We stayed here for 2 nights jut before Christmas. It is very remote and the scenery is beautiful. We were happy to walk around the grounds and also around the area - not much to see other than natural habitat, but we were very happy with that as it is stunning. There was no swimming pool that we could see, but that didn't bother us. We arranged an auto rickshaw, via the manager, to get to the main bird sanctuary and it was quite easy to arrange one by ourselves to come back. Our rooms were comfortable and clean - we didn't have any hot water however, and we weren't able to resolve this with the staff. This didn't spoil our stay, but other people may be less happy.
The food was excellent and we had dinner there both nights. It wasn't clear to us that we would have to have the buffet dinner when more guests arrived - personally I would have preferred to have had a choice about this, but it was fine and the food was equally good. The breakfast buffet was also really enjoyable.
The only criticism we had was around payment, and I haven't decided whether this was due to a language barrier or something more deliberate. When we were presented with our final bill, we queried the amount as it was twice what we were expecting to pay. We went back to our room to check our on-line booking, and returned to query this with the manager. What we had agreed to pay at the point of booking was printed off on an email and presented to us - but someone had hand-written 'x 2' on it (as we had 2 rooms I assume), and hand written a different final amount underneath it. When we came back with our copy of the booking, we somehow managed to relay that we were not willing to pay more than we had agreed on line, and this was accepted - without argument.
I really don't want to think this was a deliberate attempt to mislead us, as we have not had that experience in India in all our travels there, over several years. However I'm not sure why someone had gone to the effort of handwriting on a print out of an email, and changing the final amount owed - this may have been a misunderstanding? The manager's English was certainly better than my ability to speak in his language - however it was a problem when trying to challenge our bill, and I wonder how we would have resolved this had he not agreed to what we were wiling to offer. We were also told when checking out that the hotel was no longer able to take a card payment, so we had to arrange to go the the local town to find an ATM, and hand over the cash to the staff member who followed us. We duly did this, but we weren't provided with a receipt for this payment and it caused us some inconvenience.
My advice to other travellers would be to retain a copy of your booking confirmation, and check the bill before payment just to ensure there hasn't been any confusion. It is also worth asking about methods of payment, as this also changed during our stay.
I feel this hotel is slowly slipping backwards. We stayed here five years ago and it looks if very little has been updated/replaced during that time. The setting is simply superb, overlooking a lagoon with birds everywhere. Perfect for four Birdwatching friends. However the basic levels of comfort are somewhat lacking. The beds and pillows desperately need replacing. They are so thin and hard. I know birdwatchers are always so shattered when we fall into bed, but we do need a good, comfortable nights sleep.
The food can be a little mixed but by and large very good. We had the most amazing fish curry during our stay. Without doubt the best meal during four weeks of travelling in Southern India.
The staff are very charming and helpful and do their utmost to please their guests.
With some money spent on Birds Lagoon, it really could become a fantastic place to stay. It has everything in it's favour, and once promoted in the right places the guests will come flocking in. Let's hope so.
My family had booked a one-night stay in Jan 2017. Could spot different birds there. Food was yummy. The surroundings need to be maintained better. We were not happy with the way the room was maintained/cleaned. Overall quality of the room was not satisfactory for the price. The phone in the room was not working. Found that there is no sufficient staff available (it was a weekend).We ended up checking out the same day.
Bird Watching + Tasty food - If you're looking for this, its a good destination. Do not have high expectations on the quality of the room.
A great place if you are interested in birds, or want something a little different, off the beaten track. A room overlooking the lagoon gave us the opportunity to see 3 different sorts of kingfishers with a minimum of effort. Lots of lesser whistling ducks, Darter & cormorant on the lake, despite the (apparently) low water level. The room was simple but quite adequate and functional. Do not expect 5-star luxury, but it was clean and functional.
I was able to go on a spontaneous excursion by bike to look for birds near the hotel, accompanied by an interested and enthusiastic member of staff, who would qualify as a good amateur ornithologist (probably a similar level to mine in Europe). The high-point was probably an asian paradise flycatcher, but there were plenty of other "firsts" for me, including a Black Baza.
A separately-organised tour with a local expert ornithologist the following morning was spectacular - I could scarcely begin to list all the species seen. High-point was probably the Malabar Trogon (male) but there was so much to see, I could hardly keep up. And fabulous colours. The tour ended with the "party-piece" - seeking out the ceylon frogmouths and the roosting owls in the forest.
My only regret was that we didn't have longer to stay here.
A super place for birdwatchers, close to the Bird Sanctuary. The lagoon is easily visible from all the rooms and is full of interesting birds. The Resort has an organic farm attached with Pygmy goats, cattle and hens. The website claims that their restaurant serves fresh organic food. We did not experience this at all, and the food was the poorest quality we have had after two weeks in India. Breakfast this morning was very low quality chicken sausages, cheap bread toast and boiled eggs with no vegetarian option. They have a large menu, but local food did not seem to be available and it was certainly not fresh cooked.
The website also showed pictures of a swimming pool but this was empty when we arrived.
The rooms had air conditioning and hot water and the beds were comfortable. The rooms were clean.
Staff were polite and helpful.