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“Paradise On Earth”
Review of COMO Cocoa Island

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COMO Cocoa Island
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Cocoa Island
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 20 March 2013

We Picked Cocoa Island because of the reviews on this site , and i was not sure ... but it was everything everyone says and More !I went to Paradise and Heaven on earth , we loved every moment of our 2 weeks there. My partner admitted he was unsure he would not be bored for 2 weeks .. but he did not hardly read his book , i did not even start mine !
We used all the facilities from the Gym to the Catamaran sailing .
When we arrived to the speed boat taking us the the island that would be our Home for 2 weeks i was so excited and the colour of the sea just was amazing.
The staff on arrival were fantastic, they showed us around the island and then our One bedroom Villa which was divide, my only issue was it was a bit tired and could do with a make over the canvas on the wall above our bed needed replacing and we did tell the manger at the the time , and the shower needed some attention , which they did rectify while we were there very quickly !
The food was fantastic and the service was amazing the staff are fantastic, we loved the restaurant and Bar times , we especially loved the Happy hour and the cocktails watching the sunset were amazing, Veejay was fantastic and we had the most divide meal on the beach .
The housekeeping staff were fantastic and the villa was so wonderful every day with towels and the sunbed being sorted even after the showers we had so a BIG thanks to the housekeepers
I wish i could say more but all i can say is we will be back , i have it in my head now and the Island an Reading about how it came about and the History.
I will never forget the staff who were so wonderful from housekeeping to front desk and Taka who taught Nigel to scuba dive ,I am in love with Cocoa Island, i cannot say enough , the staff are amazing anything you ask for you get !i was in Heaven for 2 weeks and i am going back as soon as i can. I can only say this is Paradise and i am going back as soon as i can x

Room Tip: Book either the villa loft suites as they are the best !or the Loft villa. The scuba diving is fanta...
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  • Stayed: March 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Susan B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Laurent_Sola, General Manager at COMO Cocoa Island, responded to this reviewResponded 23 March 2013

Dear Susan B

Greetings from sunny Cocoa!

Thank you for taking the time to share those wonderful comments on your recent stay with us. I am surely glad to hear your holiday was memorable and that each and every one of our team members meet your service expectations.

Undeniably, it is our greatest desire to keep Cocoa Island as the choice resort in Maldives, hence the wonderful feedback you have shared with us will be of great interest for our esteemed guests.

I certainly hope that Cocoa Island have contributed to some fond memories that you and family can hold dearly to and I thank you for your support of Cocoa Island.

Warm regards

Laurent Sola
General Manager

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603 - 609 of 1,332 reviews

Reviewed 3 March 2013

Heavenly stay in a elegant, but casual atmoshphere. Two beautiful house reefs. Turquoise water meets upon an endless sandbar that turns into the world's largest swimming pool. Excellent service. Delicious food. Total relax. This was one of the best stays ever and it will be difficult for other places to ever measure up. However, there is only one gripe: I find it a bit petty for such a place to charge for table water and the food was slow coming out. We would love to return if we get the chance.

  • Stayed: February 2013, travelled with family
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5  Thank Elena K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Laurent_Sola, General Manager at COMO Cocoa Island, responded to this reviewResponded 4 March 2013

Dear Elena K

Greetings from sunny Cocoa!

Thank you for taking the time to share those wonderful comments on your recent stay with us. I am surely glad to hear your holiday was memorable and that you have enjoyed everything our island has to offer.

Undeniably, it is our greatest desire to keep Cocoa Island as the choice resort in Maldives, hence the feedback and suggestions which you have provided on the dinning water and service pace, brought attention to the areas which we may have overlooked. I will be reviewing them with my team on how we could improve.

I certainly hope that Cocoa Island have contributed to some fond memories that you can hold dearly to and I thank you for your support of Cocoa Island.

Warm regards

Laurent Sola
General Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 February 2013

My wife and I stayed at Cocoa Island for our honeymoon in January of 2007... I am shocked that I did not write a review at that time, so I am making up for my omission now... Simply put, this was one of the most beautiful places a person could ever hope to be. A tiny atoll barely reaching above the waterline of the Indian Ocean, it's a one-hour speedboat ride from Mali to the resort (if you are not a fan of boats, particularly high-speed boats, this could be an "interesting" ride. Once you arrive, you will find that you can walk the entire circumference in less than an hour. We stayed in a private villa, for which luxurious is a sad understatement. The finest furnishings, one of the most comfortable beds I have ever slept in, and just outside the back door, two steps descending into the sea... blue as sapphire, and chock-full of neon-glowing rainbow colored fish, small sharks and rays. You didn't even need to snorkel to see the most incredible variety of tropical fish and sea life- they literally swam to your feet. I loved sleeping to the sound of the ocean, and one night, my wife and I slept outside on our private patio, watching the moonlight dance on the waves. The privacy afforded by the resort's perfect design was just what we wanted and needed. The service- impeccable and near-psychic. The first leg of our honeymoon was in South Africa, and sadly, my camera (with over 2,000 photos from safari and Cape Town) was stolen by an unscrupulous car service driver from Wilro Tours. When I arrived at Cocoa Island, I asked to use a phone to call the tour company, on the off chance my camera could be recovered (it wasn't). Well, imagine my surprise when, shortly after we checked into our room, there was a knock on the door and one of the hotel staff was there with a digital camera for me to use for the duration of our stay... with express instructions to keep the memory card as a gift. I am also a musician, and I asked the front desk if there was a guitar on the island... later that day, a beautiful Martin acoustic was delivered to my villa, a loaner from one of the wait staff. This kind of over-the-top desire to please was representative of our entire stay. Every employee and representative of the resort was brilliant, intuitive and friendly. The food was likewise incredible. We were on the breakfast and dinner plan, and trust me, that is more than enough. Everything we ate was world-class and perfectly prepared. One dish (Murgh Makhni, a butter chicken) was so delicious that we literally had it with every meal. There are several activities available, from spa to sailing to snorkeling to even boardgames (my wife and I engaged in a lunchtime Scrabble tournament so vicious that the Director of the resort came one day to watch). Some might cringe at the cost of staying at the resort- however, this is one of the few times that the quality of the product you get will exceed its monetary value. If you are looking for an opportunity to explore or immerse yourself in a new culture, this is NOT the place (although Mali is an Islamic nation, most of the staff at Cocoa Island are from India and do not object to certain Western preferences, i.e. alcohol). But if you are looking for the ultimate opportunity for private time with someone you love, with the best food, service and scenery you could possibly imagine... then please, go to Cocoa Island. You won't forget it.

  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled as a couple
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6  Thank mjf37
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Laurent_Sola, General Manager at COMO Cocoa Island, responded to this reviewResponded 4 March 2013

Dear mjf37

Greetings from sunny Cocoa! I hope this finds you well and thank you for taking the time to write your comments on your 2007 stay with us!

I cannot start to thank you enough for the wonderful review you have just written.

I am very glad to hear you have enjoyed your holidays on our beautiful island and surely hope we will have the chance to welcoming you back here sometime soon.
All your comments and words of encouragement will inspire us to continue our effort for service excellence.

My team and I look forward to welcoming you back to Cocoa Island by Como very soon!

Laurent Sola
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 February 2013

Cocoa Island is a beautiful place The water, the buildings, the lush greenery and the weather were delightful. The food provided in the restaurant is of a very high standard and the staff are pleasant. However for a stay costing what they charge it was only what I would define as just above average. (I was torn between a 3 or a 4 as a result, but decide it was closer to average than very good which are the options available)

We booked a 1 bedroom villa, which is the top room available recommended for just two people, a few months in advance. We requested one of 1001 or 1003, but sadly despite the notice given were offered 1002. No problem here, they were clear that they couldn't reserve specific rooms, however it was a disappointment given the request was many months old.

I've defined the room as "average". The rationale behind this rating is that the room was very tired. The air conditioning unit looked at least a decade old, the art above the bed was full of holes and the overall feel of the room was one that had received a lot of use.

Other minor issues while at Cocoa included:

Room service not being available for 20 minutes on two separate occasions and the food arriving subsequently being cold and of a poor standard. The latter will likely be as a result of the fact that the restaurant was a fifteen minute walk from the room and a lack of common sense

The sun deck not having the sun as soon as noon came and went. On the first day, having established this fact, I asked if there were any rooms that had the sun for longer available. Despite being told upon arrival that they were only at 75% capacity and that almost all the rooms did have the sun for longer - no rooms were available.

The internet is extremely slow. Now this is understandable given the location, but worth raising nonetheless. My only real need for internet was to watch the final of a sporting event, but alas streaming was out of the question.

My wife is a big fan of cocktails (the clue is in the name of her blog - http://cocktailsandcaroline.blogspot.co.uk/) and she was very disappointed with the quality of the cocktails, as was I on a lower plane. They weren't really as described, essentially they tended to taste of solely their largest ingredient and not a lot else.

In terms of the good:

The aforementioned beauty is stunning. It really is a tiny island with dream like sand and water. I loved walking around it.

The service, apart from the room service issues, was very good. Anything requested of them they attempted to fulfil in a prompt manner. We wanted a couple of sunbeds for the front of the villa (to capture that illusive sun) and they were delivered swiftly. We requested numerous other things and many menu changes and all were delivered with a smile.

We requested a late check out as our flight wasn't until 11:30pm and Cocoa kindly offered us a 6pm check out - which was much appreciated.

As a final note when we arrived we asked what the situation with tipping was. We were told that they are not expected, but appreciated. As a result, as you would, we tipped fairly freely because the service was very good. However I was surprised upon checking out that a 10% "Service Charge", subsequently explained as "money that goes exclusively to staff", was on our bill. I have casually calculated that each of the roughly 120 staff would receive $12,500 a year for the "Service Charge" that each guest pays. I think that should be noted when asking upon arrival what the situation with tipping is. It is quite a substantial sum that you are forced to "tip" by paying the service charge.

In summary I was torn between a 3 or a 4 and would like to have given a 3.5. It truly is beautiful and the service is very good. But eventually I decided that if you charge what they do then to get five stars requires perfection and I'm afraid they were a reasonable distance from that.

Room Tip: Avoid 1002 if you like the sun!
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  • Stayed: February 2013, travelled as a couple
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10  Thank beakytraveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Laurent_Sola, General Manager at COMO Cocoa Island, responded to this reviewResponded 5 March 2013

Dear beakytraveller

Thank you for taking the time and initiative to provide me with an account of your recent stay at Cocoa Island by Como.

Whist I am delighted to hear that you have enjoyed the stay with us, I am disappointed that we have failed to carry out some simple yet extremely important requests.

I am sorry that your experience at Cocoa Island by Como did not start with a more positive note due to the room allocation and I am sad to hear you did not find room 1002 to your liking.

I took note of your comments regarding your room service order/delivery as well as your cocktail preferences and will share them with my respective department heads.

I sincerely apologize for the anxiousness you had gone through in regards to the internet speed at the time of your stay and to the tipping and service charge policy on the island which could have been avoided if not for the shortcoming of our internal communication. Indeed, your suggestion to clarify with the guest is definitely appropriate.

Undeniably, it is our greatest desire to keep Cocoa Island as the choice resort in Maldives, hence the feedback and suggestions which you have provided, brought attention to the areas which we may have overlooked. I will be reviewing them with my team on how we could improve.

I certainly hope that Cocoa Island have contributed to some fond memories that you and family can hold dearly to and I thank you for your support of Cocoa Island.

Best Regards

Laurent Sola
General Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 February 2013

I have been over 20 times to the Maldives and 8 times to Cocoa. It is my favourite resort due to the following factors.
1. You have an island feeling
2. Elegant but still a relaxed atmosphere
3. A beautiful reef which is just a 80swim from your room.

THIS IS WHAT THE MALDIVES IS ALL ABOUT

Room Tip: Take the rooms close to the lagoon!
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  • Stayed: February 2013, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank Aidacafewien
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Laurent_Sola, General Manager at COMO Cocoa Island, responded to this reviewResponded 27 February 2013

Dear 5-6stars

Thank you for taking the time to share those wonderful comments on your recent stay with us. I am surely glad to hear your holiday was memorable and that you have enjoyed every little things our beautiful island has to offer.

Your comments and words of encouragement will inspire us to continue our effort for service excellence.

My team and I look forward to welcoming you back to Cocoa Island very soon!

Laurent Sola
General Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 February 2013

This was our second visit to Cocoa Island, this time via the Banyan Tree. (See separate review).
There have been some staff changes at the top, a new general manager, Laurent and his very capable assistant Guistini, both charming, engaging additions.
To my delight the fantastic dive instructor John, was still in residence and was as patient, kind and considerate of my truly ghastly diving skills and extreme nervousness. He took me diving every day, always selecting reefs that were within my capability and steadily building my confidence. We saw a fantastic perfusion of gorgeous fish including an enormous cloud of Banner fish which literally danced in front of us in their hundreds!
The general manager of the restaurant, Chris and the chef were still in situ and are a really fantastic team. Chris made us feel that nothing was too much trouble for him or his team. The food as last year was really fantastic!
The beauty of Cocoa is that it is small, with limited rooms and a real laid back, shabby chic ambiance. This is not a bling resort, it is more like a wonderful warm blanket that wraps you up, cossets you and lulls you into a blissful state of total relaxation. This feeling is created in part by the small number of rooms and size of the island but the main contribution comes from the exceptional staff, who don't seem to have "NO" in their vocabulary. Everybody is made to feel really special and the staff really do seem to genuinely love their island and really care about your experience. This is born out by the number of repeat guests, we re met three other couples, all of whom we had met the previous year. With so much choice in the Maldives and a seemingly ever increasing number of resorts opening, it is testament to the unique charm of this island that so many people continue to return year after year.
My only gripe was that Yoga had been moved to 4pm from 5pm. Please move it back to its original time as 4pm is too early and it is still too hot!!!
Otherwise we were as last year totally in love with Cocoa Island and her wonderful family of staff.

Room Tip: Dhoni Loft suites are fab.
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  • Stayed: February 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Thank fleetoffoot
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Laurent_Sola, General Manager at COMO Cocoa Island, responded to this reviewResponded 27 February 2013

Dear fleetoffoot

Bonjour from sunny Cocoa!
I hope this finds you well and rested after your trip back home.

I wanted to thank you a million times for your wonderful comments and I am so glad to hear your stay was as enjoyable as your previous visits to our beautiful island.
John will be waiting for your next visit and ready for some new underwater adventures!
Chris and Tim will be glad to hear your praise on our restaurant team and quality of food.

Allow me to look into the yoga classes timings as this was a previous request from many of our esteemed guests commenting the original classes were taking place during our much anticipated island sunset.

Thank you again for your patronage and I look forward to welcoming you back to Cocoa Island by Como very soon!

Laurent Sola
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 February 2013

Along with my wife and 2 teenage daughters we were looking for somewhere to escape to over Chinese New Year - as usual we were late booking so our options were limited. We have been to the Maldives about 6 times now but this was our first visit to Cocao Island. After spending a week there I would give it the thumbs up and would certainly return. What really works for it is that it has so few guests (32 villas I think) so there were never any issues scheduing eating, diving, spa etc. The food was also of a very good quality, including many healthy options, and generally made to order - not my usual experience in the Maldives where you usually pay through the nose and get fairly mediocre food! We stayed in a Loft Dhoni which meant that my wife and I had a private room above the main living quarters; it also had an en suite loo and basin but no shower alas. Two trundle beds had been placed in the main living quarters for my daughters which worked well. There was one primary bathroom with a double basin, loo, bath and the one shower for us to share. As Maldivian bathrooms go this one was fairly modest but quite adeqate. The sun-deck was ok and contained 2 loungers and a table with 2 chiars and an unbrella. For 2 people this was fine but we needed to ask for 2 additional sunloungers for our daughters which were not available. Instead we agreed to take 2 x sun lounger matresses and lay them on the deck - worked fine. The house reef rings the island and is a dropoff and although good on both sides it is better on the side with the boat jetties - from a richness of coral perspective. Steps off the Dhoni sundeck into the water gave access to the sea / reef and a handheld freshwater nozzle was placed there to wash off the salt water on return from the sea. The Dive Centre team were excellent and the dives we went on were all within 15 minutes of the hotel. The dives were great with sharks, turtles, rays, eels, octapus and a great mix of small and large reef fish on show. The pool is smallish (abt 25 mtrs) but nice and not busy and the bar is next to it where great cocktails and bar snacks can be had (2 for 1 between 5 and 6pm). The gym was good with several aparatus inc 2 treadmills. The spa treatments I had were fantastic! The very senior staff were all engaging and frequently came to enquire as to all being well and were most helpful in addressing any requests. On departure we had a night flight and whilst we could not secure a late checkout the shower facilites at the spa worked well and it was very pleasing that the boat departure time was reasonable (8pm for an 11.25pm flight) as in other resorts I have been ushered away leaving me to kill 4+ hours at what is a fairly small airport.

Room Tip: For more privacy try and stay in villas to the right of 820 (821 etc)
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  • Stayed: February 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
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7  Thank theleadbitters
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Laurent_Sola, General Manager at COMO Cocoa Island, responded to this reviewResponded 27 February 2013

Dear theleadbitters

Greetings from sunny Cocoa!

Thank you for taking the time to share those wonderful comments on your recent stay with us. I am surely glad to hear your holiday was memorable and that each and every one of our team members meet your service expectations.

Undeniably, it is our greatest desire to keep Cocoa Island as the choice resort in Maldives, hence the wonderful feedback you have shared with us will be of great interest for our esteemed guests.

I certainly hope that Cocoa Island have contributed to some fond memories that you and family can hold dearly to and I thank you for your support of Cocoa Island.

Warm regards

Laurent Sola
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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Additional Information about COMO Cocoa Island

Address: Makunufushi
Phone Number:
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: £600 - £1,861 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — COMO Cocoa Island 5*
Number of rooms: 33
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
COMO Cocoa Island 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 33 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. COMO 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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