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“Beautiful heritage hotel in a great location” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Old Harbour Hotel

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Old Harbour Hotel
3.5 of 5 Hotel   |   1/328 Tower Road Fort Cochin India | Fort Cochin, Kochi (Cochin) 682001, India   |  
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Ranked #1 of 171 Hotels in Kochi (Cochin)
Rome, Italy
Top Contributor
80 reviews 80 reviews
79 hotel reviews
Reviews in 72 cities Reviews in 72 cities
65 helpful votes 65 helpful votes
“Beautiful heritage hotel in a great location”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 6, 2012

We started our stay at the hotel with some misunderstanding about which room had been booked, but that turned out to be due to our travel agency and not due to the hotel. The hotel managed and solved this very satisfactorily, so we ended up having a great stay in this beautiful hotel even though it was in a different room than what we had expected.

Our room was one of the garden rooms on the 1st floor with a very nice view of the garden. The whole hotel, including the room, is simply beautifully decorated while keeping the heritage character intact. Perfect!

Service, food and amenities were all very good, making this an unforgettable stay. Seafood dinner was excellent!

We will want to stay here again when we return to Cochin.

Room Tip: Choose a room facing the garden if you want wifi signal in your room. Consider booking early as t...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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903 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (183)
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English first
Cheltenham, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
51 reviews 51 reviews
34 hotel reviews
Reviews in 31 cities Reviews in 31 cities
57 helpful votes 57 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 3, 2012

India is without doubt a unique experience. It takes some adjusting to for most European travelers and there is no doubt that the Old Harbour Hotel helps with the adjustment. Behind the walls lies an oasis of tranquility, a very good restaurant, a lovely garden and a superb swimming pool. The bedrooms are adequate and the beds uncomfortably low and hard. The owner has selected his staff well. Chef Rahim turns his hand to most culinary challenges with great enthusiasm and varying degrees of success, front of house managers Jude and Venita are both very welcoming and speak excellent English and the waiters are to a man, genuinely friendly and professional. The Old Harbour Hotel is undoubtedly one of the best hotels in the Fort Cochin area (Brunton's Boatyard is also looks to be well worth considering) but the owner knows it and charges accordingly. The room rate will make your eyes water and you have to try quite hard to ignore the fact that one night here is the equivalent of two weeks wages for most of the hotel staff. And they don't mind charging you for the day trips either. You can certainly get cheaper deals by using local tourist information centres for trips to Kodanad for the elephant bathing (don't bother), Munar for the tea plantation experience (go but don't stay over) and Allepy for the Kerala backwaters (wonderful contrast to the dirt and heat of the towns but book separately and make sure to hire a new and classy house boat if you are even thinking about staying on the water overnight, the one that Old Harbour booked for us was second class to say the least). The hotel will add a hefty chunk (as much as 50%) to the price and the experience I would warrant is pretty much the same with the exception of Josey the hotel driver who is friendly, careful and knowledgeable. On the whole the hotel lived up to its billing although I have to say I have stayed in far better 'Small Hotels of the World' of which the Old Harbour lays claim to membership. Then again it is India we are talking about and as I said it does take some adjusting to for some of us European travelers.

Room Tip: Book a room in the main hotel they are all large and airy. The garden bugalows are not worth the upg...
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Encinitas, California
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 26, 2012

My recent stay at the Old Harbour Hotel was like heaven. My friend and I had been traveling all over India, in many homes, hotels and different situations. It was like arriving to an oasis. It is peaceful, quiet, done in impeccable taste and style. At night, upon returning to our room, there were jasmine flowers on our bed with their wonderful fragrance. Beautiful artwork on the walls in rooms, hallways and entry areas. The staff is very friendly, open and helpful. One can tell they are happy to work there. Dinner was a fabulous experience- tables out on the lawn overlooking the pool and classical Indian musicians playing to serenade us. There were lights in the trees to add to that magical feeling. The food was great and we had no desire to go anywhere else for dinner. I would definitely go back to this hotel!

Room Tip: We were in a simple room upstairs. I am sure any would be great.
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bolton, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 26, 2012

An absolute gem of a place and a wonderful finish to an extended tour of India. The Old Harbour has managed the perfect blend of small-scale intimacy with the kind of attentive yet never intrusive service normally only seen in top-end luxury mega hotels. Perfectly placed by the Chinese fishing nets just a step outside the front door, but insulated from the hustle and bustle outside. The outdoor dining area must be one of the best settings in Kochi and the meals cooked by Shafi are a delight, accompanied by live sitar and tabla music floating across the pool.
The hotel itself has been designed to incorporate the best of the old world, where there are no jarring notes or any feeling of anything out of place. But don't be fooled by the apparent antiquity of the fittings: everything works perfectly. Attention by Rahim and the rest of the staff is second to none, even for 5 AM departures.

Room Tip: Some internal rooms overlook the pool; some ground floor rooms windows face onto the street, but sou...
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Paris, France
Top Contributor
52 reviews 52 reviews
31 hotel reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 24, 2012

My husband and I spent last weekend in Fort Cochin and stayed at the Old Harbour Hotel--- we LOVED our experience.
The location is perfect: it is a couple of minutes walk from the fishing nets and Fort Cochin in itself is charming with small streets and shops. It is walking (a slightly long walk) from the synagogue and palace.
We had booked a garden view room and were on the ground floor towards the back. From the moment we stepped into our room, we felt relaxed and on vacation. The room itself was really nicely done up with a lovely view of the garden. Since our room was towards the back of the hotel, it was also very quiet.
The hotel itself is very charming. They have a wonderful garden where one can have their lunch and dinner. The swimming pool is big (especially for a boutique hotel)-- so one can lounge around the pool and even do laps if one feels like it. Apart from breakfast, we also had a lunch and dinner at the hotel and really enjoyed both meals- the food was excellent. The chef personally does his rounds to ensure all the guests are enjoying their meal.
What sets the hotel apart from some of the other boutique hotels is the service. The staff were always smiling and despite being fully occupied, each staff member went out of their way to make us feel special. They were extremely accommodating and friendly.
We would def. go back to the hotel and have already recommended it to some of our friends.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ottawa, Canada
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 24, 2012

The positive reviews are correct. This is a wonderful hotel. The staff are helpful and caring. The hotel is beautiful-a wonderful conversion/renovation. The rooms are well appointed. Many of the ground floor rooms look onto a courtyard, so do keep this in mind.
If you can, book one of the suites on the second floor. They are truly spectacular, and worth every penny. The Princess Suite is, indeed, fit for a princess. But, you will be comfortable in any of the rooms.
The restaurant offers a great breakfast, and the servers really do care if you are enjoying your food.
I also appreciated their approach to tipping-individual tipping is discouraged, rather there is a box in the central area (there really is no lobby, per se-this works very well) where you can leave a group tip on departure.
I would love to return to Cochi, and would not consider staying anywhere else.

Room Tip: Book a suite, if you can
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Manila, Philippines
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 24, 2012

The Old Harbour Hotel in Cochin, Kerala, is a wonderful place, home away from home, to spend a couple of days. You sleep like a baby in wonderful surroundings (we had the Palace Suite). Pool is surrounded by lovely tropical plants and flowers. Restaurant is excellent and Chef's fresh fruit juices and especially his chocolate ice cream were fantastic!
Service and friendliness of staff was outstanding: everything came with a smile!
Old Harbour Hotel tops now our 'favorite hotels' list.
If you do visit, make sure you spend a night on a house boat in backwaters! Worth absolutely the short trip.
PS. Kids might find it a bit quiet..

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Old Harbour Hotel

Address: 1/328 Tower Road Fort Cochin India | Fort Cochin, Kochi (Cochin) 682001, India
Phone Number:
Location: India > Kerala > Kochi (Cochin)
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Family Hotel in Kochi (Cochin)
#1 Romantic Hotel in Kochi (Cochin)
#8 Business Hotel in Kochi (Cochin)
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Old Harbour Hotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 13
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
At the heart of ancient Fort Cochin, Kerala, a place that exudes history and culture, is the 'Old Harbour Hotel'. A 300 year- old building that has for long been a heritage monument of this town, now reopened as a boutique hotel. Built in the Dutch style of architecture with hints of Portuguese influences, it was the first hotel of old Cochin. Later it remained a residential home to employees of English Tea broking firms until it was left unused for a period of time. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Old Harbour Kochi
Hotel Old Harbour
Old Harbour Hotel Kochi (Cochin), India - Kerala

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