I’m quite lucky to have the opportunity to write about luxury hotels all around the world. But I’m only one person, and I – to my dismay – cannot be in more than one place at a time.
I’m also fortunate that a dear friend of mine John recently traveled with his family to Cairo, and planned to stay at The Nile Ritz-Carlton, Cairo. I persuaded John to write about his visit, and I’m so thankful that he did! Here is his first post as a guest blogger, enjoy!
The Nile Ritz-Carlton, Cairo
Egypt is a tale of two worlds: one is the long-gone grandeur of Ancient Egypt with its mysterious pyramids and temples; the other is carefully balancing tradition and modernization in some unexplainable form of controlled chaos.
Nowhere is the latter more noticeable than in the great city of Cairo. As one of the world’s most populated cities, Cairo is a bustling city filled with many opposing extremes. Look in one direction and you see poverty and strife. Look in the other direction and you see wealth and fortune. To one side, you see a beautiful mosque, with the minarets towering above the myriad of apartments. On the other side, a large cathedral with crosses jutting into the sky. And in every direction, traffic.
In the heart of Cairo lies Tahrir Square. Just five years ago, this now infamous setting played center stage to one of the biggest revolutions in modern times. While watching news reports from half-way around the globe, it is hard to imagine that this once tumultuous area is now home to a seat of luxury in the form of The Nile Ritz-Carlton, Cairo.
Click Here to view the location of the hotel in Google Maps.
Much of my time in Egypt was spent staying at this well-appointed hotel…two weeks to be exact. I must admit, I wouldn’t have wanted to enjoy Egypt in any other fashion.
The Hotel and Accommodations
This downtown gem was once The Nile Hilton, but renovations to convert it into The Nile Ritz-Carlton, Cairo started just before the Egyptian Revolution. It has now been a Ritz-Carlton for three years and rests on the east bank of the Nile River, proudly overlooking Egypt’s most important natural feature.
With 331 rooms and suites and raising 14 floors, the property exudes elegance. I would highly recommend asking for a room or suite overlooking the Nile River. Each room has panoramic views of the grand river that is sure to invigorate you each morning! Traveling as a family of four, we often find hotel rooms to be cramped and lacking storage. This is not the case with The Nile Ritz-Carlton. Our room was beyond comfortable with enough storage space for all of our belongings.
From the beautiful art that adorns the lobby walls (including an ancient Egyptian carving excavated from a thousands-year-old temple), to the marble that lines the restrooms, The Nile Ritz-Carlton offers comfort and class to its guests.
As expected with The Ritz-Carlton properties around the world, you can expect top notch Dining. To say the hotel has a “signature” restaurant would be discounting each of its wonderful dining spaces. On the 14th floor, the hotel offers Nox, a restaurant and nightclub featuring shared appetizers with international influences. From here, you have a sweeping view of Cairo that you will not forget. This space is for guests 21 years of age and up and features DJs nightly so that you can enjoy the Cairo nightlife.
On the 2nd floor is Vivo, the hotel’s more upscale Italian restaurant. We enjoyed a wonderful dinner here with our orders taken by none other than the Chef d’Cuisine himself. Everything from Filet Mignon made even more decadent with a piece of foie gras and bone marrow reduction to handmade pastas and fresh seafood can be enjoyed here. Next door to Vivo is Bar’Oro, featuring fabulous cocktails and cigars.
On the main floor is Culina, the hotel’s casual, all-day restaurant. And while “casual, all-day” may not seem luxurious, this restaurant offered one of the finest breakfast buffets I’ve ever encountered. Dinner was equally as impressive, as we enjoyed classic Arabic cuisine on the comfort of the patio. This was followed by live music, a belly dancing show and – of course – shisha! Each night, the restaurant was reservation-only and filled with both guests and the city’s most prominent figures, all there to enjoy the show and unforgettable ambience provided by The Nile Ritz-Carlton, Cairo.
Here is a collection of our luxurious dining experiences at the property:
The Nile Ritz-Carlton features a fantastic Spa that I was (unfortunately) not able to enjoy on my trip. The spa featured all the amenities you would expect from a world-class hotel, including a full gym, sauna, and wide array of massage and beauty treatments.
Here are a few images of the Spa, courtesy of the Nile Ritz-Carlton:
As noted above, the Nile Ritz-Carlton is located in Tahrir Square, placing it next to many landmarks and important sites. Perhaps the most impressive is the National Egyptian Museum, which is located directly behind the Ritz-Carlton. This museum houses relics and artifacts from all across Egypt, including 11 mummies of ancient Egyptian pharaohs.
Also near the Ritz are many government buildings. In fact, while we were there, the heads and dignitaries of many countries in the region were also staying at the Ritz-Carlton to have meetings with Egypt’s president right next door to the hotel.
Perhaps the best way to take in the city is to walk the streets of Cairo. The Nile Ritz-Carlton gives easy access to many local restaurants (Falfella and Tabouleh were two of our favorites), and several exquisite churches and mosques which are nearby. Located across the Nile is the Cairo Tower, which is only about a half-hour walk from the hotel. This tower is 614 feet high with an amazing 360-degree view of the city. In the distance, you can even see the Great Pyramids of Giza.
I’ve found that when traveling the world and visiting other countries, the comfort of where you stay each night can make or break your trip. Luckily, with hotels like the Nile Ritz-Carlton, traveling to a foreign land like Egypt is easy and luxurious. From all of the amenities that the hotel offers to the out-going, accommodating staff, the Ritz-Carlton helped create memories that will last a lifetime for my family and me. We are very much so looking forward to our next visit to the property!
The Nile Ritz-Carlton, Cairo – Location and Social
Click on the links below to further learn about The Nile Ritz-Carlton, Cairo.
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Click Here to learn more about the property.
Thanks so very much to everyone at The Nile Ritz-Carlton, Cairo, especially to Sara for making this visit possible, and for the use of some of your high resolution images!
Please take note that the hotel welcomed John as a special media guest, but that his opinions are entirely his own.
Thank you so very much for taking the time to read this article, and happy dining and traveling!