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since 15/01/2003


General: Malta 23/03/2003

Lovely Malta

General: Malta As can be seen from the number and frequency of our visits, we are Maltaphiles. We love to get some sun in the worst part of the winter and Malta hits the spot every time. We stay at the Phoenicia just outside Valetta's city walls and love its 1930s faded luxury and impeccable service - another world. It's worth having a harbour view room as you can see half the island from the balcony. The island has a fleet of vintage buses - all beautifully cared for, cheap to use and running regularly to all parts of the island. Having said this, we always rent a car and take a taxi from the airport (6LM). M'dina, the silent city, is one of my favourite places with breathtaking view of almost the whole of the island from its bastions. It also has the Fontanella tea rooms which have the most mindblowing selection of homemade cakes you can possibly imagine. Valetta is gorgeous from the Sliema seafront and we love the walk from Les Lapins Hotel in Taxbiex round the waterfront to Sliema as the views of Valetta's mediaeval Italianate architecture are constantly changing. The harbour boat tour is brilliant value for money and well worth doing. We álways gain weight in Malta, apart from the aforesaid cakes, there is also Malta's speciality pastizzi - puff pastry filled with ricotta - and one a day is the minimum dose! Malta's soft drink, Kinnie, which you can buy nowhere else in the world, is not be missed. Shopping isn't too good - the exception being M'dina Glass where you ... 23/03/2003 Planning a forthcoming holiday to Malta in February. I started the booking process in late December, only to find that there was no chance of finding a package deal which would give us what we wanted. Undaunted, I decided to go independent and book my own flights and hotel - aided by knowing exactly where we wanted to stay. The hotel, booking via its website, was silkily smooth and we experienced no problems whatsoever. I booked our flights with - oh, how I wish I hadn't! The booking was made, my credit card debited but no confirmation email arrived. Emailing simply generated standard and irrelevant emails. Finally, after around five attempts, I received an individual email telling me that my tickets had been posted around four weeks previously, at last there was a telephone contact number. Still no confirmation email - that arrived around a week later. I called the "customer service" line, which involved being left on hold for about half an hour and was then told that nothing could be done until 72 hours prior to departure. Since we were flying on a Monday and this 72 hours included a Monday, this was not comforting! I left it until the week before we were due to fly, then emailed and called again. An hour and a on hold and I was assured that the tickets would be reissued and we could collect them at the Servisair Customer Service desk at Stanstead. I was refused an email confirmation of this when I requested it. Notwithstanding, an ...
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