How I saved 3,627QR in a month using Entertainer vouchers 

I first came across The Entertainer many years ago when I was visiting a friend in Australia. We had an incredible meal at a restaurant overlooking the Yarra River in Melbourne and I couldn’t believe it was 241. No gimmicks, no catches just simply buy one get one free. When we moved to Qatar in 2014 people advised us to buy one and, because of the savings you can make, we’ve bought one each year since. This year for convenience I bought the app (295QR) as it includes hotel stays and monthly offers. Out of interest I thought I’d keep a record of how much we saved in a month especially as we spent our Spring Break in Qatar and we had a variety of things planned – here are the results.

FOOD 

Date: 5th April

Location: Astor Grill, St Regis

Offer: Buy one get one free on any main course / grill item

Saving: 135QR – We ordered 1 tenderlion steak and 1 wagyu burger, the burger was free.

Restrictions: I was told the Entertainer can not be used on sharing platters.

Date: 9th April

Location: Quickbites, Marriott Marquis

Offer: Buy one get one free on any menu item

Saving: 45QR – We ordered 1 ‘full monty’ breakfast and sweet corn fritters. The sweetcorn fritters were free

Restrictions: I was told the Entertainer can only be used on menu items, not takeaway.

Date: 9thApril

Location: Gymkhana, Souk Wakif

Offer: Buy one get one free on any main course

Saving: 57QR – We ordered 1 appetiser, 2 mains, rice and naan bread. The butter chicken was free.

Restrictions: I was told the Entertainer can only be used on main courses

Date: 13th April

Location: Belgian Cafe, Intercontinental Hotel

Offer: Buy one get one free on any main course

Saving: 80QR – We ordered 1 duck parmentier and 1 chicken vol au vent, the vol au vent was free

Restrictions: Non

Date: 16th April

Location: Astor Grill, St Regis

Offer: Buy one get one free on the 3 course supper menu

Saving: 225QR – We ordered the 3 course supper menu each and paid for one.

Restrictions: At the moment this is only on offer during April

Date: 17th April

Location: Opal, St Regis

Offer: Buy one get one free on any main course

Saving: 95QR – We ordered 1 fish and chips and 1 pizza, the pizza was free

Restrictions: I was told the Entertainer can be used on main courses, burgers and pizza

Date: 18th April

Location: Vine, St Regis

Offer: Buy one get one free on the buffet

Saving: 150QR – We had 2 breakfast buffets and paid for 1

Restrictions: Can not be used on Friday brunch

Date: 20th April

Location: Santa Monica Breakfast Club, Grand Hyatt

Offer: Buy one get one free on any main course

Saving: 61QR – We ordered 1 beef brisket and 1 burger, the beef brisket was free

Restrictions: I was told the Entertainer can be used on any item.

Date: 27th April

Location: Belgian Cafe, Intercontinental Hotel

Offer: Buy one get one free on any main course

Saving: 105QR  – We ordered 1 baby chicken 1 rib eye steak. The chicken was free

Restrictions: Non

Date: 5th May

Location: Santa Monica Breakfast Club, Grand Hyatt

Offer: Buy one get one free on any main course

Saving: 57QR – We ordered 1 Highlander and 1 Santa Mexicana. The Santa Mexicana was free.

Restrictions: I was told the Entertainer can be used on any item.

Date: 6th May

Location: Santa Monica Breakfast Club, Grand Hyatt

Offer: Buy one get one free on any main course

Saving: 62QR – We ordered 1 poached eggs with salmon and 1 Shakshouka. The poached egg with salmon was free.

Restrictions: I was told the Entertainer can be used on any item.


LEISURE

Date: 9th April

Location: Marriott Marquis

Offer: Buy one pool pass, get one free

Saving: 180QR I paid for a pool pass and was given a receipt to get a free pass another day.

Restrictions: N/A


Date: 11th April

Location: Marriott Marquis

Offer: Buy one spa treatment get one free

Saving: 300QR I paid for my 1hr massage and Greg got his free.

Restrictions: N/A

Date: 20th April

Location: Doha Golf Club

Offer: Buy one golf lesson get one free

Saving: 300QR I paid for my lesson and Greg got his free.

Restrictions: N/A

HOTEL

DATE: 16-18th April

Location: St Regis., Doha

Offer: One night free for each night paid

Saving: 1175QR we booked one night in a grand deluxe room and got the second night free

Restrictions: You have to book direct with the hotel and can only be used on ‘room only’ basis.

DATE: 4th-6th May

Location: Grand Hyatt, Doha

Offer: One night free for each night paid

Saving: 600QR – we booked one night in a grand king room and got the second night free

Restrictions: You have to book direct with the hotel and can only be used on ‘room only’ basis.

As you can see over the month we made quite a saving. The offer on the hotels is good; especially if the food outlets in the hotel accept vouchers as in the case of the St Regis and the Grand Hyatt. For us it was definitely worth the initial outlay of 295QR. I think even if you aren’t planning on a hotel stay it is still worth buying because even if you go to brunch or, for example, use the supper club voucher at the Astor Grill you have almost broke even. I do find there are quite a few vouchers I don’t use, we don’t really drink coffee or eat ice cream, nor will we use the children’s entertainment vouchers, but we do use the vet ones. And of course, you can ping vouchers to people, or if you buy the book you can swap. Overall, for us it was a good buy.

St Regis, Doha

We’ve been to the restaurants and bars in the St Regis so many times but we’ve never actually stayed there so when we were looking at a Doha staycation it was at the top of our list. Booking was easy, I emailed the hotel directly as we were using an Entertainer voucher and they responded within a couple of hours giving me the rate options and that evening we called into the hotel to book the room.


We arrived about 11.30am as we intended to use the beach and pool if our room wasn’t ready. Check in was fairly quick but I didn’t find it particularly warm or friendly, I thought we’d be offered a drink or a cold towel which is common in the region but this wasn’t the case. We were given the choice of a room on a lower or upper floor and we chose the latter. As expected, our room wasn’t ready because it was quite early but they said they’d call us when it was. In the meantime we made use of the beach and pool. We chose a fabulous double sunbed on the beach as the pool was very busy and we were provided with towels, water and an ice bucket. The beach was fairly clean and the sea was clear for the first meter or so after which it turned to clay which is common for some of the beaches in West Bay. We ordered lunch from Oyster Bay – this is the pool bar and, as food can’t be served on the beach, a table was set up for us by the pool. The chicken Caesar salad and lamb kofta were really tasty and reasonable priced, in fact we ordered lunch from here both days. I did feel that the level of service on the beach wasn’t as visible as by the pool so if you like staff on hand you may want to stay by the pool area.



Later in the afternoon we received a call to say our deluxe room with a lovely sea view was ready. It was quite spacious with a small sofa and desk area, lots of storage space – dressing gowns and slippers were provided. We received a note from the butler service and complimentary fruit and water. The bathroom was well-appointed with a rainfall shower, bathtub with TV and good quality Laboratoire Remede products. The bed is one of the most comfortable I’ve ever slept in! On arrival our lights weren’t working and an engineer quickly came to fix them. We also asked for fresh milk and English breakfast tea (a bit of an obsession of mine) which was brought promptly.

 

We decided to eat at the Astor Grill for dinner on the first night, a restaurant we’ve been to several times lately and which I feel has improved significantly over the last year or so. We opted for the 3 course supper menu priced at 225QR each which we felt was very good value for money. The food, service and atmosphere were spot on, we both highly recommend the seafood bisque with a south East Asian twist! We were able to use an Entertainer voucher with our meal.


The next morning we slept late and woke up to this fantastic view. Other reviews have mentioned noise from the nightclub, but we didn’t hear a thing. Maybe it was because it was a Sunday night?


We decided to spend the day by the pool as it was very quiet and the weather was perfect. We chose a cabana and another double sun bed, we enjoyed lourselves lounging around and swimming in the fantastic pool.

 

We ordered lunch from Oyster Bay again, the lamb kofta and Cajun prawns with nachos were delicious. We were kept hydrated by complimentary bottles of ice-cold water, which were brought to us by the staff.

Late in the afternoon we went back to our room to change for dinner. We noticed that our toiletries hadn’t been replenished so we rung housekeeping and supplies arrived, we were soon ready to head to Opal. This restaurant has a lovely view from the terrace and the weather was perfect to sit outside. There was a BBQ offering a burger / hotdog, fries and a drink meal deal priced at 100QR but we chose from the a la carte menu. The prices here are indicative of the fact your dining in a 5* hotel but we were able to use an Entertainer voucher on the main course. The food was good, especially the ribs and pizza. After a couple of drinks we were shattered; it’s hard work being on holiday!


The next morning we decided to have breakfast before we packed. It was our first visit to Vine, the all day dining outlet. We chose to sit inside although they have a very nice outside terrace. The service was good and there was a calm, relaxing atmosphere but we felt the buffet was nothing out of the ordinary. I think for a 5* hotel I expected some a la carte options in addition to the buffet. There was a selection of pastries, cereal, fruit, western hot dishes, Arabic hot dishes and an egg station. The fresh omelets were nice and, although slightly unusual for breakfast, I loved the sticky toffee pudding! Again, we were able to use an Entertainer voucher so breakfast was 241.


We went back to our room, packed and checked out at 11am, again the front desk staff were efficient. We were asked if we’d enjoyed our stay and they checked all our SPG points had been added to our account, which they had.


We paid 1170QR for a two night stay on a ‘room only’ basis as we used a 241 Entertainer voucher; all our food and drinks were extra. We were able to use our Entertainer voucher when dining at the Astor Grill, Opal and Vine which significantly reduced our bill. The St Regis is part of the SPG scheme so you can gain points on your stay and when you dine in the restaurants, although we couldn’t get the 10% discount as we were already using an Entertainer.

Would I go again? Yes, we enjoyed our stay at the St Regis. The room was very comfortable with a lovely view, the food was good and it was a relaxing stay. There were a couple of issues with our room namely toiletries not being replaced, no turn down service on the second night and the lights not working properly but they were addressed. I also felt that the staff could be warmer, they are polite and helpful but it felt a little forced (other than the manager in the Astor Grill who is personable). If you’re already in Doha and looking for a staycation it did feel like an escape from city life. If you’re visiting Doha it’s about a 35min ride from the airport and very close to Katara and West Bay. The Pearl, Souk Wakif and the malls are about a 15min drive in light traffic.