- Krisflyer Gold Lounge, Singapore Changi Airport
- SQ494 Singapore – Dubai (Economy) 15:05 – 18:45 (flight time 7hrs 40mins) / SQ495 Dubai – Singapore (Economy) 20:00 – 07:15 (flight time 7hr 15min)
- Holiday Inn Express Dubai Airport (layover 15hrs 05mins)
- FZ1209 Dubai – Tel Aviv 09:50 – 11:40 (flight time 3hr 50min) / FZ1550 Tel Aviv – Dubai 09:55 – 15:00 (flight time 3hr 05mins)
- Sheraton Tel Aviv
I was super excited about finally getting here after the crappy HIE experience BUT I wouldn’t’ve imagined I’d spend so much time in the room – all because I fell sick on the morning after landing and remained so until I checked out.
Address – 115 Hayarkon Street, Tel Aviv, Israel, 63573. Website.
Contact – Tel: +972-3-5211157. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Location – I did not have much time to check out the surroundings as this was a work trip but here is what is lifted from the hotel website – “A prime beach front location, right in the heart of the Herbert Samuel Boardwalk, overlooking the Mediterranean coastline, within walking distance to Tel Aviv’s hotspots, the artists quarter and picturesque Jaffa. The Sheraton Tel Aviv is located in close proximity to Ben Gurion International Airport.” Apart from that, I did actually managed to take a few small walks outside during my stay and it’s indeed beaches all the way.
Price – I wasn’t privy to the rate booked but a dummy search for the same dates showed USD550++ a night which was really expensive for a regular room with only breakfast included.
Check In – We arrived at about 1pm local time and thank goodness the room was ready even if it meant being assigned a twin bed instead of a king. I also furnished my Bonvoy number in case I had incidentals, and was also informed that I wouldn’t have access to the Club Lounge even as a Titanium as this was a group booking. Otherwise, the process was quite painless.
I also got a generic welcome letter listing the necessary hotel info.
Meanwhile, the lobby is a great spot for chilling with plenty of seats – how I wish all Sheratons are like this!
Getting to my room means passing through rather pretty corridors.
Room – My Deluxe Seaview (2 Twins) (25SqM) was such a great respite after my HIE horror! I liked very much the modern design bathed in blue and wooden hues and was immediately happy that this will be my home for the next 5 days.
The block of space offered plenty of useful nooks – the 2 twin beds in the middle of the room (the modern headboards are a definite plus) with generous bedside table space complemented.
There is also 2x single chairs + a coffee table by the side of the bed. A single bottle of water was placed on the coffee table being ‘compliments of Marriott Bonvoy”.
Across this space is an island of a mounted TV, mini bar equipped with Illy’s coffee machine and pods, teas (really nice Ceremonie Lemongrass & Verbena flavor!), glassware etc, the fridge (empty), and some literature.
The wardrobe space is closer to the hallway from the door and contains the quintessential bathrobes, slippers (really nice and plushy!), iron + ironing board), and actually plenty of hangers.
The bathroom is a decked out in white patterned tiles and was immaculate. A decent open space toilet, a single sink but plenty of countertop space, and a huge enclosed standing shower equipped with Sea of Spa toiletries but the conditioning shampoo are provided instead. Some toiletries are also not automatically provided here eg dental kit but they are happy to send upon request.
I had a nice view of the beachside surroundings as well:
Breakfast – breakfast is served at the only F&B in the property, Surfside Seaview Restaurant, from 6:30am-11:00am (Sun-Thur) and 07:30am-11:30am (Fri & Sat). It is a huge space located at the lower level and offers quite a view of the seaside highlights – the window seats are the ones to go for if you want to secure your view. Otherwise, there are plenty of seating options as well.
I cannot vouch for the quality of the spread as I was sick so I ate warm oatmeal and carbs but visually it looked really exciting, and I am quite sad I wasn’t able to partake. Breads, pastries, vegs, pasta, lagsana, an entire vegan selection, an egg station, local Israeli delicacies, a whole variety of yoghurts, fresh fruits, salads, a real honeycomb, cold cuts, cheeses, dips, etc etc. Okay, I’m sad again.
Other F&B – There is a Lobby Lounge Bar which sells quick bites and coffee etc in the day – I presume it’ll transform into more a bar at night.
I also walked by the Deck 115 Pool Restaurant & Bar located on Level 2 which is a small cluster of simple tables for those who need the sun outside of the pool.
Facilities – The above is co-located with the pool on Level 2 and it was really sunny – suits those who need extra dosage of Vitamin D I suppose. The amount of sunchairs is also the most generous I’ve seen in any hotel – just look at those!
The fitness centre is also located on level 2 – but it is quite a depressing place as it is really dark with limited natural lights (I had to brighten my pics). A decent amount of equipment but the space feels ill maintained as the space is really dusty.
Service – If you recall, I stayed in my room for a good part of my stay as I fell sick and so managed to test out their in-room dining service. In-room dining is done via scanning a QR code and placing your order via the platform itself but of course for special requests like 2 pita breads, a call is necessary. There is also a function where you can order to be delivered to anywhere in the hotel which I thought was a cool feature. Sorry didn’t have the presence of mind to take pics of the process but it was quite intuitive.
Most times, the menu had nothing I felt like eating so I asked on several occasions for just 2x warm pita bread (my self-imposed no-carb thingy goes out the window when I’m sick) and they were super nice to bring it up in a bag for me without charging me. This was excellent service from a Sheraton and certainly very appreciated.
But I also did have occasion where I was better and ordered falafels – my first order came assembled in a pita bread which I wasn’t a fan of so during my second order, I made a request via the ‘notes’ section of the platform and asked for the items to be served deconstructed – and they delivered diligently.
The above good impressions sadly got marred on my check out day when I had to store my bags before I went for breakfast. The bell desk stored them and gave me a tag. When I returned to retrieve them, the bell desk was empty so I went to the front desk to ask for help while passing them the baggage tag. There were 3 staff at the front desk – they simply nodded and said they have to call the bell desk staff. I asked if it is possible to retrieve the baggage myself if it was in the room just behind the bell desk – they said it is not possible. So I waited. 10 mins later, I was getting anxious as my airport transfer is scheduled to arrive so I asked the front desk again what’s happening. All 3 of them nonchalantly said they have already called the bell desk staff and I have wait. I said I have to have them when my airport transfer arrives, and they simply said yes we understand, with absolutely no sense of urgency.
A couple of mins later, I see a staff heading to the bell desk and I asked him about my baggage – it was this time I realized that my luggage tag which I passed the front desk has been simply left on the top of the bell desk counter without any care. This ataff eventually got me my baggage in time to leave for the airport but during this entire process, the same 3 staff at the front desk did not make eye contact nor offer assistance to communicate with this guy – it was as if the entire conversation with them did not happen. These 3 staff should not be front line at all if they choose to not feel responsible in circumstances like this. Argh.
Check Out – the checkout process itself was painless.
I am actually quite glad that I was sick in a refreshed Sheraton because that was all it mattered during my stay. I think this could potentially be a good choice although expensive.