Our Memorable Trip to Jordan Was Made Even Better by the KimKim Professionals
Jun 21 - Jun 26, 2023
Overall, KimKim was an excellent choice for us in planning our trip to Jordan. We are confident in recommending KimKim to friends and associates, and will look to KimKim in the future when planning trips. In addition to the professionalism and expertise, KimKim was also a good value for us, and simplified the complexity of international travel.
Driver / Guide: Bader Halaiqa
As a mom and daughter traveling as a “group of two” in an unfamiliar, foreign country, Bader Halaiqa made us feel welcome, safe and appreciated. He went above and beyond to make our trip memorable. We felt more like family than clients, and he treated us to little surprises along the way, such as eating Arab Bread and dates after a gas station stop, and sampling unfamiliar Jordanian “treats” while walking through the market. Bader always made sure we made plenty of water, and when we were driving between locations he pointed out many cultural sights that enhanced the trip. For example, on the last couple of days of our trip, we saw sheep and goats in pens in unexpected places and he explained the religious customs associated with an upcoming major holiday. He also showed us how camel owners identify their herds. On longer trips, he played music in the car that fit the scenery, or videos to provide history and context to an upcoming site. It was reassuring to know that after he dropped us of at our hotel each evening, he lodged close by overnight to make sure he was there to pick us up on time the next morning. Occasionally Bader accompanied us on excursions to help us find our way and avoid making “touristy missteps.” He steered us clear of saying “yes” to an offer by random locals offering unscheduled “guide services” and explained that could actually turn into an obligation to provide a generous gratuity. When we wanted to go shopping he guided us through the market, speaking to shopkeepers to ensure we purchased the best item for a fair price. From the exceptionally tasty and fresh watermelon while we waited for our camel ride, to serving as our “photo journalist” when we explored and experienced the wonders of Jordan, we can’t imagine this trip without the contributions of Bader. His love of country, culture, family, and profession shone through in every encounter we had with him.
Pre-tour Contact: Samanta Neroli
Months before our trip to Jordan, we were introduced to our local specialist, Samanta Neroli. Samanta never tired of answering questions as she helped us make the most of the five days we planned to spend in Jordan. She was prompt in her communications, and creative in the suggestions she made. Samanta was flexible as we developed our trip and it was helpful to have a female representative tell us what we needed to know about local customs. Samanta was very knowledgeable about the sights and features of the places we planned to visit, and made certain our lodgings were relaxing and comfortable. She also explained the process of crossing the Border, and assured us that all the documentation would be in order and prepared for us ahead of time. Thankfully, the Border crossing went smoothly for us – just as she predicted.
The hotel was definitely above-par - especially the restaurant and buffet.
Fun and unusual place to stay. Impressive how they use solar energy and water tanks to make for comfortable lodging in the middle of the desert. In hindsight, we would have rather skipped the stargazing experience and enjoyed the party atmosphere in the big tent. The only less than perfect feature is that the hot water is turned off at 8 pm. If you choose to enjoy a nighttime activity like stargazing, it would be advisable to shower BEFORE you go.
Waking up to a stunning - and unobstructed - view of the Dead Sea is so relaxing and other-worldly. The Chalets are arranged so that each Chalet is private and has it's own view of the sunset and sea. There is easy access if you want to go for a soak, but remember to bring water shoes as there is no beach - only rounded rocks along the shore.
This is a beautiful hotel, and hosts many special occasions for locals. It was fun to see patrons arriving in their traditional - but extra fancy - dress.