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Reviewed August 9, 2012

I am struggling to score the hotel. When everything worked and you played 'the game' everything was superb.

Let me explain.

Upon arrival, we a couple in our mid/late twenties from England, were pleasantly surprised with the reception area it is very high spec and beautifully designed. The reception staff were lacking in English to a European standard which isn't great as it would have been nice to have had the processes or 'the games' explained to us.

FOR EXAMPLE:
No one explained upon arrival that if you want to eat at the A La Carte restaurants then you better get in line at 8:20am and stand there for 25minutes until the computer system opens and then play the lottery of whether their corrupt system will have already booked out some of the restaurants fully, even though you are first in line.

I will come back to this later...

So we arrived it was about 2am local time, we went to our room, very clean and very nicely decorated, mini-bar is included all inclusive and there was a menu for room service (also included midnight-6am as part of the all inclusive. I ordered a burger (wasn't nice) but still impressed with the 24hr room service speed, being inclusive etc.The Room was a standard non sea view as we wanted to find the cheapest deal. The quality of the room was very high as was the entire main building. We had a double shower & hair-drier in room. The lighting fixtures were pleasant and cohesive with the design of the hotel theme. The mini bar included a variety of non alcoholic and alcoholic beverages. The Main foyer is beautiful with a bar a huge chandelier and plenty of seating areas (this is very typical in luxury turkey hotels and worked well). Sometimes we sat outside the front entrance to smoke and use wifi at the same time - we think there is definitely room to improve the entertainment on this floor as it is such a beautiful area.

We had ran out of cigarettes (sorry none-smokers this bit is irrelevant) and decided to go down to one of the bars to buy some. They didn't sell them and told me 'no cigarettes now, shops closed', I tried again at reception to see if there was anywhere I could buy some- i got the same response. After an hour of grinding our teeth I was sat on the balcony and noticed that about 500yds away there was a petrol station. I walked there, it was open (cigarettes here, and at the shop opposite the hotel next to the pharmacy were both lots cheaper than the hotel approx 2/3rds of the price - neither shop were selling fake cigarettes).

We woke up the next morning and went for breakfast. Yummy it was fantastic - there is no difference between 'late breakfast' which finishes at 11am and normal 'breakfast' which finishes at 10am - couldn't work out why the room directory stated the two separately. The area for breakfast is HUGE which was catered for all lifestyle choices in breakfast. Breakfast had nearly everything you might want except obviously Pork as it is a Muslim country. It was all very tasty too - smoked salmon, various sausages, fruits, cereals, pancakes etc etc ..By everything I mean everything - you could even have Smirnoff Vodka with your orange juice if you wanted - we noticed this was a hit with some of the Russians.

They also gave us a little booklet upon arrival which had maps of the hotel including all amenities which are in the back pages - this was useful - the only think not stated on the map was the location of the 'detox bar' - we later found out this was in the spa area (basement level). If you arrive late as we did then I would recommend you go down to the basement as the 'Irish Bar - also called the Camelot Bar - was open until 8am and had hot food which was an alternative to room service and tasted nicer.Also very important as is the only area to where you can watch TV (Olympics) other than your room!

FOOD:
I then decided we would organise dinner for the evening - our plan was to try as many of the A La Carte restaurants as possible. We were pointed to the 'kiosks' - in reality these were two computers which at 11am on day one there was no queue. The reason for this as we later found out was that everyone else had queued at 8:30am. We were left with two options - the Turkish and the Greek. I decided when in Turkey , eat Turkish. I was at this point a bit peeved that the others were all full. I would later decide that the Turkish was probably the 2nd best meal I had there. The mixed BBQ was amazing and the mezze type foods for starter were great. This restaurant is based near the beach and is very romantic.

You must book you restaurants on the machine for every two days so on the Thursday we could not book for Friday as there was a "gala night" which was not explained to us. We had another food rigmarole because the computers just said 'closed' for each restaurant - I went to reception and said all the restaurants were closed on the computer, the reception worker said I should go and speak to guest services, they then sent me back to reception. Neither explained there was a Gala night. Later that day one of the animation team 'Zaz' really nice guy explained there was a Gala night. I later called reception from the room to ask if there was Gala night, again the response was 'no gala night', 'there is one every two weeks'. It was like they didn't know or care to explain what the hell was going on.. That said we just went down to the main restaurant and realised that the animation guy was correct and the reception and guest relations staff were just useless. They had a choice of many different foods and the atmosphere was great. This is the buffet style of eating which we usually hate but we had no problems with it. Later after the food there was the gala entertainment at the 'amphitheatre' it should be named 'the stage' because it isn't an amphitheatre at all. They finished the show which was fairly entertaining with some very nice fireworks.relating this to food I think it is apt to mention that the stage area is also where you eat lunch as a snack bar - definitely not the best area for us in terms of quality of food and we just had tuna salad/ pasta type dishes everyday. The amphitheatre/snack bar area was more for families with young children.

The Meat and wine 'Da Vinci' restaurant was lovely and was situated in the basement with the other A La Carte restaurants. The theme was cold starter warm starter soup salad and main followed by dessert. All the food and service was to a very high standard - I cannot remember everything we had but do remember something very funny as we both ordered steak for main which was great and I had a red chilli which I thought was going to be a regular capsicum but it blew my socks off!!

For lunch on Sundays they offer food in the main restaurant which was great to get away from the heat and have a little more choice for lunch. I opted for sushi and salad which made me feel fresh for the rest of the day!

The next evening we went to the international restaurant 'Fusion' which is the largest of all the rest of the A La Cartes and had the best atmosphere of all the rest. The food was very mixed and interesting choices made which could rival a 5 star restaurant in London. The theme was as above cold starter, warm starter, soup, salad, main, dessert style. They also offer you better wines here.

On the Monday we went to Zuma the chinese. This was started with a sushi appetiser to share please note that the sushi is good quality but there is no sashimi on offer which is such a shame. We had nice starters starters and an amazing main course of Duck pancakes - possibly the best presented Chinese main course I have had in a while.

On the Tuesday we tried the Greek Helena restaurant which was again fantastic and healthy with Greek salads, octopus and seabass. The desert was impressive with dry ice spouting out of it!!

For the final day we went to the "elusive" Tapenyaki which we had problems booking via the machine all week despite being first in line which felt corrupt and guest relations were never available to sort this. Finally before the end of the holiday we kicked up such a fuss with the manager to be able to get this. The chef was impressive and he was just as kind and nice as all the other waiters. We actually probably would not rate the choice in food here as much as other others after all that fuss but it was very entertaining and kids would love it!

Overall I think that there is some problem with guest relations because they either have a lack of skilled cooks for the A La carte. This is due to the fact that the restaurants appear fully booked every night but never are full!!!!

Beach or Pools:

We recommend not to use a sunbed on the beach unless you do not mind sitting in the shade and far away from a bar. It was much more convenient to be on the Jeti where there is a bar but please note you must wake up very early to get a bed here as big groups come and take them and there are not many available. We again had to play this game and get one at 7am; even though the rules stated this was not allowed it was the only way because nobody enforced them.

For the Pools we found the relax pool the easiest. You do not have to wake up very early to get a bed, you are near a bar and you have waitresses on Rollerblades come around every half hour or so. For families you might have to wake early to get a spot at the other pools with kids.

The entertainment and other stuff

We enjoyed the gala night so much we decided after a few drinks to even go to the nightclub - had a great time and you can smoke! The DJ was OK. He obviously has a limit to what he is allowed to play though. We went on our last evening too where the animation did some breakdancing which was good after a few drinks I gave him my phone because i was desperate for him to play a few of my favourite songs which everyone seemed to enjoy!

Another great area was the Jeti at night to relax and drink - however they did not provide music here at night which is a shame. Near the relax pool there is a Shisha bar and large seating area which we feel could of been busier if they had TV screens and more of a bar atmosphere too.

We went for a walk around the hotel and located ourselves at the Relax Pool. Lots of free beds here everyday and no children really. If some showed up security seemed to analyse their behaviour and remove if required. There were multiple (I would say 10 at any given time) waitresses on roller skates going round taking drink orders. If you needed a drink faster - which in 44C in the shade you probably will the bar is a 30 second walk away.

In the basement of the hotel is a shop selling cigarettes, lilos, toiletries etc. These are expensive by Turkish standards but very convenient as you need to pass them to get to the back of the hotel where the pools/ beach and majority of outdoor areas are located. Also on this level is a leather goods shop (selling fake handbags, belts etc) a jewellery shop selling fake watches, jewellery, Pandora etc.. you will soon learn that Turkey is the land of the fake items. Every shop we visited in Turkey (apart from when we took a taxi to TerraCity) sold fake goods. Also on the basement level were all A La Carte restaurants (share the same entrance) except the Turkish one, the Spa, the gym and the nightclub. I would say haggle everything everywhere, you can pay Euro's or Turkish everywhere too.

If you want to use Wifi just connect to one of the routers 'imperial 1' for instance and put your room number as username and surname as password. It is poor pretty much everywhere except the ground floor level, but you may get some on your balcony or by the pool. If you are on O2 they will allow you 50mb of data for about £30 instead of the £6mb they test you to tell you. (just an FYI)

Summary:

Go here, you will enjoy it.

Please make sure you complain to the manager about the annoyance of booking the restaurants because I would love them to change it before I think about returning again.

I would have given a 5* review if the reception staff were better trained, the restaurant booking system was resolved and the information provided on arrival was better. Also wifi needs improving, more tv's at the bars for sporting events would be useful and some music playing at a bar rather than just in the nightclub.. there was never any atmosphere in any of the bars which was a let down.

The food was the best some of the best I have had and the use of flavours, textures and portion sizes were all highly commendable.

I would say if you are a young group don't go, if you are a couple or family it is going to be more fun.

  • Stayed: August 2012, travelled as a couple
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20  Thank T_leeds
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed August 9, 2012

This property has all the potential of being 5 star, but not quite there. Check in was ok and efficient. The rooms are spacious and nice but not 5 star, especially the bathroom which as a little bland. I've had better toiletries in lesser hotels, the towels were a bit thin and wearing. Shower is large, lighting is bad for the ladies who need to apply makeup.
The air conditioning never made it to the cool level we like and the corridors are always very hot.
Mini bar was nice, stocked each day. Although they knock before entering, they would barge right in before you could answer. Balcony was good, however they need to clean up the section between the Delphin Palace and Imperial. Looks like a land field at the moment.
Food was good but the reservation system for the a la carte restaurants is a joke. Who wants to stand in line at 830 a.m. , be the 4th person to make a reservation and be told all the restaurants are full? Seems like tour groups get priority there. We had to dine apart one night because there were no 4 tables available, only space for 2 yet when we went to dinner that night, there were 7 tables of 4 seats empty all around us. We were the 2nd seating so we know no one occupied those seats. Also, the a la carte restaurants always seemed rushed and the menu was not explained very well. After 4 nights of that, we opted back for the buffet. The buffet can be an absolute zoo with people zooming all around. It was very loud at times, just busy.
Drinks are plentiful but the bars are not cohesive...one bar can make a Mai Tai, another bar had never heard of it. Mojitos, my favorite were never made with lime, only lemons and they were awful, I tried them at all the bars. The Aqua bar seemed to be the most consistent, generally good drinks.
The Relax pool is for 14 and up. Many times parents would bring their small children into the pool, the rule was never enforced. If you wanted to nap or have quiet time with your spouse, forget it.
The best place in the whole resort was at the very end of the dock. Superb place to swim or sunbathe with a breeze. We never saw lifeguards there however. Nice bar at that end.
The spa was just ok. Very lackadaisical manager who was interested in selling us treatments but lost interest after we paid. Booked a 1 hour massage which was really 30 minutes of massage and 30 minutes of "relaxing" in a chair looking at a fish tank. Just say what it is....30 minutes of massage.
There were very good members of staff, some not so much which was to me, not 5 star. They didn't seem to work as a unit.. You just got lucky if you got a great waiter, bartender, etc... Ordered room service one night, it never showed up yet we were charged for it.
Disco/nightclub was fun for our older teens (17 and 18).
Transportation in to Antalya for shopping was ok but would have liked to have had more information about the bazaars. Kind of just wandered around till we found it.
Internet... Or lack of... EVERYONE had trouble with this and the higher your floor the worse it was. The only place I could connect was either in the bathroom or standing by the door to our room. They obviously know about this problem, I see it has been a complaint for awhile yet nothing has been done to fix it. Very annoying, as it was the only way I could check on my elderly mother.
Overall, it was ok. I am hopeful they will improve with time. Not sure if I would go back... Maybe if it was advertised as 4 star?

Room Tip: Top floors are the quietest , facing the Delphin Palace. Partial sea view room is good enough, it has a nice balcony.
  • Stayed: August 2012, travelled with family
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7  Thank Ruth P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed August 8, 2012

We stayed at the imperial for 7 nights in July 2012, myself my wife and two boys 6 & 7. We booked this hotel back in January before the hotel was even built. I arranged for a transfer through the hotel costing €60 which was quite reasonable, and also emailed the hotel to double make sure that our room had a bath with it as the 7th floor is the only one with baths in the rooms. I had a confirmation email back about the transfer and the bath so I relaxed and waited for our holiday to arrive. On arrival to the airport our driver was waiting outside to pick us up and take us straight there which was fantastic. When we got to the hotel, check in was fine and I double checked with the receptionist that we would have a bath to which he confirmed this was so. Yep you guessed it the room only had a shower. I phoned straight down to reception while the guy stood there with the bags, the receptionist was quite short and blunt with me that we would have to wait till the morning to find out if we could change room. I tried the next day to change room but was unsuccessful, by this time I was ready to blow so my wife took over the matter. On the third day we moved room to one with a bath and I could finally unpack and relax. I get the feeling that the hotel is constantly upgrading people from the other Delphin hotels to the Imperial, therefore filling the hotel to capacity thus leaving us without the correct room. The staff are limited with the English language which is fine as I can't speak a word of there lingo, they do however speak very well in German and Russian hence why they favour the other guests. All these reviews seem to mention the other countries being favoured which is true and it does wind you up a bit. I'll do a short list of plus and minuses for the hotel. Pluses: very short transfer from airport - very clean and tidy - spacious rooms and hotel - good drinks service around pool - plenty for kids to do. Minuses: some staff can be hard work - ala cart impossible to ever book - only a Turkish version of a 5 star - layout of pools and beds could be better - kids club could be better and more attentive to all nationalities - some non slip flooring as apossed to gloss finished floor tiles would be helpful. Overal it was an enjoyable holiday, be prepared for some seriously hot weather in July and August, even the staff said they find it too hot sometimes. The price rose €1000 for one week from the time we booked and to be honest looking at the prices now for the hotel, it is very overpriced for what you get. After two holidays to Turkey in two years, i think we will try somewhere else next. If we do return to Turkey again one day I think I'll learn a bit of German.

Stayed: July 2012, travelled with family
4  Thank studiggler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed August 7, 2012

Me and my parents (I am nine) have just returned from the amazing delphin imperial.The size is just mind blowing.I wonder why it's seventh! Foods always on hand by the aqua bar e.g hot dogs, pizza and waffles.I really recommend going to the beach party on Wednesday, it's held every two weeks.The pools are mildly hot so dipping in the freezing indoor pool is sometimes needed.The luna park is a great way to spend the night for adults and kids alike.The toilets are very modern.The bars serve any customized drink including blue sauce sprite!I recommend booking the a la carte Da Vinci (If you can)!There is a high tech gym to burn of the weight you put on!By the aqua a bar there is Turkish pipe (20:00-00:00).The room maids leave lots of dust and sometimes accidentally take stuff like cuddly toys with the duvet covers.All in all our holiday was paka(amazing).

Room Tip: If you did not book sea view just ask for side view at the reception.But make sure it's level two or higher
  • Stayed: August 2012, travelled with family
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3  Thank mantis321
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed August 7, 2012

Delphin Imperial is an extraordinary hotel that fully deserve all 5 stars. A really beautiful holiday!
A great and well trained staff, clearly trying to please all tourists. Always smiling and even if They did not know all possible languages ​​as every tourist would like, their smile means everything. As I read many other reviews from other sites before coming here, I noticed a substantial improvement. Staff trying to learn basic words in several languages ​​to fully satisfy all tourists. I was very surprised to hear them breaking a few words in Romanian, because the influx of tourists in Romania is not at all negligible in this region. I can say that sometimes annoyingly attentive, polite and persistent which shows a very good training for them. Cleanliness in the dining rooms is exemplary, the staff is always attentive to the smallest detail.
Rooms are clean, spacious, elegant and beautifully decorated. The cleaning staff is also very helpful and make sure not to miss anything, even intimate atmosphere of the room, helping with all kinds of origami arrangements towels (swans, hearts ...). For those unhappy with certain technical problems which may appear during their stay, use with confidence the cards hanging on the door, because without the contribution of tourists, technical staff does not know the technical failures that occur. Is a new hotel and tourists are of all kinds of, not missing even the least educated. For those who complained about the cleaning also use cards hanging on the front door. These are the four colors and each has its significance.
Spa is great, pealing and a massage deserves everything. Do not miss the hamam, you will not have the opportunity to meet such a thing anywhere. Outdoor pool is open to all categories of tourists. Those who want more quite can choose Relax Pool, but those who want more activity can focus on other pools where the animation team will take care to make them a really pleasant holiday.
The gourmets, can find foods everywhere inside the complex, which is equipped with many bars, confectionerys and restaurants. Every evening you will have special shows both for children and for adults, so you will not have time to be bored.
Do not miss restaurants "a la carte". Are free and you can choose from any of the 8 restaurants. Those who complained that they had to pay ought to know that they pay only for imported drinks that were ordered at the table, the rest is free.
Positioning the hotel is excellent, there are many Shoping Center where you can buy anything you want. When shoping everything is negotiable. You can get discounts of 30-40% of the prices displayed.

  • Stayed: August 2012, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank popescuseby
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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