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“Well I had a great time!”
Review of SENTIDO Phenicia

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SENTIDO Phenicia
Ranked #8 of 119 Hotels in Hammamet
Reviewed 7 November 2008

I stayed here for one week in mid october and had a great stay. The hotel was inviting, well organised and clean. The staff were always helpful and happy to oblige. Our rep was also great. A Northern lass with a great sense of humour and time to chat.

The catering was superb. Cooking for 300 to 700 people per meal is no mean feat and the reviewer on this site who's partner lived on pizza all week baffled me. The food was, on the whole, fresh and well prepared and the choice was spoiling! (the pizza looked the least appetising thing there). I wanted for nothing in the dinning room! Sharing a table sounded like something to be endured but actually was fine and my dinning partners were a lovely couple from Bedford with whom daily experiences were shared.

Some people have described the foyer / bar as being 'cold' in feel. To me it was refreshingly modern. It put me in mind of The Saunderson Hotel in London.... I'm so glad it wasn't fake a Tunisian traditional cafe bar themed space.... So tacky! The rooms were neither overly spacious nor particularly luxurious but they were clean and comfortable. No air con in October but you don't chaise the sun in October and then moan about its effects! *winks*

I would give this hotel 9 out of 10 for an Autumn or Spring break; when the hotel is not running at full capacity. What I would have thought of it in July I cannot say.

As a foot note the hotel is architecturally striking having been built in the late 60's / early 70's and is one of the few hotels in the area that isn't trying too look like it was built 100+ years ago. Eleven out of Ten to the architect!

  • Stayed: October 2008, travelled solo
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2  Thank SkyMotel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 5 November 2008

We had never been to Tunisia before but can say we were very happy to recommend this hotel and Hammamet itself. We went for a week to give it a try but wished we could have stayed longer.
The rooms are good and kept very clean, only problem we had was that the air con is switched off in October so the rooms are warm at night. There is an indoor and two large outdoor pools, plenty of sunbeds poolside and on the beach and free change of towels.The sea was still very warm and I guess would be right into November. The food was more Tunisian than we would have expected so that was interesting, there was plenty of choice for those who wanted european cusisine. The wine was drinkable and the coffee served at the various bars was excellent. The hotel has 7 tennis courts, 5 clay which are well used and of a good standard. The hotel is in between Hammamet and the rather uninteresting Yasmine Hanmmamt a short cheap taxi ride to both or there is the little seaside train. Just one word of warning I am sure I got ripped off at the airport money exchange so try to take as litte as possible to change.

  • Stayed: October 2008, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank AlanR67
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 November 2008

We returned from the Phenicia after a two week stay on the 27 October 2008. Some of the previous reviews were a bit scary but we found it to be fine.
The food was good and there was plenty of choice. So much so I have put on half a stone. Anyone that says the food is bad is talking rubbish. We used the A`la Carte restaurant as well and found the choice on the A`la carte menu very good. If you choose to use this menu you receive a fifty % discount on your bill. You can use the wine and beer list from the all inc option so do not have to spend out on expensive drinks. Or use the fixed menu which comes as part of the all inc option but with a bit of finesse.
The best waiter in the main dining room is Ali he is a star and looked after us very well. All the staff are very good and a small tip does go a long way. There is a hotel being built next door and there was some noise but it was minimal. If you like to party and get drunk do not go here it`s not that sort of place, the beers to weak any way and we are pretty sure it`s non aloholic although the barman said it was 4.2. The only downside the animation staff they do not leave you alone. but if you go on the beach get the black dog called Fox to sit next to you as he doesn`t like them either and his bark will keep them away! They couldn`t except the fact we did not want to join in all we wanted to do was relax, read, sunbathe enjoy the company of the people we came on holiday with. Which we did and really enjoyed our two weeks here. Would we go back? Probably not but thats only because we don`t go any where twice.

  • Stayed: October 2008, travelled with friends
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1  Thank DunfermlineFifeLorna
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 November 2008

Just returned from Iberostar Phenicia with my husband and two teenage sons (aged 16 and 13). We went in October 1/2 term all inclusive with First Choice Holidays.

Weather was mainly good (one day of drizzle), the rest of the week we were at the beech.

After reading some reviews I was somewhat dubious about what I would find.

I needn't have worried at all!
We had two rooms booked for the four of us. I had visions of them being on separate floor or opposite ends of the hotel but they were actually next door to each other which was good.

Rooms were quite basic but had everything we needed and were very clean. Bathroom was spacious and imaculate. Safety deposit boxes were available for a small fee. There was also a mini fridge for cold drinks etc.

Check in was easy, we also changed some money into dinars as you cna't change it here prior to going (their Government sets the exchange rate).

Porters took our cases to our rooms, we gave them a dinar per case as suggested by others.

Lunch and evening food was superb, plenty of choice each lunch and dinner (as long as you dont just want to eat english food, this would get boring). Every day there was a chef in the centre of the dining area making up a speciality dish.
They made some fantastic deserts which were brought in ceremoniously (as were some speciality dishes). You could make as many trips to the buffet as you wanted.
We were allocated the same waiter all week. We tipped him a bit every day and the service was super, he had drinks waiting for us when we got there, remembered our preferences etc.
We didn't bother with the a-la-carte restuarant because we liked the buffet so much.

Breakfast was a bit too German for me but my husband loved it. There was no bacon but of course Tunisia is a Muslim country. Plenty of croisants though, plus omlettes and pancakes, plus cereal etc.

Snack bar was open in the afternoon serving cold meats, cheeses, pizza slices, cakes etc. Plus the pancake man was there again doing a roaring trade.

The lounge bar was open from 9am serving alcoholic and soft drinks, as was the pool bar and the beach bar. I found if we tipped we got conversation, if not we didn't . We didn't use the american bar as you had to pay for drinks in there.

Lounge/reception area was nice and airy, nice atmosphere and many nationalities. Entertainmen was either someone playing instruments in the lobby or more holiday camp like on the stage. Entertainers were multi-lingual which was fantastic to listen to.

We played tennis, did archery and there was also crazy golf. There was a coach taking guests off to a course. Horse riding was available.
There's a small shop on site who accept various currencies.

There were two pools, both well maintained and plenty of sunbeds. The outside pool interconnected with the indoor one.
Didn't use the turkish bath/massage but it always seemed to have plenty of people in there. There was also a small gym which could be used for 5 dinar (less than £3).

Beech was fab, sunbed men gave out matresses when you arrived and collected them when you left. You got to use hotel beach towels, just pay 20 dinar deposit - you get this back as long as you return the towels a the end of your stay. You can exchange them as often as you like. Pedlos are free of charge subject to conditions.
Sunbed men kept the beech clean, we walked along and this beach was by far the cleanest.
DO NOT LIE ON THE FRONT ROW OF SUNBEDS or you will be pestered by sellers. You can buy doughnuts, jewelry, camel rides, sarongs, cuddly toys, fruit etc. These guys are persistent and will try to get you talking and buying! They are allowed on the sea front as this is public property, further back its private property, belonging to the hotel. The sunbed guys did tend to shooo them off.

There are cats living on the complex and dogs on the beach. This did not bother us as we have animals at home but it seemed to bother some, especially if the dogs barked, though they were actually friendly.

We only went into town once. Yellow taxis are cheaper and cost approx 5 dinars to get into Hammamet town. Keep an eye on their meter. If there is a "2" in the corner when you get in make them change it back to a "1" or they will try and charge you more. Their driving is very different to UK standards - beware!!!

There's haggling in town which got on my nerves a bit. Be careful and not fall for their tricks. One of the ploys is they see your wrist band from the hotel and tell you they work there and its their day off and they'll show you around, they will show you around - their shop! Dont get ripped off. A watch my son wanted started at 130 dinar, I got it for him for 20 dinar (£8 approx) with lots of shouting and arm waving and walking away.

The only landscape we saw was between the airport and resort. From what we saw there are lots of Olive trees and some farming but clearly some poverty too looking at some of the buildings. Lots of litter but dont let this put you off.

Monastir airport on our return was very hot, crowded and smokey. Beware food is VERY EXPENSIVE there. We paid over £10 for 2 waters 2 cokes and a Mars bar. Toilets were limited and not clean.

When we went the hotel was approx 1/2 full. I dont know if I'd go back peak season but I will DEFINATELY go back.

  • Stayed: October 2008, travelled with family
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3  Thank Donashford
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 October 2008

Got back 20 Oct after 1 week stay. Hotel was quite good, waiters cant do enough for you but tip a little but often you will get better service especially when sat down round lobby bar area.Food in buffet restaurant was good plenty of choices,rooms basic but clean.Although night time round lobby bar area lacks a bit of atmosphere, with most people keeping to themselves. There is a lot of different nationalities at any one time in the hotel. The only down side about the hotel is the American Bar you have to pay for your drinks cocktails 6 dins about £3, but beware the drinks not on the menu you will get ripped of big time. I fancied a Baileys not a big measure after my evening meal the last night cost me 15 dins £7 nearly fainted. But heard a story about another guest got himself 2 JB Whiskies one for himself and his wife cost 60 dins £30 that is the gospel truth so BEWARE.
Would i go back to this hotel? probably not like i said before can be a bit boring at nights. Entertainment not that good, but all in all had a good week.

Stayed: October 2008
1  Thank oswaldtwistle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 October 2008

Just got back, and have to say I was a little weary as some of the reviews were poor. But.... I loved it! We our in our 20's and we went as a group of 4( 2 couples) and had fantastic time! Staff our excellent! Superb service especially our waiters who remeber what we drank each day and night. Some all inclusives there a bit tight on the drinks, but each night we went to dinner bottles of wine were waiting on the table for us!! Star Friends staff are great as well, all good fun! we spent lots of time chilling round Pool bar, and there were always plenty of sunbeds. Think it was time of year though.

Rooms were lovely, not excellent but clean, which is all that matters to me.

Evening entertainment was just good family fun. The music did get a bit familiar in the disco, but we were happy just to get drunk and mess around!

Food was fantastic lots of choice, even had wild boar!!! and on the last night it was candlelit in the main restaurant which I thought looked lovely! You can use the a la carte restaurant as well, which is nice.(one visit per stay).

Musts - Visit the medina at Yasmine & the marina. We also went to the zoo which is about 20mins from hotel, there are loads of animals-Elephants, Tigers, Giraffes and you can try camel riding! which is fun!

Anyway I could go on, but I loved it, we all did, and it was better than I thought, just wish i would of stayed 2 weeks!

Have fun! and get merry, cause you will with the amount of alcohol!!!!

  • Stayed: October 2008, travelled with friends
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3  Thank Yellow03
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 October 2008

Hotel room was a little smaller than we are used to, but was adequate. We should have received an upgrade for our anniversary, but this didnt' happen. Did get extra fruit and a free bottle of water, but then again water is free anyway!

Breakfast choice was a little limited. Lunch and dinner were OK if a little samey, but at least it was usually hot, much better than most fully inclusives we've been to. No trouble getting a sunbed on either the beach or by the pool. Our pool side beds were saved for us by the staff most days. Learn to tip, a little goes a long way, and gives the waiters a very long memory!

All in all, I would recommend this hotel and resort, although I may not go back again, as there are an awful lot of other places in this world to see!

  • Stayed: October 2008, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank sladie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about SENTIDO Phenicia

Address: Avenue Moncef Bey, Hammamet 8039, Tunisia
Region: Tunisia > Nabeul Governorate > Hammamet
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Family Hotel in Hammamet
#4 Business Hotel in Hammamet
#6 Romantic Hotel in Hammamet
#6 Spa Hotel in Hammamet
#8 On the Beach Hotel in Hammamet
#8 Luxury Hotel in Hammamet
Price Range: £39 - £168 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — SENTIDO Phenicia 4*
Number of rooms: 391
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Beautifully situated on the east coast of Tunisia, SENTIDO Phenicia spreads between a fine sandy beach and a garden of 11 hectares where mix generously palm and olive trees. For your comfort, the rooms of the hotel all endowed with balconies or terraces offer you fantastic views between the gulf and mountains of Hammamet, swimming pools or gardens. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sentido Phenicia Hotel Hammamet
Iberostar Hotel Hammamet
Iberostar Hotel Phenicia
Iberostar Phenicia Tunisia
Iberostar Phenicia Hammamet

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