All's well at the Al Fanar
Al Fanar Palace Hotel (Amman)
Member Name: Essexgirl2006
Al Fanar Palace Hotel (Amman)
Advantages: Nice rooms, well equipped
Disadvantages: Not centrally located
This hotel was selected by my tour operator as the hotel for our first two nights in Amman, Jordan. It is a large independent hotel in the west of the city, approx 45 minutes from Queen Alia Airport. The immediate area doesn't really have much to offer, being mainly residential, with a few local businesses. First impressions of the hotel were good, you went up a few wide marble steps into the open and spacious reception area where check in was quick and efficient and into the lifts and up to my room on the 7th floor. Sadly, arriving late at night, my initial good first impressions of the lobby needed to be changed. With the climate of upheaval in the Middle East, many injured Libyan rebels are being treated in hospitals in Amman. Once well enough to be discharged, but not well enough to return home, they are put up in local hotels. During the day and much of the evening they congregate at the tables in the lobby, smoking, leaving little or no space for any other guests to sit and enjoy a coffee and a chat. Some members of our party were disturbed by their late night partying. I was fortunate not to hear this, but the heavy wooden doors are quite noisy if you have neighbours going in or out at unsocial hours. You may hear the call to prayer just before dawn (when I was there, this was about 5am).
The hotel is dry and does not serve alcohol, but some can be bought from a nearby shop. The lifts are quick and tend to close very quickly - I stepped out to allow some people to get past with luggage and ended up stuck on the 3rd floor until the next lift came round again. The internal décor is fairly simple, with carpeted corridors in good condition, but not much in the way of pictures on the walls.
I was pleased with my room however - a six foot wide bed, dark wood furniture, a large window and flat screen TV which could get BBC Worldwide and a number of other channels showing English language (mainly American) dramas and films. The rooms also had a mini bar, safe and hair-dryer The bathroom with a shower over the tub, vanity unit, toilet and bidet was of a good size. The room and bathroom were clean but the latter could do with a re-grout and the door frame needed a wipe down. The shower was hot (if you could be patient) though the pressure was inconsistent, but the low pressure never lasted more than a few seconds for me. My companions in other rooms did find they struggled to get much pressure at all.
Upon my return to this hotel before flying home, I had a smaller room with a regular sized double, and a more modest sized TV. The bathroom was long and narrow and had just a shower rather than a bath. Pressure was good and water hot, but worth checking the angle of the shower head before turning the shower on as I did manage to flood the bathroom quite effectively whilst waiting for the hot water to come thorough.
Breakfast is buffet style in the ground floor Venice restaurant and I thought it quite small and limited for a hotel of this size. It consisted of various breads (a toaster is provided), soft cheeses (Laughing Cow type and a very salty feta) and cold meats like salami. Yoghurt, olives, salad items, cereal and dips like hummus were also available alongside hot food such as boiled eggs, rice dishes (often with meat), salami sausages and sometimes a potato dish like chips or other fried potato. The restaurant area has plenty of seating mainly at long tables but there are a few smaller ones. I did not eat dinner here, so cannot comment what that is like, but understand that it is buffet also. According to the info in my room there are other restaurants and cafes in the hotel, but I did not see them. There is a small kiosk for coffees etc. in the lobby.
I understand that the hotel also has conference facilities, as well as a gym and pool but I didn't see either, nor signs for them.
As the hotel was included in my holiday I don't know how much it costs to stay here, but the website indicates that the rack rate is approx US$120 for a standard double which seems a bit steep to me. I would suggest searching for other deals.
Al-Fanar Palace Hotel,
Queen Rania Al Abdullah Street,
P.O. Box: 19196,
Amman, 11196, Jordan.
Telephone: +962 6 5100 400
Fax: +962 6 5100 410
Summary: Search for deals