We travelled in a group of 9 girls on a bachelorette to this property.
Within the first 10 minutes of being there, the property's security guard was in one of my friends rooms stealing money from her handbag!
You can imagine our horror and fear, being in a developing country with 9 girls. Naturally we reached out to Richard ( owner) who was apparently in China. He refused to speak with us but sent a feeble apology mail and then disappeared.
The apology mail consisted of him refusing liability for the event as the security guard was outsourced. He claimed to use a new agency to replace him - we have no way of knowing what actually happened considering Richard refuses to be contacted.
We tried to call him and e-mail him but to no avail! To make matters worse, the house 'manager' was not competent enough to help the situation. He was a smiling yes-man who lied for Richard saying that he was cutting short his China trip. Which we know never happened because we haven't spoken to him again.
Being on a bachelorette and not wanting to set the tone for a bad time, we stayed in the property ( on hindsight we should've have) fearfully the entire time.
There are many more properties to choose from - braving this one just isn't worth it!
I came here with a group of 9 girls in November for a 3 day stay. We had seen the property on airbnb and decided to book directly. Bad idea. Within 5 mins of reaching the property in the evening, the security guard who is to patrol the area in front of the property was caught in one of the bedrooms with his hands inside one of the handbags. Luckily he was caught and nothing was taken but what was most troubling was that no one seemed to take it seriously. Sathish the house manager was called and he didn't seem to think it was a serious issue until we raised our voices and asked for the head of the security agency to be called. The security is outsourced to a third party company.
Richard Cotton, the owner of the property lives in Hong Kong and was ever prompt to receive payment or talk about us sending money but when this happened, he didn't call any one of us - he had 4 of our numbers, he instead wrote a email apologising but we didn't hear from him again. We tried to call and text but got no response and even asked to be called in the email response to him. The girl who's bag it was asked to speak to Richard when Sathish called him but Sathish wouldn't give her the phone. We expected a better service in terms of security. One of our groups husbands called and spoke to Sathish who said Richard is flying back to Sri Lanka early because of this. That was a lie because we have still not heard from him.
If the guard hadn't been caught, he would have proceeded to rob us blind the entire trip or worse. He seemed like a seasoned thief who had tried this many times before as this was within 10 mins of us arriving, leaving our bags in the room and coming out to the living room. I wonder if other guests experienced this as well.
We felt very unsafe at the house and tried to enjoy the rest of the trip. It is unfortunate that this had to happen as the place itself is beautiful and the rest of the staff - Lionel and team were alright but we all were extremely surprised by the nonchalance of the Manager Sathish and the Owner Richard Cotton, who still to this day has not contacted us about our experience.
I would definitely not recommend this place to anyone. Do not stay here.
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A group of us girlfriends stayed at Thalpe House recently. It's a beautiful property, well located, with helpful and friendly staff. However, we had a very unpleasant experience on our first night there - the security guard was caught red-handed rummaging through one of our party's bags - in her room! Not half an hour after we'd settled in, my friend stepped out of the room for a second and re-entered only to find that the guard had entered through the other door and was blatantly pilfering the contents of her handbag - he had opened her wallet and passport case. Needless to say, we were appalled - it's an isolated property, and we were a bunch of girls, so for something like that to take place, directly involving our security at that (!) was extremely disconcerting. The facility with which he seized on the slightest of opportunities made us positive that this had happened before.
But almost more disconcerting was the tepid response we subsequently received from the owner. Despite our appeals, we were not permitted to speak to him on the phone, and all we got in the way of acknowledgment/an apology was a perfunctory email, our response to which received no reply.
We found this unacceptable. To begin with, if you own but do not live on the property, please do not outsource your security needs to an agency without a rigid vetting process. Secondly, if something like this still does happen, I would think it not out of place to do everything you can to ensure that your guests feel safe, even if it's no more than picking up the phone. If the necessary changes are made, I would definitely recommend Thalpe House. Until then, I'm afraid it isn't possible to do so.