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COMO Uma Paro, Bhutan
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Reviewed February 9, 2013

We stayed four nights in February. The hotel is conveniently located about 10 minutes away by car from Paro. The hotel itself is nice, in particular the dining-room in which you really feel comfortable.
We were greeted upon arrival by the General Manager, who seemed more interested in talking to his dog than to us. He showed us around and he never talked to us again, not even upon check-out. He has been there for 7 months but appartently his lack of dedication to service appears to taint his staff as well.
We stayed in one of the villas, which are quite pricy. The villa itself was beautiful but in our case it had probably not used for several days and it was freezing as we arrived. We had to insist to have additional heaters brought to the room. Whoever designed the villa was not smart not to put a heater in the restrooms and the shower! After three days the room started to feel warmer but the restroom and shower-floors were freezing. The view is not great either as too much vegetation has grown in front of the windows. The butler was nice and trying hard but kept saying yes instead of fixing things. The in-door swimming pool was under repair.
The fitness room is very nice and well-equipped.
Well if you travel across Buthan and your budget allows it chose Amankora, it is a world of difference!

Room Tip: There are two suites in the main building which are really nice with a great view. Probably a better choice than the villas..
  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank zelal25
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Norman L, General Manager at COMO Uma Paro, Bhutan, responded to this reviewResponded February 12, 2013

Dear zelal25,

Thank you for sharing your recent experience at Uma Paro with the TripAdvisor community.

We are glad that you enjoyed our restaurant, by are sorry to learn that you felt the bathroom of your luxury one bedroom villa was not warm enough during your visit.

According to our records your private butler promptly put a portable heater in your room and that this solved that problem.

I am a bit surprised to read your comments about me personally, for as you mention I greeted you upon your arrival to welcome you to Uma Paro, to give you a tour of the hotel and to say that if you needed assistance of any kind during your stay to please ask for me. I also recall speaking to you and your wife several times while you were our guests to check on how you were enjoying your stay and I remember your telling me that everything was fine.

It is correct, that our indoor heated pool, which is the nicest in Bhutan, was not in service for a few days earlier this month, but unfortunately it needed a repair, which sometimes happens. It is now working fine and we are sorry that this was not available for the few days you were here.

We hope that you and your wife will come stay with us again and if you do we will try our best to make sure everything goes perfectly.

Best regards and Tashi Delek, Norman

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Reviewed January 24, 2013

My husband and I were on a whirlwind trip to India, Nepal, Thailand, and Bhutan. Our stay at the Uma was a special retreat. We were advised to stay in a villa, but when we arrived, we decided to move to a deluxe suite which was located inside the main hotel building. It was winter, and the weather was cool, and we didn't want to have to bundle up in our coats and be driven to dinner every night in a golf cart. In the spring or summer, the villa would be fine. The villa and the deluxe suite were both outstanding in their design and in the amenities offered. The water was always hot when needed, the warming towel racks were a nice luxury, having fresh fruit in the room was always pleasant. Having free wi-fi available at all times in the room was a real plus for me as I needed to call the USA frequently and I could use my computer - for calls and to check e-mails. In other countries on our trip, the wi-fi was not always as easily accessible. All the staff were wonderful and attentive; we especially liked having a butler assigned to us, to help us with any and all arrangements we needed to make. The dining room was gorgeous; we loved the architecture and design; having a wood burning stove in the center really warmed the room, and gave the whole room an extra special ambience. Soft music was played while we dined--and it was very romantic. There were not many guests in the hotel during the time we were there--we were off season, so we really had the full attention of the staff. The store was open for many hours, making it convenient to shop there--and the quality of the merchandise was great. The food was outstanding in the restaurant. We are from San Francisco, where we pride ourselves on our fine restaurants, and this kitchen could rival the best of the ones in San Francisco! The view from the windows-of the valleys and mountains -was spectacular, day and night.The hotel was the perfect blend of feeling as though you were in nature, "camping," with the spectacular views of the trees, mountains, and outdoor scenery from the bedroom and public rooms, yet with all the warmth, good food, and other luxuries of a fine hotel. The wood burning stoves,, everywhere, were a delight in the cold weather.! We didn't have time to experience the yoga classes, spa, or archery lessons, or even use the kitchenette that was in our room. That will have to wait for another time. I would not hesitate to recommend this hotel to all my friends.

Room Tip: The deluxe suite was larger than most of the rooms, so if you can afford it, it was very roomy. The villa was almost too big for us; it had its own massage room, but we didn't need all that space for just my husband and myself.
  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Barbara1077
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Norman L, General Manager at COMO Uma Paro, Bhutan, responded to this reviewResponded January 25, 2013

Dear Barbara1077,

Greetings from your friends at Uma Paro in magical Bhutan.

Thank you for telling the TripAdvisor Community about your recent stay with us. We truly appreciate all the high praise. We are humbled by so many compliments about the hotel, the quality of our cuisine and the service of our staff. We are particularly proud to know that you consider our restaurant to be as good as the best of those in your home city of San Francisco. Our chefs are very glad to know were so pleased with the food. We hope that you will come back to visit us again soon and have the time to enjoy our COMO Shambala Spa, yoga classes and of course the archery lessons given by our professional Bhutanese guides on our own private archery field.

Thank you again for the many kind words and accolades about our adventurous and romantic resort here in wondrous Bhutan. Please come back again soon.

Best regards and Tashi Delek, Norman

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Reviewed January 23, 2013

Stayed in this hotel for 2 days after a 10 day trip including farm stays, to relax & recover & have a special start to 2013!!

The initial look & feel of the hotel on arrival & especially the smell is great, & the staff were very accommodating in all area's, and they made a real effort to ensure all people were engaged with.

The room was of a standard to be expected of an hotel of this type, & although lovely (toiletries especially) there were no real surprise & delights, ie those little unexpected things that just make great hotels memorable.

I liked the spa facilities, the swimming pool was blissful & the yoga was very welcome, with a great instructor ( thanks Kara). I also had some spa treatments, can recommend the massage but the manicure/ pedicures were not of an international standard but that the feedback was taken positively & addressed.

The one area that needs attention is the food & beverage, which is very ordinary for what is delivered & certainly does not represent value. Paid almost $66 for small pasta, with an equally small salad & 1 glass of wine, which is expensive even for any "luxury hotel" & was ok but not amazing.
Breakfast however was of a better standard & was made even more enjoyable with the view.

So overall I appreciated & liked my stay & would recommend with the proviso that if you are a bit of a foodie you maybe disappointed ( however if you have lived off chilli for a number of days prior, it will seem like a blessing !!),

Do think the hotel has some work to do to make people rave about it, other than being in Bhutan.

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled solo
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2  Thank MazzAustralia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Norman L, General Manager at COMO Uma Paro, Bhutan, responded to this reviewResponded January 25, 2013

Dear MazzAustralia,

Hello from the Himalayas and your friends at Uma Paro.

Thank you for sharing your impressions of your recent stay at Uma Paro with the TripAdvisor community.

We greatly appreciate all the compliments about the hotel, and our spa, and especially the attentiveness of the staff. We are sorry you felt the manicure and pedicure you received was not up to international standard and as a result, in compensation, we did not charge for this service. We are now reviewing the quality of these treatments to be sure they are up to the correct standard.

We are surprised to learn that you felt one or two dinners were not to your liking, as most guests, including those who review our hotel on TripAdvisor, praise our restaurant and the food served as being the best in Bhutan. As you know our restaurant serves a full range of cuisine including Western style dishes, Indian and Bhutanese specialties. Having said that, we will review the particular dishes you mention to ensure those items are up to the high standard our clients expect.

Thank you for this constructive feedback and we do hope that you will be able to visit us again soon.

Best regards and Tashi Delek, Norman

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Reviewed January 22, 2013

I stayed at the Gangtey Hotel in Paro at the end of a 14 day holiday traveling thru out Bhutan. I spent many nights in local farmhouses and 'homestays' which were great for getting an authentic Bhutan experience. I trekked loads and obviously went a couple nights without a hot shower or western amenities- which I fully expected- and embraced. With that, the end of my trip came and I was looking forward to certain luxuries, none of which I got at Gangtey (albeit a great heritage building, clean etc, just 3 star). I ended up spending an entire day at Uma Paro and wished I had stayed there. I used their spa and had a great foot reflexology treatment, one of the best I've had (I consider myself a bit of a connoisseur if you count sheer number of massages as a measure), a steam, and a bath followed by a hot shower! Pickled! Then, I spent a couple hours at the bar reading followed by the best meal in Bhutan (let's be honest, it's not difficult to beat Ema Datshi, dried yak meat and red rice). Uma Paro's restaurant served a wide variety of cuisine including Indian, European and I think there was a Bhutanese option as well but forgive me for avoiding it after 2 weeks of the 'same same'. I had an Australian cut of beef that was amazing and cooked perfectly. I started with a seafood dish served over a pasta that was divine. Wine list is good, but like most Asian countries, expensive because of the import duties. The service was exceptional. I also got a visit from the manager, whom, I believe is new-ish to Uma Paro, and he took the time to visit with me, get my opinion etc. All in all, no brainier in Paro after a long trip 'round Bhutan. Yes, it's expensive relative to other "luxury" hotels, but you're also in the Himalayas, off the beaten track. Consider this when you compare your time in Bhutan to your time in similar standard hotels in more developed places.

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled solo
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1  Thank Audley17
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Norman L, General Manager at COMO Uma Paro, Bhutan, responded to this reviewResponded January 25, 2013

Dear Audley17,

Hello from your friends at Uma by COMO in Paro, Bhutan.

Thank you for sharing your impressions of your visit to Uma with the TripAdvisor Community. We see that you wrote this review even though you were staying at another hotel and just were visiting us for a day to enjoy our hotel and all it offers. It sounds like you tried to take full advantage of our services and that you were very pleased with our small luxury property, from the great treatments in our COMO Shambala Spa to the fine contemporary international cuisine served in our renowned Bukhari Restaurant. We are glad to know you had such an enjoyable experience. We welcome all who are in Bhutan to come and enjoy our restaurant and spa even if not staying with us and we are very happy that you enjoyed our day long visit to our little piece of paradise here in wondrous Bhutan.

We do hope you will be able to come back to this magical Land of the Thunder Dragon again soon and that you will be able to stay with us for a bit longer so you can fully enjoy our special brand of Bhutanese hospitality in all its aspects.

Best regards and Tashi Delek, Norman

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Reviewed January 21, 2013

We stayed in Uma Paro on the last 2 days of our 10 days trip in Bhutan. I have to say the hotel were comfortable with very good amenities such as complimentary yoga classes in the morning, very tasty and good selections of breakfast, clean and comfortable bed, heated towel rack, good quality toiletries and steam rooms to combat the December cold weather. Cleanliness are also top notch as compared to other hotels we stayed in Bhutan. The service staffs are also prompt and friendly. Uma Paro has successfully achieved the usual 5-star standards, guests should be able to enjoy. However, my husband and I feel it's lacking of the warmth of Bhutanese real hospitality and character. Everything seemed to be very scripted. The hotel may also want to pay some attention the hot water supply after 9pm, it can be very challenging to shower after 9pm in winter as the water turned luke warm. Although, the staff was nice enough to offer us to shower in another room instead.

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Selvi_Pan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Norman L, General Manager at COMO Uma Paro, Bhutan, responded to this reviewResponded January 25, 2013

Dear Selvi_Pan,

Greetings from your friends at Uma Paro,

Thank you for taking time to tell the TripAdvisor Community about your recent stay at Uma Paro We appreciate all of the kind compliments about the hotel and particularly the "prompt and friendly" service of our staff. So we are a bit confused about your comment that you felt the staff did not convey the warmth of Bhutanese hospitality. Most reviews on TripAdvisor say the opposite, that are staff offer great hospitality. In fact, many reviewers praise particular staff by name reflecting the warm friendships that develop between guests and staff for those staying with us. We are sorry you experienced a problem with not enough hot water, and we have repaired this situation so it will not happen again.

Thank you for your review and we hope you will come to visit us again soon.

Best regards and Tashi Delek, Norman

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