Yasmine Beach Resort
Travel Blogs from Hammamet
... university professors or socio-psychologists or communists or documentary film-makers or confused young men, thought they knew everything already and didn't really listen. I preferred to spend time with people I joked around with; these jokesters also made better listeners.
2. THE FOOD / HARISSA -
-----Oil, tomato paste, and a red pepper paste ("harissa") were overused, as substitutes for vegetables. The poor people in Sminja didn't grow ...
Easter Monday and sporting a fine chocolate egg courtesy of P&O we arrive in LaGoulette Tunisia which has been slotted into our itinerary due to the unrest within Egypt. Having spent two days in Israel and traveling within close proximity of the Gaza Strip and also the border of Syria with a leaflet warning us of possible unrest and phone numbers of embassies, another warning upon entering Athens of ...
... on this trip. Our excursion began in the Bardo museum in Tunis which had been opened specially for us as it is usually closed on Mondays . As a result it was very quiet and with a very good guide we were able to appreciate the absolutely amazing mosaics they have on display. It is housed in what was a Turkish palace and the inside of the building itself is beautifully decorated with painted woodwork, ceramic tiled panels and stucco decoration that ...
... of air, in fright.
-----Maybe she liked me because I always told her she was beautiful? She had a thin jaw and broad cheekbones, a broad smile full of big white teeth, and black nail-polish on tanned fingers and feet that fit perfectly in the palm of my hand. Or maybe she liked me because my positive attitude, learned while in Guinea-Bissau, and dancing skills were famous in Sminja?
-----She motioned that I could only touch her ...
... his strong jawline, orange brown skin, sympathetic eyes, and mischievous smile - came home from the cafe. He pretended to talk on the phone with my brother, Brandon, whom he'd never met. He hung up and said, "Brandon mezyan! Justin mush mezyan." (Brandon's beautiful! Justin isn't beautiful.") Semia said, "Brandon khoo-ya. Justin mush khoo-ya." (Brandon's my brother. Justin isn't my brother.) Oh, no. I was losing my Tunisian family to my American ...
How has this hotel rated in the past?
Historical Traveler Reviews Yasmine Beach Resort Hammamet
Fantastic overall holiday
I cannot understand why everyone is writing such bad reviews about the yasmine beach hotel - maybe it has been done up or changed hands since 2004 when the other reviews seem to have been written.
I spent a week there with my boyfriend and don;t have a bad word to say about it. Well, apart from the food which was edible but not very wide ranging or tasty but then again we only paid 300 quid each all inclusive so what can you expect!!
The staff were so friendly and couldn;t do enough for you. If you are patient they can speak enough english to hold a conversation, we definately had a laugh with them. I found there were loads of germans and italians that were very rude to them and this made me quite angry (treated them like second class citizens when they are actually very hard working, friendly, happy people)
The room was always clean (daily maid service) and so was the bathroom. Beds comfy, and a spacious balcony looking out over the second level outdoor pool and partial sea view that was beautiful. Very tidy, modern sea front and watersports on the beach which is just across a road (hardly any traffic tho)
we had perfect weather all week
we met a group of other brits and all decided to take a trip to the market one night and it wasnt as bad as people make out. Yes, they try and buy you for camels and hassle you to buy their goods, but its safe as long as you stay alert. you gotta understand that they mean you no harm and are only trying to earn a living. you can pick up a good bargain if your brave enough to browse. the kids that came with us were fine and really enjoyed themselves - just keep an eye out.
The pools were exceptional - very clean and nice shape - 2 shallow ends and a deeper end (kind of a clover shape) that you could dive into. The waiters served you drinks round the pool so you didn;t have to move all day. We ate lunch at the pool bar every day to break up the buffet food a bit - they served lovely freshly made pizzas, salads, baguettes, burgers and chips etc but all reallytasty.
Please don;t believe some of the rubbish reviews - i had a perfect first holiday with my boyfirend and we would return again. ps go on the camel ride - it's great fun (up the mountain to an old ladys house for a drink and dress up as a tunisian person and have a dance with her - she is awesome!!)i could write nice things all day about this place - its excellent value for money, fun and friendly holiday - GO TO THE YASMINE BEACH RESORT.
Problems, what problems ?
My wife and I booked this Hotel just before the bad reviews started to appear - Expedia would not let us change Hotels, and they turned out to be absolutely right!! Hotel high points - spotless room with balcony & sea view, superb food - well presented and lots of choice. Reception, cleaning staff and cooks cheerful and friendly, waiters less so - seemed to be more interested in chatting up the young ladies, and did seem to pay more attention to the German guests (possibly better tippers than us Brits !!)
We were on half-board and paid a small fee each mealtime for a bottle of mineral water, as an added precaution against stomach upsets. As we arrived in mid-winter, when most of the local entertainments were closed, we pre-booked a hire car from the airport and drove to the hotel, thus avoiding the transfer charges.
Not difficult to find the route to Hammamet, but got slightly exploited by the motorway toll-both attendant - make sure you have local currency in small denominations! Used the hire car to explore the surrounding area - driving is straightforward in the country, but becomes a little more exciting in the larger cities, where parking is a big problem. Would we stay at the same Hotel again ? - Yes, definitely - perhaps the staff at this Hotel are overwhelmed in the Summer, but cope admirably in Winter!
Having read the previous reviews I was desperate to change our choice of hotel in Tunisia. All I can say is that these people must be professional moaners and I'm really pleased that we didn't.
Firstly the hotel is 5 star but a Tunisian rating, do you honestly expect it to be an English 5 star hotel for the price they charge?
The beer is an excellent lager, not at all cloudy and was ice cold at all times.
The staff were excellent and spoke good English, especially considering they have to speak Italian, French and German as the first choice languages at this resort. English guests are in the minority here so if you like being surrounded by loud, drunk, sunburnt, tattooed English eating pie, chips and gravy then this ISNT the resort for you. Myself and my girlfriend wanted a chilled out week away in the sun and that's exactly what we got. We got talking to the waiters and they actually confessed to much preferring the English to the other nationalities who stayed there. Be aware that it is a poor country and the men are not used to seeing ladies in bikinis, so they do stare and are not as skilled as British men in subtly looking. I wouldn't recommend you go without you male partners but this is the Countries North African culture and not the fault of the hotel.
The hotel was spotlessly clean including our room which was immaculate, cleaned daily and we had fresh towels everyday. We never got any stomach problems and we ate everything off the menu. The food was excellent, for breakfast they cooked pancakes in front of you as well as omelettes. They bake fresh bread and the choice of foods covers all tastes. What they don't have is English food such as Pie and gravy, curry or marmite or beans on toast ! If you can't live without your English food DON'T go and maybe opt for Benidorm instead? To be honest I didn't really eat much differently to how I do at home - they have fresh salad, even chips, soup, fresh fish, potatoes, veggies, home made burgers, chicken, chillies and risotto dishes to name but a few. The choice of puddings was better than most decent restaurants in the UK. The best part was the fact that you could have unlimited 1.5 litre bottles of still water between 10am and midnight - something which I have never experienced before on an all inclusive holiday. I must point out that they only have 2 types of spirits available; both 40% made from figs and dates and are really nice. They use real Coke/diet Coke not a cheap alternative, the wine is good both red, white and rose. As said before the beer is really good although served in half pints but its ice cold, in the heat a pint would soon warm up hence why its served as it is.
The design of the hotel is traditional which means it does have dark areas i.e. keeping cool in the heat of summer! As for only having 'emergency escape lights' in the corridors they are in fact light bulbs with traditional shades, certainly not blinding bright lights but that's the traditional design for that country. If you don't know what a troglodyte is then maybe Tunisia isn't for you. The beach 20 feet away was beautiful as was the 3 pools. The sun loungers were comfortable, plentiful and you didn't have to reserve them at 6 in the morning, better still there was NO loud music being pumped out by the pool when we went in May - heaven if you want to snooze.
The German and Italian reps were always polite and even said Good morning to me on several occasions. When we went, all the evening entertainment was in German and Italian, predominantly aimed at kids but we dint go on holiday for the evening's entertainment - we went for the SUN. Again if you want entertainment stay in the UK and got to the Opera! But then again that's likely to be in Italian!
The weather was great in May although it was windy for several of the days and im sure some people would try to complain to someone at the hotel for the weather!
There are very few all inclusive places I would return to and this IS one of them. All the young (ish) English couples liked the place and the 'older' English couples seemed to be moaning about everything - they expected so much for so little. No this isn't a UK 5 star hotel but it's realistically a 3 star and you pay 3 star prices as a result!
Don't be put off by these professional moaners this really is a great place to go.
Hotel must have improved?!
We have just returned form this hotel and I must say before we went we were really not looking forward to the hoiday at all having read the previous reviews but can honestly say that we had a really good time. The hotel is not the finest looking building but this is comparison to all the new hotels springing up in the resort and its interior is done in areas with trailing plants and a cave grotto. The hotel is, however, having new carpets and touching up the paint work - none of this disrupted our stay. The food was excellent having a wide variety to suit all tastes. The staff were pleasant and friendly and couldn't do enough for us.
The only gripe I would have would be the looky looky men who initially kept disturbing us when all we wanted to do was have a rest - but you get this even outside in the resort.
This hotel was value for money for the cheap and cheerful break that we booked.
All inclusive may be beneficial and can be booked when you get there at the hotel reception - don't forget to haggle! We found this agreeable,but, remember cost of living here is really cheap also and could work out as a disadvantage!?
Positive Review of the Yasmine Beach
Having read the negative reviews of the Hotel in this website just prior to departure, I attempted to change our hotel booking. Fortunately I was too late to do this as we did not have any of the problems listed in the accompanying reviews.
Having travelled the world on business and pleasure, and stayed in 3, 4, and 5 star hotels in many countries it must be understood that a 5 star hotel in one country may not be the same as a 5 star hotel in another. For Tunisia, this hotel probably is a 5 star hotel, however it would probably match a 4 star rating in Europe or North America.
We booked a Superior Suite (2-bedrooms, Living Room, Bathroom, Toilet, and 2 Balconies) on a Half Board basis for 6-days during November 2004 (approx £40/night/suite) which is Low Season.
We had no problems with losing any bags, or having anything stolen with a safe available in the room.
The rooms were kept clean and tidy, as were the communal areas.
The food was very good, being based on a mixture of North African and Continental (mostly German) cuisine, and an excellent range of choices including fresh fruit and breads. Even my vegetarian girlfriend was spoilt for choice.
The staff were helpful, and could mostly speak English (the main languages being Arabic, French, then German), although visitors having at least a small command of French or German is a bonus.
We did not try the evening entertainment in the hotel as we have travelled to North African countries before (including Tunisia) and what was available appeared pretty standard (Belly Dancers, Arab shows, quizes, etc), although many of the other guests did seem to be enjoying it.
The lighting in the corridors, etc, was dim but suited the 'cave/grotto' style of the hotel, and was okay to see by once your eyes had adjusted from the bright sunlight outside.
All in all, provided you don't want to eat pie, beans and chips all the time, there is not a problem with this hotel, although, if your desperate, there are few 'English Pubs' available in the area.
Waste of money
Had the worst week of my life at this resort! They took two hours to check us in & belongings were stolen from my room on the first morning there!
The Hotel is dark, dingy and damp smelling.
The people on reception can not speak english and none of the entertainment or facilities are in english.
The Food is inediable to say the least. We had to pay extra to move to a four star hotel from this suposed five star establishment!!!
Save your money -do NOT go here
Where to start? We were sold this holiday as a 5 star hotel by Med Hotels. We had the misfortune to spend two weeks looking for the stars - I think we may have found one!
Transport from the airport was a good start - we had to arrange it ourselves. We managed to contact a rep (Mohammed) who told us the cost. however when we tried to get our transport we were asked for double. After a short row with some local who spoke very little English we paid what our rep had told us would be the cost and got on the bus.
Rooms - probably the best part of the hotel - they were ok (but well short of 5 star). Our air conditioning did not work for our entire stay despite numerous complaints to the management. A few workmen came to the room and tried to say that it was working but you only had to enter a room where it was working to clearly feel that it was not.
Food - what can I say. Awful would be fair. Both my wife and I were ill during our stay. We are both widely travelled and have never suffered in this manner before. The food is definately not for the British pallet (nor perhaps human pallet). We basically lived on bread for a fortnight and both lost weight.
Drink - very limited alcoholic drinks. One local lager available that was pretty poor. We mostly drank bottled water purchased from a local supermarket.
Staff - a mixed bunch. Some were quite friendly but others were downright rude. This hotel does not cater for British guests and very few staff speak English (or if they do they pretend not to if you want something). To give you an idea of what the hotel was like we would often see members of the entertainment staff (and I use the term lightly) drinking at the hotel across the road. This is where we actually spent most of our evenings as it at least resembled 5 star accommodation and the staff were far more friendly.
Entertainment - I am genuinely struggling for words here. Every night began with about 30 minutes of naff songs for small children in Italian. There was Agadoo, Superman, the Hokey Cokey (pronounced Hookie Cookie), the Birdie Song and other such classics all belted out extremely loudly and in Italian. The "shows" that followed were so chronic that it almost made them funny.
Hotel - generally Ok but a bit tatty. Perhaps the biggest concern was a very young Italian child that crapped in the kids pool - and nothing was said about it to anyone!!! The ice cream parlour advertised as being part of the hotel was invariably closed.
Overall - a complete rip-off. Do yourself a favour and do not go here even if its for free. Pay a little extra, it will be worth it. Do not trust Med hotels - the rep we had could barely speak English and was only interested in selling trips to earn commission. When we tried to complain to the elusive Mohammed we were fobbed off with the fact that the 5 star rating was given by the Tunisian tourist board.
Experience to believe it
Yasmine Beach Hotel absolute rubbish.
Went to this hotel for our anniversary and it was dire from start to finish.
The corridors are dark with little or no natural light coming in and you get the odd 15 watt light bulb illuminating a whole corridor.
The whole place is themed to resemble being inside a cave and from that point of view, it works.
We changed rooms three times trying to find some thing half decent that was at least a 3 star.
The food was inedible even for Tunisian cuisine so we opted to eat out each day despite the fact that we were paying for all inclusive.
The range of drinks is non existent and really tasteless and we were told this is Tunisian beer and spirits which was rubbish as we had and paid for the same "labelled" drinks in a bar down the road and they were ok.
There is a brewery on site which you have to pay for but the prices vary according to the mood of the waiters and the beer is not much better.
The entertainment is geared toward the Germans and Italians and nothing is done in English so you cannot even play bingo and even then my eight year old could do better.
The swimming pools are disgusting and small and while we were there we heard reports of several cases of bad stomachs although we don't know if this was the stagnant smell from the water or the way the food is handled and under cooked but we suspect it was the food.
Loads of people transferred during our stay and the rep "Mohamed" only appeared once as he was to frightened to come in again as several customers were after his blood.
My wife and I have the good fortune to holiday at least twice a year and have been all over the world on full board, half board; self catering on every thing from a one star apartment to real five star hotels and Yasmine Beach should not really be rated.
If you have kids the only attention they will get is the sort of attention that is unwanted from the waiters. We did witness one customer knock out one of the waiters (to a joyous round of applause) as he had groped a nine year old kid. Was he sacked for this, NO.
The staff are abusive and unhelpful and it was not surprising that there were regular arguments between customers and staff
Hammamet is ok (we have been twice before) but do not go to this hotel. If you read this review before you go and you are booked into this hotel you would be very wise to change it even if you have to pay a fee.
Although if you booked through Med Hotels or some thing last minute you may as well give up now.
Me, the wife and 3 kids just got back from this hotel on a two week break and met some friends who had spent two weeks prior to us who left the day after we arrived and boy did we have some problems.
People had warned us about this hotel and we had read some very negative reviews elsewhere and were very worried. We did try to change it before we went but our tour op was unhelpful.
What can we say?
Food poisoning, a useless rep very little choice of drinks and those that were available, like the food was disgusting. No entertainment for the kids, the pools were filthy, the staff offensive. I think we meet the same waiter that went around offending the kids that other reviewers have mentioned elsewhere as my daughter got molested by one of them.
As other people have said, if your English you haven't got a chance.
The a-la-carte food is not much better and you have to pay for it.
So, so many problems, there is only one kind of beer and three spirits that are AI and you have to pay for every thing else which is still disgusting. The waiters make up the prices as they go along and you have to pay for orange juice at breakfast.
All the show are catered for the Germans.
Where it gets rating from, heaven knows as there are other three stars in the area that are 100% better.
I could say a lot more but it's already been said except I better mention the fights between some guests and the staff.
Don't go its 1 star, or 2 if you have to rate the orange juice that you have to pay for.
Since we have been back we have looked at reviews from other sites and there are an amazing list of complaints all over the place although to be honest, there was one review that liked it but I reckon that's from a travel agent!
BE WARNED, DON'T GO, CHANGE IT EVEN IF YOU HAVE TO PAY A FEE, YOU'LL BE GLAD YOU DID.
V.V. bad don't go
This was advertised as a 5* AI hotel, unfortunately this is way overrated. In my personal opinion from mine and my daughter's recent visit to this hotel I would class it as a maximum 2*.
On arrival we were sent to another hotel, which was not part of the Med Hotel group and was not AI, to be put in a room, which I can only describe as a Health & Safety issue. The supposed Mini bar door fell directly onto my daughters small toe nail causing instant bruising which at the end of the week was hanging off and had to have medical attention, I went to the toilet and the metal toilet roll holder came apart in my hands, the dressing mirror was hanging on by a nail, the hairdryer was held to the wall by one electric wire the shower was not working and finally when I went to complain the phone did not work.
This was only the beginning it did get worse!! After eventually being accepted into the hotel on our 3rd day we attempted to eat in the restaurant but unfortunately all the food was non-descript, the AI drinks was minimal of one local beer (even though they supposedly have an onsite brewery) and only 3 local alcoholic drinks, none of which you could make any decent AI cocktail with, this you would have to purchase at quite a considerable price. We were charged for fresh orange juice even though the oranges were grown locally!
We decided to eat A La Carte the following evening (How we wish we hadn't) my daughter was molested by one of the waiters by him man handling her breasts and thought it funny the food again was atrocious. By the next day my daughter was feeling quite ill and was taken to her bead to rest.
On the Friday evening once again we thought we would give them the benefit of the doubt oh dear all I can describe what we witnessed next would surely turn anyone's stomach, the head chef was serving food to two ITALIAN girls when he dropped a pastry item on the floor, he then waited for the girls to walk away and looked around him before placing the food item back into the full serving tray of food YUK!!! NO WONDER ALL AND SUNDRY WERE ILL!
Obviously I complained to only fall on death ears the director Mr Reidhr gave me his mobile phone to speak with Mohammad the rep (whom we hadn't seen all week) I was informing him of this incident when low and behold Mr. Reidhr took the phone from me as it was running up his bill and in no polite terms stated I was forbidden to speak with anyone in the hotel regarding this incident and to go elsewhere I mean I had already been in 3 rooms by this time! You ask yourself can it get any worse YES is my answer, the following day Mr. Reidhr summoned me to his office to apologize for his actions and sent bowls of fruit and opened bottles of wine to our room (I mean we can get all this in the restaurant should we be brave enough to consume it), we took him on his offer to eat again that evening but only pushed the food around our plate to pacify him as we were unsure what lengths the Tunisians would go to as we had documented all the events up until then and Mr Reidhr was fully aware of this.
After supper I also was feeling unwell and had to retire to my room and was up most of the night very ill and still am now, and has been confirmed as food poisoning by my GP.
On Sunday our day of return (thank god) the transfer coach arrived very late and also very full, there were 4 seats available and 14 people plus luggage to get on this was absurd. We again spoke with our invisible rep Sabri who was very aggressive and confirmed he would send a 12 eater minibus to pick the last 8 people up.
After the coach disappearing out of sight one of the hotel staff came outside to inform us that no minibus was coming and that we must make our own way at our own cost to Monastic airport and with very little time left we were panicking. Two taxi's arrived luggage was thrown in and off we set.
After 10 minutes our cab managed to get a flat tire, we will never know if all of this was sabotage to frighten us due to the complaints that were made at the hotel. The taxi did not make the run in time for our flight and no med rep would take responsibility for what had occurred. The next flight to Manachester had also closed and we were made to pay for our own flight to Birmingham as this was the last flight out of this god forsaken country back to England. We took it and then had to make our own way back to Manchester via trains at silly o'clock hours very ill and very tired.
IF YOU HAVE ANY SENSE ABOUT YOU DO NOT USE MED HOTELS AND DO NOT GO TO THIS HOTEL YOU MAY NOT SURVIVE!!!!!!!!!!!! Luckily we have to tell you this and warn you