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Taj Kumarakom Resort and Spa
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Reviewed January 12, 2006

We had the booking for taj garden reatreat kumarkom for 3 days but we cancelled it because didnt find it worth spending so much of money for such a worst hotel. rent is almost 12000 rs per day (inclusive of meal coupons) and what in return u get is unclean surroundings, absolutely disgusting view of a very small and dirty pond! and hopeless attitude of the management.
We asked for the full oney back against cancellation but they returned me only 66% of the amount. It is a worst 5 star resort i have ever seen. There are 4 or 5 better options in the same area. Dont ever think of going to taj kumarkom!!

  • Stayed: January 2005
    • Value
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17  Thank Amit024
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 10, 2005

We stayed at this Taj for two nights in Dec 2004 just prior to the holidays. I was there with my wife, m-in-law and four kids and got rooms on their stationary houseboats. The other reviewers (both of them) had a bad experience but I cannot relate to it at all. Granted this is not a Taj hotel - it's the Taj Garden Retreat which is a notch below what one is used to from the Taj. But our experience was quite to the contrary.

This hotel is on Lake Kumarakom but most rooms do not face the lake - if anything they face the small "pond" within the Taj property. Coconut Lagoon (a better property) and the Lake Kumarakom Resort hotels are next to this hotel. I'd give it a 3-star rating (4-stars for India).

The check-in procedure was a little longer than we hoped (agreed), but we got our boathouse rooms. The rooms are smaller than the standard ones, I suppose, but they were well-equipped and comfortable. We wanted to try something different, so I suppose my expectations were not too high. One of our rooms did not have a working A/C but that got fixed within the hour. Locations of these rooms was great - no noise problems at all except when there was some show on the main lawn across the water. But close the room door and with the A/C on, can't hear that either.

Kids had enough activities there - a large game room with carrom, ping pong, tree house, board games, books/comics, TV/videos. Adjacent was a pottery stall where the kids (and my wife) loved the clay pottery classes and also straw mat-making. One of the days we were there, there was a carnival where local school kids were also invited (or probably they hosted it) - again, kids had a blast including an elephant ride (nominal fee).

The pool was clean enough and empty when we were there. It was open and accessible when we went which was usually in the mornings after breakfast. Nice fitness center. Ayurvedic massage center was overbooked so did not try that. Pool is bit far from the houseboats but some of the villas were close to it. One of the villas has a private pool as well (we met a guest who stayed in there and loved it).

Food options that we were presented with were only buffets. Breakfast was great - huge spread of Indian and western items including made to order eggs. Servers were everywhere such that we didn't even have to pour our own juices... in a buffet!! Some things we ordered at the table (because we were too lazy to get up and do it ourselves), and it was taken care of (sure, after reminding them again - but I thought that was only because of our impatience). Lunch was typically out although we did have one lunch on our departure date - again, quite good and varied choices. Dinners were outside on the lawn so didn't like the mosquitos that accompanied us at the table. But no complaints about the food - not great but not bad either. 6-8 main course choices - what more do you want?? Desserts aplenty and edible.

Didn't hit the bar so can't comment on that. Took the sunset cruise from the hotel - waste of time since there is nothing you can't see from the hotel's own lakeside property that you can from the boat except you're on the water!! Also took the speed boat ride (1/2 hour) - but you can't ride it yourself - as is so common in India, someone does that for you. But that was memorable and take it in the morning. They take you out on the lake and you can chase away the birds creating a majestic sight and also see fishermen catching fish and clams BY HAND - amazing. Bird sanctuary next door for which we awoke at 6AM for a tour - mediocre only because we couldn't see many that close-up (get binoculars). Other activities (free rowboats in hotel's own lake) included. All in all a great experience and would repeat it. Feel sorry for the other reviewers - bad timing maybe.

  • Stayed: December 2004
    • Value
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9  Thank Happy King
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
Bangalore
117
Reviewed December 19, 2004

We were staying at the Taj Cochin, (Dec 11th 2004 to Dec 18th 2004), a wonderful hotel by comparison to the Taj Garden Retreat, Kumarakom. We decided to take the opportunity and try the Kumarakom for a couple of days.

Same story, one night, only 2 rooms available, $320 and $400 each plus heft govt taxes. Although there did not seem to be that many guests around during our brief stay.

We arrived for a nights stay, dripping with perspiration as it was a very humid day with temperatures of 32C. The receptionist (male) spent 10 minutes trying to sell 'all the wonderful options they had to offer, when all we wanted to do was get to the room and have a shower.

Room was fine and grounds are magnificent. Arrived in the ‘bar’ for a drink. The air conditioning was making a noise but that was it.
The bar man was less than polite to my wife - be aware in the backwaters of India women are still lower than a goat.

My wife went for a swim only to be told by the staff that at 15:00 on a day where the temperature was in the 30+C that it was closed for maintenance!!! After a complaint to reception who initially assured me that it was open, the pool was released at 15:30. It was still not as clean as it should be.

Evening meal. We ordered the fish platter - allegedly a Kerala piece de resistance at Rs700. In $ terms this is about $18 and sterling £8. Not a lot by Western standards but expensive in Kerala where the average in a Taj for a main course is Rs 400 - 500. The fish was supposed to be grilled. It was battered and cold. The minute prawns were indifferent.
The sweet, also a Kerala speciality was a banana split in two with a variety of ice creams and with chocolate drizzled over it. The banana was inedible – it was green, unripe. The things are growing in the trees all around and they could not find a ripe one!

The coffee Monsoon Malabar was indifferent and stewed.

By this time we had decided to get out of the place as fast as we could.

At breakfast next day, we selected a table which one of the better members of staff half set for us. There was cutlery missing and no cups. We had to ask for coffee about 4 times before any arrived. We had to ask for milk several times before it came. There were no knives on the table so when some cold toast eventually arrived there were no knives to spread the butter which also took its time to arrive. To get anything done you had to ask the staff several times.
Apart from one or two staff the rest had no clue whatsoever what to do.

We returned to the Taj Cochin, a complete contrast. Read our review of that to get the flavour.

We also have taken the matter up, but with the General Manager of the Taj Cochin so that our comments were not blocked.

Do not go near the place – it is a rip off.

17  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 4, 2004

The grounds of this hotel are quite beautiful, which is a shame as this is a terrible hotel in every other meaningful respect.

At check-in my wife and I had a choice of two rooms. Supposedly no other rooms were available. One had a distinct stench of urine, the other seemed fine until the evening, when the loud noise from a kitchen exhaust fan kept us up at night.

The food was undistinguished and the service was mediocre. When I complained to the management of the kitchen about the semicomatose waitstaff, he turned on his heel and walked away.

To make matters even worse, although our "best of Kerala" Taj Hotels package called for two boat rides into the backwaters, we received none. One was simply omitted; the other we missed because of misinformation provided by the hotel.

Hotel management was simultaneously obsequious and obtuse, smiling and apologetic but totally unresponsive.

While in India we complained to our travel agent, who arranged this wretched stay. The travel agent contacted the hotel, which responded that we had been "happy with the accomodations"! Unbelievable. I spent approximately a half-hour reaming out the hotel staff on the morning of our departure.

We have taken this up with the management of the Taj hotels in the hope that and are hoping that other travellers in the future will not be treated so shabbily in the future. However, there is no guarantee that management will do anything to rectify matters and ensure that other travellers will not be treated similarly. Thus I would strongly recommend that this hotel be AVOIDED at all costs.

  • Stayed: November 2005
    • Value
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28  Thank DavefromNY
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 12, 2018
Google Translation

  • Stayed: April 2018, traveled as a couple
    • Location
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    • Service
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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