The World of Wonders Bodrum Resort, or WOW, is one of the most popular all inclusive resorts in the Bodrum region. Part of a chain that boasts properties in other Turkish cities, WOW is one of the largest resorts of its kind. Spread over 38,000m² the hotel provides a very family oriented product accompanied by the standard services you would expect to find. Due to the sheer size of the resort however, it is like a village in its own right, and therefore risks feeling impersonal.
Located on the western side of the bay of Gumbet, WOW Resort Bodrum is in Gumbet, 2.5 miles from Bodrum town centre and 22 miles from the Milas-Bodrum international airport.
There is free WIFI connection in the hotel lobby and pool bar area. Many of the services are free as part of the all inclusive concept but there are also many that incur extra fees to be sure to check beforehand!
A guarded driveway leads to a huge, almost overwhelming reception area at WOW Bodrum. The lobby, constantly abuzz with activity, is large and well-lit thanks to the huge windows that overlook the water. To one side, reception, and to the other a large lobby bar that opens out on to a huge terrace also with water views. Descending the stairs takes you to the huge main restaurant and its outdoor terrace where buffet meals are served. The hotel boasts a large and well equipped fitness area as well as a Turkish bath, health and beauty salon, doctor, photography service, mini market and game centre with free internet. Other information regarding daily activities is communicated on posters all around the resort.
The huge lagoon-style pool is often busy, and there's even a DJ to play tunes while you sunbathe. Should you prefer to be more active, daily activities include aqua gym, beach volleyball, darts, water polo, dance lessons and aerobics. There is also a large amphitheatre with shows and live music, plus an indoor disco. There are two different mini clubs, two waterslides by the beach and a mini disco for kids so the children are well catered for. Between several pools, seven bars and five restaurants there is lots to keep you occupied, whatever your needs.
The many facilities and services are there for a reason; at full capacity the WOW Bodrum welcomes over 1000 guests. There are 496 rooms (standard and family) in total, housed in 43 double story buildings throughout the impeccable, landscaped resort grounds with neat paths and pretty gardens. For such a prime, lofty location, only a third of the rooms claim sea views.
The standard rooms are a bit small at 23m² with a maximum occupancy of up to the three guests. Unfortunately the rooms do not truly reflect the hotel's '5 star' rating; the unattractive bright blue carpet looks a bit worse for wear, as does the clashing hot pink floral bedspread. The rooms contain a large desk and flat screen TV plus a balcony with plastic outdoor dining setting. The mini bar is included and restocked every day. The music from the main pool area can be heard in some of the rooms which might be inconvenient for some. Overall, while the rooms are clean and comfortable, their dated décor and slightly bedraggled condition is a letdown.
The main restaurant is airy and spacious with high ceilings, several wooden buffet stations in its centre and local tile decoration. Outdoor seating is available on its large shaded terrace overlooking the main pool. Food is available here almost 24 hours a day by way of its different buffet services; besides breakfast, lunch and dinner there is also a midnight snack service and a late snack service until 5:00am. At main mealtimes there is also a baby corner, diet corner and vegetarian corner.
There are four additional restaurants at WOW Bodrum. The Italian, Mediterranean and Turkish à la carte restaurants are free of charge once per one week stay while the Mangal Park restaurant, which is open from June to October only, incurs a charge. Various sweet and savoury snacks are served throughout the day at various bars, such as the afternoon tea service at the pool bar. Otherwise, guests have the option to pay extra for a DIY BBQ on the beach.
The private beach at WOW Bodrum is definitely one of the better ones in the bay of Gumbet. With 200m of (light brown, not golden) sand, there is lots of room for guests to lounge about in deck chairs or sun loungers. These are provided free or charge, as are the towels, parasols and hammocks. There are three decks, one which is used for guests who wish for more privacy - for 20 euros (£17) for the day guests have the use of a private pavilion with dedicated waiter service. At one end of the beach is the aqua park, while the motorised water sports require extra payment.