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“Absolutely Perfect!”

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Al Bustan Palace, A Ritz-Carlton Hotel
Ranked #4 of 50 Hotels in Muscat
Certificate of Excellence
England
Level Contributor
48 reviews
36 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 68 helpful votes
“Absolutely Perfect!”
Reviewed 11 February 2011

We stayed at the Al Bustan Palace for four nights in February and were completely delighted with the entire experience. This was our first visit to Muscat and we had spent some time researching hotels on the internet. We chose the Al Bustan Palace because of the beautiful private gardens and beach. Other hotels looked good but couldn't compete with the extensive private grounds on offer here. From the moment we arrived at the airport we knew we had made the right decision. We had arranged for the hotel to send a car to collect us from the airport, knowing that we would be arriving in a new country after an overnight flight from the UK feeling a little disorientated. The driver was waiting for us when we arrived and, during our journey, provided an informative and interesting commentary on the local areas that we passed through. Upon arrival at the hotel too early to book into our room, the reception desk very kindly booked us into a temporary room so that we could get a little sleep and freshen up whilst they prepared our room for us. They then called us when the room was ready and transferred our luggage immediately. The rooms are luxurious, the beds are extremely comfortable and there are some nice extra touches such as plates of fresh fruit and a complimentary minibar (no alcohol but lots of fruit juices), plus an abundance of mineral water which is regularly topped up.

The private gardens are simply beautiful with palm trees swaying in the breeze, tropical birds singing away and so many sun loungers and hammocks that there really is room for you to have privacy and peace whilst you soak up the winter sun. The infinity pool is fabulous and, if this wasn't enough, the gardens lead straight onto the private beach. It's paradise. Each time you go down to use the gardens the kind poolside staff will come and arrange the towels on the sun loungers for you and provide a complimentary coolbox containing mineral water and water sprays. They remember your name and couldn't be more willing to make your experience a happy one.

We had breakfast, lunch and dinner in the buffet restaurant and lunch, dinner and drinks in the beachside restaurant. The food is excellent in both and the service second to none. We also had tea in the lobby and sampled the arabic coffee experience there too - this is a must!!

The concierge desk was excellent - complete professionalism all round.

We are already planning our return trip next year as 4 nights simply wasn't long enough.

  • Stayed February 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank MoneypennyEngland
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
AlBustanPalace, Manager at Al Bustan Palace, A Ritz-Carlton Hotel, responded to this review, 26 March 2011
Thank you for taking the time to review our hotel. It is a great pleasure to read that you and your partner have enjoyed your first stay with us.

We appreciate the nice comments you had about the Front Desk team. and are are deeply touched with your detailed description of our restaurants and hotel facilities.

We sincerely hope to see you back in the very near future for an equally exhilarating stay.

Warm regards,
The Executive Team at Al Bustan Palace InterContinental Muscat
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2,104 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 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 (496)
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newyork
Level Contributor
115 reviews
70 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 167 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 January 2011

This is a beautiful hotel with great service and all the amenities you could ever ask for. It is big, yet corridors and rooms are quiet and no part of the hotel ever seems crowded. Beautiful pools and lovely beach on a secluded cove. With 4 restaurants (we ate in the 2 where outdoor dining is available, and both were very good), the hotel is a self-contained destination in itself. My only reservation is that it is what my husband and I call a "golden ghetto" - you could stay here warming your bones, spa-ing and sunbathing for days and never have a clue what Oman is like! It is, of course, quite expensive. We booked the lowest rate room - non-refundable 7-day advance booking - and discovered (1) it didn't include breakfast and (2) the breakfast buffet costs about $50 per person. However, you can order breakfast a la carte if you ask - we got away with an average of about $20 per person for juice, coffee and cereal with fruit.

  • Stayed January 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank bornin42
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
AlBustanPalace, Manager at Al Bustan Palace, A Ritz-Carlton Hotel, responded to this review, 4 April 2011
Dear Guest,

We are happy to hear your positive comments and that you enjoyed your stay with us.
We have shared your feedback with our colloeagues and we hope to see you again in the near future.

Kindest regards,
The Executive Team of Al Bustan Palace InterContinental Muscat
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Southern Germany
Level Contributor
37 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 January 2011

Oman is a must-see destination is the Middle East and Muscat a city that kept its Arabian character and charm. When staying there try to book the Al Bustan Palace - it is not cheap but the experience is worth it. From an amazing lobby to nice rooms (do not choose the cheapest ones, they are pretty small; the private pool access rooms are nice) and a great garden this hotel offers quite a lot. The private beach is awesome. Location is something inbetween good and less good: excellent for quiet relaxation, but not in Muscat City at all.

  • Stayed February 2010, travelled solo
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank BZ_FTL
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
AlBustanPalace, Manager at Al Bustan Palace, A Ritz-Carlton Hotel, responded to this review, 4 April 2011
Dear Guest,

We appreciate the kind review and it is always a pleasure to know that you have enjoyed your stay with us and we hope to see you again soon.

Best regards,
The Executive Team of Al Bustan Palace InterContinental Muscat
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sankt Gallen
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 January 2011

We arrived in the morning, the check in lasted for about 15 minutes, there were no welcome drinks served. Staff at the check in was friendly. The room we got (seaview) was rather small compared with other hotels, the bathroom tiny-so it was only possible to be in there alone. The room was always perfectly cleaned, the mini bar was comlimentary which was really nice. A big minus was that the isolation of the room: it was very bad so we always heard our neighbours talking...we also woke up during the night because of the toilet flush in the room next to us. The balcony is small but big enough for 2 people sitting there.
The breakfast is nice, also the food at all restaurants, service has been very good. Be careful when getting into the swinning pool-all our bathing suits turned yellow and stank really bad-we had to wash them three times at home to get them clean and good smelling again.
The beach was clean, be careful then getting into the water because of the stones (take swimming shoes with you). What I really regret is that there was no real kids club-the kids had to sit in the lobby of the fitness centre when painting etc...Such a big hotel with no space for kids? The nanny being there was nice and friendly though. No comlimentary w-lan in the room.
Overall, a nice trip but not excellent.

  • Stayed September 2010, travelled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank Weltenbummler76
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Epsom, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
58 reviews
42 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 January 2011

We celebrated New Year's Eve at this hotel and had a good time. We had a slight problem on arrival as our room was not ready, despite us checking in at the correct time, however this was rectified after we complained. The room was beautiful; well equipped, well maintained and well stocked, including a free non alcohol mini bar and snacks. The hotel had plenty of activities to do both indoors and outdoors and there was a great choice of eating places although some of them were very pricey. We ate at the French style restaurant, Vue. However the quality was very good. Because it was new year, we were also invited down to the stunning lobby for a glass of champagne and canapes before dinner. The only downside was the breakfast. The system for getting tables at breakfast was chaotic - they did not make sure there was a table free before escorting guests to the tables, so you had to stand there getting in the way while a table was cleared for you. We also had to ask 3 times for tea and coffee, then a further time for a cup to drink it from! But this is really the only critisism we had. The selection of food for breakfast was probably the best I've ever seen. I would definitely like to go back to this hotel but I think I'd better start saving up now!

  • Stayed December 2010, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank shamat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Croydon
Level Contributor
48 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 December 2010

The hotel has a wonderful location. The rooms are comfortable and the bed is probably the best I have come across in a hotel. The room cost includes a minibar with soft drinks which are provided free of charge. The room charges are however high.

We stayed in one of the rooms that retained its original design - these are on the first three floors, with the lobby on the fourth, and the redeveloped rooms on the fifth floor up. I have heard adverse comments that the relatively newly updated rooms are not terribly exciting.

There are four on-site restaurants (as well as a beach service facility). They are expensive. Alcohol is relatively expensive. Taxes and service are not included in the price quoted in the menu or the advertisements for the facilities. The service charge is listed separately from the gratuity line on the bill.

We used the Chinese restaurant (OK), the buffet restaurant (variable) and the beach pavillion (limited offerings for lunch) - the last of these is a replacement for the original facility with the advantage of airconditioning and suitability for use in the summer (often 45°+) at the expense of losing the charm of the older unit.

The service is excellent.

The internet access is expensive and was subject to problems during my stay - their system did not recognise that payment had already been made when logging in the next day. It took three attempts to get this sorted out but it worked in the end.

We stayed over Christmas and there were some small (surprise) 'presents' left in the room. Christmas Eve dinner was rather special (and rather more expensive) and Christmas Day food in the buffet a little disappointing.

During our stay a 'delegation' arrived complete with security forces and police, with added security checks and some of the (relatively few) lifts taken out of service for the use of the VIPS. Rather inconvenient and of course no advance notice.

The hotel shuttle buses operates a free service twice a day to the Mutrah Souk and two nearby shopping centres.

It is possible to rent an Avis car at the hotel or to book outings to places such as Nizwa and Wahiba Sands.

  • Stayed December 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank Selsdonian
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Washington DC
Level Contributor
134 reviews
45 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 147 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 December 2010

Total luxury. Difficult to describe, perfect view, delicious breakfast, a complete "pillow menu" and and a perfect mattress. Together with corteous staff and spacious room, this hotel has a well deserved reputation. Two small aspects to take into account: Staff sometimes tend to be a bit overwhelming, knocking on your door every five minutes to see if you need something or to bring complimentary fruits, water or tea. I ended up using a lot the "do not disturb" sign. And yes, as one of the reviewers mentioned, the hotel is a bit far away from everywhere (that's why it has a private beach!), but since there is no an actual "center" in Muscat, you aren't missing much.

  • Stayed October 2010, travelled on business
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank elmasgrande
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Al Bustan Palace, A Ritz-Carlton Hotel

Property: Al Bustan Palace, A Ritz-Carlton Hotel
Address: PO Box 1998, Muscat 114, Oman (Formerly Al Bustan Palace, a Ritz-Carlton Hotel)
Phone Number:
Region: Oman > Muscat Governorate > Muscat
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Business Hotel in Muscat
#1 Romantic Hotel in Muscat
#2 On the Beach Hotel in Muscat
#4 Luxury Hotel in Muscat
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:5 star — Al Bustan Palace, A Ritz-Carlton Hotel 5*
Number of rooms: 250
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Set against a dramatic backdrop of rugged mountains, Al Bustan Palace, a Ritz-Carlton Hotel, lies solitary amid an emerald green oasis with 200 acres of lush beachfront landscaping. We are a top choice among hotels in Muscat, Oman, offering accommodations and public spaces that overlook the glittering azure waters of the Gulf of Oman. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Intercontinental Hotel Muttrah

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