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“Cocoa Chic”
Review of COMO Cocoa Island

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COMO Cocoa Island
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Cocoa Island
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 17 March 2014

This is my third visit to the Cocoa Island but the first review that I have written while still a guest on holiday. Five years seperate the last magical visit but do allow for some perspective that repeat visitors may find useful and help those looking for their first Maldivian Break. There is a wonderful sense of timelessness to Cocoa, it beats to its own internal clock. As other resorts go bigger and bolder (more to do and more to see) Cocoa prides itself on providing exactly the same as it has always done, high quality service in an effortless manner and style, staff are trained superbly in understanding if guests want to engage or be left to their own devices. To talk or be still. Having visited in 2005 and 2009 I think the current GM Laurent has raised the game considerably from his team (from restaurant staff to the dive school to cleaners) so that nothing is too much trouble, no request too small or too large. Of course there are subtle changes to indicate that Cocoa is changing (new menus, gym equipment, entertainment) but these are subtle and unlikely to detract old visitors. Cocoa for me is a informal, boutique, and bespoke experience( like a perfectly tailored suit or personalised cocktail) but a gentle warning for those looking for multiple restaurants, adventure clubs, karaoke and nightclubs I suggest searching elsewhere, you will be disappointed with what you find here. Leave Cocoa to us.

Stayed: March 2014, travelled as a couple
Thank PT41
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 March 2014

Dear PT41
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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Reviewed 16 March 2014

My husband and I spent 7 nights at Cocoa in October 2013. We both feel it is a magical place and the perfect way to spend part of our honeymoon.

The bottom line is that this is the best resort we have ever stayed at. The food is excellent and reasonably priced. The ambience of Cocoa is special, all the rooms are overwater, and a relatively small capacity ensures that it does not feel crowded. It is only a 40 min speedboat transfer from Male airport, so a seaplane transfer needed for most other Maldives resorts is not required. There are a wide variety of activities and facilities, and the staff were very friendly.

We researched high and low before booking Cocoa. What drew us in the end was the fact that it only has around 30 rooms (all of which are overwater) with a maximum occupancy of around 75 guests. On many days of our stay, we felt like we were on a private island as we barely saw other guests.

We stayed in a Dhoni suite, the smallest of all accommodation options, but let me assure you it is extremely spacious inside and oversized for 2 people. We absolutely loved the minimalist décor of our room.

We loved how we could just open the sliding doors of our back deck, put on our snorkel gear borrowed for the length of our stay, dip into the crystal green waters and be able to admire the incredible beauty of the reef and many different colourful fish. (This was another reason why we chose Cocoa over other resorts like Gili Lankanfushi, which from reviews indicated that the snorkeling and reef was not as good or as convenient to access).

The service is top notch. Everyone we came into contact with was so friendly, attentive, competent, genuine and pleasant. I’m terrible with names usually, but I remembered the names of everyone I met, from the staff at the front desk and diving centre, to the porters, chefs, waiters, room attendants, masseuses … and I hope to see them all again when we return.

Cocoa has one restaurant only. Don’t let that concern you. As many reviewers have already commented, the food is world class. Fresh, delicious, innovative and diverse. The prices are definitely not unreasonable for the standard delivered. The kitchen is also flexible. On a couple of nights, we didn’t feel like anything on the menu and just asked to have a lobster. This was accommodated and we enjoyed it so much, we requested it again the following night. The kitchen was so considerate, they offered to cook it a different way. The service is also excellent and comparable to the top restaurants in Australia where we live.

There are loads of activities offered. Many are complimentary eg: snorkeling around the island, fish feeding, yoga and meditation class, stand-up paddle, kayak, boardgames (eg: chess, scrabble etc).

The Hydrotherapy Pool is an indoor paradise. When it rained, we just parked ourselves in there. Abdullah the one-legged heron took shelter there also and kept us company.

Out of the paid activities, we highly recommend the cooking class with the very lovely and down-to-earth executive chef Tim de Souza. Tim showed us how to make the most delicious curry and coconut rice. After we scoffed down every last bit of the meal he cooked for us, he offered us a kitchen tour where we got to meet his amazing team of chefs and assistants. He would be happy to hear my husband purchased the Champion juicer after the trip and we’ve been making the “Stress Reliever” as per the recipe he so generously gave us.

We also recommend the catamaran snorkel trip to another reef. If you are lucky as we were, you might spot dolphins and hear their humming on the way.

The massages are excellent. We only planned to get one, but went back for seconds. Try the hot river stone one.

We have not hesitated to recommend Cocoa to our families, friends and colleagues. It’s not glitzy, it’s not loud. It’s effortlessly stylish, minimalist and understated. It feels more homely than commercial, without compromising on the quality of food, service and activities offered. It's just how we like it and we think it is the perfect place for people who are looking to relax and enjoy themselves.

  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank silverana
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 March 2014

Dear silverana
“Merci 1000 fois” for the wonderful comments!!

I cannot start to thank you enough for the glowing 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 in the near future.

Encore Merci!

Laurent Sola
General Manager

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Reviewed 11 March 2014

Nine years of loyalty to Como Hotels and second year to Cocoa Island with plans to return and couple with new property Maalifushi. Absolutely wonderful, the philosophy behind this group is obviously what makes it the haven that it is. The staff are wonderful, the surroundings sublime, the food and choice excellent. It's laid back luxury at its very best! (not even a mosquito)

Room Tip: All accommodation is superb. We had a Dhoni Loft suite which is fun and like having your own houseb...
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  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Julia G
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 12 March 2014

Dear Julia G
Greetings from sunny Cocoa!

Your return to our island means the world to us! We were ever so fortunate to have you back on our beautiful island and surely hope you will be returing again soon.
I am ever so pleased to read your great review today which I will share with the team.
I remain at your service at anytime.
Warm regards
Laurent

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Reviewed 10 March 2014

This was our first trip to Maldives and it has always been our dream vacation to stay in one of the water villas which overlooks the different shades of blue with crystal clear water!

The overall environment, the staff, the activities, the climate (almost except for that day with 2-3 hours rain) all perfect!

ALL the staff at the Water Sports Centre were so friendly and they made great effort to explain the snorkelling 101 information to us and gave us great tips etc.

The staff at the Ufaa restaurant were friendly as well. I want to recognise Vijay and Razeen who went an extra mile to serve us to ensure we enjoyed our meals. They give exceptionally services and they deserve this recognition! Overall, the food served was delicious but I feel they should give more variety of breads/cakes served and should at least have some salad selection during the breakfast time. I miss the homemade mango as well red dates chutney as well as the naan. The curries we tried were yummy!

Another shout-out to Ravindra from the Bar who waited past midnight for us and 2 other couples (whom we met during the stay) to finish our drinks on our last night. We felt bad for making him working overtime and appreciated that he waited patiently for us while we were chatting with our new found friends. Oh, the live performance on our Saturday night dinner was one of the highlights too - the duo sang so well and I really want to shout encore to hear more of their singing after their 2nd set!

We met Mr. Laurent Sola, the GM of the resort who tried to chat with the guests during meals time. I shared some feedback during our stay with him and it was quickly rectified. Mr. Sola had extended flexibility to our room request which we appreciated it very much!

We went for the sunset fishing which was an awesome experience! The staff onboard the boat was so helpful and patient with us. We caught 3 fishes and had 2 fishes cooked for our lunch the next day with our preference of cooking. The sunset was beautiful! Totally worth the experience!

Our perfect holiday….we will be back, for sure! Thank you for making our dream holiday come true!

Room Tip: We were staying at Villa 823 which is nearer to the private jetty for snorkelling as well as the res...
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  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank Paulyn24
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 14 March 2014

Dear Paulyn24
Bonsoir from beautiful Cocoa!

Thank you so much for your fantastic review!
I am ever so glad to read that each and every members of our team met your expectations. I am pleased to know you have enjoyed some nice snorkeling around the island as well as our various offers at Ufaa & Faru Bar.

The sunset fishing is always a wonderful and fun way to unwind before a great dinner orchestrated by our culinary team whilst listening to our acoustic live duo.
I surely hope to have the pleasure of welcoming you back on our paradise Island very soon!

I remain at your service at anytime.
A bientôt
Laurent

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Reviewed 7 March 2014

as before perfect comfort exquisite service and great food.

when we arrived with Burma diarrhoea they were very attentive and
prepared special very light food for us.

reef wonderful

this is a very special place where you really get away from normal life/

Room Tip: 810-810 have upstairs bed and big area over water for sunbathing and shade-and straight into lagoon...
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  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank doctor30
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 8 March 2014

Dear doctor30
Thank you so much for the kind words.
I am ever so glad to know you have enjoyed your holidays with us.
I look forward to the pleasure of welcoming you back on our beautiful island soon.
Warm regards
Laurent

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Reviewed 25 February 2014

Totally magical and perfect in every respect. It's a small island 100 metres by 50 metres with rooms made of dhonis (local fishing boats) hanging over the sea. It's a wonderful place to escape and unwind. But, as if to counter balance the paradise of Cocoa island, the prison island of Maafushi a mile or so away is flood lit at night and casts an eerie glow over the water.

  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank theinspectorcalls
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 2014

Dear theinspectorcalls
Greetings from sunny Cocoa!
Many thanks for your recent review. I am glad to read you have enjoyed your holidays with us and I apologize if the lighting from Maafushi island was of disruption during your evenings with us.

I surely hope to having the pleasure of welcoming you back soon to our beautiful island and thank you again for your patronage.

Warm regards
Laurent Sola

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Reviewed 25 February 2014

When people ask me if I like beach/sand/palm trees, I say NO.
Why? Because once you go to Cocoa Island, everything else in the world PALES in comparison.

Some of the unforgettable moments:
1. It was a full moon on one of the nights, and I slept outside on the deck, water lapping underneath me, completely under the trillions of ocean stars.
2. The first day, after waking up from a long flight, I looked outside my water chalet and found a sting ray! waddling in the water outside my door. Un-be-lievably awesome.
3. Need to be dropped off at the airport? I was dropped off by the hotel's YACHT!

The hotel staff was faultless. You could firmly tell they were capable and fully focused on providing the best experience for all their guests.

The massage I got on the island, the BEST massage I've ever had in my life, and TILL TODAY i'm still trying to find a place that could do a similar massage (warm oil pouring continuously over your forehead, while you get a stretch Thai massage).

Many places you will visit and forget about. Cocoa Island is one of those special places for the rest of your life. The images and feelings will linger for your whole life.

If you've ever seen breathtaking beach screensavers and wondered, 'where on earth is this place?' This is where the pictures were taken! Yes.

Elsherief
FB.com/nationbuilder.prime

  • Stayed: March 2013, travelled with friends
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13  Thank Nationbuilder
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 2014

Dear Nationbuilder
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.

I am also pleased you have enjoyed our various activities on our beautiful island. I will pass on your praise to our team immediately.

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

Laurent Sola
General Manager

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Additional Information about 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: £646 - £1,669 (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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