Is the DB Seabank, Malta really a 4* hotel? Latest Sale Week 19092016 insights. This week, the Latest Sale Luxury Business Directory, Hospitality, Travel and Leisure sector is dedicated to a special feature covering the DB Seabank Resort and Spa in Mellieha, Malta, managed by General Manager Hubert Debono as of January 2016. We have all read the reviews so the Latest Sale team wanted to see if this hotel really lives up to the hype. In particular we wanted to test if this hotel is suitable for business travellers. Most reviews on the hotel that we have encountered tend to be from leisure travellers so the Latest Sale team put together this extensive review as part of the Luxury Business Directory from the perspective of business travellers.
DB Seabank Resort and Spa Location- The DB Seabank Resort and Spa hotel is approximately a one hour drive from Luqa airport, Malta which may add to an already tiring journey but when you arrive at the hotel, it is certainly worth the wait, with a refreshing aura immediately surrounding you. The gentle waves from the clear blue sea on Mellieha Bay engulf you as you enter the DB Seabank Resort and Spa, with hillside and sea views that are truly mesmerizing. Upon entering the hotel you almost forget where you are, is it Barbados or Bermuda? The white sandy beach (the largest in Malta) is just in front of the hotel entrance. The decor is classic and tasteful with interior design in neutral tones and the stresses from your trip begin to evaporate.
DB Seabank Resort and Spa Check in- Check in is easy, swift and rapid at the DB Seabank Resort and Spa with the hotel staff presenting you with all the information you need to know about the resort and the surrounding areas. There is so much to read one may put items aside for a couple of days before settling down to read them and in the meantime any ad hoc questions can be addressed by making enquiries with the hotel staff so that you are suitably equipped with the information you need.
DB Seabank Resort and Spa Star rating- Is this really a 4* hotel? Many hotels in Malta claim to enjoy a 4* rating and upon checking in you wonder how the rating was derived. The DB Seabank Resort and Spa is certainly a luxury 4* hotel and Latest Sale will highlight the reasons why this hotel deserves its rating.
DB Seabank Resort and Spa Business Traveller suitability– The Latest Sale verdict is the DB Seabank Resort and Spa is the perfect choice for business travellers who wish to combine business and leisure in a relaxing, luxurious yet minimalist environment.
DB Seabank Resort and Spa Guest Room Review- Guests rooms at the DB Seabank Resort and Spa are comfort based with decor in coral white and various shades of blue that provides an invigorating calmness against the sea backdrop also in various shades of blue that surrounds the hotel. For the convenience of guests, all guest rooms are equipped with UK power plugs. As well as being available in all public areas, wifi is available in all guest rooms at the DB Seabank Resort and Spa at no extra cost. The DB Seabank Resort and Spa wifi is reliable, uninterrupted and fast. For any business traveller this is a must. Guest rooms are not only comfortable but they are surprisingly spacious, once again offering business travellers with the perfect environment to work in (as the hotel has no business lounge). There are plenty of additional blankets, pillows and duvets if you feel cold during nightfall in the generously sized closets. The DB Seabank Hotel and Spa also enjoys effective air conditioning for the Summer months and heating for the Winter months.
All DB Seabank Resort and Spa guest rooms have a private balcony with sea view, land view or poolside view, again offering more space and comfort to guests, with wifi working just as well on the balcony as in the rooms. We highly recommend the sea view guest room for business travellers as the inviting, enriching blue colours of the sea are just the thing a business executive needs to wake up to in the morning whilst filtering through emails and presentations. Keep the patio doors shut whilst working however as it can get noisy! Alternatively business travellers may prefer the poolside view. Guest rooms come equipped with a refrigerator in case you need one, however bottled water is no longer provided in the guest rooms due to the DB Seabank Resort and Spa’s commitment to environmental causes. The hotel provides free portable water instead available from various dispenser units around the resort. Guests can contribute towards saving the environment as well as making a difference in other people’s lives by buying a DB Seabank Resort and Spa reusable water bottle for only €2,50 with funds used to support the hotel’s various welfare causes.
DB Seabank Resort and Spa All Inclusive- Some guests may prefer a hotel with half board options or bed and breakfast options arguing that they prefer to go out into the city centres and sample local gastronomy in other restaurants. All inclusive may be considered restrictive as it prevents guests from visiting other restaurants or bars with eating strictly restricted to the hotel. Once again the Latest Sale verdict is, the preference for all inclusive versus a non all inclusive hotel option depends on how demanding the traveller is. For business travellers who do not have the time to worry about what they will eat three times a day, we found that the all inclusive nature of the DB Seabank Resort and Spa was perfect. Even if you are not hungry during the lunchtime slot of 12 noon to 15h00, the advantage of all inclusive is that you can always just eat a sandwich or snack and grab a drink at any time during the day.
The DB Seabank Resort and Spa is not a standard all inclusive hotel. The chefs are truly magnificent. For business travellers, looking for an excellent restaurant night after night in Malta is a challenge and the DB Seabank Resort and Spa takes away this obstacle. Not to mention that high end restaurants serving gastronomic delights to a very high standard are likely to cost €30- €40 a head for a two course meal not including beverages, taxis (in the region of €10 each way) or restaurant service charges.
The DB Seabank Resort and Spa is truly all inclusive, that means there is always a restaurant open serving something delightful. The best part about all inclusive is arriving at your hotel from the airport at 12 noon, knowing that once you have checked in and refreshed yourself your lunch is served straight away (between the hours of 12 noon and 15h00) without you having to dip into your euros, working out what your budget is for your first meal or completing time consuming expenses claim forms. That means that no matter what time guests arrive at the hotel there is a good chance that there will be refreshments on hand. Restaurants are open from 07h30 to 22h30 so that gives guests plenty of time to organise their meal times. Not to mention entertainment that is included for free as well as inclusive access to the gym, swimming pool, sauna and steam room.
Public transport to and from the DB Seabank Resort and Spa- There are plenty of taxis in front of the DB Seabank Resort and Spa entrance so if you have not hired a car, transportation is accessible, especially during the evenings. If your desire is to explore Malta using public transport on your day or afternoon off away from emails, we recommend you leave the hotel as early as possible and plan to return on a bus by no later than 16h00-17h00, especially during the Winter months. Local buses in Malta are in service up until 22h30 Monday- Friday, but our experience is that you can expect to wait on average 20 minutes for a bus, no matter where you are. With the enigmatic Maltese scenery, you can certainly take some wonderful photographs while you wait!
Evenings in Malta tend to display a decreased number of available buses. Journeys around the island from the hotel that consist of driving through narrow streets and winding, uphill and downhill roads are relatively long. Depending on what you are planning to visit in Malta, you should allow for a minimum 20-30 minute bus journey (from the the DB Seabank Resort and Spa) to Quawra or Buggiba for example. Add to that the 20 minute wait for the bus each way. For the capital city Valletta allow for 70 minute bus journeys one way although with traffic the journey is more likely to be 90 minutes one way. As of January 2016, bus journeys during the Winter months in Malta that last up to 2 hours on the island are €1,50 so very economical. After 18h00 buses are less frequent and the cost is €4,50.
There are other reasons why leaving the DB Seabank Resort and Spa early for daytime excursions and returning by 17h00-18h00 are important. Bear in mind also that the luxury hotels in Malta are often on a hillside or cliff on a major junction/ road where pavements are very narrow or in some instances, where there are no pedestrian walkways at all, so to get lost at nightfall on a cliff in Malta is to be avoided! We highly recommend therefore that if you are travelling back to the DB Seabank Resort and Spa from Valletta, Gozo or Buggiba, you are on the bus by 16h00 so that you arrive back at the hotel by 17h30 especially during the Winter months when it is nightfall by 17h30 and the temperature drops rapidly. Any evening travel after 18h00 is best carried out by taxi. As of January 2016 bus tickets priced at €1,50 during Winter months are valid for 2 hours. This means within a 2 hour period between the hours of 07h00 and 18h00, you can catch as many buses as you like without paying extra which is helpful especially in instances where there is no direct bus to your destination. During the Summer months bus tickets are slightly higher at €2,00 for a two hour journey.
Take on board also that buses in Malta change numbers on a regular basis so always ask the driver where he is going and what bus number he is changing to before buying a bus ticket. Example, if you see a bus 42 pull into the bus station, do not assume that is you bus. After standing in the bus bay for a few minutes, the same bus driver may then pull up next to you but he could also suddenly change from bus route 42 to bus route 221 going to a totally different location in the complete opposite direction, so make no assumptions and always ask!
Housekeeping and maintenance at the DB Seabank Resort and Spa
Housekeeping at the DB Seabank Resort and Spa is thorough, daily and meticulous with plumped up pillows, fresh towels and any used glasses removed. A refridgerator is also provided in all hotel rooms in case you do want to put drinks or other fresh food inside together with tea and coffee making facilities.
Dining at the DB Seabank Resort and Spa- To get the most out of your dining experience, you can plan your day around the wonderful chefs at the DB Seabank Resort and Spa who prepare a new menu each day. Always check the menus at the various hotel restaurants in advance so you can prioritize whether you can skip an afternoon lunch in order to have a late afternoon tea and late dinner in between your daily excursions. The DB Seabank Resort and Spa enjoys 6 restaurants that form part of the all inclusive package; la Pellicola (Italian), l’Orjent Restaurant (Asian cuisine), el Rodizio (Brazilian), Juicy (American), Laguna (poolside restaurant) and the Coral Restaurant. There are also a la carte options at the Tramun Taghna restaurant (not included in the all inclusive package). All restaurants with the exception of the Coral Restaurant and the Laguna Restaurant must be booked in advance at the hotel restaurant desk. Typically, dining times are either, early dinner for 18h30 or late dinner for the 20h30 sitting with formal dress attire required.
The flexibility of the DB Seabank Resort and Spa enables guests who may prefer the desserts in the Coral restaurant one night but the main course in one of the pre-booked restaurants on the same night to mix and match. Guests can always just enjoy appetizers and main courses in one of the pre booked restaurants and swiftly change to the Coral restaurant for the dessert of choice!
The menus at all extremely well staffed restaurants at the DB Seabank Resort and Spa are the most varied we have seen if compared with any high end restaurant, with up to 8 options for a main course, 10 options for classic desserts with additional options for patisseries, fruit salad, cheese boards and an abundance of appetizers and side dishes including citrus marinated mussels. Soft drinks of course are complimentary, as well as wine and beer. Breakfast is plentiful, you will not be disappointed!
What is truly wonderful about the DB Seabank Resort and Spa is that the hotel management seem to have thought of every possible scenario and truly understand the finer point needs of its core customers. That is why breakfast is between 07h30-10h00 in the main Coral Restaurant. For those who have either dined late the night before or who have decided to have a long morning rest, or in the case of business travellers, those who get tied up with early morning emails, a late breakfast is served in one of the smaller restaurants between 10h00 and 12 noon again with complimentary juices, tea and coffee.
Afternoon tea at the DB Seabank Resort and Spa does not just include cup cakes, tea and coffee. Be prepared and do not go for the afternoon tea session with a semi full stomach. Afternoon tea at the DB Seabank Resort and Spa includes a light lunch, a variety of sandwiches, with potato wedges accompanied with various delightful dips and pizza slices often included. Afternoon tea at the DB Seabank Resort and Spa is served between 15h00 and 18h00 each day, perfect for those who have perhaps been out all day, have missed lunch or are too hungry to wait for their booked 20h30 dinner session.
Entertainment at the DB Seabank Resort and Spa- The obligatory DVDs are always on hand during long business trips! However at the DB Seabank Resort and Spa, we can say we only watched one personal DVD due to the plethora of great movies on Channel 2. We are talking here about movies you always wanted to see, either those that you missed at the movies or your favourites that you can watch again and again. The DB Seabank Resort and Spa hotel guest room’s complimentary Channel 2 feels more like the great movies of all time highlights of an airline on a long haul flight. Popular movies are endless including Flight starring Denzel Washington and the Adjustment Bureau starring Emily Blunt and Matt Damon. The hotel also is also fully equipped with the delightful DB Seabank Resort and Spa Animation Team who put on movies every day in the Dome. Once again, movies broadcast are current. January 2016 saw the release of the Revenant starring Leonardo Di Caprio in Europe and so the hotel broadcast this movie to guests in the Dome to a packed audience. Not to mention the broadcast of Jurassic World, Terminator Genisys, Concussion with Will Smith and Creed.
The DB Seabank Resort and Spa also holds activities during the evening after 20h00 with three inviting hotel bars (the Punent Lobby Bar, the Dome Pool Bar and the Sports Bar) that serve up to two complimentary drinks per visit to All inclusive guests. Complimentary drinks include spirits and cocktails with Trip to the Beach, Blue Lagoon and the non alcoholic cocktail Berry Patch firm favourites. The bars open from 10h00 daily and last orders at the bar are 12 midnight.
Health and Wellbeing at the DB Seabank Resort and Spa
The DB Seabank Resort and Spa boasts a variety of leisure activities to keep you fit. We recommend morning exercise just before breakfast as depending on your metabolism, it can take up to 4 hours to digest your breakfast and in between a working day or daily excursions it may be difficult to fit in an evening exercise routine when your priority may be once again speaking to the chef’s team about your evening meal and not dedicating time to any type of exercise at all! Together with which, during the Winter months, the bright sunlight warms you from 8h00 and the temperature briskly keeps rising before dropping around 16h00. An early morning swim or gym session followed by a relaxing session in the jacuzzi, steam and sauna is an ideal prelude to your choice of either hearty continental or traditional breakfast. The DB Seabank Resort and Spa swimming pool opens at 9h00 with the gym opening at 07h00. Weekend opening times vary and can be checked at the Spa front desk. Towels and locker keys can be hired by leaving a deposit of €10,00 and €2,00 respectively that will be returned at the end of your stay. Prices correct as of January 2016. Spa treatments are varied including the highly invigorating Sea Mineral Experience Bath that may be booked at the Aquamarine Spa on level UG of the DB Seabank Resort and Spa.
Shopping at the DB Seabank Resort and Spa
The Laguna Shopping gift shop on level UG is equipped with all essentials that you may need, especially if you have just arrived from a late or early morning flight. The gift shop includes jewellery, snacks and drinks, wines and spirits, clothing, accessories, newspapers, postcards, keyrings, books, calendars and memorabilia so that you may buy the perfect souvenir. The Laguna Shopping gift shop has regular offers that DB Seabank Resort and Spa hotel guests can take full advantage of.
Island Hopping from the DB Seabank Resort and Spa, Malta to Gozo island
Maltese island hopping is definitely worthwhile even in the Winter months with the Maltese tourist industry often offering visitors some surprising discounts. The DB Seabank Resort and Spa is conveniently located just a 10 minute bus ride from the ferry port Cirkewwa. The ferry crossing from Malta (Cirkewwa) to Gozo is smooth and hassle free enabling you to take in the beautiful views of the islands of Malta, Gozo and Colomo surrounded by deep blue sea, with your crossing completed in basking Maltese sunshine and sky blue skies. The best is yet to come as there is no charge for the outbound ferry crossing from Malta to Gozo. Travellers only pay once on their return journey and the ferry crossing cost is just €4,60. During Winter months or special promotional periods, the ferry crossing return journey can be as little as €1,20.
Upon arriving in Gozo, check the bus timetables and go to the Information front desk at the Gozo port so you can prioritize your sightseeing. If visiting the Ggantija Temples protected by the World Heritage Organization (WHO), the entry cost for adults is around €9,00. You can either catch a direct bus or else you can catch the first bus to Victoria (a 10 minute bus journey) and change there. Either way the journey time to the Ggantija temples is around 15 minutes. The one thing that may consume your time when travelling to the various visitor attractions in Gozo is waiting for buses. As in Malta, buses on Gozo island are €1,50 for 2 hours during Winter months, so you can once again catch as many buses are you need to within that 2 hour period without paying again.
Together with being an historic island, Gozo is a much greener island than Malta, full of more vegetation and richer landscapes. The picturesque landscapes on this quaint island are undeniable and its petite size make it a very accessible island to visit even if you only have a few hours to spare.
Special notes, things to bear in mind-
The DB Seabank Resort and Spa is certainly a suitable hotel for business travellers who demand excellent attention to detail especially in relation to gastronomy and their accommodation.
Business travellers with high expectations will return to the DB Seabank Resort and Spa again and again. Once you have visited Malta and stayed at the DB Seabank Resort and Spa that delivers on its promises, a return visit is inevitable.
The management team at the DB Seabank Resort and Spa clearly understand the needs, wants and desires of its guests. The DB Seabank Resort and Spa is a 4* hotel whose demanding British guests you meet in the lobby, lift, restaurants, bars and by the poolside are always smiling and highly complimentary, proof that the hotel has delivered its Hospitality strategy to perfection.
When crossing the Mediterranean from Malta to Gozo island by ferry, travellers suffering from vertigo may wish to take the sundeck view on level two and sit or stand toward the back of the ferry. This is the best way to enjoy views of the various islands from the sundeck without worrying about the effects of vertigo that are felt towards the front or sides of the ferry where direct railings that drop straight to the sea level are visible.
Be prepared to allocate time each day towards menu and restaurant choice deliberation. As there is so much fine quality gastronomy and beverages to choose from at the six DB Seabank Resort and Spa restaurants, planning what to eat and drink and when to eat will be a big focus of your day! The last thing you want is to commit to a three course meal in one restaurant only to discover that la Pellicola restaurant is serving biscotti mousse or that the Coral restaurant is serving pear and platacchio trunch, mixed berries almond tart, coffee and vanilla mousse, sacher tart, mint and frutto di bosco, strawberry delice and blueberry macaroons for dessert!
All main shops in Malta typically close on Sundays
It is always a challenge to describe a luxury hotel in one word. How would Latest Sale describe the DB Seabank Resort and Spa 4* hotel? In a nutshell; Perfect.