I drove to Salem from Chennai for the new year eve. The hotel, which was originally an old film studio, did look a little disappointing from the outside. But once we were in, the environment was totally different. the staff are very friendly. We travelled with two kids and the staff were helpful in getting nicely smashed rice and veg for them. The rooms and toilets are clean. The verandah is great place if you wish to soak in a book after a swim...overall a nice place to stay.