularly helpful and not able even to provide a map let alone any suggestions, but the beach was lovely and very nice to swim at. Football games up and down the beach were entertaining to watch and there are a few small malls nearby with a range of food options. We found no supermarkets within a few kilometre radius and the reception did not know where one was either so bring some basic items with you or pick up when visiting other parts of the city.
Be warned about taxis as well. No meter means rip off and you should not get into a taxi without first agreeing to the price. This does not count at the airport where a man in the booth determines how much he thinks you are worth for the destination you name. We paid 8 Omani Riyals for our outward journey from the airport to Qurum Beach (only a 15 minutes ride as it turned out so very expensive compared to Dubai) but only 3 for our return to the airport by just hailing one going past. Beware of a axi with the number plate 1049 who ripped us off by agreeing (finally) to a price before we got in, telling us the whole way why he wanted more in the most unpleasant wheedling way and then refused to give us change when we handed over a larger note (Tip - carry small change to ensure this doesn't happen in a taxi!).
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- This boutique resort on Qurum beachfront offers air-conditioned rooms with a private balcony and views of Muscat or Arabian Gulf. The resort has its own continental restaurant and a garden with a pool.An LCD TV and safe are available in all of Al Qurum's hotel rooms. Each is equipped with a minibar, tea/coffee facilities and a private bathroom.A continental breakfast is served daily in Al Qurum resort's restaurant or on the sun terrace. There is also a bar for drinks and snacks.The on-site fitness centre offer guests an alternative to the beach and pool area. There are also a few souvenir shops and a business centre.Al Qurum is located 15 km from Seeb Airport. It is set nearby the shopping area of Jawahrat Al Shatti Complex. Free parking is available. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Agoda and Booking.com so you can book your Al Qurum Resort reservations with confidence. We help millions of travellers each month to find the perfect hotel for both holiday and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
- Also Known As:
- Al Qurum Hotel Muscat