The venerable Old Cataract's story began in 1899, in the heart of sparkling Aswan, its very name taken from the marriage of the river and the granite wall that forms the first cataract of the Nile. More than a hotel, Sofitel Legend Old Cataract Aswan is a destination unto itself.
The Old Cataract is owned by EGOTH a subsidiary company of the Holding Company for Tourism, Hotels and Cinema, and the hotel is owned 100% by the Egyptian Government.
Sofitel entrusted French interior designer Sybille de Margerie with the task of bringing the luxury of the myth into life once again while conserving the original beauty of the Victorian building; a true challenge, given the weight of history that every wall bears and the rich memories of the legendary visitors who once crossed its threshold.
The soul and splendor of the place are preserved, the architecture updated for a decidedly contemporary face – Sybille de Margerie has risen to the challenge by bringing together Victorian, Oriental and French styles.
From its rose granite plateau rising above the sacred river, the Sofitel Legend Old Cataract Aswan offers its guests two different experiences in the hotel's rooms and suites*. The historic charm of The Palace pervades its 76 accommodations, including 45 suites. The two biggest ones are Agatha Christie and Sir Winston Churchill, with its magnificent and private terrace. Several other famous faces have stayed here, movie stars, heads of state and crowned heads, writers, politicians… Once a legend always a legend, and here that has held true through the extravagant transformation that managed to preserve the site's heritage in such touches as the Byzantine-style striped arches of the main lobby.
The contemporary elegance of The Nile wing, (nine stories) counts 62 accommodation facilities, 37 of which are suites, all with a terrace overlooking the famous river and the Aga Khan Mausoleum and above all, a tremendous view on the Palace. The friezes and chandeliers from the historic wing are reproduced here, inextricably linking the two buildings. Particular attention was paid to the bathrooms; some rooms even offer guests the luxury of taking a bath while gazing out over the Nile.
Emblematic spa and hammam created
The Sofitel Legend Old Cataract Aswan unveils a brand new 1200mÂ² So SPA that is a temple of well-being with 8 treatment booths, 3-room hammam and indoor pool. Impressive views, and elegant, original décor along with French cosmetic expertise from Cinq Mondes makes this So Spa space one of the finest new additions to the hotel.
So Spa treatments are an original well-being concept from Sofitel that draw inspiration from gastronomical French cuisine, another of Sofitel's areas of expertise. The Starters, lasting 30 minutes, are aimed at active young urban dwellers seeking a moment's rest after a full day. The Main Dishes and Desserts last an hour and include full massages, facial care, hot rock massages and other luxuries that will nourish your body and soul.
A veritable French icon of fashion and cinema, Marisa Berenson has created a beauty ritual just for Sofitel that includes her secret to beauty and youth – Soin Sublime with precious prickly pear oil. A unique beauty ceremony, made truly stunning by the use of gold and crystal accessories from the maison Saint-Louis.
Legendary 1902 Gourmet Restaurant
Sofitel Legend Old Cataract now boasts a choice of four restaurants, including the legendary 1902, made famous by its Qualaun crypt, 20-meter high ceiling and décor worthy of the Thousand and One Nights. A true experience to have diner in this breathtaking outlet, where as it was in old time, there is still a dress code to get in. Wooden floor, beautiful lights and chandeliers, delicate and elegant table settings offer to the guests an unforgettable moment…
In addition, guests can enjoy the Oriental Kebabgy and its superb terrace overlooking the Nile, newly created. Palms, near the pool, propose light snacks throughout the day. Lastly, a gem of the renewed hotel, a new restaurant was created, Saraya, for an exceptional moment over breakfast or dinner, inside the superb décor or outside with a breathtaking view of the eternal Nile.
As if it were still the Belle Epoque, four bars provide four different experiences and many more unforgettable moments, beginning in Terrace, with its famous “King Fouad's Corner”. Promenade on the rose granite walkway offers a first-class view of Elephantine Island, making it THE place in Aswan to meet for a cocktail or a traditional tea. In the lobby, THE BAR has all the magic of a piano bar amidst the elegance of Middle Eastern décor. The Yasmin overlooks the pool and gardens.
*Now the Sofitel Legend Old Cataract Aswan offers 138 rooms, including 82 suites, versus 275 rooms including 45 suites, before renovation.
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