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“Your Time Is My Time”
Review of COMO Uma Paro

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COMO Uma Paro
Ranked #1 of 17 Hotels in Paro
Certificate of Excellence
Hong Kong, China
Level 6 Contributor
150 reviews
66 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 212 helpful votes
“Your Time Is My Time”
Reviewed April 11, 2010

"Your time is my time" was what our butler, Jeewan, said when he greeted us upon our arrival. In the following 5 days, we were so well taken care by him around the clock that what he said was not just a welcome speech only.

There are 9 villas plus one 2 bedroom villa at Uma. There is a butler for each villa and Jeewan was ours. From making the place most comfortable to organizing our daily activities, attending to what we needed was his only duty since the minute we checked in. He also served as our waiter at the restaurant. The resort was full when we were there but Jeewan reserved the best table for us all the time.

We have met many butlers during our years of traveling and Jeewan is the best so far. Our villa, #16, was far away from the main building and Jeewan drove us back and forth with buggy most of the time. He was always punctual. There was one time that we heard the car and it was about 3 minutes earlier than our pickup time. We waited but there was no knocking. So I opened the door to check and I saw Jeewan stood right outside and he was waiting until the exact minute to knock on our door. His attention to details was what made him stood out among other butlers who only did the job right.

In the living room there was a fireplace, which the Bhutanese called BUKHARI. Everyday at nightfall, Jeewan came to lit the fire and the room would fill with a heavenly scent of burning pinewood. While we were enjoying our main course at dinner, Jeewan would rush back to our room and add more wood into the fireplace so that the fire would last until we went to bed. He even offered to come every morning to restart the fire before we wakeup. We had sweet dream every night.

Although there is only one restaurant, food were wonderful at Uma. A simple but beautifully presented breakfast buffet with hot dishes being cooked to order. A all day dining menu features salad, sandwich and pizza. Dinner menu includes Western, Bhutanese and Indian dishes which will be changed every three days. Our room rate included all meals so that we could eat at anytime and order anything we wanted from the menu. Portion was big so we ended up asking for a smaller portion even though most dishes we tried were quite delicious.

After visiting Paro and Thimphu, we would say Bhutan is far from ready to receive a larger number of visitor. Without Uma, we may not have enjoyed the "Land of Thunder Dragon" as much as we did. Uma's high level of service was what we did not expect from this country where tourism is just sprouting. However, Uma is as good as, or even better than some of the luxurious resorts that we have visited before. Highly recommended!

  • Stayed April 2010, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank ryu0803
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
UmaManagement, Manager at COMO Uma Paro, responded to this review, May 11, 2010
Dear Ryu0803,

A warm hello from Uma Paro and beautiful Bhutan.
On behalf of all of us at Uma Paro I would like to thank you for your very nice comments and feedback. We have shared your comments with all our staff and it really encourage us to continue to do better.
we are very pleased to know you have enjoyed your stay, I have passed your regards and compliments to Jeewan as well.
Should you need anything from Uma or Bhutan, please let us know. Looking forward to have you back.
Warm regards, Jorge Monje, General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
London, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
70 reviews
54 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 87 helpful votes
Reviewed April 8, 2010

The Uma Paro has the perfect location on a hill above the town of Paro. Conveniently located to get a first impression on Bhutan. The hotel grounds are magnificent - a Bhutanese style main building and several villas scattered on the ground. Try to go for a villa or a deluxe room with a view of the valley. Normally I'm not a morning person, but here I loved waking up early to sit by the open window with the crisp cold air coming in and hearing nothing but some birds and maybe a very very remote car. It really made waking up special.
The rooms were adequate, but one would expect a more modern IT infrastructure (no internet connection, wifi only with luck as it's officially only available in the library and lobby; no flat screen tv).
Staff was very polite and welcoming, though I must say that the performance in the restaurant was very variable. Some days the speed was perfect, some days it was so slow that I was filled up with drinks and bread by the time the food came (almost cold). The quality of the food was always good though.
I had booked the hotel tour guide and I must say that this was the best experience. He was very knowledgeable and anticipated every request. He tailor made the program on the go to suit preferences and tastes. So for me, what will actually linger more than the hotel is the tour and the activities arranged by the hotel.
Overall, a firm recommendation for the Uma and the tour programme. Bhutan is a definite MUST on the programme of every traveller. Go before it becomes too main stream!! (the first traces are already there)

  • Stayed April 2010, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank epicentre
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco, California
Level 2 Contributor
9 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed April 4, 2010

We booked into Uma not knowing exactly what to expect - after all, Bhutan is still "young" especially in the the context of high end tourism, and our expectations as highly traveled individuals are sometimes unrealistically high. However, Uma did not disappoint. Staff were naturally friendly, extremely courteous, competent and went the extra mile to please. Our villa accommodation was superb, the rooms well equipped, clean and comfortable. Spa services are also 5 star, with costs comparable to those charged anywhere in a high-end US or European resort. Food in the restaurant was also excellent and varied - a sort of Bhutanese fusion cuisine prepared using fresh ingredients, sourced both locally and from as far away as Australia. The breakfast buffet was also superb, though somewhat limited to fresh fruit and pastries. A la carte solves the problem for meat-eaters.
Niggles? Not many at all. The hotel lacks a somelier, and the white wines we tasted by the glass were clearly caramelized, even from a fresh pour; red wines were OK, but not exciting. I mention this because they are not cheap. Sports equipment provided by the hotel for guests enjoyment (bows and arrows for archery; darts for Bhutanese darts) was way past its best. If you are the sort of traveler who expects the very best regardless of context (Bhutan is a land-locked, Third World country after all), then you will doubtless find irritations. If you are the sort to enjoy luxurious surroundings in an unspoiled setting, with kind and generous hosts, you'll have a blast.

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Graeme19
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mumbai
Level 6 Contributor
82 reviews
41 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 169 helpful votes
Reviewed March 28, 2010

I stayed in this property when I travelled to Bhutan with some friends in December 2008.
Although this property was more expensive as compared to other hotels in Paro it was well worth the money spent.
It is a lovely hotel set in a beautiful setting, is extremely comfortable and the staff at the hotel do everything possible to make you comfortable.
I would strongly recommend this place to anyone travelling to Paro, Butan

  • Stayed December 2008, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
2 Thank SPakrasi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Netherlands
Level 6 Contributor
154 reviews
46 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 66 helpful votes
Reviewed March 10, 2010

Being upgraded to a villa (with butler!) probably clouds our view, but the hotel was wonderful and everything was so smoothly run and relaxed. We spent 5 days with guide and driver seeing a bit of Bhutan and enjoying the food. Climate was perfect (not India's unpleasant heat) and the people were great (no beggars etc). An intereting country and a world-class hotel.

  • Stayed June 2008, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank dguycar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Manchester
Level 5 Contributor
77 reviews
71 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 108 helpful votes
Reviewed December 29, 2009

Uma Paro has to be one of my favourite hotels, which is saying something since I have stayed in quite a few. I think it’s the whole ambiance and setting that sets it apart. Bhutan is such a beautiful and friendly country and the Paro valley gorgeous that staying in a Bhutanese style hotel in the woods made it even more magical. It’s so nice to see a hotel that is built externally, and designed internally, in keeping with the country and surroundings to which it’s situated.

On entering the hotel, the smell is divine - scented oils from the hotels Como Shambhala range - and then you were greeted by friendly Bhutanese staff in traditional dress. My husband and I were staying for 3 nights before heading off for an 8 day trek. We stayed in a standard room (number 26) and okay, we had no view except of trees but, since we had great views each day on our trips and we returned in the dark, that what no great shame. Our room was also off the main corridor and I was worried about noise but, since most people got up and went to bed at the same time this wasn’t an issue. The room wasn’t huge but, beautifully formed with 2 armchairs, TV, wardrobe and side cupboard and a huge bed with proper feather pillows and luxurious bedding I wanted to take home but resisted. There was a gorgeous bathroom with under floor heating and the most sublime toiletries. We also had robes and the flip flops were such a nice touch. Opposite our room was the library where you have 2 PCs with free internet use.

In the basement there was a lovely spa and a great little pool. My husband and I were often the only ones in there and (although small) it was so nice relaxing by doing a few laps after walking all day and then having a stream and sauna. My husband and I had a Bhutanese stone bath followed by a massage, which were both top quality.

The restaurant food was delicious and the portions large. This is not a place to wince at the cost of food and drink since you know when you book it that it isn’t going to be cheap. However, when you get the quality of food we did you don’t mind paying the price for a few days. As well as the restaurant we also holed up in the bar one night in front of the fire and had food from the all day dining menu. We were the only people there and that was a lovely experience, chilling out, sampling the local beer (very nice and reasonably priced) and talking to the lovely barman. Each day I really looked forward to the breakfasts (included in the rate). There was a table with the best parties, delicious yoghurt and fruit, home made granola and breads. You could also have a cooked breakfast from an extensive and different menu.

All in all, we had a great stay and wished we could have stayed longer.

  • Stayed October 2009, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank LesleyAnn44
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
montreal
Level 5 Contributor
91 reviews
49 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
Reviewed December 1, 2009

After trekking for a few days this was like going to heaven. The hotel is beautifully envisioned in traditional bhutanese style as opposed to the bland bungalows of the Aman hotels. The pool and the yoga room are zen perfect. The food is delicious even if service is sometimes uneven (although always friendly).
We did have the advantage of staying in the suite which is several times the size of the standard rooms and well worth the expense.
This was a richly esthetic experience with great day trip opportunities abounding and worth the long trip even if you don't venture into the heartland - which is frankly a lot of pain for little gain in many cases.

  • Stayed November 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank anachronist
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about COMO Uma Paro

Property: COMO Uma Paro
Address: Paro Town, Airport Area, Paro, Bhutan
Phone Number:
Location: Bhutan > Paro District > Paro
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Family Hotel in Paro
#1 Spa Hotel in Paro
#1 Romantic Hotel in Paro
#1 Luxury Hotel in Paro
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — COMO Uma Paro 5*
Number of rooms: 29
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
COMO Uma Paro offers luxury in the heart of Bhutan. Hotel guests enjoy sweeping views of the pristine Himalayas from the 37-acre estate, comprising a mere 20 rooms and nine villas with a design that is a subtle fusion of indigenous style, and a fresh, clean-lined modernism. COMO Uma Paro also offers adventure. The town of Paro, Bhutan's main cultural hub, lies nearby. Hiking, mountain biking and overnight luxury camping trips are all available. Guests can later restore and indulge in vital holistic therapies at COMO Shambhala Retreat, and dine in style at the Bukhari Restaurant, where local Bhutanese produce is blended with Indian and Western cuisine. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Uma Paro Hotel Paro
Uma Hotel Paro
Paro Uma Hotel

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