We have just returned from a week in the Stella Makadi, having supposed to have been in Thailand before being cancelled due to the current problems.
We chose Hurghada because neither of us had been there before but between us, we had been to Taba and Sharm.
Upon arrival, we were extremely pleased with our choice of hotel. It was well looked after, the rooms were nice and there was a good atmosphere around the place. It is situated right on the beach and has various things to do on site, including quad biking, camel and horse riding, a Spa, a well equipped gym as well as the swimming pools. If you are happy with staying within the resort, then this is a good place to travel to.
The standard of the rooms never faltered and were cleaned to a high standard each day and the taxi services offered from the hotel were excellent. The staff, particularly in the restaurants, were excellent too, whether you tipped them or not.
Unfortunately, the hotel entertainment of an evening is completely useless and there is not a lot to do of an evening if you don't like it!
Outside of this, for us, we were disappointed with the overall holiday. We met people out in Makadi who we knew from home and who were staying at the Makadi Palace and both of them and I were ill for several days and this was a common theme around the resort, not just out hotel, but others from the Makadi area. From this, I didn't really eat any of the food on offer within the restaurants. I was put off for having been ill for three days and although the range of food is good and I am not a fussy eater at all, a lot of it still was not appetizing.
We spent most of our days on holiday on the beach and you get constantly harassed by people from the hotel trying to get you to go and spend money in their areas, the Spa staff, the quad biking staff, the henna tattoo people etc and it is all day, every day and it drove us crazy. Some do not take no for an answer and are so persistent that you end up having to be rude to them so that they will go away, only for them to return the next day.
The same sales tactics are applied if you travel into the main Hurghada town, which is a 30-45 minute drive from the hotel. Each and every shop has someone stood outside of it and they will grab you, stand in your way and shout at you if you don't go and have a look. The best way we found was to completely not engage them in the slightest. We were not impressed with Hurghada town but just along from here is a new Hugh Street sort of area which contains the well advertised nightclub called The Little Buddha. If you use this as a reference to the taxi drivers, this is the only way that you will find it because no one seemed to know the name of this road. This area has a more cosmopolitan feel with small shops, coffee shops and bars but can again be walked down and up in an hour or so.
If you get a taxi back from here - beware! There is a small border that you will have to go through to get back to Makadi from Hurghada and the taxi driver will get charged to go through. Set the price of your taxi before leaving Hurghada and DO NOT pay the charge for the border. The drivers will try and get you to pay it for them on top of your fixed price and as told to us by the reps, it is NOT our job to pay for this. They are extremely persistent and will chase you from their cab when you don't pay it for them, as we experienced.
In all, there is not a lot to keep you occupied if you do choose Hurghada, outside of the day to day activities. The quad biking was OK, but having done it in Tunisia, was nowhere near the standard of this and was slow and dull in comparison. Talking of this, a lot of people now say that Tunisia is a similar holiday destination to Egypt and we went last year. If I had to choose which was better for me, I would choose Tunisia. The hotel definitely will not be as good as Egypt but the activities such as the quad biking and beach buggying are so much better. For those who like the pool and beach, you still also get this.
If you choose to travel to Hurghada, there is only one place to stay within Makadi and that's Makadi Palace. This is where our friends stayed and we went over for an evening and it was absolutely breathtaking. It cost them £100 more than us each to stay there but was so worth it. If we hadn't have been to this place, we would have said our hotel was five star. If Stella Makadi is five, Makadi Palace is seven.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Stella Di Mare Makadi Beach Resort & Spa is located in the prominent Makadi Bay area, on Egypt's beautiful Red Sea Riviera. Makadi is a peaceful bay with many opportunities for snorkeling and scuba diving. The semi-tropical climate makes this both a summer and winter resort. With its warm, healthy climate and the beauties of the coral reefs, this is a place to delight sun seekers and water sports enthusiasts alike. Makadi Bay is a convenient 25km south of Hurghada International Airport. The location makes it easy to access the town of Hurghada, and there are many other notable places of interest nearby, such as the island of Giftun, which is a Marine National Park, where desert and marine life are protected by law. In fact, much of the Red Sea area has a protected status. The Stella Makadi Resort & Spa is situated on a white sandy beach, and has a spectacular house reef very close by, which guests may use for snorkeling. In addition to the natural beauty of its setting, the resort has the advantage of many facilities and services to ensure a holiday that offers a wide choice of activities. There is a Spa and Health club, a shopping mall and a discotheque, to name just a few Stella Makadi Resort & Spa guests are assured of dedicated service, with all their needs taken care of in a relaxed and enjoyable atmosphere ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Stella Makadi Hotel Makadi Bay