We chose the hotel based on good reviews, and that we have used other resorts in Bahrain, which we liked. Also, close to the causeway and some days I had to work in Saudi Arabia.
When we arrived, there was no power supply next to the bed for recharging a phone overnight or other items. The power outlet was behind the bed headboard which couldn’t be accessed, and there was another behind the bedroom TV cabinet (on the opposite side of the room, no good for bedside phone), again it was hard to get to without pulling the cabinet away from the wall. Bad design. Same with the lamp which was unplugged and could only be put back in by calling for help, as the whole bed unit had to be moved out from the wall. To be fair to the hotel, someone did come quickly, and fixed that. But it didn't solve the power supply issue, that's a minimum/basic for a hotel bedroom.
The lights for the lamps in the bedroom were far too dim, we couldn’t even read a book in bed by them, because they are using energy saving bulbs. I realise everyone is watching how much energy they burn these days (this was before Covid-19 cost cutting), but they advertise as a ‘luxury’ hotel – luxury hotels don’t worry about being cheapskates. It’s not a cheap hotel for guests, who spend a lot of money to stay there. So scrimping on cheap lighting puts out a bad statement. If they want to use energy saving bulbs for genuine green reasons, they should use higher rated ones, that give out more light, and that don't make the room so dark that guests can't read a book in bed.
Both TVs never worked properly, The image kept freezing for 30 seconds or more, regardless of which channel. We reported this but nothing was done so we couldn’t watch either of them (we were there a week).
When we checked in there was a sticky substance on the small coffee table by our sofa, and the sofa cushions were heavily stained. Again this is poor for a ‘luxury’ hotel. When guests spill drinks on cushions, the cleaning staff should note it and the cushions should be washed and replacements provided before the next guest moves in. It gives a very bad impression.
When we checked in we had a bathroom floor towel for the shower, bath towels, and hand towels. But after the first day, the staff only replaced the bath towels even though we always asked for more.
Room service food was poor. For example I ordered shrimp noodles. It was just noodles smothered in a very salty soy sauce. We had to eat out, or cook our own evening meals, though we were happy to pay, had the food been good. It is supposed to be a self-inclusive resort but unlike other Bahrain resorts, it doesn't have a good restaurant.
The first night we arrived late from our flight, so we ordered room service, they took our two orders (just soup and bread) and repeated it back to us. 45 minutes later we still had no food, so we called again, and they said they didn’t have our order, asked us were we sure we ordered, did we call the right number? We said we not only had the right number, but the person who took the call repeated it back to us. Another hour plus to wait. Eventually we got the food around 2am.
When staff cleaned the room each day they took ALL the cutlery, plates, glasses we had used at the kitchen table (this was a suite with a kitchen), and we then had nothing to eat with, or minimal items. One huge ‘serving’ spoon was left, between two of us, to use for making tea/coffee and eating with, despite requesting, many times, teaspoons and other spoons for our drinks and for food. We were told there were no teaspoons in the hotel! Incredible.
My wife sometimes slept in and ate breakfast late then went out at midday, when she returned at 5pm the room was still not cleaned. And yet on the day we checked out, the cleaners couldn't get rid of us quick enough, kept knocking on our door asking if we were ready so they could clean the room, though on the other days, they were nowhere to be seen.
What they don't advertise:
The hotel allows families to stay late in the pool, then families with young children come back late to their floor, making a noise outside the rooms, running around, sometimes at midnight. What kind of hotel has a pool open so late? Also right next to the elevators? So there is always a huge wait to take one (because all the ladies go in groups and frequently pushed my wife aside).
There is a huge, tall, ugly development next door that obscures some of the view and sunlight, also sounds of construction going all day, and dust, this should be mentioned in the advertising. Even when construction is finished, it is a huge ugly thing. It's the first thing you see on the left when coming over the causeway from Saudi Arabia. A concrete monstrosity. If Lagoona Beach was once nice, in a nice place, that will be forever ruined. This more than negates any close advantage to the causeway.
The hotel caters mostly for Saudi families so had a heavy Saudi influence, with no-one else there. We were the only non-Saudis there. This should be mentioned in the advertising , as people can feel uncomfortable if there is only, or primarily only, one nationality predominantly catered for. Please note that I live and work in Saudi Arabia, have many close Saudi friends, and am part of Saudi life, so this has nothing to do with being somehow anti-Saudi. It is the way the hotel only looks out for Saudi guests, because they are the majority guest, so obviously that brings in the best business for the hotel. Other guests get neglected.
The staff were therefore serving the majority Saudi guests first, when my wife was sitting outside waiting for coffee service. She was mostly ignored and passed over for Saudi ladies who arrived after her, so she'd get served after a very long wait, or not at all some days, gave up and went back to her room.
There is not enough space to sit outside, as Saudi women took all the seats in the limited sun area (less sun in winter), in groups, so that no-one else could sit there. My wife was on her own so could not reserve large areas, so had to sit in the shade. As it was winter, it was cold. That is not the fault of the large groups of women, who were guests too, but the available areas for guests, and the actual footprint of this 'resort' is tiny.
My wife then tried to get a coffee inside, but the coffee area in the lobby is small for such a large hotel, so when the weather wasn’t good, such as the day it rained heavily, there was hardly anywhere to sit, as many of the hotel guests were all trying to sit in the same place (again, groups of women just taking over the whole area)
The hotel operates a ‘dry’ policy i.e. no alcohol - this should be mentioned in the advertising. Presumably this is because the hotel is 99% Saudi guests, which we understand, and was fine by us. But Bahrain is NOT a banned-alcohol country. The hotel can’t have it both ways, allowing international guests to arrive thinking it’s a ‘normal’ Bahrain resort hotel and expect to take in all types of guests, and yet have no alcohol, without stipulating carefully in their advertisements, that the hotel is almost exclusively for Saudi guests (of whom most are families with children), and therefore don’t serve alcohol. Guests to come under false pretenses: that it's another luxury Bahrain hotel equal to all the others in Bahrain, but it isn't. I cannot recommend the hotel to many of my friends who enjoy a glass of wine with their food; I have to tell them it is a 'dry' hotel, though the advertising neglects to say that. It is a Bahrain hotel, operating as if it was in Saudi Arabia, with Saudi Arabian laws.
The name says 'Lagoona Beach Resort'. It is NOT a resort. In fact it doesn’t really have a beach, not a proper one. It’s tiny. Hardly anything to do there. This should be mentioned in the advertising. For a real resort, their management should go and take a look at Rotana Amwaj Islands and others in Bahrain. There are multiple pools, restaurants, a large beach, and a lot more to do, in a bigger area. It is false advertising to call this hotel a 'resort'.
Parking is woefully inadequate with far too few spaces, for such a large hotel (it is tall, with many rooms, but one tall tower, so a tiny footprint and area, as mentioned above). I backed into a post at night, at the back of the parking, alongside the sports court, damaging the rear of my car, because of the tight parking and the post is not highlighted. No compensation was offered. In the evenings, guests were driving round and round, looking for a place, trying to beat each other to be the first into a parking bay. This is unacceptable for a large 'luxury' hotel. The hotel also allows appalling bad drivers who don’t know how to park, or are too lazy to park properly (see photos). Their parking is not the hotel’s fault, however they could have a sign put up, to tell people to keep within the lines of their parking bays, and should be policing it. Staff should be checking the car park regularly and if there’s a lazy, inconsiderate driver taking up two spaces, they should be called politely to come and re-park their car where they are taking up two spaces.
We were told when we first checked in that the breakfast ran until 11.30am. We twice asked the desk clerk who checked us in, to be certain. In the morning when we came down at 10.30, we were told breakfast had just finished, at 10.30. Poor information. This last point could be related to the fact that many staff struggled with English when we asked things, needed help, or room service, often having to repeat things, sometimes not being understood at all. For an international 'luxury' hotel in Bahrain, the minimum requirement for all staff coming into contact with guests should be a good standard of Arabic and English.
The breakfast needs to be served in an indoor area, not out at the end of the beach walk in a draughty, temporary shack. That is probably fine in summer but doesn't work in winter, when it was raining heavily some days.
These are not all of the issues we came across. There were too many to list.
We checked out three days early and were not offered any refund because, the staff said, we booked it through an online party and not directly with the hotel. We went instead to a central hotel in Bahrain, near City Centre Mall - leaving early for the causeway means the traffic level is low and it took me the same time from there as from Lagoona; in other words, there's no advantage being at Lagoona to get to the causeway. It's closer, but the roads are smaller and slower, from central Bahrain with no traffic and the highway, it takes the same time. So, since Lagoona is in an ugly location, there's no contest.
To show there were positives and not just complaints:
Staff were friendly (even when their English was not good)
Bed was very comfortable
Staff cancelled the money we’d paid ahead of breakfast on the first day when we were told the wrong time for it and missed it
Room service breakfast was good (that was the only good room service)
Mr. Ancheta was very helpful on the reception desk, when we checked out early
These good points should be a minimum anyway for any hotel at this price.
A very expensive hotel for what you get for your money. Not worth the cost. As described, we moved to a smaller, cheaper and much nicer hotel in the middle of the city. We have been to many hotels in Bahrain, and Lagoona 'Luxury Beach Resort' hotel is not luxury, does not have much of a beach, and is not a proper resort. It fails to advertise many of the bad things that would put people off, and needs to let people know about them else it's false advertising i.e. too small, inadequate parking, huge development next door, no alcohol, 99% caters for Saudi guests, and not really a resort as there is so little to do compared to other Bahrain resorts. So much other good choice in Bahrain, better quality at lower prices, why would you possibly want to go to this one.More