Club Riza, Malta

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Club Riza, Malta
« on: June 20, 2005, 13:38:48 »
Resort: Club Riza, Malta
Date of Visit: June, 2005
Ages of party: 2 mid 40’s + 2 under 10’s

2nd resort of a 2 week stay

Club Riza is a RID rated resort (Malta tourist board 4* aparthotel) in the resort of Qawra.

Qawra is the “quiet” side of the popular resort of Bugibba and is located on a headland looking at one side over St. Paul’s bay and on the other to Salina Bay.  Club Riza looks towards the quieter Salina bay and is located 1 street back from the main road. This gets very busy on a Saturday night when the area is popular with locals.

Reception: (arrival/departure)
The reception area has ample seating and the staff were efficient and helpful.
On arrival you are requested to check and sign the inventory of the unit. Do this as they will not let you leave until they have checked the state of the apartment and inventory.
There is a utilities charge (Lm13/11/9 for  2 bed/1bed/studio) this is in line with the other resort we visited on this trip.

The accommodation is located over 3 floors in a hotel style layout, there are lifts to all floors. If you are of restricted mobility be aware that there are 3-4 steps in a number of corridors.

We had a 2 bedroom unit, the floor plans indicate that there are only three of these, the majority of the units are 1 bed.

Initial impressions were not good, the furnishings were dark oak and the windows were small.
The lounge contains a pull down (Murphy?) bed, we did not use it but would expect that space could be limited with this down. Both bedrooms contained 2 single beds and continued the dark oak theme.

The 2 bed units have balconies that are impossibly small for the units capacity, you cant get 6 chairs on the balcony.

In most cases the 1 bed units have balconies about 4 times as big.

Access to the balcony was not assisted by the door being easy to lift off its tracks and so jam (we saw cleaners having problems with other apartments).

The Kitchen was compact and equipped for 6 (i.e. 6 of everything requiring mid meal washes of plates). Cooker (gas) and fridge looked new as did the other bits of electrical “kit”.

Cable TV is provided in the rooms with channels in Maltese, Italian, English plus airport info.

The units have communal air conditioning which was not impressive and far less effective than simple fans would have been, there were some comments about the builders having damaged the A/C units (see other comments).  The internal windows in the bathroom and kitchen were protected by fly screens allowing them to be left open.

The Riza has a number of pools (one outdoor family pool, one outdoor spa pool, one indoor pool and one indoor spa pool). There is also a sauna (somewhere).
The outdoor pool area was pleasant and clean with sufficient lounger’s & sun shades for the time of year we were there. Note that there is no lifeguard.

There are charges in high season (1Lm per day) but free during our visit.

On the roof there is an adults only sunbathing area which allows for topless sunbathing, this is barred around the family pool.

In the basement there are laundry facilities (charged for the wash but drying is free), at this level there is also the games room but in the time we were there it was not used.

The Riza admits to being a “self catering” resort but does not have an in resort shop, these are located about 2 mins walk away in the general direction of the Bus station.
Basic food is available from the pool bar during the day and there is an associated Chinese restaurant at the front door. The “highland bar” is open early evening to late and features a number of country and western performers.

Other comments
Our apartment had a number of visits from cockroaches and was fumigated twice, shoes proved to be more effective, the design of the apartment involved a lot of cladding providing ample hiding space for these visitors.

During our visit the resort was having an additional floor built on top of 2 of the blocks (you can see these in the picture of the pool), the units under this were occupied while this was going on.
There were a number of days where cranes were moving things up but building work did not seem to be an every day activity and it did not start early.  We had no warning of this from RCI.

The resort runs an active marketing programme and at times this means the space at the pool bar is restricted as they like to buy the punters drinks.

If you need airport transport the resort has a shuttle bus, the price for this is far cheaper than the cost of a Taxi from the airport.
There is a programme of trips in during the week and the bus station is only a 3 min walk should you want to try an a DIY trip (Valetta bus runs about every 8 mins).

Noise/nightlife apart from the highland bar there is nothing in the Riza, main corridor has some noise that seemed to come from the hotel that backs onto rather than the Riza.

The larger hotels have nightly entertainment which should allow you in as long as you are buying drinks but be prepared for lots of Cliff Richard songs as this seemed to match the age group of the majority.

Beach there isn’t one and if you don’t use the pool then a visit to one of the lido’s can cost as much as 3 Lm/day. Rock pools are interesting for the little ones but ensure that you have footwear as the rocks are razor sharp.

Overall view: Average (Disappointing for its rating)