Don't stay @ the Birmar 2 Hotel
Don't stay @ the Birmar 2 Hotel Marmaris Reviews
Jun 23, 2007
"Welcome to Hell !!!!! .... "
Birmar 2 Hotel" ~ Mamaris, Turkey
This review will also cover a lot of information on the resort as well, with the hope that people find this additionally useful....
Quite simply the worst hotel I have ever stayed at in my life. In fact, I have stayed in better grades of dormitory in Youth Hostels when me and a group of University friends went back-packing around Europe in 1998!
The hotel is the absolute pits and I would avoid it like the plague.
Every guest who stayed at the hotel during my week long stay had nothing but bad words to say about it. In fact, 5 families requested an instant transfer to an alternative hotel, they were that disgusted with the facilities. I, on the other hand, just got on with it. Well, it was an experience, put it that way!
Located in the centre of Marmaris on the main shopping street, you have very little chance of getting to sleep prior to 5.30am as loud dance music pumps out from the local open air restaurants all evening. The air conditioning in the rooms is the wrong side of poor and the beds are small hard and lumpy. The bathroom is just as small and pokey as the main bedroom, that you couldn't swing a mouse in, never mind a cat. The rooms are also too dark and provide very little light ... not that you should be spending vast amounts of time indoors during a sun break holiday, but the internal bedroom lighting was very weak.
The pokey little bathroom had a small inlet that I suppose was a window, but as the glass had been broken or maybe just shattered of it's own accord because it didn't want to be associated with the framework of this building, the owners had opted for badly taping together a black bin bag to cover the inlet.
The hotel had a small bar at the rear, which overlooked what can only really be described as a paddling pool ... no more than 2.5 meters by 2.5 metres, with very little sunlight reaching the paved bathing area surrouding. The young Northern Irish chappy who was working the bar with a Turkish boy of no more than 14, and his elder brother of about 20 were all very pleasant ... the Irish guy in particular being a top bloke if I am honest, but the hotel owner was a miserable .... ..... ... well, I can't finish that sentence because this is a family show, but you get the gist. Therefore, the concept of service with a smile come straight from the Basil Fawlty school of hotel Management less the comic effect. Believe me, there was nothing comical about this experience, and - despite a very good sense of humour and ability to laugh at my own misgivings and shortcomings - I can't look back and laugh about this ... I can however, about my journey home, which I will share later as an aside (just in case anyone needs a laugh!)....
The hotel is, however, very ideally placed for the beach, and the main bars and restaurants, which were no more than a 5 minute walk south, but there were evidently much better and cleaner hotels that I visted in the resort, during my 7-day stay.
Food @ Hotel
The food was not advisable to touch at the Birmar 2 hotel, as breakfast consisted of ... well, I'm still not really sure what breakfast consisted of ! There was an egg cracked open in a warm bowl of water most mornings, and a few pieces of rather dodgy looking ham ... that, I must add, was sweating more than a 20 stone kebab shop owner ...., next to a salad that looked like it had seen better days. Therefore, despite breakfast being included in the rate, I went to the extra expense of leaving the hotel one to the local dogs and eating at a local restaurant, owned by a friendly chap called Malcolm, hailing from Wolverhampton.
I think I paid something stupid like £500 for one week early-mid August, which included flight, local transfer from airport to resort (2 hour bus journey), and one weeks lumpy bed & non edible breakfast. I actually took one weeks holiday all on my own and booked it last minute. If truth be known, I was very nervous about going away on my 'jack' for a whole week, but I had recently had a break up and needed to mend a broken heart, so didn't want to let it stop me getting some sun .. I had to use holiday up in August, none of my single mates could get the same time off work and all my 'attached' mates were going away with their girlfriends and boyfriends, so I just said 'what the hell' .... Well, actually yes 'hell' could be an apt description ! Everyone advised me against it, but I took no notice and booked it. Most annoying thing about that and trying to chill was the number of (and cost of) text messages, because everyone was texting to see how I was doing !!! I have seen a recent news story to suggest that the cost of texting and calling whilst abroad is due to topple ...
Flight & Transfer
The flight from Manchester to Dalaman was about 4 hours, and - as you would expect for a Charter - was pretty cramped. I was fortunate enough to get an aisle seat, so my 6-foot + frame wasn't too squashed up and I could stretch one leg out, at least ! Food was forgettable, but generally the flight wasn't all that bad.
Once at Dalaman and having picked up my baggage, I ventured outside the main airport exit to find no signage directing me to my tansfer or transfer point.
Thankfully, one of the lovely Scouse families I had been chatting with on the plane had been here before and knew the procedure, so I followed them down to the car parks hidden behind trees, outside the airport exit. Here there was an unseen hive of activity, with a number of represenatitves, complete with silly outfits and clipboards hurriedly ticking names off and directing people to coaches, something reminiscent of Heidi-Hi ... only later would I find out that camping would have been a preference.
As I had booked my holiday last minute over the telephone (a gamble I know!), I had very little detail about my holiday, except for the name of the hotel and and resort and the times of my flights. So, I had relied quite heavily on information from fellow holiday makers about the really useful things I needed to know, you know the kind of things the tour representative told us, at 5am, after a 4 hour flight with no sleep once aboard the coach .... only problem was, I had been first to the board the coach and it took at least 30 minutes to fill up and depart, so I was well away with the fairies by the time the tour rep started giving out valuable information about local customs, food, places of interest, tipping, mosquitos, average temperature (48°C), humidity (75%), and the likes.
It would have been so much more sensible to provide this information on our descent from the moutains towards Marmaris two hours later .... Thanks Luv I thought!
I managed to get most of what I missed off a female couple who were travelling on the same coach .... 48°C average temperature .... no way ... I'll fry ... I've only got Factor 8 with me !
Actually, the temperature is very deceptive as the humdidity ensures it feels no were near as hot as the temperature readings tell you it is... drink loads of water and buy it further away from the beach, because the shops, bars & restaurants along the beach / sea front charge you a minimum of 20 times as much for the refreshment..... yes, that number was twenty !
Turkish Lira used to be displayed in Millions, but this was changed 3-4 years ago to make handling and calculating currency easier, but you will still come across some of the old notes now and again. Bascially, 1 'new' Lira represents the old 1,000,000 Lira - confused ... I was?! Just over 2 (new) Turkish Lira = £1 ... At one stage, before I become wise to it, I paid 10 Lira (circa £4.50) for a 1.5 litre bottle of water ... crazy! I walked to a couple of shops 1/2 a mile from the sea front and paid the equivalent of about 23 pence ... massive difference.
The actual resort of Marmaris is very lively and is very popular for couples and families.... so, not that popular for people on their billy-o like little old me then! In fact, people were slightly cautious of me and constantly wondered why I was on my own ... I got sick of explaining that I had split form my girlfriend, no one else could get the same time off, or that other mates were going away with their partners, so I just started saying that I had no friends ... which received a mixed reaction !!! However, most of the time, people would just come back with ... no, come on, why?! The Turks don't care, they just come right on out with it, were as the British are a little more reserved than this and don't like to pry.
Marmaris boasts a host of activites including the usual water sports, from banana boating to para-gliding, but also boat cruises, local historic tours, and a host of shopping opportunities, especially for fake bags, watches and the likes..... Damn, I could have bought a few and then sold on eBay !!! hehe
Not somewhere I would perosnally recommend for a young bunch of girls and lads looking for a musical holiday amongst their British peers i.e. similar to Ibiza, Benidorm, Tenerife and the likes. The activities detailed are actually not too badly priced and I was going to go on a booze cruise with a decent bunch of Scottish lads I met on my 3rd or 4th night, but I fell ill on the evening prior and didn't make it. That was a strange one, because it only lasted a day, so I couldn't put it down to the food.
The resort was popular for British, Dutch, Scandinavian and Russian families in the main, with the Turks taking a special liking to the English and the English girls in particular. I couldn't get over just how bold the Turkish guys were and also how relentless they are with the women ... It was one thing that made me glad to be male on the holiday, because we were largely over-looked and left alone to bathe on the beaches, whilst the girls were constantly hassled and disturbed. One poor English girl was awoken from her slumber by one persistent would be suitor, before he was promptly 'bawled' off the beach to his dismay and my utter amusement !!! "You bleep bleep, get the bleep away from me you bleep bleep, I don't get any bleeping sleep at home and you disturb me when I am on holiday you bleeping bleep!!!!" You can't write that kind of stuff... well, I know I literally just have, but you know what I mean! :-D
The food was actually very good and I tried a number of different restaurants during my 7-days stay, electing to go back to a couple of the same ones that I had become a little more accustomed to in terms of knowing the staff ... and some of the regular punters. I didn't pay any more than £15-£20 for 2 courses with a drink, and the quality and portions of food, along with the menu selection was good.
I can't for the life of me remember the names of any though, and I can't find any look-up on the web to hunt them back down. However, there was one alfresco restaurant that I went to on my first night, that I went back to on a number of occasions ... due to the fact it was lively, friendly, cheap and I met a lovely young Swedish girl there who was with her whole family on the table next to me (!)... now that was quite a surreal experience ... I am more accustomed with having to put all the ground work in myself, not the other way around, whilst having Mum, Dad and Twin brothers watching and egging her on !! I couldn't believe my luck ... not only was she beautiful, but the potential outlaws were already agreeable !! Lovely family, but a little crazy ... I have never seen a Father swing his wife around a dance floor like he did in front of so many people including his - albeit grown up - children. Fantastic!
This restaurant and bar is located just off the main drag, on the central road down to the beach, before you approach the only traffic lights in Marmaris, so it's not hard to find ... if you are walking away from the beach and continue beyond the traffic lights, the restaurant is approx. 1/4 mile on the left hand side after and ajoining the long alfresco sports bar & indoor night club. The restaurant sported a pull down screen and provided musical and live entertainment each night, with belly dancing (yours truly was invited up onto the dance floor and duly embarassed by the young Turkish temptress at one stage! Yeah thanks guys ... not only am I on my own and wishing to remain slighty inconspicuous about the whole affair, but you guys decide to elect me to join the Turkish lady providing a show and make me a minor celebrity to boot ... cheers! All good fun though), and general Turkish dancing, magic .... great for all the family. The owners and staff were very friendly and I got one well with a number of them.
The oddity of the Turkish is there fascination with the English ... I thought they hated us, because of the troubles associated with football in recent years, but they can't get enough of the English cultutre and people. In fact, many of the Turkish guys worse England football strips with their names across the back of them, and it did not appear to be with the intention of drawing extra business, as there were plenty of other football loving nationalities spending their hard earned.
Every Turkish guy I spoke to had an English girlfriend back in blighty (Huge pinches of salt required whilst swallowing these stories) and had adopted English names as a substitute for their Turkish names. Most notably, Harry and/or William (or Wills for those not into the whole Brevity thing) seemed to be popular choices, so I summised they were all quite into the Regal ness as well.
Now, I promised earlier to look back at a couple of moments I could laugh at, which occured on the journey home and just topped off what was a largely forgettable experience .. only small things, but when rolled into everything, it become largely forgettable as an experience.......
On boarding the coach for the return transfer, it was pretty full, so trying to spot a seat I had to walk towards the rear of the coach, not able to see a spare seat, I thought ... great, I have got to do a 2 hour transfer standing up and I can already see that people have noted I am alone ! (Do you think I got just an incy wincy bit paranoid by that at all?!). Turning towards the front, I accidentally smacked someone in the chops with my ruck-sack, drawing extra attention to myself ... apologising and lowering my ruck sack to ground level, I shuffled to the front of the coach where I duly saw one empty seat next to which was occupied by a young boy of about 7 or 8 dressed in full Liverpool kit .. as everyone on the coach was impatiently waiting for me to find and take my seat so the coach could depart, I turned to the couple opposite assuming this was their son and politely asked whether the seat was free, to which I received a short, sharp reply from the gentleman .. "I don't know!" ... Gazing around and not being able to see any other young child climbing around or swinging from the luggage racks, I duly took up my seat next to this innocent looking young boy ... well, innocent for a Liverpool fan (I'm a Blue), and thought "lovely bloke, you've obviously had a nice holiday as well then!".
The first 40 minutes of the journey was largely uneventful, except for the constant bleeping of my mobile telephone with received text messages annoying my fellow passengers, prior to me silencing it. Tehehe ... ooopss!
As is customary for these transfers, we made a convenience stop at some local outpost that have obviously "weighed in" the tourist companies, and everyone disembarked along with a 2nd and 3rd coach to convenience themselves and purchase refreshments. Then chaos ensued as most people couldn't recall which bus they had disembarked from, because they were all identical and no one took notice when alighting.
Once everyone was back on the correct coach and we took off, I found out the child next to me was actually spawned by Satan (I should have known him being a Liverpool fan and all!) ... Not only did he sit and fizz up a bottle of Coca-Cola before opening it and allowing it to spray all over the place, the stupid little brat didn't screw the top back on, instead, he shoved it in my direction stating "hold that" as I continued to get the brunt of the disaster ... a lady in front of me commented "You needed that didn't you love" ... "Yep, nice wet and sticky for the flight home ... perfect!" ... The little devil then duly run to the back of the coach to where his parents were evidently hiding out, before returning with his pitchfork and stabbing me (I made that last bit up).
There was more dismay .. At the airport, there were the typical large queues and chaos associated with return charter flights home, but I awaited my turn in line and chanced requesting an aisle seat. Finally, some luck .. "No problem sir". On boarding the plane, I took my seat somewhere around the middle of the plane in my aisle seat, with both window and middle unoccupied. The plane continued to fill and finally an old couple appeared declaring that they were sitting next to me ... up I got and they shuffled in, as a small child of 2 or 3 come bounding along and jumped in my seat .. her Mother was otherwise pre-occupied stuffing luggage into the overhead holds just behind me, so I waited patiently, as the child then strapped herself into my seat to the amusement of both the old couple and I ...
Her Mother come back, about to take her aisle seat one row behind but on the other side of the plane, when she realised she was missing something ... her child ... at this point, everyone at the back of the plane was transfixed with my predicament ...
Realising and apologising, the Mother asked whether I would mind changing seats for ease ... "No problem" I declared as I could hear all the oldies muttering, "What a lovely young man!", and I went to take my 'new' aisle seat ... As I did, one of the two young girls sat alongside me asked whether I would mind sitting in the window seat because her friend was claustophobic ! Quick as a flash, a guy in the row behind shouted out ... "And can I have your dinner?!", at which point the plane exploded ...... ...... don't worry, the eruption was with laughter !...
"Bleeping claustrophobic.... Your stuck in a steel vaacum whatever way you look at it" ....I thought ! Now, I had to put my own discomfort for 4 hours ahead of looking a right idiot, because I couldn't see, with 100 + other passengers looking on (all aware I was on my own ... again!), how I could quickly explain that I would rather not because I have a fairly bad back problem, and what with being 6ft did not fancy being crammed into a small space with nowhere to stretch my legs for 4 hours, I just muttered "yes" and squeezed into my new seat.
All in all, this was not a good holiday experience for me, but that's not to say other people won't enjoy the resort, particularly if they choose their hotel accommodation very carefully! Happy holidays!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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