Tej Marhaba Hotel, Sousse
Reviews - Tej Marhaba Hotel
- Age Group: Under 18
- From: United Kingdom
- Traveller type: Family Traveller
- Age Group: 31 - 40
- From: United Kingdom
- Traveller type: Family Traveller
- Age Group: 31 - 40
- From: United Kingdom
- Traveller type: Young Couple
- Age Group: 18 - 25
- From: United Kingdom
- Traveller type: Young Couple
- Age Group: 51 - 60
- From: United Kingdom
- Traveller type: Mature Couple
Read 542 additional reviews of Tej Marhaba Hotel at TripAdvisor.
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Historical Traveller Reviews of Tej Marhaba Hotel
Best vacation ever!from caculina
For the midday meal there are several possibilities, none of which demanding much effort. The easiest one is the snack bar by the pool where you can get decent pizza with tuna for 5 dinars. The discovery for us was a restaurant in the shopping mall called Sindbad which offered wonderfully fresh seafood for 7 to 9 dinars ( things like Greek prawn or octopus in Nizarda sauce) and which seemed completely deserted when we ventured into it.
Although this is Africa and it is rather hot (around 40 degrees centigrade), there is always a bit of wind on the beach which makes it cooler than the swimming pool. One day we had the hot wind from the desert (the Fan or Scirroco) and the temperature rose to 45 degrees. If that happens, stay either at the beach or in an air conditioned area. We even ventured into town that day but I wouldn't advise it.
The city of Sousse is quite big and the best way to get around is in a taxi. You either negotiate the price when you hail one or they switch on the meter. From the hotel you pay around 2 dinars to get to the museum (which is at the top end of the medina) and that's the most expensive it can get around town. Don't get confused if you see the driver going around because most of their streets, even the big ones are one way only to avoid congestion. If you go to Port el Cantaoui, you pay 3.5 dinars daytime and maximum 5 dinars nightime. A dinar is around 0.75$. The atractions of Sousse are: the medina and things in it like the Ribat with its tower, the old mosque right next to the Ribat, the shopping street that starts from the mosque. At the opposite end, i. e. when you pass all the way through the main shopping street in the medina, you go out of the medina through the gate and turn right. Follow the walls and after a few steps you come across the fortress - kasba with old cannons, huge walls with towers etc. If you continue to follow these, you get to the entrance to the archeological museum, where you can find the most beautiful Roman mosaics and the most peaceful inner courtyard you can imagine. To the right of the museum is another attraction - the lighthouse which is the highest point of Sousse and also very old. The keeper speaks slow French and is very keen to tell you everything you want to know. These attractions are 2 dinars each and you pay 1dinar for the right to take photos. These places seem utterly deserted by tourists, I don't know why. Everybody seems to fret about the excursions into the desert or to the city of Tunis etc and they completely miss out the charm of these places. The offered excursions are OK if you go to Tunisia in April, May or any time but the summer, but to spend hours in the bus didn't seem such a good idea to us so we skipped them.
All in all, the location of the hotel, which is in town but still secluded and everything within a walking distance if you don't want to use a taxi, the wonderful beach, the charm of the old medina and its attractions, the local food and the friendly people made this the best holiday for us. The only ugly thing that happened to us actually happened at the airport before the return trip home. The security guy took away my partner's swiss army knife as a weapon (OK, safety above all) but then he suggested that we could return to the check-in counter and check it in as baggage in a small handbag that we had, so I did so. When we arrived in Belgrade and got the handbag, there was no trace of the knife and the new pack of cigarettes that was also inside had been opened by someone. I know that the baggage gets stolen at airports, but this seemed so intentional that we both were really disappointed and enraged with it. It almost spoiled the wonderful impressions we had up till then.
fantastic holidayfrom A TripAdvisor Member
Ladies remember this is a Muslem country!
never going backfrom A TripAdvisor Member
June 2005 - Tej Marhaba, Soussefrom shanliff
SOUSSE: Bloody awful! We went to Port el Kantoui (4 dinar/£1.80 taxi) and thought it was much nicer - a lovely marina to look round. There is hardly anything to do in Sousse except get hassled to have a look at what they are selling.
TEJ MARHABA: Very good hotel. Immaculate everywhere - and clean sheets/towels everyday. The maids make wonderful patterns with the bedding. We had a very big bed too - emperor size I think. We were surprised that the rooms are carpeted which made a nice change in a hot country. Make sure to ask for a Pool/Sea view - the view from the other side (front) is of the hotel rubbish tip and there is road noise! If you have pool/sea view - the swifts(?) are very entertaining feeding on the wing etc. Pool/sea view has sun in the morning and is cooler at the end of the day when it's needed. The rooms and pool area are treated regularly with something which stops mozzies - no evidence the whole week!!!! The hotel has its own shopping mall - sells the same as everywhere but a bit pricier! Oh, and the hotel has just been re-decorated so not so shabby.
STAFF: We found them to be very pleasant but with the waiters/porters etc, tips are behind every nicety
TIPPING: Tipping is required everywhere! 1 dinar seems to be the going rate - reckon the pool man (Ali) must be a millionaire! The same on the beach - one of the young hotel beach lads even asked for our beach towels as a souvenirs when we were leaving - to sell I would think. It was costing us about 10 dinar (£4) a day in tips.
FOOD: As the other reviews have said - good but can be repetitive. Always a long queue for the pancakes
POOL/BEACH: The pool is very clean as is the hotel beach. The hotel beach is 'policed' by staff and they stop the hawkers from bothering you. Sea very clear and warm. Expect to tip for sunbeds each day.
NIGHT ENTERTAINMENT: Definitely for the more senior guests! The nightly bingo game seemed to be the highlight??? The Tej Marhaba 'band' is a trio which can be slightly off-key at times - their repertoire is the same every night near enough. They were good for the waltzing guests! We thought we must have booked a Saga holiday by mistake. The younger guests were not catered for and no music bars for them to go outside the hotel. There is different theme entertainment each night, e.g. Tunisian folklore, a magician, a fakir? The fountains make a lovely backdrop for photos though!
TIP: The Riadh Palms across the road has much better entertainment and anyone can go.
DRINKS: The only wine available is Tunisian (how can a Muslim country make wine - who tastes it??) Every bottle we tried with dinner was like vinegar or water - and at approx £7-10 a bottle! Measures for shorts are free poured and much smaller than UK (i.e. nothing like Spain/Greece!). A very small Baileys costs £5!!!!! They push Tunisian wines and spirits which are cheaper but ugh! Even the beer is Tunisian but that seemed ok.
TIP: Buy enough duty free spirits for your holiday in the UK airport.
TIP: Cigars are very rare and very expensive in Tunisia If you manage to find a Tabac that sells them, the prices are the same as UK if not higher with limited selection - buy duty free in UK airport.
OVERALL: Don't think we would go back to Tunisia but the hotel was very good. There's not a lot to see or do in Sousse but if sunbathing and relaxing is what you want - a week is excellent - and enough!
first time in tunisia our family experiencefrom zigzag
yes u had to force a smile frm female reception staff - but otherwise found all staff helpful - hotel well located beach clean and we did swim in the sea - we had 3 bedded room which was spotless and cleaned daily - hotel was being cleaned 24/7 - splendid hotel and grounds - everyone pleasent - food too nice and plenty of evening meal choices (although i missed my bacon and sausage}
pool bar meals very reasonable and also meals in rose and crown -
- bar staff seem to give a free plate of nuts to locals but we had to ask before got any
met lots of nice people
- if got late flight cannot book ur room for longer as hotel full up - but th have courtsey room but was someone in everytime we tryed
one line/one house bingo game then entertainment
Entertainment stopped at 10.20 - but bar open till 12 and piano bar open till two prices of drinks were same in both bars as well as rose and crown bar on hotel complex - they had just opened a new cocktail bar and the evening entertainment was moving outside when we left -everyone expected tips even cleaners followed u to toilets and turned on taps and passed u loo roll to dry hands -
OUTSIDE HOTEL when they knew u were english everyone tried to drag u into their shops or stalls on the medina - and little tots kept givin u a flower then holding their hands out for money - even when u sat in a cafe people tryed to sell u - everyone wants ur dinars - also they kept putting things round my sons neck and getting to you that way found it hard to say no thanks but was getting used to it by the second week - even my son was saying no thanks
would recommend the hotel to anyone - but the haggling culture takes some getting used to
Mixed Reviewfrom tigger65
We managed to get a good sub £300 deal for half board flying from Glasgow. The reception is ok but the money changer is a right misery. But use the ATM on the road to the town centre next to “the escargot” (brilliant French restaurant about 200m away). Hotel reception is huge with 2 bars in it one was finished on our last night, and there is a 70's retro piano bar next to it. Drinks are about UK prices. The dining room is huge, breakfast is ok with mix of hot dogs, scrambled eggs toast, etc. as well as fresh pancakes free and juice at an extra 75p. Evening meals are what you expect from a half board hotel ok and safe Thursday night is "Tunisian" night so you get cous cous too. The waiters are helpful as long as you keep the Dinar tips flowing. We saw the food as an extra as we intended to eat out most of the time but ended up eating 4 times. The evening "entertainment" is varied to say the least and unless you are a huge bingo fan and not to be banked on. The porters are very cheeky and asked for a tip in UK money !
The pool is huge as are the gardens with sun beds. The private beach is well managed too just watch out for the persistent salesmen and don't be too easy going with them unless they get the wrong idea that you may buy something, we had an incident but the hotel sorted the security out later on.
Rooms are comfortable with Air Con, reasonable bathroom and BBC world. Highlight was watching the birds from the balcony catching the mosquitoes.
The complex also includes some expensive shops and English Bar (again expensive) as well as an Italian Restaurant.
Around the hotel is another English Bar and some slightly cheaper shops as well as loads of other hotels.
No problems with fire alarms mind.
Easy to get into the town centre don’t be put off going around the medina its not that bad and they won’t sell you into slavery or anything, the Ribat makes a great introduction followed by the Kasbah and Museum. If things get tight in the souks head for the Do-Do café and have a sit down inside.
Taxis’ are ok too just agree a price up front they won’t rip you off then.
Trips, we did two but I wouldn’t do it again as both of them tried to do to much however, Do go to El Jem and the museum there it was the highlight of the week, if you want to go to Tunis get the train as its more comfortable and cheaper. The operator that First Choice use Startrips is next to the wine supermarket the rep will tell you about go there and have a chat.
Last thing our First Choice rep was the best I have ever met really helpful.
not impressedfrom ilovethebeach
Fire at hotel - No fire drill - suffered smoke inhalationfrom A TripAdvisor Member
The reception area is very nice and clean, and there is a lot of space. However, when you see your room, you're in for what we call "a bit of a come-down!"..
The carpet beside my side of the bed near the patio door was dirty. The bathroom tiles were grimy and dated. I was bitterly disappointed but, one's on holiday, and it's just a place to sleep....
So we got over that and later on that evening, got ready and found a lovely little restaurant down the stairwell, can't remember the name; think it was Nicos or something Italian.. The food and staff were excellent..
The next day was our first full day in Tunisia and we paid 4 dinar by taxi to go to the Medieval city. We had a lovely time. I must say that the Tunisian people are very nice and helpful.
The following day we were up at the crack of dawn as our tour bus pulled up to the entrance and off we went on the tour ROAD TO CARTAGE, it was very good but a bit tiring and we got back to our hotel at 6pm.
Again, we decided to get ready and go down and sample the delights of the menu we had enjoyed the previous evening. It was a lovely meal and we headed to bed that night at 11pm..
In the early hours of 27th April, at 1:45am, I might add, I woke to the strong smell of burning. I sat up in the bed, thinking "I must be dreaming, I'm on my holiday, this couldn't be happening...why are there no sirens..?" I leapt out of bed and quietly opened the door so as not to disturb my sleeping husband and opened the bedroom door, to stick my nose out and see if what I was thinking was in fact a reality.. I bolted in very quickly as I became overcome with the smoke filled corridors.
One should not panic. Panic doesn't save lives. This is what I thought. All the lights in the room went on and I said to my husband "Get up, get dressed, get out, our floor is on fire, there's a lot of smoke". He was rather sleepy as you can imagine but got dressed. I got dressed too, just threw on a pair of jeans, a top and pair of sandals and while he got dressed I rang the reception to report it...
"Hello, Reception?", I asked
"Yes, how I can help!?" he replied
"There is a fire on the third floor, there's smoke everywhere, sound the alarm" I said, thinking that would be enough to jolt them into action
"Yes, yes, nice, nice, you can go sleep now, yes, yes, thank you!", he replied incompetently
"Did you not hear what I said, I said FIRE!" and to cut a long story short his reply was the same. I slammed the phone down and said to my husband "Feckin' eegit doesn't care, come on!"
So we left the room and went down the stairwell, and the closer we got to the ground floor, the heavier the smoke became. We arrived in the reception area and I walked straight up to the receptionist and asked him "I asked you if there was a fire and he you denied it; yet there is smoke from the 3rd floor down here", and he replied "Em, yes, everything okay now".
I wasn't satisified, I had woken to smoke coming into my bedroom and there was no firebells going off; no fire drill activated. The hotel had sleeping holiday makers, men, women, babies and children, all putting their lives in the hands of people who made a decision not to call the emergency services.
After quite a verbal battle, it was established that a fire began in the kitchen when a chip pan was left unattended. The fire began at 12:30 and lit the kitchen up and the staff fought it themselves, unaware that the first thing to do was to GET THE PEOPLE OUT...
I demanded that the fire brigade be called, and after 30 minutes they were. I asked where the police were and an off-duty officer stood beside me and I said to him; why is there no fire drill? By this time, a young couple and a few other people had come down the stairs. One elderly woman came down 7 flights by stairwell, and she was an asmathic. She didn't receive any care or medical attention. She followed us outside to we were recovering from the smoke inhalation.
By now it was nearly 2:30am and I decided I had enough, and wanted to leave the hotel. I went back inside and asked the receptionist to call my rep. By 3am that request had gone ignored and when I asked the bell-boy who earlier had said "hello and how are you, did you have a nice day" where the hotel manager was; he replied "I don't speak English".
I speak French, Spanish, and Italian and I have never heard of a Tunisian who couldn't understand French, but he swore he couldn't..
To cut a long story short when we did finally meet with the Manager; not only did I give him a piece of my mind but I told him that I wanted to leave his hotel immediately.
We were driven by him in his own car the hotel ROYAL SALEM, and I can honestly say, what a difference..
The food, the staff, the cleanliness of the place was amazing.. I am looking forward to my return to Tunisia; just to stay at the Royal Salem and of course to see more of Tunisis.
What's nice about the Royal Salem Hotel is that every Monday at 11am there is a fire drill and every hotel guest is requested to take part. I felt safer there than I did at the Tej Marhaba Hotel.
Bottom line... DIRTY HOTEL, NO FIRE DRILL, FOOD IN THE BREAKFAST ROOM IS AWFUL, ROOMS ARE OLD AND DATED.
t go backfrom planetbollox
The arrangement for the sunbeds by the pool is simple and easy. Just turn up with your beach towel and look around, before you know it, one of the two pool attendants will be there asking how many beds you want and where, he will then sort it. The first time we did this, I asked 'how much?' his reply was 'whatever you want to pay me'. The going rate is one dinar - about 50p. Where else can you get two sunbeds all day for 50p ?
We only used the outdoor pool. Yes, when you first go in it seems a bit cool but this sensation is gone before you have covered 5 yards. The pool and grounds are superb. As others have mentioned, the staff never ever stop cleaning and tidying.
We went on two tours, the first to Carthage, Sidi Bou Said and Tunis. The second to a bedouin evening. The first tour was good, the guide, Nayla, was very very knowledgeable and enthusiastic. The unfortunate thing about Carthage is that it literally borders the Presidents villa. The President doesn't like the idea of anyone photographing his pad and so photos are a big no-no. Just in case you might forget this, he has armed guards every 70 ft around his walls ! Tunis is a dump. A strong word of warning. We deceided to go to a pavement cafe on their equivalent of the Champs Elysee. We got targeted by a bag snatcher. Fortunately, we were too good for him so in his anger he spat at us. Not nice. My advice would be either not to sit outside or if you really must, use one of the cafes that has an enclosed frontage and sit right back from the kerb, almost inside the cafe.
Unfortunately, this experience put a bit of a damper on the day.
The following day, we went to the Bedouin evening. Now this really was excellent. You will probably have heard of events where you pay the price and all the booze is free - then spent the rest of the night trying to get some, not so here. The booze really was free flowing. Beer, red wine and coke. The beer and wine came in bottles. There was loads of it on the tables when we sat down and they just kept bringing it. Again the food was excellent.
Back to the hotel. Entertainment is laid on most nights. The staff and the reps really do want the punters to enjoy themselves and work hard to ensure that they do.
We only used the main hotel bar. A bottle of house white, rose or red wine is ten dinars - about £5. A bargain ! All of the wines are perfectly good, there are more expensive ones but why bother ? Each time the waiter brought us a round of drinks we tipped him about 10% usually about one dinar - 50p. This might not seem much but Tunisia is a desperately poor country - the average monthly wage is about 150 dinars - yep £75.
For the women, going topless seems to be cautiously ok around the pool but I don't think it would be a smart move to engage any Tunisian males in conversation whilst in that state. I would certainly advise caution regarding going topless away from the hotel. This is an Islamic state after all.
All in all, the Tej is a good hotel and for us it suited our purposes ideally. The downside is that we have done it all now, the beach is nothing special given that it is a Mediterranean beach, the sea is not turquoise - more a greeny colour. And most importantly, you can't seem to get away from the fact that this is a desperately poor place. My view is that whilst I would not wish to put anybody off, if you want a cheap chill out then Tunisia is good but once you have been here, you will be looking forward to Greece again next year.
Tunisia in generalfrom A TripAdvisor Member
Starting with the actual place, Sousse is a nice part of Tunisia and to be honest, much better the Skanes as there is not much to do there. The sand on the beach is good although the sea did not look the right colour to be swam in.
There are shopping centres which i recommend to buy your water bottles, snacks, chocolate, crips & sun tan oil etc etc, as if you were to buy this in the hotel, you will be charged twice the price.
Talking about prices, Tunisia is a cheap place and the fags cost between 3D - 3.500D (about 1 pound 40p sorry pound sign not working on my keyboard lol)
You get about 2.30D to the Brits 1pound sterling.
The Hotel: The hotel in very nice, clean, big and a great outdoor pool. The indoor pool did not look to healthy so i can make a comment on what its like in it. The outdoor pool cold although once inside it, you wont feel a chill.
Round the clock cleaning inside this hotel therefore you will realise that you for sure wont get any germs.
When you 1st walk into the hotel, you will be feel like a million bucks as the view is just fantastic. Thats until you get to the reception and are spoken to some grumpy staff. Very Grumpy.
Dont worry though, you aint spending your time with them so it aint that bad. Your rooms are cleaned every day (thats your choice) and we were on the 2nd floor facing the pool & Beach (the other side of the hotel is a totally rubbish scene).
Tip: When you check in, ask for the pool view. If they say "Have you asked for this?" you just say yes as they do not check.
Do not go to the Club Maracana during the weekdays cause the only people in there will be you and the staff behind the bar. Fri's & Sat's are the days to go there. Becareful though, prices for drinks are a rip off (double prices even more sometimes to the reception/piano bar).
I need to go now although i will be back and give you more of a better review shortly.
In all, you will have a good time here and remember that its what you make of your holiday to make it a good time.
Top Local Tips for Sousse
Tuk Tuks Never go on a tuk tuk there suposed to carry 6 people but they fit 12 people in and they topple over also there normaly not covered by your holiday insurance. Tuk Tuks are pink carrages on motor bikes
dont buy people drinks when you aare siteseeing try the fish resteraunt at the bottom of the road below tej marhaba you wont regret it
Sousse Don't go!
Other names for Tej Marhaba Hotel
- tej marhaba sousse
- tej marhaba hotel
- hotel tej marhaba
- Address: Boulevard Taieb Mhiri - Sousse - 4000 - Tunisia