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“enjoyed our holiday, but generally have mixed impressions about Bulgaria...”

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Orchidea Boutique Spa
Ranked #22 of 111 Hotels in Golden Sands
Reviewed 23 August 2011

1. Orchidea Boutique Spa: The hotel is nice and clean. The rooms are spacious and have balconies. The staff is friendly. The food was pretty good. If you are staying with a kid, you may try the Bulgarian yogurt ("kiselo mlyako"); our 14 month old daughter loved it. The hotel has decent pool and SPA facilities, but the children's play room was a joke. The hotel is a bit far from the beach (20-25 min walk). The hotel provides free shuttle service to/from the beach, but the first trip is at 10am, which I think is a bit late.

If we were to travel to Golden Sands again and choose a different hotel, we would probably consider Kini Park (it is closer to the beach of Rivera Complex), or a hotel at Rivera Complex (they are next to the beach and are surrounded by a very nice park).

2. Beach: There is a free public beach, but we haven't used it. If you want a nice, clean and quiet beach, then go to Rivera. If you want a more active beach with lots of different entertainment, bars, music, etc., then go to the central part of the beach (10 min walk from Rivera). The facilities at beach (umbrellas and sunbeds) were not cheap. One umbrella with two sunbeds will cost you some Eur 15/day, which is more expensive than at many beaches in Spain and Italy. The weekly rate is a bit lower.

3. Currency exchange: Be very careful! Some exchange office advertise that they have the best selling rate. Obviously, most tourists will be interested in the best buying rates rather than the selling rates. The buying rate at such currency exchanges is extremely low (some 15-18% lower than the normal rates). Note that the rate at the baggage claim area of the airport is also very low, so if you need to exchange any money upon arrival, do so at the exit, as the rate there is much better. Never change any money in the streets with "private" dealers; you may get local money in banknotes which have been removed from the circulation.

4. Cheating: Cheating is, I guess, a national sport in Bulgaria, so do always count your money. We were cheated everywhere, at the currency exchange offices, in beach bars, and even at the duty free.

5. Taxis: Always bargain for a fixed rate acceptable to you. Note that rates of some taxis may be twice as higher than the rates of other taxis. Overall, the taxi drivers were nice and helpful.

6. Food: We have attended different restaurants at the beach, but the one we have liked most of all was Old Lighthouse St. Nikolas.

7. Weather: We stayed for 2 weeks in mid Aug, and the weather was great in 12 out of 14 days.

  • Stayed: August 2011, travelled with family
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2  Thank Vahan H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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53 - 59 of 108 reviews

Reviewed 2 August 2011

Rooms are big and clean. Breakfast is very diversified. Hotel has 2 swimming pools (one for kids) and a free parking in front of the hotel, but is a little bit far from the beach. However, the hotel has a bus to the beach (10:00, 11:00, 14:00, 15:00, 16:00 - Eiffel Tour).

  • Stayed: August 2011, travelled with family
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3  Thank dartadesign
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 July 2011

We have been staying at this hotel for 4th day and still have some left but I couldnt wait to get home to post a review.

Its indeed one of the best hotels probably where you want to spend your holiday.
-very large rooms, most of all have sea view, except probably 01 and 02 from each 1st to 6th floor, with bathtub and shower bath as well
-one nice panoramic elevator, they have a total of 2 though
-very clean overall and a.c.-ed overall
-nice pool with minibar
-very good food(breakfast&dinner) and variety daily so far
-sky bar "touch the sky" at 7th floor opened 20-02 am with a nice view
-internet access
-free parking for about 20-25 cars, thats the capacity of their own parking area
-wifi internet free in the lobby plus by cable in the room (I couldnt get to fix mine but the lobby one was enough)
-pretty quiet area in the forests
-staff friendly and helpful
-spa facilities but I havent been there

Indeed some say its not so close to beach, but on the watch you can get there in 15 minutes max by foot. They do also have shuttle busses to get you in the center of the town to the beaches there. They start from 10 am up to 16 pm.

That would be all I could say for now to help other know what to expect from this hotel hopefully, so if you are aware of the location which some say its far from the beach but to me was great actually, you can really have a great experience.

Room Tip: Try to avoid 01 and 02 rooms from 1st to 6th floor, I think they probably dont have sea view.
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  • Stayed: July 2011, travelled with friends
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2  Thank Miky198
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 June 2011

Very good hotel, good services, but far away from the beach. good spa, nice pool whit bar in it.Clean and spacius rooms.

Room Tip: ask for the superior floors, great sea view
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  • Stayed: August 2010, travelled with family
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1  Thank Dragos_vl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 May 2011

Clean, beautiful rooms. Good meals, nice pool. Too bad that the pool bar wasn't "functional".

  • Stayed: July 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank CrisaI
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 October 2010

Our massive suite was spotless, with sea and pool views. The bathroom, with complimentary skin care products, was immense and had mood lighting. It was beautiful and a relaxing area. Internet access was uninterrupted and fast loading. We enjoyed the meals, which were included in the tarrif.
We had a ball at this resort. The pool area was spotless and the music was great!
The free bus was useful. We caught the bus back to the resort, having walked down.
The staff was so friendly and helpful- nothing was too much trouble.
I loved the spa services that were on offer.

  • Stayed: August 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank Gabriel11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 September 2010

The Orchidea Boutique Hotel & Spa, only opened in 2007, has 4 stars by Bulgarian standards. It is well designed and has some fantastic facilities, but is already looking a little tired in places, mostly due to a seeming lack of basic upkeep.

For example, one of the main reasons we chose this hotel was that it had a fitness room with a treadmill. This was important to us as our 2 week holiday was immediately before the Great North Run, in which we were both participating. However, on our first day we noted that the treadmill was not functioning properly – nor was the cross-trainer, and the multi-gym had worryingly looking frayed cables. We reported the malfunctioning treadmill on a number of occasions to the hotel and our rep, but despite this it remained unusable for the duration of our stay. It was as though the gym was installed in 2007, and the door shut.

The remainder of the spa was great, though, with guests able to use freely the aromatherapy steam room (although we failed to spot any distinctive aromas, so really it was simply a steam room), the jacuzzi (by appointment – accommodates two quite comfortably), the relaxation room, and the indoor and outdoor pools. The indoor one, however, was merely a huge hole in the floor, until our last day, when it was mysteriously suddenly filled with water. This, alongside certain discrete lighting both indoors and out, coincided with the arrival of a few German guests.

The swim up bar was a particular attraction for us, but it was nearly always unstaffed – so to have to go to reception to ask for service at the bar detracted from the experience of having attentive bar staff at the ready. Maybe this – amongst other things – was indicative that the season was coming to an end.

The Balkan Holidays brochure describes the hotel as having an “enviable position at the start of the resort” – or words to that effect. Well, hmm, no – it doesn’t even lie within the confines of Golden Sands itself, which is a good 20 minute walk away down some fairly steep slopes. This was not a problem for us as we are relatively fit, but for others it could be problematic. Hence, the courtesy shuttle bus to and from the centre of Golden Sands is a welcome addition, but it only operates four times a day (and always departed earlier than stated, so be warned if you plan to take it!), the last trip being at 4pm – not much use for an evening dinner! Perhaps that is because the hotel would prefer you to eat in their restaurant, and you can’t blame them for that, so we thought we’d have a go early on in our holiday. Most days feature a special offer – the day we chose was ‘chicken fantasy’ at a reduced price, only to find that when the bill came, there it was at full price. Upon our enquiry, we were advised that the offer only applied at lunchtime – yet the official restaurant opening times don’t include lunch! Not to worry, it was only a fiver difference for the both of us, let’s leave it – so we asked to have the bill charged to our room. “Sorry sir, we can’t do that now we’ve printed the bill.” Well, that’s not four star service, so needless to say there was no tip, and that was our last visit to the restaurant! Upon mentioning this at reception, we were told we’d have to speak to the duty manager in the morning. No thanks, we’ve not come on holiday to spend all our time at the reception desk – we’ll simply vote with our feet and wallet!

In terms of proximity to the beach, 400m is probably accurate, but it is down two steep roads (or short cut round the back of next door’s pool and down some steps, then down further steps between the roads). It took us 8 mins to walk there and 10 to get back – many others may take longer, or even find the descent and/or climb back too demanding. We also noticed that a short cut through the (predominantly German) Kini Park Hotel and rear path would knock 10 mins off the walk into town, but we didn’t have the bottle to do it – let us know if you dared it yourself!!

As for breakfast, it was continental in style, but rather uninspiring, with stale croissants and soft (not crispy) cereals, and only warm (not hot) water for a cup of tea. Very often, the milk and hot water had run-out, and we nearly always had to ask for them to be topped-up. Never a problem for the staff, they were always nice about it, but why didn’t they keep an eye on it in the first place to alleviate the need for our constant asking? Again, is this indicative of four star status?

The air conditioning left a little to be desired. It was as effective as turning on the fan in your car, but not pressing the “AC” button, and that applied throughout the hotel, not just in our room, which to be fair was very spacious with a nice balcony overlooking the pool with a ¾ sea view, and the bed was absolutely huge and VERY comfortable.

The internet access in room was a LAN cable, so unless you had your laptop with you, it was 3 BGN per hour (about £1.40) on the desktop on the ground floor.

Overall, a smart looking hotel with excellent spa facilities (save for the gym), but the lack of attention to detail along with its position means that if we ever visited Golden Sands again, we would probably stay elsewhere, but would pop up every now and them to feed the wild dogs, who all have a lovely temperament, especially “Patch” (you’ll know who that is!) – if you visit, please give them a snack and a pat from us!!

  • Stayed: September 2010, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank GaryOwen66
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Orchidea Boutique Spa

Address: Golden Sands, Varna 9007, Bulgaria, Golden Sands 9007, Bulgaria
Region: Bulgaria > Varna Province > Golden Sands
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#11 Best Value Hotel in Golden Sands
#16 Spa Hotel in Golden Sands
#17 Luxury Hotel in Golden Sands
Price Range: £29 - £93 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Orchidea Boutique Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 80
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Orchidea Boutique Hotel Golden Sands
Orchidea Boutique Spa Bulgaria/Golden Sands

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