Sofitel Winter Palace Luxor
Travel Blogs from Luxor
... worshiped the crocodile god at this temple. They would lure a live crocodile to a place where they had built a really deep well. They would keep it there and chuck food down to it. When this temple was uncovered the archaeologists actually found heaps of crocodiles that had been mummified here! They are on display in a museum next door to the temple. Crazy!
Islam boarded the ship with us at about 8am to sail to the next stop. We had breakfast together and then ...
... Tutankhamun as well as obelisks of Queen Hatshepsut and Thutmosis I.
The columns are huge. If I extend my arms, it would take four of me to reach around the circumference of a column. The columns are constructed like a stack of pancakes. The stone is cut in circles at the quarry and layered one stone on top of the next at the temple. No mortar is used. Every stone fits perfectly. My question is how did they build the columns so high?
We had a nice quiet morning as we were still sailing towards Luxor. We had breakfast as we passed through the Esna Lock. We spent a very pleasant couple of hours on the sun deck chatting with our fellow passengers and then Mum and I went on a tour of the boat. The main manager took us round, although we were a bit alarmed when he told us we would be going to the 'bumming room'! We quickly asked for clarification, and then realised that as there is no letter 'P' in Arabic, ...
... before. Some of them got quite angry; I heard a few f bombs thrown our way. Like many of the passengers I got bored with the lock, tired with the sellers and the sun and retreated down for another great lunch where I ate far too much. I love having desert at lunch time; it might need to become a new tradition, one that requires much bigger clothes.
Around 5.30 we sailed into Luxor, but all I could see was ships. We crossed five unused ship lobbies before we ...
... amazing things and felt like on of the locals, helps that by now i was as dark as the locals. He took me to a few local places for our food and usual smoke of the Sheesha.
All in all a great day in Luxor. Next day was the other part of town. Starting with an optional balloon ride of the Valley of the Kings, it cost $100 USD and I decided to sign up for it. Another early morning start 4:00am...so back to the hotel for some R&R.
How has this hotel rated in the past?
TravelPod Member ReviewsSofitel Winter Palace Luxor
Hotel prestigieux , superbe exemplke d" architecture Victorienne qui propose des chambres elegantes avec vue d' ensemble sur la rive du
This review is the subjective opinion of a TravelPod member and not of TravelPod.com.
Historical Traveler Reviews Sofitel Winter Palace Luxor
Mythic place, amazing garden
Loved the special charm of this hotel. A bit faded it's true but that really sends you back in time.
Staff we though were very helpful and polite, in pure old English style. We even got upgraded in a room with view on the Nile by just asking.
Having the sunset tea on the front terrace is a real experience. Garden is absolutely incredible. Breakfast is complete and of good quality. Our room was a bit small though.
A great experience
you must stay here if you go to luxor but needs to be in the old wing
its more expensice but worth it
its a bit faded glory but that adds to its charm
this is no "boxed hilton"
get a nile view room though garden rooms are nice and have lunch round the pool and dinner in the restaurant in the evening
incredably reasonable not the best food but the whole experiance is very agatha cristy
have been 3 times and loved it more each time
Bad personnel , makes a Bad Hotel. Even the Concierge Tried to rip us off!!
Stayed there during July 2005, No bell boy to pickup our Luggage (We had to carry it trough the stairs that lead you to the lobby.
The personnel of the hotel was hostile since the beggining, first they ask you: are you sure you made a reservation here? (There is anothe hotel called "New Winter Palace", nearby) so you have to prove them you made a reservation there (instead of them looking for your name and reservation).
Then the doors of the rooms are so hard to open and close (Watch our for your belongings!)...you cannot call yourself the best hotel in town if your customers have to spend 15 minutes locking or unlocking the door ...for god sake change the doorlocks!!
After arriving in a 42oC temp first thing you want to do: refresh yourself with purified water (To avoid getting Sick), just to find out that there is no courtesy Bottled Water and Your Minibar is Empty!!.
The concierge....first we requested him a newspaper (he sold us The New York Times of the previous day, and when we told him that he was giving us yesterdays newspaper....he lied to us telling us that that they there was no newspaper, then he said that newspaper arrived to Luxor only some days ......accross the street at a newstand were selling that days Newspaper....
We asked him to purchase for us for train tickets to Cairo and a day later, when we were riding the train we realized he had sold us train tickets for another date (Train tickets are written 100% in Arabic ..impossible to check)...we spent the night moving from empty seat to empty seat.
No internet, horrible breakfast.... try another hotel...go to Aswan...Stay at the Old Cataract it is a Jewel ....
Belong to Sofitel brand ?
Very centraly position in Luxor overlooking the Nile...
Quite a good feeling upon arrival in the lobby... but when we saw the bedroom, ( new winter palace ) we ask ourselves if we where in a Sofitel !
Old and dusty, noisy, the bedroom seemed to belong to a old 70' two stars european hotel !
We immediately asked to move to the "pavillon wing" among the very beautyfull garden: it is a new 3 stars building, annex of the the New winter palace. More confortable, but still under sofitel standarts.
Wonderfull swimming pool (water at 29°) but there, staff not very pleasant...
Very good buffet breakfast, but service still pretty poor...
Not really a good adresse...
I loved the old winter palace. My girlfriend and I stayed at the main building on the 2nd or 3rd floor. The room was really nice with a big bathroom, big tub and an excellent shower. Our room had a balcony facing the garden. We spent our New Year eve sitting out on the balcony drinking champagne with chocolates and strawberries. The only bad thing I can think of was paying US$100 per person for the New Years gala party. It was mandatory. You have to pay even if you don't want to go. Make sure you book the old winter palace and not the new winter palace. The same when you are in Aswan.
Best Luxor Hotel
Stayed at the Winter Palace - Garden Wing in December 04 - and after visiting Luxor once before and dining out in many of the Luxor hotels - this it most definately the nicer hotel of them all. The room in the Garden wing was lovely, very clean, nice bathroom and good view over the gardens. The pool area is very peaceful and relaxing, you can forget that you are right in the centre of Luxor. The service at this hotel is out of this world. The hotel is very central and within very easy walking distance of Luxor temple. There is so much to see and do - I would not advise booking trips via the reps as they are a rip off - for example first time in Luxor we paid £36 each to go to Valley of The Kings and other sights on the west bank, but this time we risked hiring an Egyptian taxi driver for £7 and he took us to all the sights at half the cost! This was also a better experience as he took us off the beaten track and we got to see the way of life for Egytians in Luxor. The Egyptian are very friendly and will treat you like a king/queen. The weather in December is ideal - 28 degrees during the day, however the sun sets early @ 5.30pm and the nights can be chilly - and we needed to wear jeans and a sweater in the evenings. However we have also been to Luxor during July - big mistake with temperatures going upto 48 degrees, this made it impossible to go out of the hotel after 1pm and the nights can also be very warm. You will not be dissapointed if you stay at the Winter Palace!
A grand old Lady...
The central hotel position is Luxor is very convenient.
Great views on the Nile. Having a drink outside at sunset is magical.
Restaurants are good, so is the buffet breakfast.
The atmosphere is magical: we're back to the 19th century.
Service is good and efficient.
Some drawbacks (linked with age, i'm afraid...) : rooms can be very nice. We got a very large one last time (thanks to our local guide who negotiated for us !!!)
Prefer rooms on the garden (they are quieter than the Nile view ones).
Some need refurbishment. That's obvious. Insulation between rooms is not wonderful either.
The park and swimming-pool are wonderful.
When we go back to Luxor, I think we still stick to this hotel.
Beyond it sell buy date
This hotel is definitely beyond its sell buy date. . The "Old Winter Palace" has large rooms but is tired and in our view, comapred to the other hotels we stayed in during our recent trip (Oberoi and Intercontinental), is poorely maintained (stained carpets and chipped furnishings) and noisy. The "New Winter Palace" is cheaper but so it should be. In all aspects it is need of huge investment to bring its rooms up to standard and also had the same poor standards of housekeeping. Only the "Pavilion" a reletively new building overlooking the gardens, where we took a suite after a noisy uncomfortable night in the "Old" building was acceptable at a basic level. In frustation we looked at the Mercure Hotel in Luxor which is Accor's lower brand and found it superior in the quality of its rooms and its houskeeping.Accor need to consider the impact of the Winter Palace on their Sofitel Brand.
This hotel is relying too heavily on its past reputation.
Quality hotel in great location
We had heard mixed reports about Luxor and the New Winter Palace Hotel - we stayed over New Year for a week with our teenage daughter. We were very pleasantly surprised - hotel is excellent European standard - especially the Pavillion wing which is modern and very well appointed. Pool is large, well organised for sunbeds etc and very clean, situated in delightful and extensive tropical gardens. Staff could not be friendlier or more helpful. Hotel is French owned and it shows in the food - superb bread and pastries! Other food was excellent too. Location is best in Luxor - right on Corniche - you can walk almost everywhere. Hotel seems fine for women unaccompanied -security is good - there were several resident at the time and all recommended it. We will definitely go back!
Step Back In Time!
Wow! What a fantastic place! It`s like staying in a stately home and is so luxurious. I`ve stayed here twice before and I`m going back again next year. It has got to be one of my favourite places on this planet! The staff are all so helpful and polite and although the surroundings are so grand you are made to feel right at home. The food in both of the restaurants in the Old Wing is wonderful. The only trouble is you need to go on a diet when you get home!!
The palace wing of the hotel is so beautiful. It`s nice just to sit in the grand foyer and take in the atmosphere of the place. There is a lovely lounge where "afternoon tea" is served with a wonderful selction of sandwiches and pasteries, each afternoon. The "Royal Bar" is opposite the Victoria Lounge and you can treat yourself to no end of wonderful drinks, in a lovely setting served by friendly and attentive staff.
It`s a great base to go visiting the local attractions. Luxor temple is literally next door! I hired a wonderful taxi driver, Hamdi, for the trips we went on, which was not only a lot cheaper than booking the same trips through the tour operator, but you have control on how long you stay in a place, so you don`t get a short stop in a place you want to explore and spend most of the trip at a bazzar, papyrus or perfume shop! Hamdi arranged for a professional guide to accompany us on some of the trips when we requested one, which was wonderful. You have their whole attention so you`re not just one in a massive group.
I`d whole heartedly reccomend anyone goes to stay at this hotel at least once in their life time!
I have got details of the taxi driver on my personal website if anyone is interested at http://www.gatewaytoancientegypt.co.uk
Hope you get chance to go yourselves!