Hotel Hissar Lobby, photo by placescases.com

Hotel Hissar – 3 in 1, relaxation, art gallery, recreational procedures

SPA Hotel Hissar rating by the 5D Sensograph of placescases.com: 4 out of 5.

September  2020


Seen              4.5 сърца от 5D Сензографа на placescases.com / 4.5 Big Hearts by the 5D Sensogrpah of placescases.com

Felt                3 сърца от 5D Сензографа на placescases.com / 0.5 Big Hearts by the 5D Sensogrpah of placescases.com  

Heard            4 Big Hearts by the 5D Sensogrpah of placescases.com

Smelled         4.5 сърца от 5D Сензографа на placescases.com / 4.5 Big Hearts by the 5D Sensogrpah of placescases.com

Tasted           5 сърца от 5D Сензографа на placescases.com / 5 hearts by the 5D Sensograph of placescases.com   


Reading time: 7 min

You don’t have 10 min to read? Then try the fast mode, go only through bold and colored text – 7 min

You don’t have 7 min.? See the short movie further below:  4:49  min.

Hotel Hissar is defined only as a SPA complex, but it is much more than that. There really is an opportunity for many types of therapies, sports and entertainment. The hotel has 2 SPA complexes, an indoor pool and hot water baths, as well as several outdoor ones. There are separate tennis courts, a football ground, a gym including cardio equipment, and a bowling hall. The latter does not work in Covid-19 conditions.

What remains somehow unmarked and without comment, and must be advertised at all costs, is that SPA Hotel Hissar is a real, large art gallery. Everywhere in the outdoor and indoor areas there are beautiful works of art, mostly paintings and sculptures. The works are impressive, by extremely talented and famous Bulgarian contemporary artists.

I think it is a very big omission by the management that it does not emphasize this unique advantage of the hotel and that it has not developed an application to guide guests through the halls and corridors, with audio and textual information about the authors and their works.

I dare say that there is no other hotel in Bulgaria with such a rich collection of original works.

See ….

…. In general, the interior style is something like socialistic retro – it is by no means irritating, there is impressiveness in the heavy furniture and large curtains and draperies, but the brown carpet, the dark corridors in the standard wing are a bit depressing. The pale laminate flooring, resembling linoleum, in one of the SPA sections, also did not prepare me for the pleasant procedure that was ahead of me, but rather reminds me of a balneo-sanatorium of the old types, where diseases were cured. The plastic furniture on the balcony in our room, although deluxe, was quite worn our.

…. The deluxe wing is more luxurious – the rooms are large, comfortable, look good, as if recently renovated. The carpet and wallpaper in this wing look better.

If I can make a comparison between the standard and the deluxe wing, I imagine that East and West Berlin looked like this immediately after the wall was destroyed. They are one territory, but one of them somehow looks depressing and very socialist, and the other, the Western looks much better. Of course, there is a difference in the accommodation  prices for the different wings.

…. Be sure to take a walk and look at the paintings and sculptures – I could not take my eyes off them. They are exceptional!

…. Wall clocks and antique cabinets in the common areas, as well as a grand piano – I wish there was a chamber concert with a guest musicians, at least one night;

…. From the restaurant Panorama on the 9th floor a wonderful view of the hills.

Feel ….

…. There is never a second chance for a first impression. Unfortunately, my first impression after a 10-year break from my last visit here was not good;

We stopped in front of the hotel and an employee, a bellboy, walked fast towards us. I thought he was running to help us with our luggage, but he just wanted us to move our car because the boss was going out with his car and we were obstructing it. I keep thinking that when a customer comes, it’s better to take his luggage first, invite him in, and then ask him to make way for the boss, or just ask someone to move his car while the customer goes through the check-in procedure. Here are these obsolete and unacceptable approaches, still living in the Bulgarian hotel industry and it is high time they ended them.

There are hotels that approach to welcoming the customer and registration in a completely different way, just to make a good customer memory and experience at first impression, upon entering. One such example for me is the Saint Ten Hotel in Belgrade. The hotel has no parking in front, but an underground garage. As soon as you arrive, you are greeted by a bellboy, who takes your luggage, and another offers to take your car to the garage. Then you don’t rush to the front desk to rummage for an ID card and wait, but they put you on a sofa in the lobby, offer you to order something refreshing and when you’re ready, the receptionist sits next to you, takes your card details, tells you about the hotel, answers questions, recommends restaurants around, generally plays the role of receptionist and concierge at the same time.

…. The next thing that made a bad impression on me was that the staff hardly wore masks, and the few people who wore them did not cover their mouths and noses or only covered their mouths.

When I watched this year’s MTV Video Awards 2020, Lady Gaga, who took several of them in her speech, urged people to wear masks, even out of respect for others. This is what we customers expect, at least out of respect, the staff to wear masks, because it shows that they care about us.

I’m sure someone will immediately point out here what a great harm the mask does if worn constantly. Well, think about your personal doctor at least, or about the surgeons who do just that – they haven’t got ill merely by wearing masks yet, and they don’t complain about how much they are bothered. And the regulations are to be observed, since their function is to prevent the re-closure of hotels and restaurants. So, wear your masks dear staff, so that we customers come to you.

…. The massage was weak – good products, no effort. More talk instead of focusing on the procedure;

All this led to the loss of 3 hearts.

…. I highly recommend a pedicure with fish Gara on the ground floor. The procedure is not at the hotel’s SPA, but it’s worth it;

…. House keeping comes in every day and changes all towels and bathrobes – total luxury, but unnecessary. Perhaps, however, a rule can be introduced to change only the towels that customers specify by leaving them on the floor.

The beach towels are actually the big towels from the bathroom, which seemed a bit strange to me and maybe that’s why they were changed every day.

Hear ….

…. Absolute silence at night – great relaxation;

…. A loop of elevator music everywhere – at breakfast, in the spa, in the  a la carte restaurant “Panorama”. This part should be improved, especially in the SPA. It is necessary to play more relaxed music, instead of cheerful rhythms, which in no way help for complete relaxation. Asian chill-out music, created especially for spa areas, is very suitable.

Movie watching time: 4:49 min.

Smell ….

…. The cosmetics in the bathroom are based on rose oil, which is wonderful. Also, there is  added toilet milk and it is renewed regularly, every day. I think a little better packaging and information materials about the benefits of rose oil would draw more attention to such a nice detail;

…. In the SPA zones I missed the typical SPA aromas in the air, which in the other SPA-complexes mark the beginning of the zone and seem to separate it from the other common parts.

The aromas in the SPA areas relax the customer and set him up for the pleasant relaxing minutes that follow. In the best places they offer you a healthy drink, and in Asia you are served ginger tea. Read more about what a typical SPA procedure looks like in one of the places in the world where massages are a philosophy, not just a procedure in my post МАСАЖИТЕ НА БАЛИ – РИТУАЛ ЛИ СА ИЛИ ЛЕЧЕНИЕ? 

Taste ….

 …. In general, the kitchens of the main restaurant, which offers the buffet breakfast and dinner,  and the Panorama restaurant, on the roof of the building, are based on traditional, simple things – grill, french fries, oven and stove cooked meals. There are no gourmet performances, but everything is relatively tasty;


…. The breakfast is with relatively good quality products, but nothing special and not as varied as I remember it before. Of course, this shrinkage of the range is largely due to the requirements for measures against Covid-19, as well as the placement of the products behind a plexiglas barrier and their their plating by the staff. However, they could include more traditional things like homemade banitsa or home-made fried buns, instead of semi-finished patties and croissants, which were dry and tasteless.

A woman was arguing at the front desk that there were no pancakes at breakfast and her children were hungry. I don’t think she was right because there were a bunch of other things typically preferred by little guests, like my children. But to her delight, and to ours, there were pancakes the next day. I wondered if this pleasant surprise was due to the quarrels or was already planned on the menu.

I missed the soup, which I remember being at the buffet in the morning 10 years before, but I didn’t make a fuss about it. 🙂

The guests were not required to wear a mask for the buffet in the restaurant, nor to wear gloves. The utensils were made freely available, and if one decides so, one could disinfect the hands, or just simply touch them directly with dirty hands. I do not think that the best measures have been taken to protect against the spread of the virus.

…. Panorama Restaurant has a small menu and offers cooked items during the day. It’s good to bet on the grill – they make it very well, and the french fries are homemade and thin as chips;

…. The pool bar was convenient for drinks, but we didn’t dare to eat at it because the hygiene there bothered me even more. It was full of children in the complex, but ice cream, especially the one preferred by the children, was not supplied and was running out.

My personal opinion is that this hotel has a huge potential, which is not utilized enough. The rooms are spacious and nice, the common areas and spaces too. The view from the balconies is great.

It is possible to focus more on the products based on rose oil, to make a special therapy and to be advertised.

The emphasis could also be on wine. There are 2 large wineries nearby – Chateau Kopsa and Starosel. It would be good to make tastings in the hotel with sommelier, to give the opportunity to buy wine. Wine and painting animation is also an option because the hotel has many halls. Wine therapy can also be advertised in this regard.

Courses in yoga, wellness fasting, Ayurveda for 1-2-3 weeks are also an option, especially for autumn and spring.

Guided walks, and why not bike tours of the city with a visit to the Roman wall, fountains and explanations from a guide about the qualities of the water and the old settlements that were built there for it, would be a very interesting proposal.

Chamber concerts in the lobby bar, with the grand piano and some other string or brass instrument are something else that can delight guests after dinner.

Another thing that can be done is to make a short movie about the hotel. It can tell its story because it dates back a long time. The film may include interviews with the owner, the management, some employees, especially if they have been working there for years, conversations with the people from the SPA, responsible, telling about the healing and aesthetic effect of the treatment procedures. The hotel’s SPA has a device that is available only in a few places in Bulgaria – a hyperbaric chamber. It can also be emphasized.


How to get there?

Don’t worry about getting to Hotel Hissar in Hisarya. Just use the Google map here by clicking on the red pin of its location and then select directions:

бул. Генерал Гурко №1, 4180 Център, Хисаря, България

A: 1, General Gurko blvd. 4180 Center, Hisarya

T: +359 33 762 783

E: hotelhissar@gmail.com

If you need to rent a car, you can book it here in the box of the largest booking platform.


How to book your stay

If you liked the movie about SPA hotel Hissar and you are already planning a stay there I recommend that you book it right hereFor your convenience, I have added a booking.com box, which refers directly to their site. I guarantee you’re going to use all your genius discounts and privileges they would offer to you. Just enter the dates of your trip, then hit the Search button and voila. In addition, booking.com are doing their best to make sure that your expectations as a customer are fulfilled. I’ve described an example about the latter in  my story about our stay in Shangri-La hotel in Singapore .


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