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“Poor customer service mars otherwise lovely place”

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The Borderlands Resort
Ranked #1 of 1 Gati B&B and Inns
New York City, New York
Level 6 Contributor
70 reviews
64 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 56 helpful votes
“Poor customer service mars otherwise lovely place”
Reviewed May 8, 2012

I have been to Borderlands in the past, and prefer the stunning riverbank location to that of Last Resort when I'm looking for a peaceful escape from Kathmandu.

In the past, I have often recommended Borderlands to friends and visitors to Nepal because it is so beautiful, but the customer service was such a disappointment on my last trip that I feel obliged to write a negative review. I hope the management reads these reviews and makes some changes.

A small group of folks living in Nepal booked a weekend at the resort in advance, negotiating a transport-included rate. "Misunderstanding" #1: We arrived at the Ultimate Descents booking counter at the appointed hour of departure to find that in fact, no transport had been arranged for us. The gentleman assured us that he would get us transportation, but that it would cost us an additional $60 to hire the vehicle. Given that our original rate was supposed to include return transport, we were miffed and negotiated the fare down by half (the resort would shoulder the other half of the cost). We were assured that for the return trip, transport would be available back to Kathmandu, as there was another group returning the same day, and their transport had already been booked, and we would be added onto their bus at no cost. "Misunderstanding" #2: The morning of our return to Kathmandu, the manager approaches each member of our party individually at different times (this was strange) before breakfast to inquire whether we would be catching the public bus or if we needed him to arrange private transport on our behalf. What?! Long story short, we end up paying an additional $35 for the return trip in a "private" vehicle into which the resort then piled several other people who were not sharing the cost of the vehicle. I will note that these misunderstandings were not due to a language barrier, as one of our party is extremely fluent in Nepali.

I want to clarify that at no point were any of the staff rude to us, but their demeanor and reversals and denials left us feeling extremely manipulated. As I read the review by lostinparadise, I see that we were not the first to confront this kind of treatment.

Another consideration for folks looking to visit Borderlands for a quiet and adventurous weekend-- Be sure to ask in advance whether the resort has booked any large parties or "picnic groups". In the weekend we were there, we arrived to an organizational picnic of almost 100 people, and a private group of maybe 30 arrived a few hours before we left the next day. All the picnickers were very friendly, but the number of relatively quiet hours we had were limited to post-dinner and pre-breakfast. The dance music started blasting around 11:30am.

I still love the design of the resort and the wonderfully noisy and impressive river. I just want to make sure anyone considering a trip here is fully aware of the potential for manipulation in the customer service. The prices per night are high for Nepal, but would be justified by even decent customer service. Is it worth it? Unfortunately, I don't think I'll be going back.

Room Tip: They have four-bed tents and two-bed tents. The two-bed tents are older, nestled among the trees...
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled with friends
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3 Thank bzchrmr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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19 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (7)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
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English first
Vancouver, Canada
Level 3 Contributor
16 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed April 17, 2012

Borderlands Resort is an absolutely gorgeous place to stay when in Nepal. Like another reviewer has said, it's the "outdoors but not roughing it". The tents are very well kept, clean and comfortable and the grounds are pristine.

My issue with Borderlands however, is regarding the customer service, which really tainted my experience overall. The reason why I ended up at Borderlands in the first place was because I won a 2-night stay including free meals but I was told that I would have to pay out of pocket for transportation. So when I contacted Borderlands to arrange my arrival/transportation, I was quoted ridiculous prices - $100US all together (note: you can fly return to Pokhara for that price) - because they claimed it was more costly for them if I did not purchase an "activity" such as canyoning or rafting. Then, I was told that if I wanted to stay 2 nights but only do 1 day of canyoning it would be $90US plus $55US because the 1 day canyoning only includes one-way transportation - What? If I paid for 2 days canyoning it was $135US which included accommodations, food and transportation, and they refused to discount the price given that my accommodations and food were supposed to be free in the first place. Either way, you do the math, it just doesn't add up.

Essentially what became clear is that my "free stay" was not actually FREE. What made the customer service feel even more unprofessional was that I was made to feel like I was inconveniencing them and I actually didn't have transportation arranged for me, despite the fact that I had contacted them a week prior to my departure, until 7pm the day before I was set to leave - essentially I had 12 hours notice. My driver was also 40 minutes late to pick me up at the corner of Maitigard because they didn't want to drive the extra 10 minutes to pick me up from my door. All in all, my experience with booking at Borderlands left me feeling pretty manipulated and frustrated. And, it's really a shame because the resort so lovely. Even though I had hoped to go to Borderlands for a relaxing weekend, because of all the unnecessary stress and the "nickle-and-diming", it sadly didn't turn out that way. In a country that's main industry is tourism, it's shocking that customer service is often found to be so poor. I hope that for their future guests' sake, as well as their own revenues, they start practicing a better business model and get their customer service up to par.

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled solo
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Helpful?
2 Thank Andree R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kathmandu, Nepal
Level 6 Contributor
107 reviews
43 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
Reviewed January 29, 2012

Stayed two days and a night in this resort along with my colleagues for a team building event. The event organized by the resort management was beyond my expectation. The resort served delicious food, service was excellent and the resort had good amenities. The most of the staffs were local and had got good knowledge of the area. The rafting in the Bhotekoshi river organized by the resort was particularly praiseworthy where safety was given topmost priority.

The resort is just at the bank of the Bhotekoshi river which is world class river for rafting (class 3,4,5). Sounds of the river gives the feeling of being with nature, which goes up as the night deepens.

Each tent room has good bedding and nice blanket, good winter wear is advisable during winter.

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled on business
    • Location
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Helpful?
4 Thank ckanchan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kathmandu, Nepal
Level 6 Contributor
71 reviews
35 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
Reviewed November 18, 2011

Close to the Tibet border and about 3 hours from Kathmandu, Borderlands is a great escape whether you just want to chill out or get an adrenalin rush from all the adventure activities. Staying in permanent tents with a roof built overhead, it was very easy to sleep as the only sound was the the adjoining river. The resort is centred around the open dining area with its thatched roof where all meals are served and alcohol is available from the bar. The meals were great and I found the staff very helpful. A range of adventure activities are available including canyoning, rafting, hiking and mountain biking, all run by well-qualified instructors. Bungy jumping is available at Last Resort, 3 km up the road. Canyoning was enough of a buzz for me! If you get the chance include a hike that visits some nearby villages as you can see everyday life as it happens while also getting some mountain views. Borderlands supports a number of schools in these nearby villages so you visit helps contribute to this.
I certainly hope to head back there for another visit when I get the time.

Room Tip: To get away from the others, tents 13 and 14 are high above the dining area and on the opposite side...
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  • Stayed November 2011, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
2 Thank hf01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Istanbul
Level 4 Contributor
15 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed October 8, 2011

A garden-like compound with permanent tents sheltered by roofed enclosures, Borderlands is surrounded by high hills and snuggled right next to the rushing Bhote Koshi river. The sound of the river is overwhelming and takes a day for your ears to acclimate to it. The style of the place is aesthetically pleasing without looking overwrought. It is, after all, meant to be and outdoor adventure type place. But the wandering slate paving stones, the landscaping, and subtle detailing makes it feel like you aren't really roughing it. You aren't. The garden is lovely, with a reflecting pond at the low end of the yard (nice for wading). There is a large dining hall that is open air (with a thatched roof) and has raised platforms and low tables. The food is good, though not much variety so it gets predictable if you're on an extended stay. Don't forget to take your shoes off and leave them on the ground when sitting on the platforms. The tents have 3 different styles of beds-- some are right on the floor, some are on bamboo frame/mattresses, and some are on raised cots. The (gender segregated) public showers are fantastic. Not in the sense that you will have hot water very often-- you won't. But they are fieldstone buildings without roofs so you have a view of the mountains as you shower --or a view of the starry sky if you shower at night. They have western style toilets as well as squat toilets. They have separate spigots for treated water that is suitable for drinking (highly iodized). Make sure you avail yourself of the great outdoor sports they offer. Canyoning is a MUST DO, with training first on a 15 meter descent right there on the grounds. There is also rafting, trekking, etc. We trekked up to the old fortress, through small villages, and camped overnight on the top of a small mountain with a STUNNING view of the tibetan mountainscape. There is difficulty getting any kind of cell phone reception at Borderlands unless you walk out past the shower house to the far end of the property. The whole staff were polite and attentive. Durga, the manager; Lau, the barman; and Prem who leads the outdoor sports were all wonderful and made the trip memorable.

  • Stayed April 2011, traveled on business
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Helpful?
5 Thank Pollyanna-Ist
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Salalah, Oman
Level 6 Contributor
167 reviews
53 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 172 helpful votes
Reviewed September 24, 2011

Don't be fooled by the address - it's just their office! Borderlands Resort is towards the end of the Arniko Highway on the way to the border with Tibet. Accommodation is tented and the tents are well sealed (insect screens over window cut-outs & 'door') and the beds are off the ground and comfy! The location is amazing - right by the river with fantastic areas to sit out and enjoy the view. Borderlands tends to operate on an all-inclusive basis and we were very well fed & watered. It's a very chilled out, relaxed place to be. Depending on where your tent is you may have a small walk to the toilet - and you'll need a torch at night - but that's to be expected at accommodation of this nature. The showers are fabulous - powerful hot water inside a stone-built, open-roofed area. Wonderful to cleanse in such a beautiful environment. This is definitely a place for nature lovers! Borderlands offer all sorts of adrenalin activities too - kayaking, white water rafting etc. and isn't far from the famous 160m bungee site. It's a great place to relax and do nothing aswell!

  • Stayed September 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Anokhi10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about The Borderlands Resort

Property: The Borderlands Resort
Address: P.O. Box 13558 | Thamel, Kathmandu, Gati, Nepal
Location: Nepal > Central Region > Bagmati Zone > Gati
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Room Service Shuttle Bus service
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 B&Bs / Inns in Gati
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 18
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Borderlands Eco Adventure Resort is a truly magical place enveloped in the natural Himalayan splendor. We are located a mere three hours north of Kathmandu, just 16 kms south of the Tibetan border. Clean mountain air and tantalizing meals compliment the friendly atmosphere of this riverside resort. We offer rafting, canyoning and hiking adventures, and a peaceful environment for relaxation and fun. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
The Borderlands Resort Nepal/Gati

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