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“Some good points, some bad”

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Golf Residence Hotel
Southampton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
14 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Some good points, some bad”
Reviewed 13 August 2014

Some of the reviews here are quire accurate, some way off the mark.
Basically this hotel is cheap and cheerful. It was the cheapest available in the Thomas Cook brochure so I wasn't really expecting much.
The Hotel does show it's age but is clean and the rooms are spacious and pretty well equipped. There was a great shower in our room, a mini-fridge which was vital for chilling the obligatory bottled water and really efficient air-con that we had to turn down overnight as it was a bit too chilly.
The Golf Brau bar/club at the right hand end of the hotel (looking from the front) was incredibly loud from about 9pm and the volume just went higher as the night went on. Surprisingly we found it OK to sleep through but it was just too much really.
I went with my 13 year old daughter and 15 year old son and we all enjoyed ourselves.
The pools (indoor and outdoor) were both great. The indoor one especially during the hottest part of the day as it was nice and cool.
We did get a fair amount of hassle from the locals (taxis, shops etc) but that is to be expected and is easily ignored with no problem.
We went on the Medina Ramble (good but could have done it better ourselves), the camel caravan (really good and great fun) and the Pirates and Gladiators (pretty poor to be honest) - organised trips with Thomas Cook.
I don't understand the comments about people having to be careful with the females in their party - my daughter had no trouble at all.
Food in the hotel was plentiful and of decent quality. I recommend going early for dinner as it does become a bit of a bun fight later on.

There are other much better hotels in the area but this is by far the cheapest. Like I say, you get what you pay for.

Room Tip: If you don't like noise, insist on a pool facing room or at a push a front facing room. Rooms 13...
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  • Stayed August 2014, travelled with family
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank GuyGreenwood
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (331)
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English first
Sunderland, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
37 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 August 2014 via mobile

very close to the marina. Although next door to a night club, we never heard anything. Across the road from water park, right beside a proper beer house. Excellent hotel and location. Animation a bit naff, but good clean fun. Try to see drag queens, very funny and very cheap night. Go back?? Defo.

  • Stayed October 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Debra W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 August 2014

We booked this as a late deal with Thomas Cook, online. After reading the horrific reviews I requested a quiet, poolside room.

After a 3hour flight delay, we finally arrived at the hotel around 4am. I fully expected music to be blaring out, but it was quiet. The night reception staff ( all men) were polite. We made sure we said please and thank you.They could not find our names on the register but on producing our documents, found us straight away. Perhaps we were on the 'quiet' list.

The initial rate we got for dinar was 288 dinar to £1.

Our room was on the 2nd floor, which we were taken to and it was room 260.

It was a for three of us, one single bed, one double. The room was clean, including the bathroom. The bathroom was a bit rough round the edges but clean, everything worked.
The air conditioning worked, if a bit noisy.


The cleaners are all women, who come and change the towels every day and replenish toilet paper and empty the bins. There is a notice you can hang on the outside of the door if you want them to change the sheets and clean the room. This service is free although we did give them a tip. Our regular cleaner was very good and thorough.

The TV only had 2 English channels in our room - BBC world news and channel 2 (found on number 28) which showed films, on a loop. So whatever was on at 5pm in the evening would be repeated in the morning the next day.

Music around the pool started at 10am and finished around 4pm. It then came back on at around 9pm(around pool) and finished at 11pm. We didn't take part in any of the evening entertainment but if the acts were on the stage, we could see it from our balcony.

We didn't hear any music from the club.


Breakfast is 6am to 9.30 am. I thoroughly enjoyed breakfast - I had eggs (sunny side up), sautee potaoes, yoghurt, chamomile tea and what ever else I could fit on my plate. The grilled tomatoes were nice. My daughter had the pancakes, freshly made in front of you. They also seem to cook everything using olive oil or it is cooked on a griddle. Lots of variety.

Aqua aerobics took place at 11.30am every day, which I personally loved.

Snacks by the pool area are reasonable, with chips at 5dinar and pizza at 10dinar (big enough for 2 to share).

The indoor pool is nice and quite often empty.

There is no gym at this hotel and no public laundry although the description says there is.

The hotel beach was close, about a 10 min walk. There is a horse and cart which can take you there, from the hotel for free, tip is up to you. We took it once to find our way the first time, then walked after that.
It is 1 dinar for a sunbed and mat on that bit of the beach if they know you are from the hotel.

We bought a couple of beers from the restaurant(cancun) on that bit of the beach and the guy serving glared at me (because I was female?) and short changed me. so I made a point of counting it out in front of him at which point he took the change back then gave me the correct change. No please or thank you.

The beach is sectioned and each hotel owns a bit. The bit of beach next door, which has a beach shack selling nice reasonable fresh food charges 2.50dinar for a sunbed as you are not from the hotel they are linked to.

The watersports are good, especially for us as we had never done anything like that before. We tried the banana boat (15 dinar) and my husband and daughter tried the parasailing (60dinar) for two. They take photos of you while you are doing the sport then you have the option to buy a dvd of photos if you wish.

The water is fairly shallow, the deepest part being by the ropes. I would advise sea shoes as there is a lot of seaweed in the deeper bits. I was also stung by a jelly fish which is just like a stinging nettle sting. Thomas cook's brochure advises wet sand as a helpful aid. Occasionally, you get a waft of a really bad smell, which is sewage. Their drains are pretty bad.

PLEASE REMEMBER TO BRING A SMALL LIGHT BEACH TOWEL

There is a small 'road train' which does a return journey to Sousse for 3.50 dinar. It takes about 20mins and is open air. Well worth it. There are bazaar type shops there and the beach. Lots of little cafes but we only ever saw groups of men in them, which I am sure is part of the Tunisian culture. We bought a nice rug and some leather purses. There is a big 4 storey building opposite where you are dropped off and everything in there is cheap and no hassling.

Our dinner time allocation was 8pm til 9pm but we went down at 7.45pm, thus avoiding a bit of a rush and they didn't seem to mind . Our first night, Ahmed the waiter, took our order for drinks, as again dinner is buffet style. He was polite and smiled. We tipped him and after that he saved our table for us, every evening. This was valuable for when new people arrived which caused the restaurant to be over full at times, with tables being difficult to locate.

I loved most of the food. It can be a bit bland and is repetitive but there are loads of salads and sauces and sides to jazz it up. The fish was freshly cooked in front of you. The main meat was chicken. The did try beef with puff pastry once and it was delicious.

I noticed some people would only eat chips with bread and a few more chips. We tried a bit of everything really and spaghetti Bolognese was my daughter's favourite.

The cakes look great but don't really taste of anything much but the ice cream is really good.

Watermelon and nectarines were on offer too and sometimes grapes.

As to the rudeness of staff on reception? we did not experience any rudeness. We exchanged our sterling there. We always said please and thank you, progressed to sil vous plait and merci as they speak French and then onto the only Tunisian word we mastered - shukran - pronounced 'shook run ' which means thank you. Initially, we only got nods, but by the beginning of week 2, we got 'you are welcome.'

The second week, the toilet would not stop flushing. I went to reception and informed them and 2 guys came up to fix it within 20mins.

Smoking is allowed everywhere except in the lift. Being a non smoker I thought this would bother me, but to be fair, most people did not smoke while eating, although some did.

My husband booked the 3 day back and leg massage. He chose the days and each session was about 2hrs and 20 mins long. He thoroughly recommends it. It includes a kind of mud wrap, scrub, sauna, underwater massage and then back and leg massage. Price 280dinar.

The guy who does the bookings was ok, a bit forceful in asking for the money up front but a firm no sends him on his way.

I booked a French manicure for my daughter - 30dinar - but would not recommend this as it chipped within hours.

A young man does henna tattoos. My daughter had one and very nice it is too. You get a free top up before you leave to come home.

There is a small supermarket next door to the hotel and the guys in there were friendly. We only bought crisps and water and coke from there but it is cheaper than the hotel.

We really enjoyed our stay. My main concern was that I wouldn't be able to sleep at night because of noise, but that was definitely not the case. You can request a quiet room online and I also did the live chat just to ensure the request was sent onto the hotel.

Please remember to bring any remedies for sickness, headaches etc you may need, just in case. We bought loads with us, but didn't need any.

ps the free wi fi is only available by lifts or in lobby, downstairs.

Room Tip: Pick room 260, 2nd floor, overlooking pool
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  • Stayed August 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
15 Thank Deborah R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ipswich, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
40 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 August 2014 via mobile

Just returned from golf residence and unsure about the reviews went with open mind,the rooms are basic but clean ,towels changed everyday food is ok but it is very noisy from 8 in the mornings to 4 the next morning as there is a night club attached to the hotel if you have young daughters watch them carefully check your change and do not expect to get a sunbed unless you get up at 6 in the morning.the reception staff are probably the worst i have ever come come across and tell blatant lies,women do need to be careful as we were told that all british women are tarts by some of the male staff and they act accordingly. The pool is a fair size but we all had ear infections after swimming so take some antibiotics with you .Shame because it could be a good hotel,but will not be going back

Stayed August 2014, travelled with family
Helpful?
2 Thank chris k
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

Travellers are raving about these Port El Kantaoui hotels

Yorkshire england
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 August 2014

We stayed here in august 2013and enjoyed our stay ,we decided to stay again as we knew the surroundings and it was cheap and clean. What a difference this year was we arrived earlier than expected and went to our room which was very dated,shower didn't work properly and no one fixed it, pool area was ok but other holiday makers and some of entertainment team were arguing which was not pleasant ,food was not very good and repetitive.When we went outside the hotel we were hassled to death everyone wanting money and when we said no some were very rude. Everyone from the chap in the shop next door to hotel seems to want to rip you off it became like ripoff city always looking for tips. However mido Dodi and yaya and pool staff work hard but beware of max and Chico who asked my husband to borrow money two days later he asked for it back then a day later he asked again . We will defitnley won't go back again I hope this helps those who read.

  • Stayed August 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Bev K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 10 August 2014

Just got back today (stayed for a week), Thomas Cook rep (Ryan) was helpful, good food and great entertainment team that put in a good show every night... Access to facilities is fairly good, water park was good too; could have stayed a bit longer !!

  • Stayed August 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Shannon E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lytham St Anne's, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
36 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 August 2014

Golf Residence, There's a saying "All Fur coat and no k******s" (panties).Looks impressive from the outside but our room was basic and in need of better upkeep, wardrobe doors wouldn't shut properly, no plug for bath so you had to have a shower, not enough plug sockets (only 1 spare), stated satellite TV which I suppose it was, but was an old CRT set and lucky if you could get 2 channels in English, (other nationalities would have have similar issues). Wi Fi was sporadic and accessible only in certain area.
While we had a family of four, two adults with one child of 17 and another of 15 we bounced around each other, all sleeping together in a small room. there were only 2 chairs (not 4) out on the balcony so if you did want to sit out (during the day, (read further)) two would have to sit on the floor, there was no light on the balcony. Considering this was supposed to be a hotel, things you would expect to be there weren't; such as an iron or even tea and coffee making facilities, (would have loved to be able to make a coffee or cup of tea if i wanted one), the mini fridge just took the heat out but didn't chill, The staff in general were friendly and helpful, the best of which being the cleaners (who came in every day to clean and tidy, providing clean sheets and towels) and the waiters both in the restaurant and the bar staff who were always on hand and friendly. The entertainment team worked hard to keep things going all day and sometimes don't know where they got the energy from, they then put on nightly shows to keep everyone entertained, the kids loved them. However as stated in other reviews the reception staff seemed emotionless and could come across as quite rude. (one point I will get to later!) Food was excellent, buffet style, self service, always multiple choices and all well presented, mealtime depends on what time you go to eat, it could be quite relaxed or a free for all, with people milling about everywhere.
Despite the fact that the hotel had a large pool and and garden area there were nowhere near enough sunloungers available, if you wanted one you would need to be up at the crack of dawn.
When we booked we asked for something quiet but near to facilities and things to do, granted the hotel was on the edge of town within easy walking distance of the marina, shops, restaurants etc there is an aqua park across the road with slides, wave machine etc, which you could spend all day. but what we got was the Tunisian equivalent of "Blackpool" (for those who know that) to the extreme. during the it was fairly busy, but early evening it seemed everybody from the whole of Tunisia headed to the area to party. All roads into town were gridlocked and hoards of people just kept coming and coming. There was an amusement park with roller coaster and other rides at the junction which opened early evening and stayed open till the early hours, lots of screaming and very loud music. Unfortunately that wasn't the worse, our room/balcony was above a bar/ restaurant called Golf Brau, We did visit this bar at the start of our stay in the early evening, which I will write a separate review about. but we soon realized that as the night went on the volume increased, they even added an extra speaker during the week right under the hotel balconies, it was as if they were in competition with all the other venues around, the volume of either recorded club music or live bands increased as the evening / night went on, you couldn't sit out on the balcony and if you were brave enough to try, you had to shout at each other across the table to be heard. Other guests at the hotel showed sympathy when we mentioned which side of the hotel we had been put in. We began to dread returning to the room at the end of an evening as you could hear the noise blasting into the rooms as you walked back down the corridors, Usually the music started getting louder about 10pm and went on till 4am in the morning, so we had very little disturbed sleep throughout our holiday, the balcony doors made little effect of drowning this out and if you touched it you could feel the metal rail on the balcony wall vibrating. We even resorted to using earplugs, but these again made little difference,
We reported this to the reception whose answer was "well did you dance all night? next time you come you will need to ask for a quieter room"
Conclusion
Tunisia is a lovely place, Inexpensive if you plan right. Do your homework, and be aware and prepared of being harassed each time you go out, constant pips of the horn from taxi drivers. negotiating prices etc. Take advantage of some of the reps trips, we did two, the Zulu / Zoo trip and El Djem both enjoyable.
Would I go to Tunisia again? Yes! but not to that hotel, unless could be guaranteed a bigger quieter room, or possibly not even to that resort, If you want to rave all night then fine, if not then look to somewhere else. Its not the hotels fault primarily its the overall experience of the holiday as why I have rated it down. If we had known beforehand it was a mecca for night revelers then we would had gone somewhere else. I will be taking this up with the travel agent separately.

  • Stayed August 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Robert B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Golf Residence Hotel

Property: Golf Residence Hotel
Address: Touristic Zone, Port El Kantaoui 4089, Tunisia
Region: Tunisia > Sousse Governorate > Port El Kantaoui
Amenities:
Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 4 Speciality Lodging in Port El Kantaoui
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:4 star — Golf Residence Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 237
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Also Known As:
Hotel Residence
Golf Residence Hotel Tunisia/Port El Kantaoui

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