Hilton Nubian Egypt - a truly excellent all-inclusive experience - Wapiti Travel

After an excellent experience at the Hilton Papagayo resort in Costa Rica we decided to stick with Hilton for another all-inclusive vacation in 2014.  We love how Hilton has some true all-inclusive resorts instead of the all-inclusive packages offered by Marriott and many other hotel chains.  This system is just more straight-forward.

For this vacation we chose the Hilton Marsa Alam Nubian Resort, a relatively new hotel at that time.

UPDATE: The hotel is no longer an all-inclusive resort but instead can now be booked with an all-inclusive package.

Review Hilton Nubian Egypt

Getting there

We took a direct flight with Air Berlin from Dusseldorf. Since they went bankrupt last year your options would now be to fly with TuiFly out of Dusseldorf, Amsterdam or Brussels or to fly with Brussels Airlines out of Brussels.  All direct flights.

The Hotel

The Hilton Nubian resort was a great experience and I can truly recommend this hotel to anybody who wants to relax and enjoy the sun for a while.  The hotel is frequented by Scandinavians, Germans, Italian and Polish.  Russians tend to opt more for Hurghada as there is more nightlife in that area.  If nightlife is important to you it’s best to opt for Hurghada, Marsa Alam really has not much to offer at this stage.  This hotel is a 20-minute drive from Port Ghaib the only city in the neighborhood.

Review

Here’s a detailed review of the hotel.

Room

There had been some terrorist attacks in Egypt a few weeks before our vacation.  The attacks were situated in the Hurghada region but as the tour operators had shut down their operations in whole Egypt the hotel was only half full.

We didn’t mind at all as this meant that our HHonors Gold Status secured us an upgrade to a suite.  Usually we only stay 1 or 2 days in one location.  An upgrade for our 7-day stay meant that this time we could truly enjoy the benefits of the suite life.

The suite was very spacious as you would expect from a suite, and truly a home away from home. We loved the mood lighting in the living area and the jacuzzi-bath in the bathroom. The main bathroom has both a bath and shower and there was a second, smaller bathroom, with an extra shower and toilet.  This comes in handy if you would share the suite with your children.

The bed was excellent as you can expect from a Hilton hotel.

The hotel is not that old so the rooms are still in good condition.  Cleanliness of the room could be better but was still OK.

Restaurants/Bars

The hotel offers several bars, 3 restaurants with a la carte options and 1 main (buffet) restaurant.

We are not a huge fan of buffets so we love how the all-inclusive formula of Hilton not only covers the main restaurant but also all the other a la carte restaurants.  It was one of the main reasons to opt for Hilton again. Unfortunately, we were a bit disappointed by the a la carte restaurants at this hotel.  Firstly because you have to make advance reservations for these restaurants and this can only be done on the day itself (between 10 am -noon).  We never had problems to reserve a table but the restaurants are rather small so I suppose this may be different in high season.

The menu in these restaurants is limited and not very different from what is offered in the main restaurant.  We had hoped these restaurants would offer a more sophisticated kitchen as we had experienced in Costa Rica.

One more strange aspect of the a la carte restaurants, different from how it was done in Costa Rica, house wine is offered for free in the main restaurant but not in the a la carte restaurants.

Don’t get us wrong, the food in the a la carte restaurants is quite OK, just not sophisticated and not much different from what you find in the main restaurant.
If you would only eat at one of the a la carte restaurants pick Souks.  Second choice Breezes, last choice Nubian.

The main restaurant offers a big buffet.  You have plenty of choice for Bfast, Lunch and Dinner. Every morning you have eggs made to order, every lunch you have pasta made to order.  Dinner is with a rotating weekly menu (Asian, Italian, Egyptian, …)  The large buffet ensures that each evening there is something to everybody’s taste. Only a portion of the buffet seemed to be in the style of that evening’s theme.

Those who have a sweet tooth will be glad to hear that there is a large selection of desserts as well.

We could again make the same remark.  The food was not that sophisticated but was up to standard of what we expected in a buffet restaurant.  In terms of decoration and atmosphere, the main restaurant was the least pleasant/cozy area of the hotel.

Service in the restaurant was sometimes not as fast but always very attentive, polite and friendly.

Pools/Beach/Garden

The grounds of the hotels are very well maintained, the hotel is an oasis in the middle of the desert with lots of greens and flowers. 4 pools are spread out over the hotel and it never seemed crowded.  No need to get up early to reserve a seat.

I don’t know what will happen if the hotel will again become busier.  Now there was still lot’s of space at the pools and certainly at the beach where there are many sunbeds.

Vendors will approach you to offer massages, scuba excursions and that sort of things.  The hotel offers ‘do not disturb signs’ if you don’t want to be bothered by them.

All-in package

The all-in package does not cover everything but is certainly not a rip-off in the meaning that you are forced to buy-up.  Some minor exceptions exist like specialty coffee and imported premiums alcohol beer.  From 11 am till midnight you can drink unlimited local beer and cocktails with local premiums for free, as well as regular coffee, thee and sodas.  The only thing we found strange was that no wine, not even house wine, was included in the a la carte restaurants.

Service

The staff all over the hotel was always very polite and helpful.  I like the fact that the hotel uses ambassadors that are very accessible and proactively approach you to inquire about your stay. They also act upon feedback given.  A very strong point of the hotel and a real differentiator with other hotels!

Conclusion

Despite the meals that let us slightly down we returned with a smile on our face.  Not only because the suite we stayed in.  The staff all over the hotel were very friendly and helpful and the hotel never felt crowded. There was no need to stress over a sunbed or a reservation in the restaurant.  Except some strolling on the beach or swimming in the pool we did nothing but reading and relaxing on our comfy sun beds. If you feel guilty after attacking those big buffets you can go snorkeling or choose out of a range of many other water sports activities.

Bookings and more info about this hotel : HOTEL INFO

If you are heading for the first time to Egypt, find here what you should know before visiting Egypt. 

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