Malta – travel tips

By 18 February 2015Poker Travel

Malta is not only the place where lot of Poker tournaments take place, it is the place where I live for the most part of the year.
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Malta is a “friendly” location for the Poker players. In a small isle you can find all kinds of comforts: two casinos, many restaurants and wonderful beach and resorts. Besides being a wonderful place, Malta is also a cheap island, especially if you will follow some of the advices I am going to give you by this blog post.

Hotel

The tournaments usually take place in the Portomaso casino (A) in St.Julians, that is considered the most beautiful and modern casino in Malta. The nearest and best hotels are no doubt the Hilton Hotel, 50m (B) and the The George, 350m (C).

mapThese are two of the most beautiful hotels of the isle and usually the most expensive ones. In Malta there are a lot of cheaper options, but I absolutely suggest you to book one of these two hotels because they are the best in Malta from the quality/price ratio point of view and you will be right near the Portomaso casino.

I also have to give you some advice about the internet connection inside the hotels. In both the hotels the internet connection is free in the common areas, but you have to pay to use it in the rooms. If you need the internet connection in the room I suggest to download Connectify. This is a free program that makes your laptop become a real modem. This way you can pay for one connection that may be also used by the person you share the room with. You can also use it for your smartphone or tablet, without paying for other connections.

Another advice is that of not consuming the drinks and the snacks from the room’s mini-bar because they are very expensive. Next to the casino and hard by the two hotels there is the Arkadia supermarket where you can buy everything you might need and save money.

Taxi and transfers

Malta is well connected. As it is a small isle, there is not a subway as, for example, in London, but there is an excellent taxi service. As often happens almost everywhere, mind the frauds! Absolutely avoid the white taxis, I mean the ones you will find just out the hotels, because they will make you pay twice or trice the normal price, as they see you are not from Malta.

If you need a taxi, always get an Ecabs. The ride from the airport to St.Julians costs €19 and you can book it wherever you are in three different ways:
• Calling the: 00356 21 38 38 38
• From the website: http://ecabs.com.mt/
• From the app for smartphone on the Apple Store and Android
This is a high quality service. The brand new taxis are always punctual and you can check the flat rates on their website. With them you will never have unwanted surprises and the prices are the cheapest of the island.

Restaurants

In St.Julian there is plenty of restaurants. I am going to give you some advice about the restaurants, considering the economic aspect and not only. I suggest you to give a look at the Tripadvisor website, where are reviewed all the restaurants, included those in Malta.

Some of the restaurants I suggest are:

  • Meet Argentinian Steak House. An Argentinian restaurant in Spinola Bay where you can find delicious steaks. Excellent quality/price ratio.
  • I Monelli. In Paceville the prices are slightly higher than in other zones, but it is the ideal place if you can’t do without Italian food in Malta. One of the best restaurants of the island.
  • Cafè Portomaso. Next to the casino, it is an excellent place to have snack lunches or to relax in a luxury location.
  • McDonald.  clote to the casino there is a McDonald.
  • The Avenue. In Paceville, near the The George hotel. It probably is the best restaurant in Malta in terms of quality/price ratio. It is not a Michelin restaurant but it is the ideal place if you want to eat well and save money.
  • Club Sushi from Tokio to Seoul. In Paceville, behind the The George. For the Japanese food lovers, this is the best Japanese restaurant in St.Julian and perhaps in Malta. The prices are not so high compared to the food quality.
  • Brasserie Portomaso. It is inside the casino. Excellent bar-restaurant for a quick meal. You can have a good and cheap snack menu getting the Burgers (€6uros), the Salads (€6) and the Sandwiches (€5).

You can see the map to reach these restaurants on Google Map.
16475_938974026135267_1707768402524955494_nActivities

Malta is one of the most beautiful tourist places in Europe. I absolutely suggest you to organize a tour. One day will be enough to visit the most important attractions.
I suggest you to get a travel guide of the Isle, to book a taxi and visit the places that most interest you. Go on Google and do a research to know what to visit on the island. There are a lot of agencies too, that offer touristic excursions. This option might also be a good idea.

I will principally put my attention on St.Julian, that is the zone you will stay in:

  • Hilton’s Pool. It might seem weird, but the weather in Malta often allows staying at the poolside even on March and the Hilton’s pool is very beautiful. If you stay at the Hilton go for a swim, it is free!
  • Hilton’s SPA, if “unluckily” the weather won’t let you use the outdoor pool, you can visit the indoor Hilton’s SPA. The entry is free for all the hotlel’s guests.
  • Club TwentyTwo. It is at the 22th floor of the Portomaso Tower, the highest skyscraper in Malta (next to the casino). Here you can have a drink and enjoy a wonderful sight of the isle through the glass walls.
  • Portomaso Marina. There is a wonderful small port next to the Hilton hotel where you can go for a walk and see the boats and yachts moored there. Or you can sit in one of the restaurants and enjoy the magical atmosphere of Portomaso.
  • Paceville is probably one of the craziest streets in the world, with plenty of bars and free entry discos opened all the year. The only defect is the low median age, but you’ll however have fun!
  • Promenade from St.Julian to Sliema. Going toward Spinola Bay it begins the promenade that reaches Silema (about 2-3km). To go through it on foot, by bike or with the rollerblades will be a relaxing moment for your sight!
  • Paceville Beach. This is a small beach in the Paceville zone. It is not so big, but it is the ideal location if you want to relax enjoying the seaside!

If you won’t be lucky, you will however enjoy your stay!

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