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“Remote luxury”

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Sifawy Boutique Hotel
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in As Sifah
Certificate of Excellence
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
9 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
“Remote luxury”
Reviewed 10 January 2013

If you want to do not very much on a remote piece of Omani coast, but do it in luxury, then this is your place.

This is quite a high end hotel so has well appointed rooms built around a lovely pool with various facilities like a nice gym. During my stay the onsite restaurant served consistently excellent breakfasts, lunches and dinners. The hotel also runs a very good seafood restaurant built on a delightful sandy beach about 1km away (transfers provided).

Service from all the restaurant staff, housekeeping etc. was top rate. I also felt the hotel was good value for the discount price I paid via a special offer on their website - around GBP 100 per night for a high quality hotel compares favourably with other options in this part of the world.

The downside is that this is not a good base for doing any activities away from the hotel - it's a 45 minute transfer to the Muscat area (either by road, or by boat service which I'd recommend trying) and a further 45 minutes from there to the airport. I had already done my sightseeing in Muscat so that wasn't a problem, but the one thing I did do was a half day diving trip. This turned out to be quite a lot of hassle and something the reception staff didn't seem at all used to arranging. Unfortunately I got stranded for 2 hours at a remote marina waiting for my ride back to the hotel after my diving and had to phone 3 times to get them to pick me up... pretty poor customer service for this type of place.

The other downside is that the hotel beach is not great for swimming - too many stones and sea urchins. However, there is about a 2km stretch of lovely sand a 10 minute walk from the hotel, adjoining the sleepy village of Sifa.

As other reviewers have commented, the Sifawy is phase 1 of an ambitious plan to develop the whole area, complete with 4 hotels, golf course etc. There was a small amount of construction work going on whilst I was there but nothing to disturb the experience. From what I saw there were already a lot of empty apartments and hotel rooms that need filling - my guess is it will be a while before the development is complete. So for now, this is a great place to get away from the crowds.

  • Stayed January 2013, travelled solo
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank Jodie_FM
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 (73)
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Auckland Region, New Zealand
Level Contributor
44 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 January 2013

Stayed at the Sifaway for three days over New Year. This is a lovely resort style hotel set around a pool and marina. The hotel has been open around a year and there plans for three further hotels in the development, but as yet these are not complete. The hotel is surrounded by marina apartments but most of these are yet to be sold, which makes the site a bit soulless, although I would expect this to change with time. It is a good hours drive from town so you would need your own transport if you want to do any sightseeing and it best to arrange this before you go, the only place to walk to from the hotel is the local village As Seifa which is a friendly place. On a positive note as we did not realize how far this hotel was from town we arrived with virtually no petrol left in the tank and the nearest petrol station is back at town, the hotel staff kindly arranged to pick up petrol from town and filled my tank with enough to get me back to a pool station for free!

  • Stayed January 2013, travelled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank kinacollector
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Muscat
Level Contributor
44 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 January 2013

• I Checked in around 3pm. Reserved table #8 – 2 seats with Front Desk Receptionist, Jam.
• We arrived at 9:30pm to find table #8 full. I asked wait staff why my reserved seats were taken? No answer.
• My room’s patio terrace was blocked by serving table. I asked to have it moved as it blocked access and my view. Staff refused to move it. The hotel decided to use the electric outlet on the patio. There was extension cord laying on the floor that tripped me when I first went outside. I fell against the table blocking my patio breaking several wine glasses on it. This was a safety concern.
• With no where to sit I asked that my food be served on the table on the terrace. The staff refused to do so.
• The Operations Manager explains that my seats are taken. How can that be I ask? They are reserved. He says that he has no control over that. He also refused to serve my dinner on the only open table in the area, my patio This is truly brilliant! I tell him we are finished with the discussion and go to the front desk to complain.
• Did I get a assistance from the front desk? No. NOTHING happened. I left and got food elsewhere.
• Upon checkout I asked to see the GM. Mr. Daniel Fanselow met with me to discuss the issues documented above. He explained how the hotel has no control over where the guests sit at dinner. I asked then why have reserved seats? No answer. I explained that the table and electric cord were blocking my exit, view and were safety isses. No answer.
• The buffet breakfast was included in the room rate. I was able to get my food, wait for the omelet to be cooked and finished my meal all before the server could bring 1 cup of coffee. Unbelievable! At least the service was consistent.
• The front desk attempted invoice me 50 OMR ($130 USD) for the dinner that I did not eat being fully aware of the circumstances.
• When I sent a follow up email to the GM he indicated that somone more important than me had taken the seats and I was properly compensated by having the $130 removed from the room bill.

  • Stayed January 2013, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
3 Thank Captain_Dave_L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Daniel F, General Manager at Sifawy Boutique Hotel, responded to this review, 21 January 2013
Dear Guest,

Thank you for taking the time to share your feedback.
I do regret the inconveniences you faced during your recent stay with us. I assure you, it is our sole objective to ensure our guests leave the Hotel happy and satisfied.

Regrettably we faced some difficulties with the seating arrangements during the New Year’s Gala Dinner and I apologize that the seats which you had reserved had been taken by other guests. We had tried to rectify this on the night itself, but unfortunately the other guests were not receptive at all. I also understand that alternative seating was offered, which you unfortunately declined. I had been informed of your request to have dinner on your patio, after the seats which you had booked were taken, and I gave an exception to the team to honor your request. By the time our Operations Manager went to your patio, you had unfortunately already left.

I trust you would understand that in order for the event to be a success (6 course set menu for 120 people), we require maximum resources and space, and in no way was this meant to be an inconvenience. Quite the contrary in fact, that we did our best to ensure a pleasant evening for everyone.

Again, on behalf of the Hotel, I apologize for any inconvenience you faced during your stay with us. I do hope that we will have the opportunity to host you once again; in which case I assure you will notice a marked improvement.

Sincerely yours,

Daniel Fanselow
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Fethiye, Turkey
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 December 2012

My wife has already put a review of our stay at this hotel. It was very thorough. I am writing this to back up everthing that she wrote with photographs.

photo 1- The rice, as can be seen was grey and very dry on top. It was a glutinous mess.

photo 2- This is the "Hammour fillet crusted with almond flakes" Though from the texture it could be seen to be fish, in fact it tasted nothing like Hammour and was soggy.

photo 2- "Roasted" vegetables swimming in oil.

photo 4- what was this? Polenta was the description, I personally have never seen it served like this.

photo 5/6 prepared dishes loooked ok, but not too sure about the unchilled chicken meat.

photo 7- These starters, though looking tempting, left one wondering what some of them were. Lack of labelling here.

photo 8- even worse lack of labelling here. No account seems to have been taken as to whether guests should be informed - not only to what some of the dishes were, but also what they contained.

photo 9- Though these to meat bowls were set into a chilled base, the colour of the top layer of chicken did not encourage me to eat any of it. The beef bacon wrapped sausages might have tasted nice if cooked and served fresh. Howver when I asked for one, the attendant served one of those that can be seen on the griddle, it was tough, rubbery and inedible.

I should add here that we have been working in Oman for eight years and have stayed in many other hotels in the Sultanate. There are far more 3-4 star establioshments that offer finer fare than the Jebel Safawiy Hotel.

  • Stayed December 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Denjames
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Daniel F, General Manager at Sifawy Boutique Hotel, responded to this review, 21 January 2013
Dear Guest,

Thank you for your feedback.

Please know that I have shared your comments with our Executive Chef and Kitchen Team to better understand what and how it went wrong. Generally, as is reflected on the other reviews, our food is normally regarded as exceptional and I regret that you & your wife did not have a pleasant experience with us.

I completely agree and sympathize that a lack of labeling can be frustrating and this will be immediately rectified.

I would be grateful if you could get in touch with me directly on info@sifawyhotel.com so that I may get a first hand review of your experience with us.
Once again, many thanks for sharing your feedback and I look forward to hearing from you.


Sincerely yours,

Daniel Fanselow
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Nizwa
Level Contributor
9 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 December 2012

It took us half an hour to check in, and the staff speak very poor English, although they are friendly. The room wasn't ready when we were given our keym so we had to wait outside for 20 minutes while they stripped beds and mopped floors. The design of the hotel means that it is very noisy - dark, echoing corridors, poorly lit, behind rooms which overlook the pool with its piped music. It is a cement barrack block with pretensions. The pool is nice, but noisy, often full of even noisier children, and in high season (Dec-March) many of the (few) sunbeds are in shade all afternoon. In the rooms, the beds are comfortable, but the ACs are so noisy, that it is impossible to watch TV and have the AC on. At night, it is a choice of getting hot or being kept awake by the AC. The area is full of mosquitos, so sitting out in the evening isn't an option unless you are covered up - or covered in repellent. The hotel claims to spray the beds around the pool area at 6am every morning, but that didn't happen while we were there. The worst part is probably the food. They had buffet only: good salads, but the main meal was watery fish, grilled vegetables saturated in oil, soggy polenta, starchy, clumped rice and slices of potato. The deserts were even worse, with melon that was impossible to cut it was so dry: quite a trick for melon. The cost? 36 OR. Breakfasts were average, but for a high end hotel (or prices that are) it served instant coffee and the selection of breakfast goods was poor. Room service is available, but with a very limited choice and there are tea and coffee making facilities in the room. However, if you do stay, take your own. They supply 2 breakfast teas and one sachet of nescafe. If you ask for another, the charge is 1.4 OR. The hotel offers Wifi for 5 OR for 24 hours, but that is per person. If two of you want to use a laptop or tablet, you pay twice. The bathrooms were good, but ours had a leak so I took a slip, and my husband cut his foot on the door of the cupboard which was very sharp. All in all, it is noisy, overpriced and poor quality. I would not recommend it (unless I really didn't like you!)

Room Tip: Top floo.r - away from the music
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  • Stayed December 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank NizwaJill
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Daniel F, General Manager at Sifawy Boutique Hotel, responded to this review, 21 January 2013
Dear Guest,

Many thanks for sharing your feedback.

Please know that I have read & shared your feedback with the team at the Hotel and we are already beginning to address most of the issues which you have raised.

Indeed, the design of the building is based on traditional Omani architecture, with a central courtyard feature, which is actually the pool deck, and all rooms overlook this courtyard. This is usually well received by our guests, however I can understand the inconvenience if there are many children, like during the school holidays for example.

The matter of the air-conditioning is an ongoing issue and has been a recurring comment on most reviews. You will be pleased to know that we have already begun addressing this by adding additional insulation and sound-absorption units to reduce the noise level drastically. This is already an ongoing project and will be completed in all rooms by the end of April 2013.

I regret the comments you have made about the food; I have shared these with our Executive Chef for immediate action. I believe your husband posted a similar review which includes the same comments about the food buffet.

I am also pleased to inform you that we will soon be offering FREE Wi-Fi to all our in-house guests. This is an initiative which I have personally been driving which will undoubtedly bring an added-value to our guests.

Once again, I do appreciate your constructive feedback and hope that we will have an opportunity to host you again in the future.


Sincerely yours,

Daniel Fanselow
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 November 2012

We just spent four nights and are full of praise, although there are one or two slight downsides.

The hotel is a beautiful building around a lovely pool. Very intimate and friendly with helpful staff and great service. The rooms are luxurious, particularly the suites. If you want a quiet, stylish spot to chill, nothing much could beat this. It is located in a remote area to the south of Muscat - the 1 hr drive is spectacular. The marina and surrounding resort are also wonderful but since the resort is new and only just getting going, there is a lack of atmosphere at present. If the resort gets busier, the hotel could be less of a retreat but the plus side would be an increase in amenities, of which there are few on the doorstep. At present there is only one restaurant so the choice is limited and alcohol expensive, but all is reasonable value for Oman.

The lovely, little-used private beach is a short walk along the marina or a shorter ride in a golf buggy. The beach boy is very helpful. The beach is rocky at low tide so best to wear swimming shoes. Lots of fish can be found on the point of the marina - rays, guitarfish, grouper, clownfish and huge shoals of other species. Turtles too apparently.

We wanted a quiet, quality hotel with good sea swimming - exactly what we got.

  • Stayed November 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank MarineBoy60
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bordeaux, France
Level Contributor
32 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 November 2012

i went there in the late afternoon for a coffee, it was a nice ride though the mountain to tea the resort. very quite atmosphere . few people. the prices are of those high end resorts. i would suggest to go there but try to be with a big group otherwise u wont find a company there !

  • Stayed November 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Redseadiver3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Sifawy Boutique Hotel

Property: Sifawy Boutique Hotel
Address: PO Box 1719 | Jebel Sifah Marina, As Sifah PC 130, Oman
Region: Oman > Muscat Governorate > As Sifah
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 Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in As Sifah
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — Sifawy Boutique Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 55
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located in Jebel Sifah, a new resort development 45 minutes from Muscat downtown. This boutique hotel designed by renowned Italian architect features large swimming pool, outdoor Jacuzzi, fitness centre, treatment room, in addition to a wide range of activities and excursions. Suite guests are provided with a personalized butler who can handle every detail of your stay. ... more   less 
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