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“outstanding”
Review of Island Hotel Istra

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Island Hotel Istra
Ranked #5 of 23 Hotels in Rovinj
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 20 June 2009

Fabulous location and views, clean modern hotel with lots of food choice and reasonable food quality - all staff were friendly and happy, as indeed were most people we met. The add on freebie's offered by the hotel are good and the regular free boat service made Rovinj easily accessable - Rovinj by the way is also fabulous.

  • Stayed: June 2009, travelled as a couple
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Thank redwhiteoses
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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758 - 764 of 1,044 reviews

Reviewed 21 May 2009

What a location! The hotel owns two islands and all room has a sea view. 360 degree of sea, so you can pick your own beach although some parts are very rocky and can be seriously dangerous. The hotel seems to be catered mainly for the Germans, so yes, you have to get up early to reserve your sun beds. Many women remove their upper bikini even around the hotel swimming pool area so may not really be suited for a family with children of sensitive ages. You can have nice evening walks around the main island or you can swim or jog around the adjoining nudist island with nothing on during the day.

Absolutely beautiful sea... You can see the bottom of the sea even if you swim away from the island. Lots of rich people park their boats being naked on their deck around this island. Hotel provides drinks for free with evening meals so it was nice, however their food was much worse than our canteen food served at British universities (have I put you off enough now?). Breakfast was even worse... horrible... I have never seen deep fried eggs in my life...

Their Spa ad gym areas were really lovely. We spent a lot of money to get massages.

I must warn you that things are actually more expensive at the main town, Rovinj, than in London and locals are getting more and more greedy (said by local people). They were charing 1 pound for a bottle of little mineral water at KIOSK. A glass of alcoholic drink in bars was around 5 pounds. I feel sorry that Western tourism affected how people live in this pretty old town.

  • Stayed: July 2008, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Enjoydifference
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 January 2009

My boyfriend and I wanted to visit somewhere in Europe that was a bit different to all holidays we had previously had. Croatia & Rovinj seemed like the ideal place for us so we jetted off for a week in August. When we arrived we were not disapointed with scenery, food, people and the hotel.

We normally go on self catering holidays so were pleasently surprised with the food on offer in the hotel, although we did eat out three nights to sample the local restaurants. All the food on offer was as you would get in other european countries, but it was of a higer standard. An evening meal costs about £50 a couple, including wine and we thought this was a very good price, in view of the food we were served. Some of the resturants on the hill to the left as you step off the boat have amazing views and sunsets while you eat.

The hotel was clean, tidy and as expected. Being on its own island made it feel more special, there are no shops however so if you want to pop out for something you are restricted.

Rovinj is a beautifal place and gives many parts of Italy a run for its money. I would definaltey recommend this area and hotel to anyone if you want somehing a bit different.

  • Stayed: August 2008, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank TrueBird28
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 January 2009

A good hotel in a pretty unique location - on an island just outside Rovinj - gives a choice of holiday styles: pop into town on the free ferry shuttle any time, or just realax at the hotel. Or to toally chill out, walk across the causeway to the other part of the island, strip off and get an all-over tan. This part of the island is all clothes free FKK but the main hotel area is not, so the hotel is a good choice for a family or group with some naturists and some prudes!
There's a good choice of decent food, and overall it is very a nice hotel, even if it is a little bit 'uninspiring'.

  • Stayed: August 2006, travelled with family
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2  Thank markmathsn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 January 2009

We spent a week here and were unexpectedly pleased after a short boat ride from Rovinj as from outside it looks a little like an office block spread out over the island. However inside is clean, contemporary decor and friendly staff who were only too pleased to provide an excellent service.Bedrooms have all mod cons, brilliantly clean although the air con did have its moments and took at least 4 hours to reduce the temperature in the room on the hottest day.Fantastic location, we loved the boat to get to rovinj which is a pretty and lively little town with lots of options for eating out . We also loved walking around the island and the adjoining islet watching the sunsets.However the only down side was the horrendous white, bland school dining room which echoed unpleasantly and felt very much like a refectory. What a shame, it always felt rushed and noisy when we dined there although the food was pretty good buffet style. We preferred the attached restaurant on the island which was in an original old ex chapel, very pretty with marvellous food and a warm ambience.

  • Stayed: September 2008, travelled with friends
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2  Thank connem
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 November 2008

We stayed at the Hotel Istra in mid-October and had a wonderful time. The hotel itself is clean and nicely furnished.

We were pleased with our room, which had a balcony with a sea-view. The only (but rather significant) negative was that we had requested a double bed but instead were provided with two singles pushed together - in addition we were not provided with a double bedspread.

We had booked bed and breakfast. The breakfast is o.k. but in our opinion did not have the best choice, although we would say that there is quite a lot on offer - even chips, if that is what you want in the morning! Also, the milk tasted a bit funny. So although there were a few cereals, we didn't actually eat any of them.

However, we would say that the breakfast 'did the trick' and kept us nicely full until lunchtime; and in reality it was fine. We would simply say that we've had better breakfasts at other hotels. That said, the serving staff were lovely, particularly the lady who cooked the eggs/omelettes.

As far as evening food is concerned, we would recommend the impressive Restaurant Lanterna (located in a church), just outside of the main hotel building but still on the island. The food was very tasty and good value for money.

We were also quite partial to the kebabs (or kebaps) provided by City Kebap in Rovinj, near to the top end of the main street that runs through the centre - up to the bus station. My partner had a veggie 'kebab' (a teacake with loads of veg) and loved it. Ask for one and you'll receive a rather bemused response from the staff (a kebab without a kebab?!), but she will tell you it's well worth it!

The hotel staff were very friendly and helpful and we were impressed by the ability of staff to converse in numerous languages. Their English was very good. (Zlato and Mladen were great tutors for archery and shooting.)

Another great feature of the hotel is that you're on your very own island. In view of the time of year of our visit, it was pretty quiet and full of middle-aged / elderly-ish folk. As far as we were concerned, that was great because we were after some peace and quiet.

The hotel provides a great boat called the Rubinum (we loved that boat!) to travel to the nearby town of Rovinj – free of charge. The boat starts early in the morning and we think that the last boat from Rovinj back to the island is around midnight: boats are regular, every hour.

We were not particularly impressed with the treatments that we received in the Wellness centre located in the hotel complex. My back massage was particularly painful and we found it difficult to communicate with the staff who, unlike hotel staff, were not able to speak English that well.

The great thing about staying on this hotel is that you have your very own island (actually 2 islands joined together) to yourself. We suspect that in the middle of high season it must be very very busy, and we may have liked it less (?). As it was, we were content, although we would liked a bit more sun!

In conclusion we would recommend this hotel to all persons. You should have a great time.

  • Stayed: October 2008, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank VJag
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 October 2008

The sunsets in Croatia are magical, the scenery is really quite superb and the relative ‘unspoiltness’ of the country is refreshing in these corporate times. There are corporate elements to Rovinj as with other destinations but to me they appear to be promoting the area and its natural beauty more than taking it way. After staying in the Hotel Albatross in Cavtat a few years previously and receiving Gluten free cakes, bread and specially cooked courses I was hoping the Istra would be very similar.

Overall we enjoyed our two weeks at the Hotel Istra but, there always is a but, the hotel is a series of contradictions. From the variety of Star ratings in the brochures, some say 3, some say 4, some say somewhere in between, to the quality of service and final impressions. There are lots of positives but every now and again a little negative would come and nip you on the toes just to keep you good.

Location
The location is superb! Its just a 15 minute boat ride from Rovinj harbour which, I think adds an interesting twist to your holiday. My wife, who isn’t the best on boats, happily used the service without hesitation. The ride is very comfortable in the Maistra boat come mini ferry. The smaller boat can be challenging if it’s a bit choppy but on whole the experience is a BIG positive more than a negative. The hotel offers fantastic views of the Istrian peninsular and there are sea views in most if not all of the room, (I believe some views are obscured by trees). If you are facing back to Rovinj as we were you do not get the sun on your balcony which can be refreshing after a day in the sun but not so good if you are drying out wet gear. The pool side is all out sun, not good when you have been sitting in it all day… and yes it can get HOT! Personal choice really.

Cleanliness
The rooms are cleaned daily and are spotless, the bathroom, overall size of rooms, bed comfort and mini bar are all to a good standard.

Food
The food was good. With my gluten intolerance I managed to secure the services of the kind deputy Manager took me around each night explaining I couldn’t eat. This far outweighed what I could eat. However, the grilled fish and meat, veg, salad, rice, boiled potatoes and I when I was feeling brave I chanced the chips, were fine. After 2 weeks you can get a bit bored of it. Beggars can’t be choosers but I didn’t get any preferential treatment as with the Albatross. Breakfasts were a tad more difficult and fruit and bacon and eggs were the staple diet (I couldn’t bring myself to eat the boiled sprouts and cauliflower the morning) even though there was a good range of non GF on offer. It was a bit of a free for all at times. The posh Laterna restaurant on the island I have to say is poor. The food I received through the Hotel’s free voucher was not good. Admittedly I had to go Gluten Free and it was a free voucher… maybe if you paid to eat there things would hopefully improve. My wife’s food seemed nice though.

Hotel and staff
Half of the staff were great, positive and a joy to be around. However, some staff needed a bit of personality injecting into them (“Let me see your TICKETS!”). There was no shop on the island which meant you had to pick up supplies on your travels to the mainland. Another downside was the wasps around the restaurants on the island. They were unbearable and we stopped eating there after the 3rd or 4th day. I had an a major argument with the reception staff on the last day, they had overcharged me on the mini bar by a stack of money and wanted to charge me the full £75 day rate for the 5 hour room extension when I was quoted £15 the previous day! Its something you don’t need at the end of your holiday.

Facilites
Early to rise regime to catch a decent sunbed, nice pool, entertainment at Captains bar mediocre (wonderful setting though!) excellent walks around the island. Lots of watersports to purchase, smashing rope slide for the kids, 2 table tennis tables, indoor wacky warehouse.

Conclusion
I could go on with my little contradicting anecdotes but I feel I am already boring you. It’s a good hotel, excellent location, quite good food, family friendly and worth the bargain price I paid for it.

  • Stayed: August 2008, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Glutenfreefella
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Island Hotel Istra

Address: Crveni Otok 1 - St. Andrea, Rovinj 52210, Croatia
Phone Number:
Region: Croatia > Istria > Rovinj
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#5 Luxury Hotel in Rovinj
#5 On the Beach Hotel in Rovinj
#5 Family Hotel in Rovinj
#8 Romantic Hotel in Rovinj
Price Range: £86 - £340 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Island Hotel Istra 4*
Number of rooms: 326
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hotel Istra is an island of its own, a traffic free oasis of sea and sun, wonderful beaches and secluded spots, a ten minute boat ride from Rovinj. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Istra Hotel Rovinj
Hotel Istra Rovinj

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