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“A little paradise”

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Niraamaya Retreats Surya Samudra
Ranked #1 of 52 Hotels in Kovalam
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed December 31, 2012

I just spent this Christmas week in this Niraamaya resort together with my wife and two young children. I believe this quiet Hotel was fully booked (Families with very young children, and couples, most I would say western/northern Europeans) but it never felt crowded at all.
The resort is very beautiful in a secluded location on a cliff with direct access to two almost private beaches. We stayed in a garden view bungalow (The Palm) near the Spa and really enjoyed watching our kids feed the birds in our terrace. The semi-open Bathroom layout is unique and fantastic.
The Restaurant: Loved the food. As it was our first time in India and we were only staying one week we did not want to take any chances of getting sick, so we decided to play safe and have all our meals in the two restaurants. My only regret today was not to have tried all the dishes. Besides the great Indian food in the main restaurant, really enjoyed the Kerala buffet and the Thai specialties at the Essence restaurant. Compliments to the Chef and all his team for the excellent job. It was a real pleasure. Some guests might feel that to wait half an hour + for a meal is too long, I say if that is the time it takes to cook a perfect meal, so be it… In the meanwhile you can watch the eagles fly above the swimming pool, watch the waves at the ocean, enjoy the live music or the martial arts show, or just have a chat with the waiters who are all very friendly and go the extra mile to make your meal a success.
The SPA: All our requests were accommodated in a very professional and friendly manner, and both my wife and kids took yoga lessons from Sudeven. If you are looking for that mystical yoga experience in India, do not miss a lesson with this charming gentleman
The free and fast speed WIFI available probably everywhere in the resort is a great PLUS
Some minor issues I would improve:
1) The Mosquito net in our room covered 3/4 th of the bed. Maybe add the missing bit for total protection
2) Create a nice excursion brochure with photos with the standard half day trips to Trivadrum, backwaters, tea plantations, elephant + Lion Park and even Kovallam + fishing village and propose them at a reasonable price, while using only good and safe vehicles/ Drivers who are knowledgeable of the region.

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with family
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1  Thank Sergio M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NiraamayaRetreats, General Manager at Niraamaya Retreats Surya Samudra, responded to this reviewResponded January 20, 2013

Dear Sergio M,

Thank you for your review and positive comments. We are very happy to hear that you and your family enjoyed the serenity and tranquility of the retreat.

Your encouraging words for our team of Café Samsara and our South East Asian restaurant Essence have motivated the team to strive harder to exceed guest’s expectations.

We have noted down the feedback on the Mosquito net which is largely decorative. We do carry out traditional eco-friendly incense fogging of all rooms and public areas every evening so as to ensure that our guests are not troubled by insects.

Concierge activities around this exciting destination are also part of our planned extended services, so as to provide all our guests a memorable authentic cultural experience.

Looking forward to welcoming you back to Niraamaya Retreats.

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887 - 893 of 1,082 reviews

Reviewed December 23, 2012

If you are in Kerala looking for a Hotel / prvate Resort with Spa and you think of the following kind of paradise:
- on the cliffs above the beach with coconut trees around you and an infinity pool above the sea with view to the sea
- small, sandy, secluded beaches between rocks
- two open air restaurant with excellent food, above the sea with sunset view and each place seeing the sea
- romantic Kerala style cottages with a veranda, seaview and open air bathroom (never mind, it is never cold)
- a perfect spa with a wide variety of massages and treatments
- the most friendly staff
- a place to releax and to enjoy romantic atmosphere
- away from the crowds in a private tropical surrounding by the sea


One Spa-treatment for couples is a must: Ying Yang Massage

Niraamaya Retreats Surya Samudra is the place youwould like to stay forever!!

Room Tip: Ask for the cottages with Sea View
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  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank RudolfHAUG
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NiraamayaRetreats, General Manager at Niraamaya Retreats Surya Samudra, responded to this reviewResponded January 20, 2013

Dear RHisserich,

Thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to give us your positive and encouraging review.

This has motivated us to focus on enhancing the Niraamaya experience that we try to provide to our guests in our retreats on exceeding guests expectations and providing an authentic cultural indulgence along with relaxation.

Looking forward to welcoming you back for another memorable holiday at Niraamaya Retreats!

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Reviewed December 14, 2012

Just returned home after an amazing 5 nights at this beautiful hotel, situated away from Kovalem town. We arrived needing some serious relaxation and de-stress, and from the moment we arrived we were made extremely welcome and felt thoroughly looked after by the attentive and friendly staff. The grounds and gardens were superb and a joy to wander through (though some of the paths at night were not all as well lit as could be, so remember to take a torch), the food was excellent in variety, presentation, taste and quantity.

The room was beautiful. Our particular room was a little dark at night though and the bathroom took some getting used to as it had no curtains to screen it from the little courtyard - even though this was totally private to our room. Evening performances of high quality, traditional Indian music and dance, in the restaurant (which overlooked the sea), were a wonderful unexpected treat. An infinity pool cut from existing rock was great to bathe in while watching the sun set and view the twinkling lights of the fishing boats out at sea.

The local beach was stunning, while the second beach which was accessed through a pretty doorway provided some glimpses of the daily life of local fisherman. We didn't have time to explore the local fishing village, though what we saw gave us another reason for wanting to come back.

A truly wonderful place to stay- which exceeded our expecatations.We recommend this superb hotel without reservation.

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Graham121212
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NiraamayaRetreats, General Manager at Niraamaya Retreats Surya Samudra, responded to this reviewResponded January 20, 2013

Dear Graham,

We are happy to hear that, you really enjoyed at our property. Thank you very much sharing your feedback on the memorable time you spent at Niraamaya Retreats ,Kovalam.

Our team strives to capitalize on the pristine location and secluded beach and provide a discreet authentic cultural experience along with international indulgence.

Looking forward to welcoming you back, at one of our retreats.

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Reviewed December 12, 2012

Just spent 4 days in this lovely hotel which is set in a beautiful location with a stunning private beach. We had a Rock Garden room which was large and very comfortable. The decor is elegant and we could find no fault with the accomodation. The food was of a very high quality and breakfast on the terrace looking out on the ocean was lovely. The staff were very polite and more than helpful. The hotel is a lovely size and never appeared crowded despite it's high occupancy. I would have no hesitation to recommend this hotel for a total relax.

  • Stayed: December 2012
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1  Thank 2012nirvana
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NiraamayaRetreats, General Manager at Niraamaya Retreats Surya Samudra, responded to this reviewResponded January 20, 2013

Dear Nirvana,

Thank you very much for inspiring us by sharing the positive feedback.

The team at Niraamaya Retreats ,Kovalam are encouraged by your recommendation and aspire to enhance the service delivery so as to further exceed expectations of all guests.

We look forward to welcoming you back for another Niraamaya experience.

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Reviewed December 9, 2012

Just returned from a satisfying 5 days stay at Niraamaya. Set away from the city, amidst coconut trees on a cliff by the beachside, the location is perfect for a rejuvenating break away from the hustle bustle of a city. The retreat is perfect for couples looking for a quiet and relaxing holiday. The rooms are very well maintained. We stayed at the premium heritage room and it had an excellent sea view. Morning and evening housekeeping services are provided along with small touches like leaving chocolates on your bedside at night.

The service staff is welcoming and polite and we did have a personalized experience. We enquired about a few local delicacies not in the menu and were offered that the same would be prepared for us on the very next day. The quality of the food is excellent. Most of the accompaniments are made in-house. You should try the in-house pickles, jams and chutneys. The pace of service left something to be desired for. It takes a while for your order to be served.

The pool overlooks an almost private beach and one can enjoy the perfect sunset from the restaurant, pool or the beer/wine bar. Getting down to the beach can be in issue if you are not comfortable with stairs on a rocky cliff.

The retreat also has a Ayurveda centre which has a plenty of options. The centre is clean and the staff again is very courteous and polite. We enjoyed the treatments there. Though you need to take prior appointments.

Some points to note:
1. Service pace is a bit slow. Best to order about 30 mins before you want service
2. The pathways in the retreat are a bit dimly lit at night. We had to use the flashlight in our phones to get the adequate light.
3. Beer and wine are the only alcoholic beverages served.
4. Would not particularly recommend place for families with kids as besides the pool and the beach there is not much i think the kids can possibly do there.

Room Tip: Choose Heritage Premium Rooms for an excellent sea side view.
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  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank coolwave
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
vincent r, General Manager at Niraamaya Retreats Surya Samudra, responded to this reviewResponded January 29, 2013

Dear Coolwave,

Thank you for spending your time to leave a note about Niraamaya Retreats,Kovalam.

While we work on fine tuning our service delivery we also try bring unobtrusive service to match the serenity of the retreat. Our cuisine seeks to use freshly made ingredients and preparations as against packaged supermarket “fast food” solutions and this does mean that we do a slightly longer time to serve.

I am glad to tell you that the complete pathway lighting is currently undergoing an upgrade, and that the challenges you faced would be a thing of the past.

We do not have a full alcohol license currently and are limited to wine and beer. However we have applied for the same so as to provide our guests with wider selection of International beverages in the future.

We have noted your comments on children’s activities and are working on increasing kid friendly activities in the coming months.

Thanking you for your positive feedback and looking forward to welcoming you back for an enhanced Niraamaya Experience.

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Reviewed November 26, 2012

After 5 trips to India I thought I knew what to expect but Niraamaya presents another side to India which is enchanting. It is beautiful. The private beach at NIraamaya is super, it is immaculate, there are no hawkers, stray dogs or shacks just pure sands and pristine waters. The staff are superb, nothing is too big or small: They helped us get up to Konni to see the elephant sanctuary; Their chefs gave us a lesson in their signature dishes; Their lifeguards accompany you to the beach to make sure you get in/out safely. Take note, Niraamaya is premium but don't expect a Taj experience, it is a retreat where the focus is on your relaxation not grand displays of opulence. The gem of Niraamaya is the spa, India is usually chaotic making it difficult to really relax, but they were able to get us to a place where we were really relaxed and at the same time 'fix' ailments. The food is magnificent, Chef Prakash & Chef Prasanath serve classic Kerala foods but vary it with their own ideas. The rooms are well appointed and the bathrooms are something to experience, being half inside & half outside. Kerala beats Goa easily and we will return.

Room Tip: We stayed in Beach Cottage East which has sea views :-)
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  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank McDanster
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NiraamayaRetreats, General Manager at Niraamaya Retreats Surya Samudra, responded to this reviewResponded January 9, 2013

Dear Mr McDanster

Thank you for spending your valuable time in providing this positive review. It is a huge morale boost for the team to know that we were able to provide you with a memorable stay at Niraamaya Retreats, Kovalam.

The cooking sessions are an initiative to ensure that guests go back with some knowledge of local cuisines; it is part of the overall Kerala experience. The Elephant Sanctuary visit is another aspect of the authentic cultural experience and we are glad that you enjoyed the excursion.

Niraamaya Spa strives to create a perfect atmosphere of relaxation that matches the surroundings of the retreat. We take great pride in being one amongst the best spas in India and we are extremely pleased to know that we have been able to live up to your expectations.
Your encouragement has motivated the Team to continue to strive harder to exceed Guest expectations. We look forward to welcoming you back.

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Reviewed November 23, 2012

A beautiful property overlooking a very clean beach, which gives you a sense of serenity instantly. Good cottages with open baths. Lovely breakfast, ordered from a choice of set menus. The staff is very average and seemed to be uninteresed. A good, though rather short stay. Would have loved to explore more of the hotel.

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank SriMayuri
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NiraamayaRetreats, Aditya Mata , Chief Operating Officer at Niraamaya Retreats Surya Samudra, responded to this reviewResponded November 27, 2012

Dear Guest , Thank you for your feedback on TripAdvisor . I have taken note of your critique in a positive manner and shared the same with our core Team. Exceeding guest expectations is our objective and we look forward to welcoming you back to Niraamaya Retreats in the near future . We value your patronage . Kind regards

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Additional Information about Niraamaya Retreats Surya Samudra

Address: Pulinkudi | Mullur, South of Kovalam, Kovalam 695 521, India (Formerly Surya Samudra Private Retreats)
Phone Number:
Location: India > Kerala > Thiruvananthapuram District > Kovalam
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Kovalam
#1 Luxury Hotel in Kovalam
#1 Romantic Hotel in Kovalam
#1 Spa Hotel in Kovalam
#1 Family Hotel in Kovalam
#3 Business Hotel in Kovalam
Price Range: $258 - $553 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Niraamaya Retreats Surya Samudra 5*
Number of rooms: 35
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Now re-opened under a new management as Surya Samudra Private Retreats. Relais & Chateaux Luxury heritage beach resort. Adjoining two pristine, unspoilt beaches and completely secluded from the busy tourist areas of Kovalam. Enjoy complete privacy and serenity. Stay in a carefully restored traditional Kerala tharavadu dwelling. At our Spa Niraamaya, highly trained therapists pamper you with herbs, oils, and concoctions that relax your body, revitalise your mind, and renew your spirit. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Surya Samudra Private Retreats Hotel Kovalam
Surya Samudra Beach Garden Hotel
Surya Samudra Beach Garden Spa
Niraamaya Retreats Surya Samudra Kovalam, Kerala

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