My wife and I stayed here for 12 nights on a holiday, around mid-May, 2018. We had an excellent experience, as detailed below: 1. Nestled near the top of the town, this is a compact hotel of only 18 rooms with a beautiful valley view at the rear, visible from the dining area. There is a sit-out area to dine, enjoying the view. 2. If you are looking for idyllic beauty, peace and quiet, salubrious air of the mountains etc, do avoid a summer visit to Kodai; unless of course you really want to the escape the heat of the plains. You would run into a crush of people and clogged streets, somewhat dirty. The saving grace is that, once you are inside the premises of Villa Retreat, it is clean, pleasant and relatively tranquil. 3. One outstanding feature of this hotel is the consistent and unfailing courtesy and service attitude of the personnel, always responding with a smile. That is not easy to accomplish in India. 4. Though of a limited variety, the food is good, made to order. One unusual and user-friendly aspect is that the charges are the same whether food is served in the dining hall or in the room. The dining staff is to be commended for their excellent service, especially the steward Shiva. 5. The front desk is attentive, responsive and helpful. 6. Each room has an independent geyser, always on, thus assuring 24-hour hot water supply; an important comfort in a hill station. Power does fail off and on, but is quickly restored with Genset Backup. A few repairs involving electric sockets that can't receive a charger or a plug were quickly fixed. 7. The hotel offers daily, starting at 8 AM, gratis, a one-hour Nature Walk. It is a pleasant experience in verdant surroundings. It is a nearly 6 KM walk that involves mild climbing for some distance. 8. Having been expanded around a Heritage Building, the hotel is really cute with the exterior of several rooms clad with creeping ivy! 9. A very special mention must be made of the energetic and present-everywhere Resident Manager, Mr. Shyam Kumar. He meets and greets every guest, goes round the tables in the dining area, being very informative and helpful. Having observed at close quarters over many days, I can say that a large part of the many good things in the hotel arises from his dedication and untiring attention to detail. It is fortunate for any employer to have such a commitment. You can see his picture alongside, against an ivy lined wall. Here are a few things that could be somewhat unsettling or disappointing: 1. WiFi is available only in the Lobby area and not in the rooms. Though the hotel is upfront about this in their website, it is still an inconvenience. My AirTel voice signal here was strong, but the data signal was inconsistent. 2. The housekeeping (room cleaning etc) is an area for improvement. While one batch seems to do a good job, another is sketchy.
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