Thursday, 14 November 2013


As the Foreign office gives the all-clear for travel to Egypt, I fled to the lively Red Sea Resort of Sharm El Sheikh for a welcome burst of winter sun.

Best known for its fantastic diving, Sharm has grown up over the last few years into a sophisticated destination with lovely winter tmeperatures and a vast collection of resorts ranging from five-star luxury to small family friendly hotels.

I was staying at The Savoy, one of the area’s top hotels which also owns the Sierra next door and the Royal Savoy, an even more exclusive hotel. It also includes an array of exclusive villas which I was invited to inspect. The Villa  Queen Farida and Cleopatra are fabulous, opulent and spacious houses which you can hire for private use.I understand various international royal and celebrity families have stayed there.

But for me, the Savoy is perfect for now. Travelling with a group of close female friends for a change, we found everything we wanted here, starting with the welcome massage which relaxed us after the flight. Although at five hours, the flying time from London Luton makes this a leisurely ‘medium haul’ holiday.

Once settled, we tackled the serious business of indulgence. The Savoy has 414 rooms, including twin triple and family rooms.  The beach stretches along the beautiful coastline and there are also 3 adults’pools and two for children. This is a fantastic place for families, even though we are without them on this visit.  Theres a Kids Club and playground, plus film shows and discos.

But the Savoy’s crowning glory is Soho Square, the rather unlikely name for the complex which sits in front of the resort. Very unlike its namesake – the rather unassuming little square off London’s Tottenham Court road – this is a glitzy collection of restuarnts (they range from Japanese to Italian, Egyptian to Chinese) activitis which include the rather invongruous ice-skating, bowling and even ‘dancing waiters’ and bars. After a lovely evening spent in the decadent sounding Caligula restaurant in the Savoy (its designed to look like a Roman brothel and serves ‘Hot Rocks’ – meals cooked on piece of sqyare stone at the table) we head to the Ice Bar in the square for frozen vodka in ice glasses served from an ice bar. Cool
And we also found time for camel riding, quad biking, a boat trip with snorkelling and an evening Bedouin feast in the desert.

FACTS:Monarch, the scheduled leisure airline, operates flights to Sharm El Sheikh from London Gatwick, London Luton, Birmingham and Manchester airports with fares, including taxes, starting from £57.27 one way (£176.26 return) (lead fares summer 14)For further information or to book visit

Packages include bed and breakfast at the Savoy Hotel including  flights from London Gatwick,  leaving on 29 March 2014  are :  For 2 adults £681pp or 2 adults 2 children £793pp

FOOTNOTE:From next year the Savoy will be offering Yoga holidays which will include daily yoga sessions covering both beginners and advanced yoga  More to come!







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