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Thursday, 4 April 2013

Lazy pool day

Spent the morning at the pool and wandering around taking photos and noticing that the pool area is looking very shabby nowadays.  There are lots of uneven slabs and broken tiles and we saw that there was some pool slime and algae around the stools that are situated around the pool bar in the centre of the pools - this pool bar was never open during our stay and the plants growing inside that area look quite overgrown.  Even the water in the pool was a bit cloudy, although that did clear fairly quickly over the next few days.  There are large mobile parasols that can be moved around the pool area to give shade, but these are now filthy.  The varnish on the sunbeds and the tables is peeling off and there are broken sunbeds lying around.  There is a wooden structure that used to have a roof which was a great place to get some shade, but the roof has been missing for years now.  However, the structure is now leaning badly (I think after a tree fell on it) and has never been straightened or repaired.

Just some of the broken and uneven slabs

Just one of many broken tiles

The wonky wooden structure

The gap site where the tower of the 'New Winter Palace' once stood, is still a gap site.  No work whatsoever has been done here and there are no signs of any work beginning to start.  I took these photos through rather a dirty window, but you'll get the general idea!!

For lunch we decided to stick to our plan of going to the Caffe Moka where we found the owner had reserved a nice table in the shade and he had the cutlery etc. all laid out for us.  We were truly treated like VIPs!!  We ordered four chicken sandwiches and drinks - they sell soft drinks, beer and spirits.  I don't know where he gets the hot food from, although we suspect it comes from outside the premises somewhere, but it's very very tasty indeed and piping hot and served in polystyrene containers.  The whole lunch cost 202LE so it was quite reasonable.  It was so tasty in fact, we decided that we'd be back again to try the other sandwiches on the menu!!

Chicken sandwiches

Sit and watch the mad traffic!!

Seats, sofas and shade
After lunch it was back to the pool once more to relax.  Later, on going back to the room, we discovered one of the light bulbs wasn't working so we reported it to reception and were totally gobsmacked when an 'engineer' appeared 15 minutes later to replace it!!  After changing to go out for dinner we went up to the Royal Bar at the Winter Palace where we met some of the management staff that we know, and we were given a drink on the house, which was rather nice.

We then took our usual walk into 'Little Britain' and went to The Taste of India where he ordered two soups, four main courses, two sweets (our favourite Om Ali!!) and drinks, which all came to 446LE.  Afterwards we walked back to the hotel via Caffe Moka for coffee - they do rather a nice hot chocolate as well!!

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