Sun Gardens Dubrovnik
What We Love
- Sweeping Adriatic Sea views
- Three freshwater swimming pools
- Laid-back city-meets-beach atmosphere
- Mammoth 37,000-square-foot spa
- Lots of kid-friendly facilities
What To Know
- The resort is a 15-minute drive from the historic center of Dubrovnik
- Don’t go if you want an intimate experience; this is a vast resort
- Some restaurants and shops are closed during the off season
- Book spa appointments well in advance
- A tourist tax of approximately $1.50 per person, per night, will be collected by the hotel at checkout
- Free WiFi
- Handicap Accessible
- Kids Club
- Parking On Site
- Room Service
“The Pearl of the Adriatic” built by the Venetians, Dubrovnik is a city that allows you to hit the coast and get a culture fix in one trip. And the Radisson Blu Dubrovnik Sun Gardens, situated a scenic 15-minute drive from the historic old town, is perfectly placed to see the sights and soak up the sea views, too. One of the first resort-style hotels in the region, the property mixes breezy modern design, kid-friendly activities, a full raft of dining options, a mammoth spa and Adriatic vistas at every turn.
Bed & Bath
The 408 guestrooms are all about contemporary design, with a Mediterranean palette of beige and turquoise and floor-to-ceiling windows. All but the Standard Rooms (which are a spacious 366 square feet) come with balconies overlooking the sea, and they feature tea and coffee kits, bathrobes and slippers, and the all-important free WiFi. The residences are like luxe apartments, with oak flooring, modern artwork, lounge and dining areas, and kitchenettes.
There are plenty of opportunities to kick back or get active at the resort, including three outdoor pools, a private pebble beach, a dive center, a gym, a climbing wall, volleyball courts and an impressive 37,000-square-foot spa, which has all the essential amenities, from a hydrotherapy pool to a hammam. Foodies and fussy eaters alike are seen to, with a choice of 14 venues at which to wine and dine. Tuck into seafood and local specialties at the waterfront Cilantro or sink your teeth into a steak at the Butcher. Families should head to the resort’s Market Place, where you can either dine in or pick up goodies from the open kitchen. Or, for those wanting to party, the lounge-like Ginja features an alfresco dance floor by the Adriatic.
In the Area
Discover the pedestrian heart of Dubrovnik’s old town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The impressive fortress hides a maze of white cobblestone streets. Its marble thoroughfare, the famous Stradun, dates from 1667 and shines like a mirror thanks to centuries of polishing wear. Go really local at the no-frills Buffet Kamenice, with its blue and white awning. Located on Gunduliceva Poljana, it offers local fare, including squid ink risotto that’s incredibly tasty, cheap and plentiful. For the hipper crowd the favorite is Gil’s, at the city entrance. It has become the place to see and be seen, with a fantastic alfresco lounge, bar and restaurant with lovely sea views and French fusion cuisine. A daytrip to the Elaphiti Islands is a must. Kolocep, Sipan and Lopud are exotic and green, covered in olive groves, vineyards and tropical plants, as well as Roman ruins and churches.
How to Get There
We stayed here on a self-catering Jet2 Indulgent Escapes holiday over the school half-term holiday and were given an apartment at the top level by the sports centre. When booking we were led to believe that there was a mini-market on site for self-catering supplies. Sadly, it had closed some weeks earlier (along with most of the restaurants, pools, childrens' facilities etc). After spending an hour or so searching for it, we went to reception to speak to the manager. He was apologetic and professional and gave us a free buffet breakfast and the use of a hotel car for a single trip to a local market for supplies. This was a big help, but the lack of a shop on-site was rather limiting. On one occasion we opted to have a buffet dinner in the hotel, which was very expensive, especially given that the food was so poor with such limited choice. Now, I understand that it was end of season (the hotel was due to close the next day), but this was not a 5-star Indulgent Escape quality experience. The breakfast buffet on the other hand, was very good. We found it better value to take an Uber into Dubrovnik, have a wonderful meal and drinks in the old city and then Uber back, than to eat at the hotel. Our apartment was excellent, with loads of space and quite nice sea view. There was a large screen TV, but almost nothing in English apart from Youtube and PPV movies. The sports centre was a great facility right outside our door and we used it a lot for football, squash and pool. I found the staff there to be especially friendly and helpful, and happy to chat and joke. Generally speaking, the staff tended to be at worst polite and efficient, and at best friendly and warm. Overall, I was very impressed with them. I have read a few reviews of rude staff, but honestly, that wasn't my experience. My son is 10 and he was treated very well and with respect and he enjoyed that.
A few things to keep in mind. If you are travelling here early or late season, double-check to see if the facilities you want on-site are actually available. The resort was like a ghost town on our last two days and not so pleasant. If you have mobility challenges, please be aware that there are a LOT of steep steps and steep ramps. The hotel has some little buggies, so it's worth asking if they will pick you up and take you to the beach etc. The beach is a pebble beach, which is not to everyone's liking and very tricky to walk on to get to the water. TBH, the above applies to lots of places in the region, so it's worth bearing in mind. Outside the main entrance is a lovely little bakery, and well worth popping in for snacks or packed lunch for a day out. The hotel has a little shuttle boat that takes you into Dubrovnik. Even if you only do it once, you must do it; it's such a lovely journey. I am not sure if I would stay here again if I went at this time of year, but I would be happy to recommend this hotel with caveats.
Excellent hotel, amazingly friendly and helpful staff, they even gave me a deluxe apartment instead of a regular one so I managed to enjoy a wonderful view of Elafite islands from the terrace. Not to mention that the terrace was as big as somebodies flat and the apartment...no words to express. For dinner, breakfast or lunch you can chose from 5 different restaurants, but actually the best one is the one in the main building. The choice of the buffet (if you chose breakfast or dinner that are included int the price is fabulous and you might easily find yourself overeating because you literally want to try everything they offer. The rooms are very spacious and clean. It takes 10 minutes by car to get to Dubrovnik but my suggestion is to park somewhere outside the main garage (on the street in the city quarters Lapad or Gruž) because the garage is quite expensive. I'm talking about the parking in the city of course because the hotel parking is for free. It may take you a while to get to the Old town on foot or you can take the regular bus (the ticket costs 12 kunas = arround 1,6 euros), to the station called Pile). The hotel complex offers a variety of activities such as gym, tennis terrains, swimming pools (outdoors and indoors) and their Spa center is one of the best in Croatia. The even have a shopping area and their own beach on the sea. What else one can want?
We visited as a family of 5 and stayed in a deluxe holiday apartment. The apartment was spectacular - spacious, comfortable and immaculate. The balcony area was huge and the views out to sea and the outlying islands were incredible.Dubrovnik is nearby and justifies its reputation as a wonderful place to visit.The site is beautifully landscaped and the private beach is stunning.
The staff were very ready to help and the service was excellent. Food and service in the restaurants was good. The sports centre was popular with our teens - free pool table and basket ball for example.
We booked via 'lastminute.com' and the only quibble that I have is that we should have been more clearly forewarned that some of the facilities (grocery, pools and restaurants) are closed at the end of season. This meant that there was no on-site shop for our self-catering apartment and a little less choice than expected for eating.
There is a great bakery just by the hotel entrance and there is a decent little grocery a short walk away in the village. Obviously, the hotel wants to keep as much trade on site as possible, however these local shops could be better publicised to self-catering guests, especially close-season. Similarly, there is a walking route to neighbouring Trsteno that is very pretty and could be better publicised.
It was fantastic holiday and I would readily recommend Sun Gardens to anyone.