My first visit to Ukraine and Odessa and I was apprehensive to say the least. Even more so after our landing at Odessa airport where the runway looked to be made of pavement slabs ! (the roughest landing I have ever experienced).
Then there was the drive to the Hotel passing run down houses, ramshackle suburbs, very old dishevelled apartment buildings...yes! I was worried.
After a crazy hectic drive dodging the mad Odessa traffic and navigating a few side streets we turned through security gates and into a beautiful garden area and pulled up at the entry to a fabulous white Villa.
From the moment that I stepped out of the cab I knew that this would be a brilliant experience. The welcome was so warm and friendly (in English) and my treatment stayed that way for the entire 10 days that I was there.
The reception staff, the bar staff, the restaurant (which is available 24 hours a day) staff,
the pool staff and even the security guards...all were amazingly friendly and helpful.
My room was immaculately clean as was the bathroom and balcony (overlooking the pool and with a glimpse of the Black Sea).
The food and service at the hotel is excellent (not 5 star, but you are not paying that much).
The hotel has easy access (maybe 5 minutes walk) to Arcadia which an incredible entertainment precinct full of restaurants, bars, nightclubs, serviced beaches, cafes, dancing fountains, a water park and shops. It is called the 'Russian Riviera' and deserves the title...although I would now call it the 'Ukraine Riviera'.
I have now stayed at Palace del Mar a second time because I loved it so much the first time and have made friends with many staff.
That's the sort of place it is.
My wife and I stayed for 6 days in this hotel. We booked a standard room with balcony, ground floor, facing the pool area. The room is spacious and the bed is large and comfortable: the furniture looks quiet cheap though, so I would not rate it a as 5 stars. The property (a former villa) is surrounded by a beautiful small park with different type of trees and flowers. The pool area s really nice. Few minutes walk to main Arkadia restaurants and clubs.
The staff and service:
If you are not a Russian speaker, you may have some difficulties communicating with the staff, since their English is poor. The personnel seemed to me very "shy" (hardly smiles) and some waiters appeared to me a bit rude. This is only my personal impression as non Ukrainian. The people at the reception are however very professional.
most of the clients were from the former Soviet Union countries. Honestly I was a bit shocked by the behavior of some individuals: you would expect to see these people everywhere but not in a 5 star hotel. They had no manners at all and were shouting at the hotel staff...no wonders why the waiters are shy. So if you are westerner, you may have some interesting cultural experience staying at this hotel.
Value for money: the hotel is nice but definitely overpriced!
A former private villa this mini hotel is most likely the most expensive in Arkadia but makes a big change from the typical cheap hotels and apartments in the area. You can walk directly down a private staircase to Arkadia so is 5 minutes to Club Ibiza. It has a great private pool, all the food was excellent and rooms have large bathrooms with balconies. The staff were all very well trained. You certainly feel like you are away from the masses here. It is only a 20 minute taxi drive to down town Odessa
I stayed there for a couple of days and have to say that this hotel is very good. The must is to stay around the swimming pool in the evening. If you turn right just after the exit door and go through the park you'll reach directly the night club area.