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Old Cataract

Aswan, Egypt

Situated right on the banks of the River Nile, the Old Cataract is the place to stay in Aswan. With its old colonial charm and fabulous views of the desert and life on the Nile it's the perfect place to stop over before embarking on a cruise up to Luxor.

We don't currently feature Egypt in our portfolio of vacation destinations. Please speak to our travel specialists for alternatives.

At a Glance

  • The Old Cataract boasts the only spa in Aswan

  • The hotel was renovated in 2011, mixing history with a fresh feeling of style and elegance

  • Situated on the banks of the Nile, the hotel has its own jetty to enable boat trips

  • For views of the Nile, opt for the Nile Wing

  • The hotel has a swimming pool

Honeymoon, Adventure, Couples, Culture

Insider's View

If a direct view of the Nile is a must, go for a more contemporary room in the Nile Wing

Scott Dunn team

Insider's View

The historical Palace is more expensive than the Nile Wing, but the price difference is definitely worth it

Alice Moseley

Insider's View

Make sure you pack formal attire if you are planning on eating at the French restaurant

Scott Dunn team

Insider's View

The hotel has had its fair share of influential guests, with Winston Churchill giving his name to a Presidential Suite (the original desk he wrote at is still there)

Alice Moseley


The Old Cataract Hotel is perched atop a shelf of pink granite overlooking the River Nile and on the edge of the Nubian Desert with views over to Elephantine Island. Completed in 1899, this stunning colonial hotel was built in a high Victorian style and originally home for the workers of the famous High Dam and where Agatha Christie wrote her famous novel, ‘Death on the Nile’. The Old Cataract is decorated in a Moorish style combining French elegance and Egyptian heritage, designed by Sybille de Margerie. The historic palace houses nearly half of the rooms and suites, many with stunning views and private terraces overlooking the Nile. The hotel is designed with sophisticated interiors with rich and colorful materials, Islamic arches and antique hand carved furnishings. For those seeking a more bright contemporary design of room enjoy a stay in the Nile Wing which has spectacular views of the River and the Palace itself.

The Old Cataract has four restaurants and two bars to choose from. Hexagonal in shape and impressive, ‘1902’, the hotel's signature restaurant offering exquisite French cuisine paired with fine wines. Others include dining on the Terrace, Saraya the all day dining restaurant or Kebabgy blending local flavors with rich Levant cuisine. Whilst enjoying the beautiful sunsets over Elephantine Island celebrate with a whisky or wine at The Bar, a Sir Winston Churchill favorite or sip a refreshing cocktail under the warm Egyptian skies on the Promenade or at Yasmine whilst watching the Felucca's sail up the river.

With the Old Cataract boasting the only Spa in Aswan, it is a perfect way to relax and revitalize. Whether that be in the hammam, Jacuzzi or indoor heated swimming pool, the options are endless. Even indulge in one of the spa's signature treatments with products by Cinq Mondes. The hotel also has a fully equipped fitness center, with a cross trainer, treadmills and weights, a perfect way to kick start a busy day.

The Old Cataract also has a heated swimming pool, billiards table, table-tennis and can arrange Felucca rides up the river, boarding steps away from the hotel on the private jetty.


The Old Cataract features 100 suites and 138 rooms divided between the Palace and the Nile Wing. For a more lavish stay, enjoy the gold scarlet grandeur of the Palace in one of the Legend Rooms or Suites. Rooms within the palace start from 45m2 elegantly decorated with warmly painted walls, high ceilings and soothing colors. Suites are incredibly spacious starting from 64m2 and stretching to 138sqm if staying in the Sir Winston Churchill suite or even 175m2 in the Agatha Christie suite.

For a more contemporary design the Nile wing offers a colorful and opulent luxury ranging from 36m2 to 67m2 featuring fashionable elegant furnishings.

Luxury Room Nile Wing

62m2. Stunning master piece of art elegantly decorated with warmly painted walls, high ceiling, balcony, tropical garden view. Sofitel My Bed, LCD TV, marble bathroom, shower&bathtub, French amenities,

Palace Luxury Room

Reflects the sense of the history with its classic furnishings, high ceiling and soothing color, Sofitel My Bed, LCD TV, marble bathroom, shower, bathtub, French luxury amenities.


Children are welcome to come and stay at the Old Cataract. The hotel features a kids club for the younger guests during the day as well as offering babysitting services during the day and evening.


The hotel offers a selection of restaurants and bars offering a selection of cuisines. Local specialties in addition to fine dining in the signature French restaurant. There are also four bars to enjoy, whether it be by the poolside or at the piano bar.

The Old Cataract has a beautiful spa to enjoy offering a range of beauty treatments, hammam and a fitness center.


The hotel has a wonderful outdoor swimming pool to enjoy, along with an indoor spa pool. Guests can take a felucca ride right from the hotel jetty and if they would like to visit the sites in and around Aswan namely Philae Temple, the Great Dam etc. a guide can be arranged by our Egypt Specialists.

Location & Directions

Aswan, Egypt

The Old Cataract Hotel is perched atop a shelf of pink granite overlooking the River Nile and on the edge of the Nubian Desert with views over to Elephantine Island.

When to go

Egypt enjoys a mild climate, making it a good year round destination. However, temperatures increase as you travel due south. Cairo can be chilly between December and February, and very hot between June and September. But the heat in Egypt is made bearable by the northerly breeze that leads to a drop in temperature at night. Peak temperatures in Upper Egypt occur between May and October, and are accompanied by extremely low humidity. The best time to visit Cairo is in the cooler months between November and March

Cairo has long-standing populations of major religious groups and past colonial powers, so it’s possible to find celebrations for most every major vacation. Islam, however, is the prevailing force here, and the month of Ramadan is one of the most pronounced Islamic vacations. It happens in July or August, and during this time, some shops and restaurants may stay closed during the daytime fast.

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Call us on 858 523 9000 to start planning your vacation to Old Cataract or take a look at our itineraries to Aswan

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