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“The good, the bad and the funny” 2 of 5 bubbles
Review of Swagath Holiday Resorts

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Swagath Holiday Resorts
Ranked #26 of 51 Hotels in Kovalam
Beverley, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
76 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 74 helpful votes
“The good, the bad and the funny”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 March 2008

We stayed at the Swagath for 2 weeks and were allocated a room in the old block initially. The room was clean but a little jaded - the A/C was noisy and did not work properly. It was situated near to the floor and appeared to be held in place with masking tape, the really strange thing was the way the full length curtains had a square cut out of them to accommodate the unit when they could easily have just been cut shorter - India at its funniest!

We asked about rooms in the new block and were told that there was one available 2 days later. The room was lovely, one of the best I've had in India, but we found to our dismay that this air conditioning did not work at all. Maintenance was called and they said it would be repaired in 2 days (this did not happen). Our rep was really good and found a mobile A/C unit - unfortunately it did not work well and was just too noisy to use during the night. We were offered another room in the old wing but this did not even have a balcony, and so decided to sweat it out for another 2 days until another room in the new wing was available. Our 3rd room was great - nice room with lovely cool A/C, we were in heaven!!

The reception staff were very friendly and helpful and the cleaning girls did an excellent job, however the staff in the breakfast room either did not have a clue about running the place or were just plain lazy.

It was very rarely busy, sometimes we were the only ones there, but we found that the tables had not been set and the waiters seemed happy to let us find crockery for ourselves. The jam situation was really odd - 2 jars on the buffet table, usually with a sticky spoon and sometimes ants having their breakfast jam too - I think there must have been a shortage as some days you had to take your plate over to the service station and have jam measured out to you!!

The only day we had an efficent restaurant service was when some officials vistied, then they couldn't do enough for us.

The roof top has a lovely open air restaurant with great views but we did not eat there, although we did have a few drinks there in the evening.

Ground floor rooms 501 - 506 are the best and once we had finally got the A/C sorted we had a good holiday and even found the breakfast service funny, but needless to say they did not get a tip as we felt, along with other guests, that they really did not give us good service.

Not a bad hotel if you get one of the new rooms. Management need to tighten up on maintenance and breakfast service.

  • Liked — Our room when we finally got things sorted out
  • Disliked — Breakfast service
  • Stayed February 2008, travelled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Check-in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Terri1402
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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109 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (28)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Cardiff, Wales
Level Contributor
15 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 January 2008

The hotel is in Kovalam (rather than Trivandrum as the description suggests). Our tour operator (Thomas Cook) informed us, prior to departure, that the accommodation is no longer affiliated to Best Western. Our rep told us that the manager was keen to respond to any feedback to improve the hotel, and by the end of our stay we had no reason to doubt this.

The good:
A small but reasonable selection of breakfast buffet (Indian and continental) and the kitchen were happy to provide other foods (such as omelettes, scrambled eggs).
Fantastic views from the new rooftop restaurant over the coconut trees towards the lighthouse – highly recommended to enjoy a beer as the sun sets. We only ate there once but the food was very good.
Very helpful and pleasant staff.
Well placed to go down to Grove Beach – a much more relaxing beach than Lighthouse beach (instead of turning left out of the hotel entrance to go down to lighthouse and Hawah beaches, turn right then immediately left on to the main road and follow the road past the Leela and the Mosque, and you’ll see the beach umbrellas ahead – sunbed prices negotiable!).
Nice pool – as the hotel is perched on a hilltop, the pool is very quiet (except for the cheeky crows which will try and nick any food you leave out) – a really pleasant alternative to the beach.

The bad:
There is a steep climb from the beach to the hotel (known as Cardiac Hill) - We didn’t find it an issue though some people seem to feel like they’re climbing Everest.
The old wing (where we ended up) is a bit jaded and not all rooms have balconies – other guests told us that the new rooms were really nice.
Breakfast could be chaotic (depending on who was serving) as the right utensils weren’t always put out - We found this a pleasant quirk of being in an area where tourism hasn’t been overly developed, though some guests got pretty uptight.

Tipping hints:
It was suggested to us that we tip 10-15% for meals (the Swagath includes a Service Charge at the restaurant but we suspect that none of this gets to the waiter, so we left the waiter an additional tip – it’s 10-15% of very little after all).
10-20 rupees per bag for the porters seemed acceptable.
We didn’t listen to an earlier review and left a tip for the cleaners in the room on the day of departure – as we left the room one of the non-cleaning staff was in there like a shot! Give tips directly to the cleaners (if you can) or maybe leave smaller daily amounts on the pillow.

  • Stayed January 2008, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Check-in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Andrew_McQuilly
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
wakefield, england
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 January 2008

Just stayed at this hotel from 14th to 29th dec. Arrived at 9a.m and luggage was taken to our room while we enjoyed our first breakfast. This was really nice. tea/coffee, toast, jam, omelettes, any cooked eggs, fruit juice, porridge, bacon and some indian breakfast. We thought the breakfast was great and set us up for the day. The hotel is at the top of the hill, 10 mins from beach, but is a big pull coming back and with two way traffic papping horns at each other!!! The hotel staff were extremely friendly and helpful and when we complained we hadn't got an earl;y morning call, the engineer came immediately to check the phone and someone had turned off the phone underneath, but it was sorted straight away. The laundry service was inexpensive and the clothes came back absolutely spotless. The only gripe we had, was that we booked this holiday in Dec 2006 and not at any point before we travelled were we told that the hotel had lost it's best western status. That was the travel agents fault not the hotels. We really enjoyed this holiday and cannot complain about this hotel We were sceptical having read previous reviews, but it seems things have drastically improved or we would have been out of there.

  • Liked — friendly staff
  • Disliked — on a steep incline from the beach
  • Stayed December 2007, travelled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Check-in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
3 Thank sueprice2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SwagathHolidays, Manager at Swagath Holiday Resorts, responded to this review, 15 July 2015
Dear Sir,
Greetings from Swagath Holiday resorts, Kovalam.. We sincerely thank you for staying with us and putting very good remarks about our resort and staff. We look forward for you to stay with us again and again.
Warm Regards,
Team Swagath Holiday Resort
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
England
Level Contributor
52 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 8 March 2007

Visitors to this hotel should be aware that the older part of the Hotel, to the right of the front entrance as you look at it, has rooms with interconnecting doors. These doors offer absolutely no insulation against noise from the adjoining room. If, in our case, you had a succession of large family groups passing through, the noise is unbearable.

Because these rooms were obviously originally built as ‘ suites ‘ with lounge and bedroom, only every other room has a balcony. Our party found this to their cost although travel firms advertised all rooms with a balcony.

Further more, the air conditioning system in this older wing seems to work on a communal basis. The upshot is that although the air coming through the air-conditioning ducts is marginally colder than that already in the room, it barely counteracts the heat coming from the fridge.

It has to be said that the ceiling fan gives a good impression of cooling but my digital thermometer in the bedroom never dipped below 27.5 c for the entire fortnight and was usually at about 28.8 c

If you are in the newer block you will enjoy lovely modern air conditioning, no connecting doors and balconies overlooking the pool. There are obviously two new floors being added to the new wing
( although no workers were evident in the fortnight I was there) but, at the moment, the majority of rooms are in the old wing.

The hotel is 5 minutes walk to the beach and 20 coming back due to ‘cardiac hill’, but this isn’t a real problem. A local tricycle taxi will get you up the hill for 40 – 60 rupees.

The hotel is clean, staff are friendly and food is good, although local cuisine is better and cheaper. Beer is 125 rupees in the hotel compared with 80 in beachside bars and restaurants for instance.

Breakfast is a shambles with staff having to be constantly asked to go for cups, plates knives, milk……. Well just about anything.

The pool is good although down many steps. The massage service excellent. Money/ travellers’ cheques are readily changed at the proper going rate.

The hotel arranges excursions at a fraction of the cost of your travel firm……… and they go to the same places.

If you want to leave the cleaners a tip and you are leaving at night, don’t leave the money on the dressing table, as many Brits’ do …………… give it to the cleaners during the day. The night porters have this well sussed and they are in your room before you are down the corridor!

Not a very impressive stay but it may have been better in the new wing.

Stayed March 2007
Helpful?
2 Thank CheeseSlicer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

Travellers are raving about these Kovalam hotels

Stoke Poges, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
83 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 77 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 March 2007

We have recently stayed at this hotel and was not impressed at all, run by a not very nice general manager, due to a mix up with my stay dates, l had him shouting at me at the front desk, where he demanded l came from my bed (suffering from Deli Belly) l had to move to another room there and then or l was told to get out of the hotel. The hotel is on a very steep slope 45 steps to the pool ( l was told just a few) up to the lobby and then another 55 to the top floor no lift. the breakfast room was not at all inviteing with a selection of warm juices cold toast handled by the staff and scrambled egg prepared and left on the table to go cold, the tea was excellent. Most days at mid morning a fire was lit just over a small wall next to the pool sending a smoke screen across the swimming pool, even after complaints it did not stop, next to the pool and behind a green netting screen was a rubbish dump, during our stay a wall had to be rebuilt as it was so dangerous it could have collaped, quite a few of the bricks in the steps were loose or missing, as this hotel is used be British tour operators ( one of their reps had not been able to communicate for over a month with the manager) l have just heard that the Best wetern have now withdrawn it from their group of hotels. l have taken pictures of what l have repoted here and will try to add them at a later date.

Stayed January 2007
Helpful?
3 Thank derekcox66
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chorley, Lancs
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 March 2007

My husband and I stayed at this hotel in February 2007 for a 2 week holiday. The hotel is in the centre of Kovalam and convenient for the beach, restaurants and shops. However, you do need to walk up a steep hill, nicknamed cardiac hill, when returning from the resort centre. The hotel is having a new extension - 1 of 3 floors complete. The new rooms are very nice and overlook the swimming pool and have views of the lighthouse. The older rooms are in need of a face lift and do not have pleasant views. We stayed on B & B, and are glad we did not book any other meals, as the breakfast was a bit hit and miss, sometimes buffet - sometimes waiter service. The buffet was rather limited, although if you asked the waiters they would do their best to provide what you asked for, but things were not always available.

The pool is quite small and it is too hot to sit there for long as it is does not attract much breeze. It is not used much by residents and possibly for this reason it is not cleaned out as often as it should be.

The staff are very friendly and helpful and most of them speak good English. I think the hotel is more suitable for business clients who are staying for a couple of nights.

The Hotel Samudra is in a prettier location, has beautiful gardens, and has a good pool. There are several good restaurants nearby or you can get a taxi into town for about £1. The beach here is much quieter than any in the centre of Kovalam.

The beach in Kovalam is nice, try the one to the right of the car park, it is quieter and has two very good restaurants for lunch where the food is excellent and cheap - about £3 for 2 people if you choose the vegetable curry, fish and chicken are a little more depending on what you have.

Stayed February 2007
Helpful?
2 Thank Jan&Gaz07
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SwagathHolidays, Manager at Swagath Holiday Resorts, responded to this review, 15 July 2015
Dear Sir,
Greetings from Swagath Holiday resorts, Kovalam.. We sincerely thank you for staying with us and putting very good remarks about our resort and staff. We look forward for you to stay with us again and again.
Warm Regards,
Team Swagath Holiday Resort
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
San Francisco
Level Contributor
10 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 24 January 2007

The Best Western Swagath is an older property with only central AC in the okder wings of the building. It's at the top of the hill directly above the Kovalam beach - good for access to either lighthouse or the other beach. Also near the Leela 5* hotel too. For US$75 a night it was overpriced and the included breakfast was marginal. If you stay the rooms in the new wing (numbered 500-515 and 400's) all are brand new with balconies overlooking the pool, in-room individual AC units and are very clean.

  • Stayed January 2007
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Check-in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank Bradley R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
SwagathHolidays, Manager at Swagath Holiday Resorts, responded to this review, 15 July 2015
Dear Sir,
Greetings from Swagath Holiday resorts, Kovalam.. We sincerely thank you for staying with us and putting very good remarks about our resort and staff. We look forward for you to stay with us again and again.
Warm Regards,
Team Swagath Holiday Resort
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Swagath Holiday Resorts

Property: Swagath Holiday Resorts
Address: Near Eves Beach, Kovalam 695527, India
Region: India > Kerala > Kovalam
Amenities:
Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#5 Top resorts Hotel in Kovalam
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:3 star — Swagath Holiday Resorts 3*
Number of rooms: 24
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Imagine an intimate resort that lets you get away from it all, where you are pampered with only the finest indulgences. Whatever your ideal - a secluded honeymoon, total rejuvenation, a feast of traditional cuisine, incredible entertainment, or simply the lure of our warm Kerala hospitality. Savor nature's beauty at its soothing best... at Kovalam, the internationally acclaimed beach resort on India's exotic south - western coast; the fascinating ‘emerald paradise’ situated very near the capital city of Kerala state. You can have everything here.. dreamy, lazy days, basking in the soothing gentleness of nature, under the shade of swaying palm trees...perhaps a spot of wind surfing, or speedboat racing, or an exhilarating ride on the choppy sea with a traditional fisherman in his catamaran ...even an absolutely relaxing, rejuvenating Ayurvedic massage, using natural herbal oils.... reach out to a never before, total holiday experience! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Swagath Holiday Hotel Thiruvananthapuram (Trivandrum)
Swagath Holiday Resorts Kovalam, Kerala
Best Western Thiruvananthapuram (Trivandrum)
Thiruvananthapuram (Trivandrum) Best Western

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