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“Paradise exist!!!”
Review of COMO Cocoa Island

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COMO Cocoa Island
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Cocoa Island
Certificate of Excellence
silverstone
Level Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Paradise exist!!!”
Reviewed 28 January 2008

Better late, than never… visited the island last year, and returning in 4 weeks :-)

Cocoa Island was how I would like to imagine Paradise! It is virtually all beach, complemented by palms and a lagoon of tranquil sky-blue water.

Our villa nestled amid the azure blue water, and where on waking we would look for the resident marine life who lived underneath it, which would be there waiting for cookies!

I never tired of the fantastic view from the restaurant, this is situated next to the infinity edge pool, which blends seamlessly with the sea beyond. As for the experience in the restaurant…. here you would presented with food that was incredibly fresh, imaginative and varied as well as extremely tasty.

All of this is complimented by personnel who are friendly, amenable, and professional and had a sense of humor

Stayed September 2007
Helpful?
7 Thank Tillie19
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Australia
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 January 2008

I have been to the Maldives once before in my capacity as a travel reporter. My crew and I sampled Club Med Kani and then The 'Rania Experience' (at that time upwards of $15,000 per night) in 2006. Both properties catered to different travel tastes and budgets, but in both places we had perfect out-of-the-brochure weather and we all agreed the Maldives were right up there on the 'paradise on earth' destination lists. So how do you impress a seasoned travel show host on her first actual holiday after three years of flitting around the globe and being indulged by resort PR's showcasing their absolute best? Go to Cocoa Island - that's my answer. My initial concern was that we were booked for eight nights (might get a tad bored .. anyone who's been to the Maldives knows those islands are kinda weeny) and what if it rains? Surely the place is only mind blowing if it turns on that azure blue sky/crystal clear water/powdery white sand picture postcard perfection day after day? Well, it rained every single one of those eight days. Unforgiving and relentlessly, it stormed like crazy at night, rain cutting sideways into the villa, thunder, lightening the whole boom crash opera. We couldn't have cared less. We still managed to snorkel every day off the reef and take a cheeky skinny dip at 6am at sunrise before scaring any staff or other guests (although being a Muslim country I shouldn't really encourage nudity). Being Christmas the resort was fairly full but we managed to get treatments every day. The boyfriend opted for the Thai massage from Sarah daily and I sampled a variety, the Indonsian massage was divine and the treatment where they pour oil in a constant stream over your head and then rub you with delicious smelling powders was hysterical - if you had thrown me in the tandoor afterwards I would have tasted delicious!. We had a little work out in the gym (yes a proper, airconditioned well equipped gym - even with a selection of smokin' dance tracks to work out to!), spent hours in the hydrotherapy pool - incredible! We walked around the island, it could have been snowing for all we cared - it was totally, utterly beautiful. We did the yoga at 5 in the evening even though I would be distracted during a 'down dog' by passing pods of playing dolphins. We Kayaked around the island and went sunset fishing and caught ourselves a variety of reef fish. On the boat as we watched our catch flip around in the bucket we chose from a menu how we wanted them prepared that evening. Once ashore the fish were whisked off to chef and presented to us - one a delicious sashimi, one steamed with soy, ginger and shallot and finally a fabulous fishy island curry. We watched DVD's on the nights the weather was so violent that we would have been blown off the pathways if we had attempted to go to the restaurant, but the room service guys were happy to brave mother nature to feed us. Our organic spaghetti bolognaise was a touch tepid when it arrived, understandably, but as a result we were not billed for that meal. The food overall was brilliant, and this was a concern that for eight nights eating in the one place that we would become uninspired. Not a chance. The variety was incredible and (boyfriend has been known to be a fairly fussy eater) the range of organic and gluten free and diary free was diverse and delicious. Tip - make an absolute pig of yourself at breakfast - it's delicious and included! When one decided to go against the grain of pure health (as I did every day) there were daily specials on the dessert menu that left me craving more and more (thanks chef for the chocolate souflee night after night even though it wasn't always on the menu). We couldn't fault any of the dishes we ordered and were blown away by the freshness and flavours - we discovered a herb garden on the island which proves they take the preparation and the whole organic food thing seriously.
The dwellings were all brilliantly appointed, we checked out all the types of accomodation although we stayed in a one bedroom villa. The only complaint with the positioning of our villa was that after about 10am you wouldn't get sun on your deck should you want to sun bake - but sun wasn't putting in an appearance on this trip so not really an issue for us. The rooms are stunning, the beds comfortable and the bathrooms huge - wouldn't have minded a bathroom door for the actual toilet for privacy however! There are just some things even the closest couples don't really need to share. So all in all we were very impressed indeed - the staff were incredibly helpful and polite and would go beyond the call of duty to help. One night our turn down guy sat outside our villa for over an hour in a driving tropical storm waiting for us to leave for dinner! We discovered him trying to sheild himself from the elements on our way out ... poor fellow! (BIG tip for him).
Our favorite was 'Karma' he was so helpful and sweet and attentive without being overbearing and he was also genuine. On one of our last days we managed to squeeze about four hours of sunshine out of the gloomy clouds, and boyfriend, who was a first time visitor to the Maldives, at least got a glimpse of what this place can be like on a non monsoonal/cyclonic day. So I think that might have convinced him that we need to return when the satelitte isn't showing scary looking swirling activity all over the region.
We left on Christmas Eve for Bali to stay in Cocoa Islands sister resort the Como Shambala in Ubud. Will get on to reviewing that which also a wonderful experience despite the flooding, landslides and more torrential downpours..... oh well ... mother nature might not have turned it on for us but the folk at Cocoa Island certainly did.

Stayed December 2007
Helpful?
18 Thank TheFlyingPossum
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
BR
Level Contributor
12 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 January 2008

I worked a lot to chose a hotel to go. And this site was soooo useful to me that I couldn't come back without sharing my feelings about Cocoa. Hope it's useful to someone else.

It was very hard to choose between so many resorts. But Cocoa was the only one which hadn't any complaint at all on the reviews. Even the slightly down points sounded great for me,such as, no structure for children, mostly seafood. With no doubt, it's place for lovers! If you can afford, go to a Loft villa. You'll feel like a house on a desert island!

I would like to highlight the points that made my choice and were over my expectations:
1) the reefhouse. Going snorkeling on your own, whenever you want, not depending on boat schedules, and seeing such beautiful marine life, in a turquoise quiet sea, is out of the world!
2) the attention with the food. Although it's expensive, you can rely on what you're eating because everything is very fresh! The fruits I had there are unforgetable.and I have wonderful fruits where I live (Brasil).
3) the staff really wants you to be happy and feel at home. Maybe they've realized this is a guarantee of their jobs.
4) the art of doing nothing. I'm a very active person. So I was afraid of being bored in 5 whole days on an island of 200 x 50 m. But, what a surprise, it's magic! You can do nothing and be very happy, specially when you can eat when you're hungry, go into the water whenever you feel like (even in the low tide, it's just a walk from your bungalow to the far end of the jetty and forget about the tide). I didn't take any tours. What for?? The dolphins were there, dancing in front of us. Try a different spot for snorkelling? What for, with so many fishes and corals on your sight with no effort?
5) No warms, no mosquitos, no diseases, good water on the bathroom, mineral water as much as you wish, no problems for anything you need.
6) I've never been to Maldives before. I imagine it's like that everywhere. But, I have the feeling Cocoa is really very special. If I come back some day, it will be very difficult to try some other resort. Will it be so special???
7) A tip: try to go on full moon. It really makes a difference!

Finally, it's great to have a dream come true, specially if it's even better than you've been dreaming!

  • Liked — the whole set, and particularly the house reef so close
  • Disliked — nothing
  • Stayed November 2007, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
15 Thank LumarBr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hong Kong
Level Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 December 2007

We stayed with Cocoa Island for our first two nights of our honeymoon trip last month. We didn't have much time to experience the whole island just in two days but the overall experience was great.

There are 4 villas in the resort and we stayed in one of those. The villas are perfect choice for honeymooners cause they sit at the far end and you won't be able to see people right next door when you are sitting on your private sun deck. Another good thing to stay in a villa is that you can open up all the windows in the living room and let the breezes to come through.

The good that about Cocoa Island I would say is the food they provided. Of course, the price was not cheap but it did worth the money. We had a Oysters plate, tuna tartar as starters; a steak and a deep fried coral fish as main courses on night. The food quality was comparable or even better than a 5-star hotel in a city (cause we didn't expect such a high quality of food can be delivered on such a small, remote island in Maldives).

For those massage and spa lovers, I would strong recommend you to book your treatment ahead. We didn't have a chance to try out their signature treatment cause they were fully booked.

Everything was fantastic except one thing that we were not very happy about. There was just one restaurant in the resort and you can either sit indoor or outdoor. We decided to enjoy our first breakfast outdoor so that we could feel the sea breeze and hopefully eat under the sun. We requested to sit outdoor and the waiter wasn't that happy cause all the tables outside had not been set up. He of course had no choice but set up the table for us without a smile. After sitting for a while, we started to feel a few raindrops and I asked the same waiter "Do you think the rain is coming? If yes, we might need to move inside..." and again he had no smile and answered "Yes, the rain is coming. Thus we don't suggest our guest to sit outdoor." We were shocked by his rude reply but we did nothing cause we didn't want to ruin our holiday. But I would expect a better customer service should be rendered in this high end resort.

Anyway, if you are thinking to go to Maldives.....Cocoa Island definitely is one of your choice.

Stayed November 2007
Helpful?
5 Thank AJ_HongKong
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Blackheath Wanderer
Level Contributor
9 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 December 2007

All I can say is that the wonderful reviews that I read before I arrived are completely true. I particularly enjoyed lying on our double sunbed on our private deck (we stayed in a Dhoni villa). We have travelled quite a bit and couldn't find fault anywhere. However, this is for couples only. We have four children and I think they would feel quite bored after a while. I can't wait to return.

  • Liked — Large private sundeck. It was quite simply but very comfortable. Free water.
  • Disliked — Slightly unnerving at night during a storm when my bed began to shake.
  • Stayed December 2007, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
4 Thank BlackheathWanderer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
milano
Level Contributor
18 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 December 2007

8th - 15 th Dec 2007
Cocoa Island is a fantastic resort, not only for the beauty of the island (the reef is one of the best I've seen), but also for the staff. They are really so kind. Any request is fulfilled and the services are excellent.
The privacy is a must. In some moment you fell like the one on the beautyful island. The rooms are large and well designed, with a cool interior design. There are alsa huge villas, but I've seen only from the external. The reef is amazing: any kind of tropical fish is under of you. You'll spend a lot of time in dive and photos!. Finally, the spa is a first class level. It offer a great time for your realax. last but not least the high quality of the chef and his staff at restaurant. The only "negative" thing, let me say, is the lack of structures for children. In any way, if you go to Cocoa, you'll discover an amazing nature and a high level staff and resort.

  • Stayed December 2007, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
5 Thank chirs
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hong Kong
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 November 2007

My wife and I spent just three days and nights at Cocoa Island in mid November. Kind of a short stay but since this was our first visit of Maldives, it takes on some experimentation characteristics and the hunger for more is a strong driver for a rerun. My general comment is that you don’t have to go the haven to find paradise, Cocoa Island is the paradise on earth. Cheesy as hell but true.

Instead of repeating all the praises served up by fellow visitors, I would like to share some tips about vacationing at Cocoa Island from our own experiences.

(a) Room upgrade. Since this was our first visit of Maldives, I thought we would go slow and build it up from there. So I booked the Dhoni Suite, the most basic accommodation. But when shown inside the door of our Dhoni, I realized it was a Dhoni Loft Suite, with a huge living room and bath room at the first floor and the bed room at the second floor. It was an automatic upgrade that I did not expect but fully appreciated. And the honeymoon Champaign was chilling in an ice bucket on the table. I must thank our travel agent Singapore Airline Holidays and Cocoa Island management for this surprise gift. Our vacation scored a fantastic start.
(b) Late checkout. Our departure flight was at 23:25, almost mid night local time. The normal checkout time is at 12:00 noon everyday. No need to ask or beg, on the day prior to our departure, we received a letter that automatically extended our checkout time to 18:00 for the 20:00 speed boat ride to the airport. I later find out that it is Cocoa Island’s policy that if rooms are available, automatic late checkout is extended to all guests. I read online that in some resorts, you either pay for the extension, or spend half a day waiting in public areas for the departure ride, or leave early for Male for a local tour to kill time. This policy sets Cocoa Island apart from many other resorts. We had an extra half a day to swim, feed the fish, relax and hit the spa.
(c) Unlimited fresh water supply. There were two bottles in our second floor bedroom, two in the bathroom, two in the living room and one big bottle by the coffee machine. And it is Cocoa Island’s policy that you simply ask for more if running out. Fresh water is in dear supply at Maldives. I read online that in some resorts, supply is limited. Some visitors even bring their own to save money. Again, Cocoa Island scores a winner with this policy. We never out drank those standard supplies though.
(d) Time slows down at Maldives. It doesn’t fly by. We are from Hong Kong. And Maldives standard time is three hours slower than Hong Kong’s. So basically, we were eating breakfast in our normal lunch hour, and dinner in our bedtime. That made the day last longer and we seemed to have gained more hours daily to enjoy our stay.
(e) Get up early and do some stuff you don’t normally do. My working habit is to get up at 6:00 daily to check out the overseas markets. As Maldives is three hours behind Hong Kong, guess what, my biological clock woke me up everyday at around 3:00 local time. Here is what I would do at the wee hours of the day at Maldives. Get up and head to the sundeck at the back of your suite, lie down and admire the sky full of millions of stars. The moon then has already passed beyond your roof so it won’t outshine other stars. A binocular is a valuable toy at this moment. You are certain to catch numerous shooting stars with your naked eyes. Have your wishes handy and wish away. If you get tired, sleeping under the blanket of stars is also cool.
(f) Get up early and do some stuff you don’t normally do. Hey, it is still dark and you are wide awake, what to do? Try skinny dipping in the turquoise Indian Ocean under the stars for a while. As far as I understand, Maldives is still a Muslim country. And in broad daylight, such an adventure is out of the question. Strip in the dark, slip down the stairs off the sundeck, the lights around the stairs will expose you for a brief second or two, and you are home free about three meters out. Then splash sway. I assure you, you are very safe…But around 5:30, you’d better cover up because the sunrise will draw fellow visitors out of their suites to take pictures, and you don’t want to be spotted that way.
(g) Get up early and do some stuff you don’t normally do. On the first morning after arrival when I took an early swim, I saw a two meter long mantra ray gracing the bottom of shallow waters and a giant sea turtle swimming by me. The next morning, the surprise was a school of dolphins show jumping just off the jetty.
(h) Best snorkeling places. At Cocoa Island, you probably don’t need to go on a snorkeling trip because the house reef is so close to your suite. The Dhoni and Dhoni Loft Suites occupy the best spots leading out to the house reef. Even in low tide, you can swim for just some 30 meters to reach it, which features a steep drop-off to the bottomless ocean. At shallower waters, tones of fish already take your breath away. And at the edge of the drop-off, you can see more and awaits bigger fish to pop up from the deep ocean. Another good spot is the jetty at the end of the Dhoni lineup. The jetty is positioned right at the edge of the drop-off, so you can just bring your snorkeling equipment there, jump in and save the swimming. You don’t even need the flippers, just hold on to the foundation of the jetty and watch schools of fish swimming by. It is surreal, like you are watching a Discovery movie. An underwater cam proves handy then.
(i) Bring a pack of biscuits. No, it is not for your snack, but for feeding the fish. Sitting on the stairs off your sundeck or standing in the water, or sitting on the edge of the jetty facing the drop-off, the biscuits will boost your popularity with the colorful fish. In my case, my Dhoni Suite attracted the most fish during our stay. Besides, you don’t have to sneak out any bread after breakfast. Warning: if you submerge you fingers holding the biscuits, there could be knuckleheaded fish to take a bite of your fingers anxiously.
(j) Yoga class. Every day from 17:00 to 18:00 except Monday, there will be free Yoga class in the open air hut on the Island. My wife went the first day while I opted for a swim, and she was so happy when she got back and managed to drag me along the next day for my first Yoga session ever. There were seven of us ranging from newbie to veteran. The Yoga master took care of all of us and I survived my first Yoga class. Don’t miss this by taking a nap during that time of the day.
(k) Bring your notebook. What? Notebook at Maldives? Get out of here! I kid you not, the reception area and the Suites have free Wifi access so you can check your e-mails and portfolios daily. But that’s not what it is best used for. After we checked out and waited for the transport, we walked to the tip of the Island off the restaurant, under the full moon and Indian Ocean breeze, we watched the first episode of Jericho on DVD. That’s another unplanned yet unforgettable experience.

I already write too much. You have to experience Cocoa Island yourself, I know I will, again. To wrap it up, here is probably my best tip: once you have been to Cocoa Island, be very choosy about your next Maldives destination or you risk setting yourself up for disappointment by comparison.

  • Liked — Unique, top notched management.
  • Disliked — Can't think of.
  • Stayed November 2007, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
20 Thank sniping
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about COMO Cocoa Island

Property: COMO Cocoa Island
Address: Makunufushi
Region: Maldives > Kaafu Atoll > South Male Atoll > Cocoa Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Cocoa Island
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:5 star — COMO Cocoa Island 5*
Number of rooms: 33
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Cocoa Island by COMO is a private island in the Maldives and offers measured simplicity in its design. Wrapped in white sandy beaches and clear turquoise waters, Cocoa Island is in close proximity to some of the best dive sites in the world. The tranquil setting is enhanced by the understated elegance of Cocoa Island’s 27 rooms, which resemble local dhoni fishing boats and feature direct access to the shallow lagoon. Ufaa, the resort’s restaurant, serves fresh local produce and seafood cooked in the Keralan style, while Faru bar overlooks the pristine infinity-edge pool. Cocoa Island’s spa, COMO Shambhala Retreat, offers rebalancing treatments, including Ayurveda, reflexology and a range of recuperative massages and facials. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Cocoa Island Hotel South Male Atoll
Cocoa Island Maldives
Hotel Cocoa Island

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