Oberoi Sahl Hasheesh
The Oberoi Sahl Hasheesh is a WOW hotel and deserves the Best of the Best award in Hurghada.
Egypt has two major tourism regions, Hurghada and Sharm El Sheik.
Whereas the best hotel on the Sinai peninsula is the Four Seasons Sharm El Sheik, the Hurghada region has also a clear winner: Among the hundreds of hotels in the Hurghada region, the Oberoi is the undisputed number one.
As one of the finest international hotel groups, the Oberoi has a handful of hotels among the 20 best hotels in the world. The one in Sharm El Sheik is a retreat hotel for those who want to be private and undisturbed. You are secluded in your villa, by the pool you will always find a quiet spot, and if you relax on a wooden sunbeds on the light sandy beach, your neighbors sunbed is definitely too far away to have a chat.
Here you find privacy, seclusion and tranquility – an almost perfect Secret Retreat. And if you love Indian food on the highest level, this is your place.
Egypt, the land of the thousand hotels, has only two really good beach hotels: the Four Seasons Sharm El Sheik on the Sinai and the Oberoi Sahl Hasheesh in the Hurghada area.
Both are a pleasure to the international luxury traveler among the many miserable 5-star hotels in this area, many of which would have trouble getting beyond the third star in other countries.
The Oberoi is such a pleasant exception: It offers a beautiful location with an idyllic and peaceful pool area, where peace-seekers can relax. The hotel offers highest standard cuisine, really pretty guest-villas with a little garden or even with pool, and a flawless 6-star service.
The WOW-factor is definitely not to be found in the garden or interior design here, but in the perfect service, in the peace and in the seclusion.
The Oberoi 117, Sahl Hasheesh Red Sea, Egypt
Let me tell you: You’ll look forward to getting up in the morning. Come late, and come hungry. It’s worth it. The breakfast room is pretty, the picturesque courtyard, where you can have breakfast as long as the sun hasn’t become too hot, is really beautiful. In addition to the classic continental breakfast in all variations, Arabian breakfast is served. Fresh mango juice of course (always a symptom of a good beach resort), and – on request – the chef prepares all the delicacies of Indian cuisine. Just for you, an a la carte tour through culinary India at its best.
Talk to the chef and let him introduce you into the characteristics of the Arabic and Indian breakfast cuisine, he’ll prepare you some small breakfast compositions.
In fact, they will serve you almost everything for breakfast upon request, as long as they have the ingredients. All this at no extra charge, one of the many amenities of an Oberoi hotel.
It’s that attitude that actually describes the whole hotel: As long as it’s in their hands, they’ll do anything to make their guests happy.
Rooms and Suites
The hotel has no “rooms”, it is a pure villa hotel.
The villas are arranged in small, V-shaped groups in three rows parallel to the beach.
In the front row you have the direct sea view, in the two back rows more peace and (don’t underestimate that) less windAnd that’s the whole thing in nature, looking from the sea:
The V-shaped villas, in several rows up the hill
By the way, don’t overestimate the „sea view“ of the villas, there is not really a sea view. The villas are facing the back side, with only a single window overlooking the sea, and you can only see it by standing against the wall behind the sofa in the living area of the villa. There is no view from the bed, the sofa, the dining table, etc.
You see the sea when you leave your place. This may be a disadvantage of the villas, they are completely inside-oriented, you see almost nothing of the outside. I find that surprising, but maybe that is part of this „Secret Retreat“ concept – where you cannot look outside, no one sees inside.
The standard villas (so called Deluxe suites) are 125 square meters in size, these are the smallest villas in the house. Don’t forget some hotels in Paris would call their 25 square meter rooms “junior suites”.
The categories are a little difficult to understand here, so let me make this easy for you: The Deluxe Suites are in the second and third row, the Superior Deluxe Suites in the front row right at the beach (number 202-211 and 405-416, see picture). Then there are the Grand Suites with an almost 8 meter swimming pool in the little private courtyard – quite big for a private pool.
And then there’s the Royal Suites, the highlight of the Oberoi: 225 square meters, large living room, cozy bedroom with walk-in closet, covered patio, pretty pool area and – beautifully done – small dining lounge on a little platform right next to the pool.See for yourself:
The garden of the Royal Villa Suites
Complete seclusion and tranquility: The neighbors seem as far away. There’s nothing better in Egypt to relax in complete tranquility, and in that respect the otherwise great Four Seasons in Sharm El Sheik cannot compete with the Oberoi either.
I spent wonderful summer evenings at this pool: Dinner in my own garden, on top of the small plateau overlooking the pool and the small, covered terrace, perfectly romantic lighting as soon as it gets dark outside – and don’t forget that’s rather early in Egypt. I’d enjoy to hear the music from the living room quietly on the terrace, then swim a few lengths in the warm water of my pool. The dinner is served to the pool on request, the room service is spotless. They make your private terrace table look like in a fancy restaurant, and if you find the water in the pool a bit too warm or too cold, they will change the temperature for you in no time.
The garden of the Royal Villa at night
Restaurants and Bars
There are two really good restaurants in Oberoi, „The Restaurant“ with European-Mediterranean as well as Arabic cuisine (its own Middle Eastern menu invites you to a discovery of the regional cuisine), and the „Zaafran“, oh my God, what a masterpiece of Indian cuisine, aromatic, intense, heavenly. It is one of the best Indian restaurants in the whole of Egypt.
This is where you notice that you are staying in a hotel of the Oberoi chain, the epitome of Indian luxury.
When the waiter takes your order and gives you menu advises, you already feel their pride of Indian cuisine in perfection.
And to make this a full experience for yourself, I beg you: Talk to the chef. He likes nothing more than to come to the tables and talk with the guests, but will only do so if you ask for him. Let him tell you about the dishes, the tastes, the spices, and then create an individual composition according to your wishes.
The „Zafraan“: Indian cuisine in perfection
Pool and Gardens
The heart of every beach hotel is the pool area.
Here everything has to be perfect, here you are looking for relaxation, tranquility, and a magical view over the sea.
The pool area: Completely undisturbed relaxation
Here you have everything: Relaxation. Piece. Lots of space. No neighboring beds. And the view over the sea – well, see for yourself …
Settle down by the pool, order a good glass of white wine and a few pieces of the magnificent Baklava or Basbousa (this mediterranean cake the Egyptians love so much).Stroll a bit along the beach and enjoy the tranquility …
The staff keeps the little paradise clean and perfect
By the way, it’s not much different on their beach: lots of space, lots of piece, with at least 10 to 20 meters between the sunbeds. If you want to chat with your neighbors, you’ll have to walk through the warm sand.
Impeccable service, there is nothing more to say here.
Not that this would surprise in a house of the Oberoi group, but in Egypt this kind of service is rare. Whether by the pool, or the room service, or special requests at breakfast: Try it, try the Oberoi experiment.
My personal experience in Oberoi hotels: they do everything for the guest. And certainly much more than in any other hotel in and around Hurghada.
Now comes another exciting thing about this hotel: Yes, high-end hotel business has its price, luxury travelers know that. But in the Red Sea, especially in Hurghada, competition is high and prices are traditionally low. And even the heavenly Oberoi cannot completely break out of the Hurghada price level, because otherwise there is no high-end tourism in the region.
Of course, the Oberoi is still the most expensive hotel in the region. But believe me: Nowhere else you can stay at an Oberoi at this price.