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Skanes Serail

Traveller (1528)
Pool & Beach (466)
Room & Suite (327)
Zone Touristique Skanes - Bp 23, Monastir 5065 Tunisia See on map
Free Internet
Free Parking
Breakfast included
Air Conditioning
Airport Transportation
4 Star accommodation
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Languedoc-Roussillon, France
Reviewed 24 Oct 2018
We've just got back from a wonderful fortnights holiday in the Skanes Serail hotel in Monastir.
We were last here in January 2015 & enjoyed our stay immensely , but this was even better as bottled water is now also in the all inclusive & an aqua-park has been built along with a tapas bar & night club for those that enjoy them .
I'll start my review with the food as I found it truly amazing to be so well looked after at the price we had paid for the holiday. I could not produce the same quality & quantity of the tasty & healthy food we were offered if I was to try at home on the same budget .
Every meal was a great choice of fresh vegetables with either, carrots , creamy spinach ,stuffed aubergines , cauliflower cheese , leeks au gratin , roasted / mashed/chipped potatoes , braised cabbage , lentils , rice , chickpeas etc . Along with this was usually a fish choice including , mackerel , sardines ,swordfish & some wonderful fish cakes made with fresh herbs .My favorite fish dish was the tiny squid in a rich & tasty tomato sauce with fragrant spices & a hint of chili .
Always at least one meat dish on offer including, quail , merguez sausages , turkey , chicken & my favorite mixed grill with liver , onions & sausage . The shepherds pie was a delight & of course there were also the pasta grill & local Tunisian food serving station at the end of the counter .
The soup station often had two choices of homemade soups per meal . My favorites include the tasty chorba , the creamy vegetable & the onion & leek soups . The salads also deserve a mention as they were fresh & varied every day . I'll add some photos as words do not do them justice . Many choices of salad dressings , pickles , sauces , olives ,capers & garnishes .
Desserts were always a great ending to the meal & the pastry chef made some amazing cakes , both a delight for the eyes & the taste-buds if you had any room left . I'll add photos of the sweets as they are so eye catching . There was also a choice of fruits , grapes , watermelon , mandarins , sweet dark plums , apples etc.
Drinks in the restaurant :-
Self service like the food buffet .
The red wine was of good quality & young & fruity as I like it . There was also white & rosé wines , soft drinks ,and still or sparkling water available .
The waiters work hard & are charming . They are pleased to be of service in any way they can & if you show your appreciation of this with a tip or two they will get your wine for you in a nice wine glass ( instead of a tumbler) , make sure you have a salt & pepper ( which are rare) & decorate your table with flowers . They really are a super team & some of them even remembered us from our previous visit , despite all the tourists they see over the years . It's great to be remembered & have a fuss made of you , lovely for the morale !
I mustn't forget to mention the ice-cream cart outside the restaurant with its handsome young man serving the different flavors with a smile .
We sometimes went to the bar after eating all this at lunch time & ordered a luxurious Irish coffee to help digest before a much needed siesta .
The bar staff were all smiling & friendly & made an effort to remember your favorite drinks . I enjoyed a gin & tonic or two before my meals & my husband drank a pastis . I kept meaning to try the cocktails that were put into large punch bowls at 6 pm on the bar , but sadly never got round to it . There was sangria , mojito & sex on the beach . Once again a small tip or two would ensure you got a decent glass instead of the plastic tumblers .
There were three other restaurants where you could eat by booking with reception 24 hours beforehand , a Tex Mex on the beach , an Italian pizza and an A la Carte Tunisian restaurant , but we didn't try any of them as we enjoyed the buffet so much in the main dining room .I didn't find the Tapas bar called l'Emprunte though I think it is near the disco .
Breakfast :-
Always a pleasure to choose either pancakes , dough-nuts , cereals , croissants , cakes ,omelettes , eggs , fruits ,salads ,breads , butters & jams ,cheeses .There were often beans , rice pudding , lentils , tomatoes & frankfurter sausages on the hot counter , along with the local porridge type breakfast .My normal choice was creamy yogurt with honey & halva along with honey & lemon in hot water . The coffee machine provided good coffees for my husband & there was a fruit juice machine which I didn't try as I think it was the usual powdered type from the look of it . I must admit I loved the doughnuts & pancakes when I was tempted to try them . There were also fresh doughnuts on offer at 4 pm near the pool area .
If you arrive late there are snacks & fruit laid out in a room nearby the reception to refresh the weary traveler .
The Rooms :-
Large , airy & very clean . Lots of cupboard space for clothing ,a comfy armchair & coffee table . Bed is one of the most comfortable I've ever slept in , great mattress & pillows .The first night when we arrived at 4 am we were given a small room without a balcony which smelt of cigarettes & was noisy from the disco below . We had a word with the reception staff who arranged to have another room made up for us the following day in a quieter part of the hotel . They were true to their word & we spent a lovely quiet fortnight with no noises from neighbors or in the corridor .The staff on reception were always helpful & had a smile & a good-morning for you . When we arrived at 4 am the receptionist found me a bottle of water .They give a good exchange rate on the dinar , will give tickets to hand over to the bar staff for bottled water . They will provide you with a safe key ( small refundable deposit € 10 ) and they even managed to find us a local train time table .
The cleaners are a hard working team who keep the communal parts of the hotel spotless as well as the rooms . Our lovely lady picked flowers for us & decorated the bed with towel swans sometimes .
Animation Team & Entertainment :-
What a great fun crowd they were . I got hooked on the Aqua-gym every morning . I loved watching everyone in the pool doing their exercises while I tapped my foot to the music & sipped my Gin & Tonic on a nearby lounger. They organised games , cooking lessons , Arabic classes , quizzes . Always with a kind word & a ready laugh . In the evenings they did shows , karaokes , music nights , Tunisian folklore and even a fakir entertainer.
There are scrabble & card games , ping pong & pool table & even a counter in one corner where you can exchange books and magazines when you have finished with them .The WiFi is very good , especially by the Reception area .
Once a week there are stall holders from the local town who set out their wares around the pool . There are spices ,pottery from Nabeul , watches , jewelry , clothing , shisha pipes & fruit tobacco along with gift ideas if you do not want to leave the hotel .
Gardens & Beach :-
The pool area is surrounded by well tended gardens with lots of unusual cacti , flowering shrubs , banana trees & green lawns . There are pretty paths leading to the beach area & beach bar . We fell in love with the hotels camel called Aisha who was so gentle I was able to feed her from my mouth to hers . She was very popular with everyone , especially children who stroked her & rode on her back for a few dinars . The beach is cleaned every day & has plenty of sunbeds & umbrellas . Shallow water in the sea .
Situation of Hotel :-
Well situated between Monastir & Sousse . We took buses most days to buy a news paper & look in the souks & market places . The 52 A & 52 B stop just outside the hotel & the fare is 550 millimes to Monastir & 1 dinar 90 millimes each to Sousse . The shared striped taxi fare to Monastir is 1 dinar each . The yellow taxis which wait outside the hotel are more expensive , but are willing to drop the price if you haggle . We preferred the buses , train & shared taxis . The train station is a 15 minute walk from the hotel & is fun to try . You can have a day out in Moknine , Lamta or the fishing town of Mahdia where there are museums & weekly market days for a couple of dinar each. Market days - Monday is Karouan , Tuesday , Ksar Helal , Wednesday- Moknine, Thurday - Hammamet , Friday Nabeul & Mahdia ,Saturday Monastir and Sunday in Sousse . The market in Monastir is quite a long walk along the corniche so I suggest you hail a taxi in the town to take you for a couple of dinars . Lots of great bargains to be had ! The market in Sousse is also a little away outside of the walled town so ask directions when you get off the bus .
There is also a pleasant walk along the beach to visit the Habib Bourghiba palace museum at a fairly steep 12 dinars entrance fee for two .
There is a shop in the hotel which has decent prices & is useful if you've forgotten your shampoo , swimsuit or want to dress in the colorful Tunisian clothes for the special Monday folklore night . There is a henna tattoo artist , a young man who will engrave your names in Arabic on a silver or gold ring ( mine is a lovely souvenir ) ! The resident photographer also deserves a mention as he brings out the magic in his subjects & makes a perfectly normal looking person into a glamorous , fun or interesting model . Lovely photo work . There is also a young polyglot man who organizes trips on camel back , quad or on a pirate ship for those that want it . The reps who work for the tour companies will organize outings to El Djem to see the Roman amphitheater , to Tunis to visit the Bardo museum & many other historical or cultural trips . Taha , our Rep is a very friendly , helpful person & deserves a mention for his lovely personality .
The Spa & massage area by the indoor heated pool are very reasonable . My husband took an offer of 4 Californian , 50 minute massages for the price of three . He says they were excellent and great value for money .
Small bad points :-
All in all despite the shortage of salt & pepper shakers , real glasses , lack of towels ( I think they need to be washed before they can be replenished so you can sometimes spend quite a while without anything to dry yourself on ).We took our own towels so we didn't have this problem . The woven bar chairs loosing their seats & the few noisy rooms above the disco . They are small matters compared to all the positive points , as far as I'm concerned & we are looking forward to being able to return to this great hotel as soon as we can .
2 Thank sugarandspice2
Brighton, United Kingdom
Reviewed 14 Oct 2018via mobile
I've recently visited this place again after 3yrs of not being able 2 return 2 Tunisia, and I'm so disappointed at wot I found. Other reviews said, avoid avoid avoid, but I really wanted 2 give them the benefit of the doubt. How mistaken waz I!! I feel so sorry 4 the tunisians which try so hard 2 make your stay comfortable in extremely hard conditions. The place is falling apart, the rooms have not been renovated since I waz last there, and obviously the lack of English goin has hit them very hard. I'll start wiv my arrival..... I'd been up for 30+hrs when I arrived to find I had 2 wait at least an hr 2 get 2 my room, not a gr8 start, but dealt with it as its wot u have 2 do. I got 2 my room wiv an amazing view (room 271) which I previously had wen I waz there in 2015. There was no coffee or tea in the room, which for an all inclusive I find odd, as its nice 2 b able 2 ave a coffee wen u get up, or a cuppa b4 u go a bed, but no such luck. Then I assumed I'd get a rep letter inviting me 2 a greet and meet 2 arrange some outings and generally let me know wots wot!! NAH, did not see a rep the whole time I waz there, considering I waz on my own I found this for such a large co' (Thomas Cook) 2 b a disgrace, and wot made me laugh even more waz the fact that they had a Thomas Cook convention while I waz there!! God only knows wot they wer doin, bar drinking and stuffing their faces. UNBELIEVABLE!!! So, back 2 my room..... 1st day, not so bad, went 2 bed as u do, an woke up in the morning, sun waz shining an all waz well. All I can say is I must ave been lucky, as the following morning I got up, I had bites all over!! U might b thinking, get a grip, your in Tunisia, mossies r about.... An yeah, although u'd b right, my bed waz covered in fleas!! I waz unable 2 get another room, so I actually slept in the bath, yes folks in the bath. It waz the only way I cld ave a comfortable sleep wivout getting bitten 2 death. I think by wot I saw of other people, they must have had the same, cuz it didn't look like anyone escaped fm either flea bites or mosquito bites. Not happy at all. While I waz there unfortunately there wer really bad storms, which made my room in 2 my own personal swimming pool. I did phone reception, and got told someone wld b up 2 sort it, but yeah u might ave guessed, I'm still waiting!!! Right, pool and beach!! Pool area although there wer always people out cleaning it in the morning, there waz very little maintenance being done, which is so needed. Broken lights, broken bits rnd the pool, just generally run down. So I spent wot time I cld, between the storms, (wldnt suggest
goin late Sept, storms are horrendous) at the beach. Which again, not there fault admittingly, but waz covered in black sludge, brought in by the storm, which stunk 2 high heaven, but by the end of my holiday it had been all cleared. Yeaaah!! Ohh, and as for the general manager!!! Wot a joke.... If he took as much interest in looking after the hotel as he does with women his hats and mobile then the place wld b impeccable. I think he thinks himself as Al capone!! Complete joke and waste of money. So guys, if u go, on ur own head let it b, but don't say u haven't been warned!! It's such a shame as the waiters, cleaners and the animation do the best they can with very little support fm management. Won't be back, EVER.
Thank SHAZ032
Jicín, Czech Republic
Reviewed 15 Aug 2018via mobile
Let me briefly describe the impressions of the Skanes Serail Hotel. I do not purposely write from Tunisia because I believe that hotel staff is not a reflection of the character of this country. We set off on a holiday with a certain amount of naivety that we could spoil it alone and enriched by our friends' advice we thought it would be fine. Actually it was. Nice hotel, warm and clean sea, a solid pool with slides, keen animators and careful cleaners. And the negative? Room above the disco? Take it. We love music. It is said that the deckchair by the pool will take guests when you are in the water. It's a lie. Take it directly to the pool staff. They even took our towels directly from the deckchairs that we had lent on bail. And that's just because a guest who is just more important than you came. The hotel does not have access to uninhabited guests. Lie. Every day we were jumping in the pool on our heads. You know, they are at home. And when you have to wait at the bar for a bartender to call a few drinks for these guests, and he does not see you one of us. . . ! Their son had stolen their cell phone in the dining room. He's stupid, he left him at the drinks dispenser. He did not speak with us. Tunisia. Even with the receptionist. The phone does not return. The only hope is a record from the dining room. After two days a manager in the Russian jersey (he had to talk to Russian speaking guests and deny himself), showed a photo from the camera. Black and white. With a glance: "what do we really want"? We know. We do not return to this hotel.
1 Thank martina1holubcova
Samantha M
Reviewed 7 Aug 2018via mobile
I would not recommend this place to anyone. It’s certainly not worth the prices they charge. The paint is peeling. The walls are crumbling. The carpets are coming up. The first room we were put in was directly above a nightclub. Whose extremely loud music was finally turned off at 03:30 in the morning and only after many complaints from guests. My 8 year old who can sleep through just about anything couldn’t get to sleep at all. Why they have family rooms on that side of the hotel I’ll never know. Or any room for that matter. No one stayed on that corridor for more than 1 night. The rooms are sparse with no kettle or fridge included though they are cleaned to a good standard. The WiFi is shocking. It only “works” in the reception area. But it only actually works rarely and when it does it’s very slow. We ended up buying a sim card from the shop which had 4GB of data. The windows in the reception, while very impressive, I’m fairly certain have not been cleaned in at least 6 months. Probably more. The range of food on offer is very limited and most of what was served was often cold and either over or undercooked. The only air conditioning available is in the rooms themselves. The dining room is unbearably hot to eat in and there are few tables outside. There are air conditioning units in there but they are not used. The only place to get all inclusive drinks all the way down at the beach is to go all the way back up to the pool bar. The beach is lovely though and the sand isn’t too soft so wheelchairs and pushchairs are easy to push on it (it’s easier to pull the wheelchair backwards). The sand also doesn’t get hot so it doesn’t burn your feet to walk on (this was a blessing whilst using a wheelchair/crutches as I couldn’t move very quickly). While I didn’t go in the sea myself, my family said it was lovely and warm and you can go far out without it getting deep. The pool is a lot smaller than expected. There are always huge queues for drinks and only ever a maximum of 2 bar staff on, it any at all. The soft drinks served are always flat. As is the beer. There is only one redeeming feature of this place and that is the staff. And even then not the ones that work in reception who are no help with anything whatsoever and are rude. Also, I had to use a wheelchair whilst there and while there were ramps on offer, they were very steep and the only way into the dining room is steps unless you want to risk your life trying to get down a ridiculously steep ramp with very large bits of wood on them (about an inch squared). The one to get out of the hotel to the pool is positively dangerous when wet but there’s no other way to get to the restaurant. The ramps to get into the main entrance are always blocked by cars and you have to ask the staff at reception to get people to move them and they’re rude and act like it’s somehow your fault. The whole hotel is very badly lit - indoors and outdoors. The corridors on one side of the hotel has switches but the lights font stay on very long. And on the other side they have sensors that don’t always work. The path to the amphitheatre has only a string of green LED lights along one side of the path and doesn’t actually light the path itself in anyway whatsoever. It’s also very bumpy and was very uncomfortable in a wheelchair. The amphitheatre itself is very small. There is nowhere for a wheelchair to park so you have to get out to watch the show.
2 Thank Samantha M
cahide c
Reviewed 6 Aug 2018via mobile
I liked the hotel when we arrived at the first moment it looks really nice. But the negative point is the rooms we were a family of 6 and we were all in 1 room. The room we stayed in had 1 big bed 3 tiny beds for 1 person. Our first day went nice but there was too much music from the disco near us we couldn’t sleep. We talked the day after with the reception they called the director of the hotel and he imeddiatly changed our room to one far away from the disco. This was a really nice gesture and the next room we got was quietter like we wanted. We ordered a baby bed for my brother and they brought one in the room couple hours later. The food is not really my food but it was nice to taste tunesian food but i think the food could do better the sweets were 7/10 but the food 5/10 :( the chicken was sometimes not baked properly but the workers and the servers were really nice and fast that was amazing. The pools were great and the hotel was near the sea so it was AMAZING to go to the sea. There was also an litlle Aquapark for younger ones it looked really nice. There are some activities you can do at night and day like petanque,dart,mini disco or other things that was 👌🏻. What i really liked was mini disco iy was amazing the animators were all amazing the dj by itself was 👌🏻👍🏻 And these workers were amazing : siwar she plaued and was so nice towards children that everyone could trust her she speaks also english french and tunesian so it was nice to chat with her and be with her she is like a friend ❤️ She deserves better than she gets other animators that i really liked were : anya,intissar and one person that i forgot the name a man that is always in the mini club these persons worked so hard i could see the sweat dripp off they danced talked and many things ❤️ They were a.m.a.z.i.n.g the children adored them 💜 me too the reasons i wrote this revieuw is to thank siwar,anya and other animators they were such amazing persons and i hope they can have the best in life 😊 i miss you siwar and anya from belgium before i forget the director is 10/10 he is great and super couldnt ask better.
Thank cahide c
smartline Skanes Serail is a family-friendly all-inclusive hotel located right next to a beautiful, long and sandy beach near the historical city of Monastir. The hotel offers a wide range of sporting More activities and entertainment for the entire family, including bowling, mini-golf, aerobics, and tennis. If you want to recharge your batteries, the hotel's spa offers a Turkish bath, jacuzzi, and massages and treatments. The hotel features two restaurants and four bars, as well as a beautiful garden with a pool, kids' pool and sun-terrace. In short, smartline Skanes Serail has something to offer for all ages. Less
Hotel class
Hotel Amenities
Free Parking
Free Internet
Breakfast included
Air Conditioning
Airport Transportation
Banquet Room
Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly)
Conference Facilities
Dry Cleaning
Indoor pool
Laundry Service
Meeting Rooms
Outdoor pool
Tennis Court
Room Service
Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room
Free High Speed Internet (WiFi)
Hotel Style
Best Value
Hotel class
Hotel Style
Best Value
Number of rooms
Price range
US$29 - US$85 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Also Known As
Skanes Serail Monastir
Skanes Serail Hotel Monastir
Skanes Serail Tunisia/Monastir
Tunisia > Monastir Governorate > Monastir
Hotel class
Hotel Style
Best Value
Number of rooms
Price range
US$29 - US$85 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Also Known As
Skanes Serail Monastir
Skanes Serail Hotel Monastir
Skanes Serail Tunisia/Monastir
Tunisia > Monastir Governorate > Monastir
Traveller (1,528)
Pool & Beach (466)
Room & Suite (327)
Dining (147)
Amenities (23)
Business Centre & Event Rooms (15)
Family and Play Areas (14)
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Questions & Answers
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Lowrie C
22 October 2018|
AnswerShow all 2 answers
Response from SHAZ032 | Reviewed this property |
Hi there, if u want my honest opinion, I would see if you can change hotel, if you can't, then, 2 answer ur questions.... 1. There r 2 restaurants, 1 is the all inclusive, the other is an Italian. People I met went 2 the... More
7 September 2018|
Response from lilou038 |
non tout est compris boissons à volonté
Google Translation
Room Tips
"Ask for a pool facing room"
9 Apr 2018
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"Avoid right wing above multi-purpose room where sometimes partys are held."
30 Mar 2018
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"Choose the rooms in higher floors or in the left wing of the hotel, as our friends room was above the disco."
7 Aug 2016
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"Send an email I paid for seaview but asked for one of the rooms that provides seaview and pool view and got..."
29 Jun 2015
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