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“Great hotel but something lacking”

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Sofitel Taba Heights
Ranked #5 of 22 Hotels in Taba
Reviewed 20 November 2010

We enjoyed a week at the Sofitel the first week of November. The hotel is amazing and the rooms very spacious (definitely pay for the seaview upgrade). I can't say enough about the staff, they were amazing and did everything they could to make our trip enjoyable. However, there were a few things that did not make the trip as good as it should have been. The food was very average. The buffet was limited and the same food was cooked night after night. We spent one night at the Tepenyaki restaurant which was okay, not great, just okay. Also, I fell ill on the second day and when visiting the doctor, was surrounded by other hotel guests. After a couple of injections and a batch of antibiotics, I was good to go for the rest of the holiday. Another negative were the amount of russians. They continue to amaze me with their arrogance, their ill manners and their total disregard for anyone else! They are THE worst tourists I have ever come across. If I find a resort that doesn't allow Russians, I'll book a week there every year!

In all honesty, I probably would not go back here again, I think I would try a smaller hotel or a hotel with more restaurants.

  • Stayed: November 2010, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank SJGillett
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 20 November 2010

We are experienced travellers and holidaymakers but new to tripadvisor. We recognise individual expectations and perceptions vary and we have found it difficult assessing the relevance of some of the reviews to our own expectations. Firstly, the resort, better weather than the Carribean or Asia, being dry rather than humid. Not a lot to do at the resort but relax or take rather expensive and long trips although there are some shorter boat trips and a golf course. A good climate for outdoors in the evenings and no mosquitos or other biting insects. Access from the beach into the sea is difficult, over coral or using a wooden jetty.
Excellent rooms, pool, rooms and grounds and very clean throughout. We stayed in room 1416 and enjoyed a view over the main pool area and out to sea (thanks to the previous reviewer who recommended 1412!). The shower area is about ready for a refresh and maybe a bit more light and an extra mirror would improve the room further. This maybe in the hotel plans. We would choose the same room or an adjacent room again, preferring the view to those in blocks 2 or 3, although block 2 does look out to sea. As many other reviewers have mentioned the staff are excellent, friendly and efficient. They are not looking for tips everytime they serve you which is relaxing. Obviously they appreciate tips and the service gets even more personal. The Manager, Bert Plas is very hands on and accessible. Clearly he sets the tone and all the staff work all of the time to very good effect. Unfortunately, he maybe leaving in January so it may be worth checking the reviews following this if that happens. The only area which compares unfavourably with our experience of all inclusive four star is the food. Choice is limited, main courses are bordering on poor. A number of UK guests often chose to miss the main course altogether. The difficulties with the food supply is well known to the Management, the staff do their best with what is available but all food has to come from Cairo and cost controls and logistics rule.The pastry chef does an excellent job with sweet things and danish pastries. The rest is best described as average for Egypt.
Should this stop you going to the Sofitel? No, because there are so many other excellent aspects, but go with your eyes open about the food - not expecting five star Caribbean menus and you won't be disappointed. We have added it to our list of hotels to which we may return.

  • Stayed: November 2010, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank pater41
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 November 2010

We have just returned from 7 days in the Sofitel. The hotel is a large hotel with it's own section of private beach and six swimming pools. I loved the layout of the hotel and whilst in Taba Heights we visited a number of the other hotels and I still prefer the Sofitel.

The staff are friendly and the standard of the rooms and the quality of the hotel is good. The only thing that does let the hotel down is the food.

It is an all inclusive hotel so I have come to expect that it will always be buffet food, not hot and you are likely to get a dodgy tummy. The Sofitel is no exception, but there is really only one place to eat all your meals. Although they have two all inclusive restaurants, the food is the same and the second restaurant is really a spill over for when the first is full.

They do have one restaurant (well... maybe two, but the second one is not really a restaurant - it is by the pool where they serve food during the day) that you can pay to eat in, but given the quality of the all inclusive food it did not inspire us to risk trying and to pay!

That said, each night is themed and every other night they set up a BBQ outside and usually that was hot and tasty.

The evening hotel entertainment or animation team were some of the worst we have seen.

Going to Taba Heights is not a visit to Egypt as the whole place is basically a tourist resort by the sea, so you will need to leave/travel if you want to see Egypt.

From there most Tour Operators run trips and we did the trip to Petra, Jordan. Petra was great but be warned - you leave at 6.30 am and return at 10.00 pm and only get one meal - it is a very long day mostly taken up by travel with only really 2/3 hours in Petra.

The same is the case for Jerusalem and Cairo, which is even earlier - the tours leave at 3.30 am! So.... you really have to be up for it!

To travel between the hotels you can walk along the beach or if you don't want to walk or want to go to the local shops, you can get a free bus that runs every 20 minutes or so around the resort.

Golf here seems to be big.

Within the resort there is only on dive centre. You can book direct or through your Tour Operator, so check out prices and exchange rates to get the best deal as it will be same company you ended up diving with at the end of the day.

We also found that it was better to exchange money when you are there - the hotel has a cashpoint machine and bank and the local rates were better.

If you do go to Petra you will need some money for the horse ride (a tip/gratuity as the ride is usually covered in the cost of the Tour, but a small tip is expected), take some money so you can eat and drink and you will need to pay harbour tax - in cash, in local currency (70 LE person - about £8/9).

On arrival at the airport the queue is slow and long and unless you plan to leave the resort/Sinai area (or you are not going on an organised tour) - you will not need a Visa.

On leaving we were told by our Tour Operator that you can use credit cards at the airport, but you can't - cash only.

We booked through Thomson, but found the advice of the Thomson Hotel Representative to be poor and incorrect. Hopefully this is not the case with the others, but we would recommend doubling checking facts and advice with the hotel and other guests.

Finally, the snorkeling here is great! You must do it!

  • Stayed: November 2010, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank Malachi W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 November 2010

We thoroughly enjoyed our stay at the hotel. My 2 boys didn't want to leave, the bar staff made them feel ever so welcome!! Big thanks to Reda and Arhmed.

  • Stayed: October 2010
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Thank Kaikai2710
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 November 2010

We visited the Sofitel, Taba Heights, in October of this year with our 5yr old son. If you are looking for a relaxing break in the sun, this is an excellent location and hotel. There is little to no entertainment in the evening so if you are looking for that then is not the place. There are 2 bars in the evenings, both close at 11pm, although I think the Hyatt next door has later opening times. The hotel have a large outdoor area beside the poolside bar where they play a DVD for the kids and have games on early evening etc.

The main pool was excellent for us as our 5yr old could stand up at the deepest part so was able to really enjoy himself without needing us constantly in with him - he loved this! The pools are all very nice, but they have a granite floor so be careful of little feet with blisters if they are constantly in the pool and running around in it....

The main restaurant, Alladin, was excellent, the staff were wonderful, especially Ahmed at the tables close to the buffet area, and the variety of food on offer was impressive.

There is plenty of food/drink/ice cream etc available throughout the day in comparison to other all inclusive hotels with a wide and varied selection. The shop onsite can be expensive though so don't suggest picking up pool toys etc over there.

Having friends out there who took the trip to Petra, they said it was lovely - but a very long hike/trek with no shade - in no way suitable for unfit/kids/elderly - very hard going. Also, the market night on a Friday came highly recommended, but friends who had gone the week before said it is not pushchair friendly for anyone with younger children - beware.

October was definitely quiet in the hotel, although we struggled to get a space at the beach, the pool was always fine. The snorkelling is amazing, however, we seen more animated fish, eels, stringrays at the normal walk in section to the sea as opposed to out on the jetty. Don't worry for anyone not keen on snorkelling or younger kids unable to, it is not deep out towards the jetty and you can see just as much by standing as the water is so clear!

  • Stayed: October 2010, travelled with family
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2  Thank DeniseHudson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 November 2010

We stayed for 2 weeks at the Sofitel and had a wonderful, relaxing holiday. The choice of food was excellent. The whole hotel, including our rooms were spotless, we were impressed with the soundproofing of the bedrooms, were heard absolutely nothing from the rooms above, below and each side. Most of all every single member of staff did everything possible to make our stay perfect.

  • Stayed: October 2010, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank sunkissed010
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 November 2010

This hotel is by far the best I have ever stayed in. Everything was absolutely perfect for our stay there. The staff were the hotels' best asset, everyone without exception was very friendly and welcoming.
The surroundings and facilities were so clean and maintained to the highest degree.
The food was varied and very well presented and the swimming pools were spotless.

  • Stayed: November 2010
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1  Thank Penny1960
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Sofitel Taba Heights

Address: Km 42 Taba Newuiba Road | Taba Heights, Taba 46621, Egypt
Region: Egypt > Red Sea and Sinai > Taba
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Romantic Hotel in Taba
#2 Family Hotel in Taba
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Taba
#4 Top resorts Hotel in Taba
#5 Luxury Hotel in Taba
Price Range: £23 - £54 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Sofitel Taba Heights 5*
Number of rooms: 442
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A truly magnificent location, at the northern tip of the Gulf of Aqaba between the southern Sinai mountains and the Red Sea, Sofitel Taba Heights is also a uniquely designed hotel, inspired by traditional Oriental architecture. This exceptional resort is an all-inclusive property with easy access to the private beach, 3 exquisite restaurants, 5 swimming pools, a fitness center and 3 meeting rooms. Just 20 km from downtown Taba and 40 km from the airport, it's convenient for business and pleasure. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sofitel Taba Heights Hotel Taba
Taba Heights
Accor Taba Heights
Taba Sofitel

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