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“Average hotel - Get what you pay for.”

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Orient Palace Hotel
Ranked #22 of 36 Hotels in Sousse
Reviewed 25 August 2014

This is an average hotel with everything you need for a cheap and cheerful getaway. On arrival our room wasn't ready; however, the reception staff moved us on to another room straight way when we went back down to reception. The hotel its self can come across as dated in the bedrooms, but you get what you pay for! The holiday was made a lot better by the staff that worked there, this was after they had been tipped around 5 dinar - about £1.50 at the end of the first night. The staff were friendly and tried to look after you as much as they could. The food at the hotel is average at best and can be repetitive as a few people have pointed out. If you are all inclusive I would recommend eating at the pizzeria (£7.50 for two large stone baked pizzas) or the Cafe Moure restaurant (mixed grill was around £6.00 cooked fresh on a BBQ grill - they also had a good seafood choice here) to try and break up eating at the restaurant every night. This does take the point of going all inclusive away but by trying the different restaurants we seemed to enjoy it more. I think any longer than a week and we would have had to start eating at different restaurants outside of the hotel. If you are going with children the animation team are great and have things going on in the pool through the day and a mini disco on the evening. The children seemed to constantly be having a good time.

  • Stayed: August 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank David H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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167 - 173 of 876 reviews

Reviewed 25 August 2014

We made the stupid mistake of staying at the Orient Palace for 2 weeks, as this was our first time in Tunisia. From our first impression as we arrived it wasn't good, and that was before we saw our room. No air conditioning, it blew out warm air, fridge that didn't work at all, plug sockets hanging off the wall. This was definitely not a 5 star hotel, more like a 1 star. The hotel is very old, tired looking and out dated, staff do their best to help, but not always up to our standard. We were on the second floor room 210, and the only good thing was it was quiet, nice view to pool, beach etc, and our maid Sonia was so lovely. Clean towels every day, and she made the room up daily. Pool was always crowded, and water was dirty, you had to be up at the crack of dawn to get a sun bed, other wise it was the grass, or the beach area. As for the food, it was exactly the same, Lunch, and Evenings for the entire time we were there. Breakfast was no better, like a Cattle market, pushing and shoving, with the locals piling their plates up, leaving nothing for anyone else, then leaving most of it anyway. Their manners are appalling, the locals, picking food up with their hands, taking bites out and then putting it back.The children running wild, using tongs to put food on their plates, and then licking the tongs before putting them back in the food. They had air con machines in the restaurant, but they never put them on, same as everywhere in the hotel, so you are just sweating constantly. If you wanted a decent meal you had to pay to sit in the A La carte restaurant, which at least was outside, and very quiet. In the Bar nearly every evening they ran out of Brandy, other spirits and even bottles of Water. My partner even witnessed the bar staff filling up bottles of their tap water, and giving it to customers, which is not good. No entertainment in the evening, only for the kids, but not every night. Nowhere to walk to in the evenings, as you didn't feel safe. An on-site night club, open to anybody from outside the hotel, which closed at 4 in the morning. They do not cater for the Brits, and make it quite clear that they class us as second class citizens. Any complaints made to reception, gets ignored, so you just have to sit up and shut up. We regretted going for a fortnight, 2 days after arriving, all in all a total waste of time and money. Our first time in Tunisia should have been one to remember, but all we will remember is how much we missed being at home, with decent food, decent manners, and friendly faces. Please, please avoid staying here at all costs. I contracted food poisoning the last few days we were there and am still getting over it now. I have never felt so ill in my life, and my partner has come back with Shingles GREAT!!!!!!!!!!!

Room Tip: Fourth floor room 401, 402 supposed to be the best rooms in the hotel.
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  • Stayed: August 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank 246Halls
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 August 2014

I'm surprised reading all these bad opinions about Orient Palace. Strange that most of them are written by British. I talked to other Polish, Russian and German clients of the hotel and most of them were satisfied like me. Of course when you come to Tunisia in the middle of high touristic season you have to be prepared for many unconveniences: the long time of waiting for check in, full hotel and no posibility to change the room, many arabic hotel guests and some problems in the restaurants, bars and beach (if you expect "royal" service you have to come before or after "high" season).This year I came back to this hotel for the second time (my first visit there - 10 years ago). Many things have been changed in Tunisia and in this hotel (officially it has now only 4* and not 5* any more, so why people still expect 5*level ??? and also the price is very cheap !!!), but one thing didn't change: warm and polite staff, always eager to help. We met there our good friend from the past - Sabri who work in animation and thanks to him and other people from the old staff we spent nice time in warm, family atmosphere. Probably we will come back to this hotel, but next time sure after the summer season.

  • Stayed: August 2014, travelled with family
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Ewa M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 August 2014

Worst holiday we have ever had and by far the worst all inclusive of the four we have done. Was told this had lost all it's star's which was no surprise, certainly not higher than 2*. Arrived late (2 1/2 hour delay) and put in room 485. Fridge didn't work and AC poured water all over floor when turned on. No drinks or toilet paper, carpet was sticky and the towels were filthy. Complained and was told we needed to come down to get water and that room was only temporary for us that night. Good job we hadn't unpacked.
Next day didn't get new room until 12.00, and that was still dirty when we went to it. (Saw we were on a list of at least 15 rooms where people had asked to change).
No soap and no drinks in fridge for two days and 3 complaints later. I could have written paula h "avoid at all costs" myself as our experience was almost identical.
Cleaning of the room wasn't part of the chamber maids skills, as she must have devoted her time to rifling through our bags. Luckily everything of importance was in the safe so nothing was missing.
Reception was manned by incompetents who told you any old rubbish so they did not have to deal with you. Only decent one was the guy who did money exchange. There is absolutely no management standards at this hotel at all, which is why the place is so dirty and badly run.
I usually eat anything, but, this was just slop and the same slop every day. Never had omelette as queue always too long, and the chef couldn't cook for more than one person at a time. We paid to eat out 3 times so we had something decent to eat. We then didn't have to put up with the Russians, Libyans, and Moroccans piling their plates as high as possible to see how much they could leave after they had finished troughing.
Beach was always packed and dirty. Pool beds were also always packed, although pool guys did put white towels on chairs so that they could then take them off and make out they had found you beds!!
Sousse as a place was disgustingly dirty with litter everywhere. We went on a trip for 2 days and the smell of sewage was disgusting when we drove back in from the countryside. Being away from the hotel for two days was the highlight of our holiday visiting the 3 deserts.
Would never go back to Tunisia again as everyone we spoke to on plane seemed to have issues even those who had visited before.
It's a shame as some of the country we visited was lovely. Orient Palace will just ruin your time there if you are mad enough to stay there. Have already put in complaint to Thomas Cook and may not be using them again either!! Glad we only stayed for 1 week.

Room Tip: Don't have a room facing car park as you will be woken by the fights from the nightclub. Sea fac...
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  • Stayed: August 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
1  Thank Steve M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 August 2014

We returned yesterday from what was meant to be a wonderful break in Tunisia. This is our third trip to Tunisia so we knew the Tunisian people. What a Nightmare. We were expecting a 5* hotel that from the photos looked amazing. On arrival what a nightmare Our room wasn't ready so we were asked to have our lunch. 31/2 hours later we still had no room. On numerous trips into the Managers office. He finally gave us another room which he took us to himself. Which guess what wasn't ready. By now we have lost our first day, and our suitcases were still not with us. Unhappy was an understatement. The hotel is very tired. Dirty carpets, lifts working when they wanted to being on the 4th floor this wasn't great. Our plugs in our room were not working. exposed wires. Only two towels in our room for three days when their was three of us was not acceptable. The reception staff were absolutely useless. I requested toilet roll as our room had not been cleaned., After waiting two and a half hours I got cross and phoned the reception and shouted within 10 minutes it arrived. So obviously being polite gets you no where. Food is reheated and bought out the next day and seeing the Russians, Algerians and the locals filling their plates is like watching pigs round a trough. If you do not hold your own you would starve. Food is very poor and the same everyday. We are not fussy people but this was dire. We will be speaking to our travel agent as we have been told the hotel has been striped of its stars and is waiting for the Tunisian travel board to re assess . The gym was closed for the first three days and my teenage son wanted to use it. He finally got three days in there but had to walk through the building repairs and wet paint to get to it. The area was being refurbished so the sound of drilling and banging was nice when you are trying to relax in the sun. Fridge was not restocked as It was meant to. The restaurants you were meant to get your free al a carte meals in were only being used if you paid extra so you had to eat your al a carte in the wooden shack called la Dune. There was no evening entertainment and the animation team apparently had not been paid so all I saw was a bit of water polo and two darts games in a week nothing in the evening at all. The only thing that was positive was the staff as they are doing all they can with what they have got which isn't a lot. I have never been all inclusive where they run out of drinks at 8.30 pm. One day I couldn't even get a bottle of still water. We always go All inclusive and have never ever been to such a horrendous hotel. Please do not go..... All the English people we meet at the hotel had similar experiences as us. do not waste your money going here.

  • Stayed: August 2014, travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
2  Thank paula h
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 August 2014

PLEASE BE AWARE- STAFF are writing the good reviews! Notice how all the 'amazing' and most recent reviews about this place all mention the Animation Team and have only reviewed this one hotel. Believe me, the only reason you would go to the effort of setting up an account to review this hotel would be to warn people NOT TO GO!!!!

I am the type of traveller who is happy with a 2* hotel as long as its clean and I get fresh towels/bedding. So please don't see this as a typical 'moaning' Brit review.

Stayed in the Orient Palace with my fiancée. This presented an issue on arrival as those on reception could not understand why two females would wanted a double room. Feeling vulnerable at this point we insisted it was just a room together that we wanted. Not in fact the double room that had been requested from our booking agent. Homosexuality if you were unaware is illegal in Tunisia.

Problems:

Arrived at 2.05pm (check in 2pm) but told to return 30 minutes later as room wasn’t ready.
We should have actually checked in at 10.30am but didn't due to a delayed flight
Given no information about 'All inclusive'
No towels or toilet roll in room (Had to ask twice for these) Arrived 6 hours later.
Power cut on first day- no Air Con, no hot water. This continued throughout the week
Private beach was full of rubbish.
Turned away at numerous bars as these were not included in AI option.
Poor drinks selection
When asking for 'cocktail' there were no options to choose from. You got what you were given.
All drinks given in plastic cup.... this is fine but most of the time the cup was only half full.
It seems staff here forgot that 'All Inclusive' guest have paid before they have arrived at the hotel.

Now for the main Restaurant: AKA 'The Canteen'

Food was cold (Due to power cut) and in my opinion UNSAFE to eat.
Selection was poor.
Food wasn't properly labelled. God help you if you have a nut allergy.
Witnessed on several occasions 'guest' using their fingers to taste selection of food.
Also witnessed 'guest' using serving spoons to taste and then returning theses to the dish for the next guest to use.
45-1hour wait to order eggs for breakfast although it was the safest thing to eat.
Had to ask everyday for plates/ cups and cutlery every day
The only time you got a 'clean' table was at the very start of service after this waiters would turn the table cloth over sit you down at a table with clearly visible 'grease'/ food stains.
Given dirty napkins
Drinks were poor: Ordered a lemonade in which I am certain was mixed with some sort of detergent fluid. In fairness it was the cleanest thing I had been presented with all week!!! But can only imagine was very unsafe to drink.
It was clear (No wrists bands) that the locals were coming into this hotel to eat. I can only describe feeding time like a scene from the 'Hunger Games' people were pushing and we witnessed 3 disagreements between 'paying' and 'non paying' guest. It was like everyman for himself!!!
Also witnessed people taking piles of food to tables and then placing these in containers to take away from hotel.

Non of the above was challenged by 'Management!!!'

Al a carte restaurants, although were far cleaner and a better service than the canteen it was still the same food available from the main restaurant.

The room:
Staff were taking our drinks from the mini bar.
Staff were drinking our drinks from the mini bar and returning half empty
Full mini bar consisted of 2 fizzy drinks and a bottle of water
Room was dated (again fine) I am not there to sit in my hotel room however stains, thick black hair and cracks in walls were not what I would expect of a hotel that claims to be a 5*
Our room was over looking the exit of nightclub (At approx 4am each day I would wake due to the noise of around 50+ people leaving.... followed by car horns, fighting, and police sirens.
Again had to ask for toilet roll and fresh towels.

The pool area:
I did not see the pool being cleaned once.
I often felt I was on a club 18-30 experience.... Loud music from 10am through to 5pm daily. Fine if that is what I was looking for from a holiday, I wasn’t.
Animation team in my opinion were poor. Nothing was ever translated in English and staff looked totally disengaged.
Building work carried out daily- drilling and hammering
Indoor pool, Jacuzzi and sauna closed

We spoke to another couple who had witnessed a stabbing on their first day. They chose to leave the hotel as they had also encountered the same problems as above but at a further cost themselves. We also witnessed two fights during the evening on the resort. Apparently there was security on site but we failed to see any presence during our stay.

Now for the positives:

CHECKING OUT!!!!

Room Tip: Stay at home.....
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Stayed: August 2014, travelled as a couple
3  Thank SLH847
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 August 2014

We stayed in this hotel in July. Although the hotel was a little dated and the food was repetitive, I have had a lovely time there with my 2 year old and my mother. Our seaview room (345) was clean and had enough space. It was also situated across the open air disco so in the evening we could hear the loud music but for us that was not a problem. We slept well anyway. It is true that a lot of Russian people stay in this hotel but to us they were very nice and they did not bother us. The first days of our stay we had some difficulties to get a table in the restaurant because they wanted to save the table for the guests that give a lot of tips and some waiters were rude but after a few days they got to know us and that wasnt a problem anymore. The pool was big and clean and not crowded and my daughter enjoyed it very much. She also enjoyed the dancing every evening in the kids disco.

I have read some reviews about paying extra for the drinks but we never had to pay for drinks or food. If you want to be sure that your Coke or Fanta has enough bubbles, get your drinks in the bar nearby the reception.

As you can see there are some good and some bad things to say about this hotel. For us, the people working in the hotel made everything right. Imed (Ben) and Rim of the animation team, Aymen of the restaurant, Ben the waiter, Ali and Anur of the swiming pool, Mohamed of Ali Baba and a lot of other people. Each in their own way, they made our stay in the hotel a succes.

  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled with family
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank S K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Orient Palace Hotel

Address: Boulevard 14 Janvier, Sousse 4051, Tunisia
Region: Tunisia > Sousse Governorate > Sousse
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#10 Spa Hotel in Sousse
#11 Luxury Hotel in Sousse
#16 On the Beach Hotel in Sousse
Price Range: £21 - £61 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Orient Palace Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 263
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
We have the great pleasure to invite you to discover our Hotel Orient Palace Resort & Spa, located on a beautiful sandy beach, 3 km from the famous Port Kantaoui, and 05 km from the center of Sousse, close to entertainment centers, and larger shopping centers ... ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hotel Orient Palace
Orient Palace Sousse

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