The PlanHotel in Stella di Mare At Ain Soukhna on the Red Sea
by Jimmy Dunn
When this story was originally written, we felt that the grading system of Egyptian hotels was, while objective, not fair to hotels of this caliber. The Plan Hotel, while only currently rated four stars, was better than some five star hotels we have reviewed. However, we are pleased to announce that the Hotel Association in Egypt, in conjunction with the Ministry of Tourism, and under the excellent guidance of the Chairman of the Hotel Association, Mr. Fathi Nour, has revamped the rating hotel ranking system to be more in accordance with international standards.
Tour Egypt expect that this very progressive move by the Hotel Association will not only allow tourists to make better decisions regarding their accommodations, but will also vastly improve hotels in Egypt. Now, rather than having to compete with pricing of hotels that are inferior, we expect the PlanHotel to be ranked with more similar facilities because of the new system, which will allow them to maintain their wonderful facilities. Furthermore, the new system will rank service, which will create a more competitive environment in that regard as well.
While the rooms at the PlanHotel may not be as nice as its neighboring five star hotel, the Swiss Inn, they are nevertheless very large and comfortable, with all the amenities. Furthermore, the grounds and common buildings of this hotel are also lovely and well kept.
If something is missing from this hotel, it is not obvious. Nestled within beautifully landscaped grounds, the hotel consists of a main building housing the lobby, bars, restaurants and other facilities and 43 multi-room bungalows divided into three wings with a total of 255 rooms. Gardens are all about, and a manmade pond, home to a number of water fowl, twists its way through the property.
The hotel offers a grand total of six swimming pools, including a baby, one for diving, three private villa pools, including one that is heated, and a large recreational pool. There are three lighted tennis courts, two air conditioned squash courts, a fully equipped gymnasium and even an Amphitheater! Within the main building is the main restaurant, called the Nile Oasis, Rajastan, an Indian a la carte restaurant and Cedres du Liban, a Lebanese restaurant. The main bar is known as the Sailors Pub, and there is also a Lobby Bar. Additionally, the Cafe Moresco serves oriental coffee and tea, oriental snacks and pastries and has Shisha water pipes. There is also a boutique and drugstore with mixed shopping facilities and a business center.
In addition, there is also conference facilities including three fully equipped banquet rooms and a banquet terrace. The business center supports cable, fax and Internet communications and has a secretarial service available upon request.
Of the 255 rooms in this hotel, four are suites, forty-six are family rooms and twenty-six are connected rooms. The rooms themselves are said to be the largest in Ain Soukhna, and this is not difficult to believe. Even the restrooms and showers are large and comfortable. Each room has individually controlled air conditioning and heating, international direct dial telephones, remote controlled color TV's with international cable service, mini-fridges, in-room safe boxes and hairdryers. Each room also has a comfortable sofa-bed, along with either a balcony or terrace.
While this hotel is not directly on the beach, it does share the beach front with the Swiss Inn. And even though the beach is a very easy walk away, there is a small train that will transport guests to the beach at regular intervals. The beach itself is spacious and well equipped, with permanent beach umbrellas and comfortable lounge chairs. There are also a few playgrounds for children, as well as a daycare center, a beach snack bar and various facilities for water sports and boating.
Really, this hotel shares many facilities with the five star Swiss Inn, and together, they offer just about every imaginable activity one might hope to enjoy on a beach vacation. Of course, there are various water sports, including windsurfing, boating and sailing, water skiing, diving and water aerobics, while on the beach there is always volley ball.However, there are also tennis courts, football (soccer), bike rentals and even archery. Indoors, there is a squash court, billiards, a game arcade, darts and various games for children. And never fear. If one shoots oneself in the foot with an arrow, there is also a medical clinic with a physician, nurse and pharmacy.
Of course, there is also the wonderful Thalasso Spa, a therapeutic center located in the Swiss Inn. They offer any number of wellness treatments.
In the evenings, visit one of the many bars, some of which provide live entertainment such as bands, or enjoy an animation (floor show).
We also love the location of this hotel within the Stella di Mare complex at Ain Soukhna. It is easy and quick to reach from Cairo, and as we have pointed out in other articles about Ain Soukhna, there are, close by, at least several sights to see, such as the Suez Canal and the Eastern Desert Monasteries, including St. Anthony's and St. Paul's. Such tours can be arranged at this hotel.
Who are we?
Tour Egypt aims to offer the ultimate Egyptian adventure and intimate knowledge about the country. We offer this unique experience in two ways, the first one is by organizing a tour and coming to Egypt for a visit, whether alone or in a group, and living it firsthand. The second way to experience Egypt is from the comfort of your own home: online.