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“Worst hotel room I've ever stayed in!”

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Dolmen Resort Hotel
Ranked #2 of 14 Hotels in St. Paul's Bay
Merseyside
1 review
“Worst hotel room I've ever stayed in!”
Reviewed 24 September 2008

This is apparently a 4 star hotel. The amenities are the probable reason for the 4 star status, ie health spa, gym, pools, conference rooms, casino etc. Certainly the standard of the room we stayed in was 2 star at best! No balcony, shower no more than a dribble, yet a pool of water on the floor as a result of the poor shower scrren. The sink leaked underneath, TV on it's last legs with a total of 4 channels, the noise from outside felt like the M6 motorway was at the bottom of our bed,. It was extremely noisy!! No tea/coffee making facilities. The cleaning was average. Good points? Well, none whatsoever in relation to the room. Breakfast was average. However, it's location was good with pools next to the sea. Plenty of sunbeds. Didn't use the hotel bar with it's rather cheesy entertainment. The staff weren't particularly friendly either. I think the hotel is too vast in size hence the lack of "personal touch". Location aside, I'm sure there are much better hotels in the resort.

  • Liked — The location
  • Disliked — Awful room!
  • Stayed September 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Shelski
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
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Macomb, Michigan
Level Contributor
69 reviews
49 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 160 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 September 2008

We spent 10 nites at the Westin Dragonara so perhaps we were spoiled. We really couldn't afford to spent our entire holiday there so we went spent the last 5 nights at the Dolmen. Some advice - if the Dolmen is all you can afford, then stay home!

The lobby is beautiful and the exterior of the hotel looks OK too. But once you get past the lobby it becomes a dump. Dark and dingy hallways, with filthy carpeting. Our first room was 177. It was huge, with nice seaview. But it was horribly shabby, poorly equipped, and the noise level at night was beyond belieft. Even ear plugs didn't muffle the sound. And the next morning we realized the door and steps to the pool and beach were just a few feet from our balcony so everyone walked right past our room and we couldn't open the drapes. So we got another room. It no longer had a sea view, it was much smaller, but it was just as shabby, even darker, but quieter. We kept the room.

There is nothing good to be said for the Dolmen. Well, a nice lobby if that is important to you. The few rooms I saw were all shabby, dingy, dark, poorly equipped, and toilet amenties were minimal. And altho the weather was extremely hot while we were there, the air conditioner barely functions. And in our second room (and better??) the filth around the air conditioner unit was disgusting. I wondered just how how many virus we wer inhaling.

Worst of all is the bedding. They use cheap straw mattresses I think. They crinkle and groan when you move, plus are so uncomfortable. And if you have any physical problems like I do - you will spend the night in tears because of the aches and pains. The sheets are paper thin and don't reach the foot of the bed. I'm only 5 ft, 4 in. And yet my feet were on the bare mattress.

This is the type of hotel and room where I don't touch anything I don't have to. I wear slippers at all times so my feet don't touch their floors, I wiped all the doorknobs with Lysol wipes, put towels on counter tops before I would put my personal things on them, etc etc.

And the reviews on this site about the rude and useless front desk? Believe me, they are all true. One small example - I asked for a pot to make instant coffee or tea, and the young tall thin girl that had a 'trainee' tag on told me that is only for the 6th floor. Well, I had booked a room on the 6th floor and they told me they were full. I tried to explain this, but she said "hotels have rules, and our pots are for the 6th floor". I could give you a few more examples, but you get the point.

I would not go on a holiday if I had to stay here again. Usually I hate to see holidays end, this time I couldn't wait to go home.

  • Liked — Absolutely NOTHING
  • Disliked — Everything.
  • Stayed August 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank barbaradixon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
wolverhampton
Level Contributor
12 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 September 2008

A Very Average hotel.
On arrival we were given a room with a balcony so small that 2 people could not stand on it together. I kid you not (room 423).
after complaining to the front desk that i had payed extra for a superior sea view they then gave me room 550, Overlooking the car park, with no sea view!!
On my 3rd attempt and after lugging 2 suitcases up and down i was finally given a room with a decent balcony & sea view. The only problem was the musty smell of the place. Please do not think I,m just another whinger i have never compained before and honestly believe you get what you pay for. Talking to guests around the dirty pool we found that many had changed rooms due to the smell and a few couples had even moved hotels.
The food was not up to 4* european standard and we met several people who had payed half board and were eating out like us..
On checkout they tried to charge me for signed bar tabs even though they were clearly signed by a different name!!!! Please
think twice. P.S. Buggiba is like a mix between a building site and a bomb site at the moment, with very high prices since the restrictions on price increases was lifted on july 1st after joining the euro

  • Liked — location
  • Disliked — cleanliness
  • Stayed September 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank wolvesbigDave
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Oxford
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 September 2008

I have just got back from my holiday and I am already missing the place...This was a perfect holiday

Originally booked a 1 week stay with my girlfriend at the San Antonio Hotel & Spa which is just behind the Dolman but was told the day before we were due to travel that the hotel was over booked so we were re-booked in the Dolman. Having seen both the Hotels I am really please were moved to the Dolman as it was a far superior hotel.

The Hotel is described as a 4 star hotel and I would agree with previous reviews the rooms were not a 4* quality but they were clean and had everything we wanted in them TV fridge etc... but it’s worth booking a sea view. The view we had was amazing but you want a room that is at least on the 3rd floor otherwise you won’t see much, the only down side is you do get to listen to the hotel entertainment...every evening (the hotel entertainment appeared to be popular, but just not our thing) However overall the hotel facilities are 4*... The hotel also had a good mix of young and old and a good mix of nationalities

The hotel has 2 great outside pools and 1 inside (which I didn’t use as the outside pools were so nice) The hotel also has a dive school by the private beach (this is not so much a beach but a concrete area by the sea, but has plenty of sun loungers and is quite pleasant) which I used the instructors were really nice and I had a great first time diving experience and I would totally recommend it to anyone esp. for 35 Euro's. I would also recommend the speed boat trip to the Blue Lagoon which can be sorted out in the Water Sports hut on the private beach. For 18 Euro we went to the Blue Lagoon on the speed boat and were offered the choice of which side of the Lagoon to go to. We loved this trip so much we ended up going twice... I would also not recommend going on one of the Captain Morgan trips as these seemed very commercialised (packed with people) and very expensive.

Normally I don’t like to eat in the hotels I stay, as I find them very expensive and of poor quality but in the case of the Dolman we ate at the hotel 5 times out of 7 in the evening and the quality was very good and the price was very reasonable. Having eaten at a number of top restaurants all over the world I was very impressed with the food at both the la carte and the beach side restaurant. The breakfast on the other hand was ok but nothing special.

The final couple of things I was impressed with were the staff very pleasant and the location the hotel is only a few mins walk to the bus station. We used the bus's most days to get around the island going to Medina, Paradise Bay, Golden Bay and Valletta. You can go on organised tours but these are around 40 euro to Medina for example whilst you can go on the bus for just over 1 euro and spend as little or as long as you want. And for the Cat lovers amongst you, the hotel also has a small group of cats in the grounds which my girlfriend loved and fed every morning...

  • Liked — Location and food
  • Disliked — having to come home
  • Stayed September 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank James_OxChem
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Nelson
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 September 2008

I stayed at the Dolmen in late May with my Mum, we went for my brother's wedding. Being typical English tourists we did find the lack of tea and coffee making facilities a little odd, but there's a 24-hour cafe in the complex to resolve that.

The breakfasts were plentiful and generally very good, and we had no complaints about any of the staff we met while we stayed there. One of the receptionists even gave us a street map of Qawra, which I felt most helpful. The location of the hotel is very handy, with the bus station being almost next door and the local shops being all of five minutes walk from the door.

We had a ground floor room, which was good and spacious, with a nice terrace overlooking the temple in the hotel grounds. One thing we did find was that the shower somehow wasn't quite right, I didn't bother maintainence and soon had it working properly. As a travel agent myself, I have to say that the Dolmen was generally what I'd expected, although I don't feel I'd rate it as 4* Superior. I'd describe the Dolmen as a 4* in the UK system.

Would I recommend this hotel to fellow travellers? Yes, I would, as it offers a nice base for a holiday, a good breakfast and generally comfortable surroundings.

  • Liked — Spaciousness and Comfort, the good breakfasts.
  • Disliked — No Remote for the TV and no teamaking facilities in the room.
  • Stayed May 2008, travelled solo
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank MaccaNelson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Birmingham
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 September 2008

Just returned from a week at this hotel. On arrival our reception was warm and welcoming. The room however was a big disappointment . *No sea view *No balcony *Blasting music

I was nearly close to tears and returned to the reception and demanded our room be changed. I was to report to the desk the next morning as all the rooms were allocated.

The room was changed as promised 3.00pm the next day. We wasted time wondering what the next move would be like. It turned out to be fine. So if your not happy complain!

We stayed half board and on the whole the food was very disappointing. Like you we read all the previous comments on the restarant and thought it can't be that bad but it turned out be true.

This really is only a 3* not a 4* as advertised.

Plus points:_ Rooms are cleaned daily to a good standard.
Pool areas were very good with plenty of loungers. Safety aspects good too with plenty of warning signs etc

Spa - Highly recommeded. My husband treated me to a head massage and reflexology treatment which was just heaven.

Resort itself plenty of shops and bars and restaurantsw to choose from.

LOOK OUT FOR THE TIME SHARE SHARKS! Don't be fooled that you've won a bottle of wine or free holiday.

Enjoy the sunshine and the matleste people who are lovely.

Stayed August 2008
Helpful?
1 Thank WheelerBirmingham
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sawbridgeworth, Herts
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 August 2008

My wife and I have just returned from 4 nights at the Dolmen and to say I was underwhelmed would be to put it mildly.

This hotel is clinging to its "4 star" badge by a thread. Yes, the amenities are all there, air-con, Satellite TV, pool, mini-bar, in-room safe, shaving points etc (even a dive centre). But all of the above are badly in need of renovation. The aircon was struggling to work in any of the 3 rooms we saw, as were the the mini-bars (warm drinks in 35 deg heat !). TVs had no remote control and showed 10 fuzzy channels, carpets were threadbare, and there was just generally a very run-down feel.

In an effort to keep this balanced, the Pool area and reception were well maintained and the entertainment at the pool (Aqua-gym, etc) seemed to keep people interested. It was also useful having Internet on site and while we didn't use the Spa, it did look to be of a high standard.

Anyway, on our first night, we arrived at 10pm to find our room directly above the pool and a Beatles cover band playing outside our window. We had only just arrived however, and despite the noise, they were a good band so we were not phased that they played until midnight. On our second night, however, music from a nearby nightclub was pounding through our window until after 3am, which forced us to change rooms. The staff were friendly about this though and offered us another room on a higher floor further from the action without a fuss, so fair enough.

The real let down for us was the Dive Centre, which I had tried to ring half a dozen times in the week prior to our trip in order to book diving for the morning after our arrival. Having had nobody answer the phone, we turned up early that morning and waited 90 minutes for someone to arrive> we were then told by a rather surly dive instructor that 24 hrs notice was needed to dive and that we would need to come back the following day. With only 3 days to dive ina 4 day trip, this was not what I wanted to hear.

Luckily we picked up the phone and rang around the numerous local dive centres and found one to take us out that day. Note: For any Scuba Divers reading this, try Maltaqua located about 5 minutes away in St Pauls Bay who were absolutely superb and totally saved our trip!

A quick note on location... The Dolmen is sat on one side of Bugibba (Blackpool in the Sun). It will suit some people no doubt - those interested in very late nights and bars particularly, but had I felt the advertising depicted the Dolmen as a resort set apart from the town, rather than straddling the main road through a tourist trap.

To summarise - having paid UK 4 star prices, I felt the Dolmen offered poor value for money, made worse given its location. A shame as with the right level of investment and perhaps better management and effort, it could be excellent. However, until then - there's more for your money available elsewhere.

  • Liked — Lovely pool areas - perfect pool temperature
  • Disliked — Tatty Rooms - very poor amenities most of which didn't work
  • Stayed August 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank Jones1e
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Dolmen Resort Hotel

Property: Dolmen Resort Hotel
Address: Qawra Front, St. Paul's Bay, Island of Malta SPB 2402, Malta
Region: Malta > Island of Malta > St. Paul's Bay
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#2 Luxury Hotel in St. Paul's Bay
#2 Spa Hotel in St. Paul's Bay
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — Dolmen Resort Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 413
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Beautiful located at the waters edge, the 4 star hotel boasts 375 guest rooms and 38 highly finished superior rooms and suites with panoramic views of the Mediterranean Sea and St. Paul's Islands. All bedrooms and suites are fully air-conditioned, centrally, heated and have their own private bathroom, safe deposit box, satellite TV, direct dial telephone, radio, mini-bar and hair dryers. The majority of the rooms have a balcony or terrace.The hotel's general facilities include a Conferece Centre, Casino, an A La Carte Restaurant, Buffet Restaurant, Piano Lobby Bar, Cafeteria, Swim-Up Bar, Night Club and Caribbean Style Beach Club offering a variety of water-sports, a Diving Centre, Bars and Restaurant. Four outdoor swimming pools are located within the hotel together with one dedicated for children. The newly designed Spa incorporates state of the art Therapy rooms with the latest equipment as well as a Fitness Room, Indoor Pool with hydro massage and sauna. Animation Activities are provided on a daily basis together with a kids club during the summer months. A regular entertainment is held during the evenings. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Dolmen Hotel St. Paul`s Bay
Dolmen Hotel St Pauls Bay
Dolmen Hotel Malta
Dolmen Resort Hotel Malta

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