Uday Samudra Beach Hotel
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"This hotel was great in 2009 but since the charter flights have ceased the management appears to be concentrating on Corporate events and short stay Indian guests, at reduced room rate tariffs'.
This reflects in the general ambience of the resort, that it has had to tighten it's belt and is no longer interested in entertaining long term guests from the UK and Europe. Rooms are not cleaned properly and the bedding is not changed regularly, there is a shortage of towels in the rooms and a shortage of sun beds and umbrellas for guests staying in the hotel, these items frequently fell apart and did not appear to be replaced, and what was available were often taken up by non-residents and locals who had an arrangement to use the hotels facilities.
Food was obviously another victim of tight budgeting, vegetables & dal's to accompany either chicken or fish for the evening buffet day after day, the same recipes with different names on the labels. Breakfast was just as repetitive with many Indian breads and curried items, although there were baked beans and eggs in addition to Continental style breakfast
Would only recommend staying there on Room Only or B&B
Fortunately the location of this hotel meant we were only a few steps from several good restaurants including the Seagull, WatersEdge, 3rd Rock and Molly's providing a real choice of excellent menu's including lamb, beef and prawns and the best curries we have ever tasted."
- Holiday details: Jan 2010, half board, booked with Mercury Direct
- Advice: book room only or B&B
11 readers found this review helpful. Did you? Yes
"We have just returned from our first visit to India. It was amazing. A little scary at first when you step into the mayhem but wow what an experience.
The hotel was great, very clean, staff are wonderful and very friendly. I was getting quite annoyed with some people who were complaining about service standards et.c they were totally unfounded. They will do anything to help you sometimes the language barrier causes delays but hey these people are working very hard to make everything just right for us. So be patient, not that we had any problems at all.
The three pools are very clean with lots of sunbeds if you want them. The hotel try to entertain you every night with something either in the Restaurant or they set up the tables outside in the gardens. It was a shame for them while we were there as the Hotel was not busy so they had only a small audience.
I would not hesitate to recommend this Hotel to anyone. I cannot comment on the rooms only to say we had a room in the 800's that was fine. a balcony overlooked the pool. King size bed and large shower area.
Go with an open mind, the poverty can shock you but enjoy all the experiences."
- Holiday details: Dec 2008, Bed & Breakfast, booked with Thomas Cook
7 readers found this review helpful. Did you? Yes
"We recently returned from 2wks at the Uday Samudra hotel in Kovalam in Kerala. It was our first time to India and we went with First Choice which was a fairly comfortable flight with a bit more legroom than we had expected. The hotel we chose looked very nice in the brochure but always aware that pictures can be deceiving we were prepared it might not be quite as good. We weren't at all disappointed though. We arrived to a warm welcome and given a drink while we waited to check in which didn't take too long. We were very pleased with our room which was on the top floor of the "Atrium" (there are lifts) it was large with a nice big furnished balcony that looked out to the backwaters and a side view of the sea. It was very clean, had a good size bathroom with a great shower almost like a small wet room, tea/coffee making facilities, large tv with a couple of English channels, fridge, even had plug-in mossie things in the room and bathroom so didn't need to use ones we'd brought. The only negative was that there wasn't any drawer space other than 2 little bedside ones, all clothes etc had to be stored in the wardrobe but we managed well enough. The room was cleaned daily and towels and bedding changed daily too. Tea/coffee etc topped up regularly. On the odd occassion we had to ask for something we did find service was very slow such as when the room boy broke one of our mugs he said he would get another but it took about 3 requests/days before we finally got a replacement. No big deal but we did occasionaly witness people getting quite stroppy over bad/slow service. I felt that often it was a case of the odd member of staff/worker not really understanding the request but still smiling and making out they did which of course could be a bit frustrating. We found mostly everyone to be so friendly and helpful. We were on bed&breakfast which we found perfectly adequate, enough choice for us. Tea, coffee fruit, juices, cereals, toast and eggs cooked to order. Indian breakfast too. We tried the evening buffet and enjoyed it so much ate there every night except for one when we went to Molly's just outside the hotel, had an excellent meal there, and 2 nights when we were away on a trip. There were 3 courses and plenty of choice so we always found something we liked. There are 3 pools around the gardens of the hotel and as in most places the usual "early risers" who reserve their beds by placing books or towels on them even though you aren't supposed to. Occasionally it would be difficult to get a sun shade but usually there was a bed somewhere free. The hotel is right by the beach which isn't the most attractive one but ok for going for a paddle in or watching the local fisherman pulling in their nets. Its a smallish working beach but the nice thing is there was rarely any hassleing other than a lady selling fruit or a few of the local restaurant owners telling you about their place. Unlike Lighthouse beach further along which we didn't like, a lot of hassleing and as with Samudra beach the sea was far too choppy for us to swim in. We thoroughly enjoyed our holiday as it was a nice mix of hectic sightseeing and just chilling out. We took lots of pens&pencils for school children and also villagers we met that seemed to want them. We went along the backwaters which was really relaxing and interesting,went to Cochin and stayed overnight.Up into the hills past the tea plantations which was very scenic and to Periyar wildlife reserve but unfortunately hardly saw any animals. We stayed overnight in Kumily at a homestay which was basic but really nice and in the heart of a residential area so another experience finding our way around and getting lost at night in the dark down narrow little streets then having a big animal with horns walk towards us! A tuk-tuk driver came to our rescue and took us back to our homestay.I had lots of reservations before going on this holiday but I needn't have worried. The food was wonderful and we never had any stomach problems at all which I was amazed at considering the variety of food we ate and some of the places we ate in. The people were so friendly and polite.The traffic and driving was a nightmare and some public toilets were best avoided but other than that I wouldn't have missed this holiday for anything and have so many great memories."
19 readers found this review helpful. Did you? Yes
"Me and my mum got a last min holiday here on the 8th Feb. Kerala its self is fantastic!!! After exploring the different beaches we were very glad of our location away from the buzz of Lighthouse beach but only a 5 min tuttut ride in. The Uday was a nice hotel with friendly staff and a good breakfast, the pools and facilities were very good and our room was 10 paces from the beach! The room itself could have done with serious referbishment but it was clean, had a big bed, a fridge and aircon so we were comfortable. If I had paid more for this holiday I think I would have been a little disapointed with the room though.
One place I would reccomend for dinner is 3rd Rock, on the beach outside of the hotel. The food was amazing, eating with your toes in the sand looking at the sea. The fish in banana leaf was to die for, and JJ the owner is to this day one of the kindest and hospitable individuals I have meet. I will be coming back next year and will stay at this hotel, due to the location and great staff. If you go to 3rd rock say hi from Ali and Carol. Have a great holiday!!!!!!"
8 readers found this review helpful. Did you? Yes
"We took this holiday on the 14/12/07, an Xmas break.
I have to say after reading some of the reviews on this hotel I was very worried and even looked at changing hotels, but my husband said no leave it.
Anyway I could not believe how wonderful it was! I would recommend anyone going there.
The room was great and the staff very friendly, yes they are a bit slow at doing things but then you’re on holiday so what's the rush??
We ate at the hotel for the 1st day or so until we found our feet then we started to use the bars outside the hotel. One bar I will say is a must is the 3rd Rock Cafe on the beach great company and great food!!
We took a boat trip to back waters of Kerala for a night and this is a must great day and evening it cost us 130 pounds but what a time we had! We booked this outside the tour operator as we got a better deal.
I did not like Light House Beach to much found it too busy and you do get hassled to buy things there. But that is the only fault I could find.
As I said it was a lovely place and one of the best holidays we have ever had it was that good that we are looking at going back in Nov 08."
4 readers found this review helpful. Did you? Yes
"Gorgeous hotel in lovely picturesque surroundings. Friendly, helpful staff.
We had a lovely spacious room overlooking the sea, with a lovely balcony, with flowers growing in tubs with great air con and ceiling fan, lots of space to sit and relax inside if you wanted to, not that we did as the weather was fantastic.
Breakfasts were very varied and the odd meal that we had in the hotel was very good.
The hotel arranged entertainment every night .While we were there it was the Kovalam Festival on the beach, and we were entertained for 1 week with acrobats, fire eaters, Indian dancing, pop groups and as we had direct access from our hotel to the beach through a gate manned by the hotel security, it was amazing and the food sold at the stalls was excellent.
The resort is very relaxing; we had some marvellous evening meals at 3rd Rock from the sun, looked after by Sajhd and his crew, and sat by the water’s edge on an evening watching the twinkling lights of the fishing boats. Heaven and the food was out of this world.
Nice walk to Lighthouse Beach, not too many beach hawkers, and those that were there were very friendly and left you alone if you wished.
Hired a scooted and travelled around visiting lots of touristy places. The hotel arranged a trip to as they call it lands end where the 3 seas meet and we watched the sunset there. Visited the wooden place and temple where we had to pay to crawl through a hole to exit, that was a bit of a rip off.
Had a ride on an elephant which was an amazing if not scary experience this was arranged by Ashat a local fisherman who took us there by air con taxi and also arranged a boating trip on one of the back waters.
A must do there is an overnight trip on the rice boats on the lake, we were lucky to have this organised by Ashat again, and we ate fresh prawns the size of your palms, watching the sun set and stars laid out on the cushions at the front of the boat.
The bedrooms are amazing and the rice boats have air con, and the staff are so helpful nothing is too much trouble. A must to take are as the local children say "school pens" that was the only thing that anyone asked for all the time we were there.
I loved Goa but Kerala is less commercial, greener, lots of fresh fruit and vegetables and the people are not always on the take so to speak.
Visit now before this beautiful area is spoilt."
3 readers found this review helpful. Did you? Yes
"Overall the hotel was very smart, although a little quiet for us younger ones.
A word of advice - watch your valuables.
Unfortunately my ipod went missing from the room on the last day. The hotel said they would investigate. The police were no help, still waiting for there crime report! Guess i should of used the safety deposit box but it spoiled the stay slightly.
Also many people we met had gotten food poisoning, including myself, so take immodium!
The train is a very easy and cheap way to see Kerala."
Did you find this review helpful? Yes
"we arrived early morning on a first choice flight which was very good. hotel check in was swiftly completed, and we managed to get a couple of hours sleep before breakfast.
first impressions of the interior of the hotel were good, and all staff are very friendly and helpful. breakfast is plentiful and varied although my husband says they can't fry an egg properly without breaking it, but if you ask for poached eggs they are perfect.
we never had a problem getting a table, but sometimes had to wait for cups or cereal bowls which happens at all hotels.
we stayed in the new block on the top floom with our room (707) overlooking the pool which also had a sea view. very comfortable room, a/c, coffee maker, tv , fridge and safe. First Choice has all its rooms in this block which is a bonus. Manos has its rooms in the old block which are very poor in comparison. if you are travelling with Manos, i would suggest you pay to upgrade as several people we met did.
the hotel has 3 pools which means its never too crowded.
we had a bed on the beachfront every day with an umbrella which meant we could watch the locals bringing in their catch of fish. only on our first day did we have a problem when 4 beds had been reserved with books. we were told they had been like that for hours so we removed 2 books and took 2 beds. there is notice saying this is ok if the beds are left unattended for more than i hour.
we arranged our trips through the hotel tour desk as it was so much cheaper. we had a 7 seater a/c people carrier with driver, who took us wherever we wanted for the day picking us up at 8 am and returning around 6 pm. the cost was 3000 rupees in total. their were only 4 of us and we had plenty of room. these days out cost approx £9 each, fantastic value. we went out 3 days visiting cape kumari, neyyar lake and dam which is beautiful, and we also went up country to Pommudi whch is in the Western Ghats mountain range. this was a lovely trip as you pass tea, coffee and spice plantations on the way. its very scenic with some bumpy roads, hairpin bends, and breathtaking views. we also went on a trek through forest with a guide to see a waterfall but i wouldn't recommend this part.
eating out was very good and cheap. we mostly went to lighthouse beach in the evenings where the choice is excellent. be prepared to wait anywhere for an hour before you get your meal. we used the Kingfisher several times and the food was superb. ask your tuk tuk driver to pick you up for the return trip which they are happy to do. the cost for the round trip is 150 rupees although they will try to charge 200. just tell them its 150 before you go and they will be ok.
all in all a very good holiday. i would recommend the hotel as long as you are with First Choice in the new block.
i have to give a special mention to PENNY PETTIT our First Choice representative for outstanding service. she went out of her way to meet everyone, and was available at all times. we even joined in the quiz night to raise money for a local charity which was good fun. i heard several people say that Penny was the best Rep they ever had so we are not alone in our judgement.
opticians and dentists are very good in Kerala and much cheaper than the uk. i used a dentist recommended by another hotel guest and was delighted with the result.
the cost to change a silver filling for a white one, less than £10. a crown cost me £34. they are very up to date using latest technolgy, Brightsmile costs approx £185 versus UK £600.
one final thing. if you change your money at the airport, they charge commission and the rate is not so good. best wait till you get to your hotel and change with a local moneychanger. at lighthouse beach there are lots and the rates better still."
1 reader found this review helpful. Did you? Yes
"Had a lovely time, The hotel was good, Friendly Staff, The room was cleaned daily with a nice pool & sea view in block 600,
The hotel beach is a bit non-existent, but a 3 min walk away following a stepped path over a small hill or a walk through Hotel Samudra is a good beach with Restaruant where they will bring your food & drinks to your sunbeds, also if you carry on walking for another 10 mins you will go past Hotel Leela & then come to Lighthouse beach where the main Restaraunts & Shops can be found, or take a cab for 100 rupees.
An interseting walk was to turn right out of the hotel along the beach path, you will come to a small village where the local women make rope out of coconut strands, It is a good idea to take some pens for the children.
Just up the road from the hotel is a restaruant called "Molly's" which was excellent.
All in all a good holiday but a bit too quiet compared to Goa."
Did you find this review helpful? Yes
"This was my first trip to India and I was worried before I arrived at the Uday because of previous comments on this sight.
Luckily all bad comments were untrue and I believe written by people who were either blind or just liked to find fault.
The Uday was a wonderful place to stay, the room was exactly what you needed, bed, fridge and shower! The staff are more than happy to help and service is always provided with a smile, especially the guy at breakfast who will cook your eggs exactly as you like them.
The pools are great and very relaxing but the beach nearby is the best place to be. Although the beach is small and the current of the water strong, every morning you get to watch and hear the locals singing and pulling in their fishing nets by hand.
The food is very good at the hotel as well and if you fancy a short walk we went to every hotel near the Uday and never had one bad meal.
Outside the hotel you can get a taxi or a rikshaw for pennies. If you want to plan a trip anywhere I would suggest that you ask for Samuel the taxi driver as he is amazing, cheap and very funny. If you want to book him ask how many children he has and if he sais 2 then it is him. You will find as soon as you ask for someone they all pretend to be him, but this is just one of the very amusing things of India.
Get a rikshaw to Lighthouse beach but do not pay more than 100 rupees. Light house beach is amazing, the beach is great but so are all the restaurants and jewellery shops. Sunday is recommended as this is when all the families go to walk on the baech and watch the sun go down.
There are always a few dodgy locals on the make but all in all I was overwhelmed by the kindness and generosity of the indian people. I can not fault any of the trip.
One small fault was that we arranged a trip through Thomas Cook to wash bathe and feed the elephants and the picture showed them in a river but when we arrived the elephants there was chained up and distressed and washing them was them being sprayed with a hose in a muddy old yard. From there we went to dinner and then on a rice boat but what they failed to tell us was that the time in between trips stuck in the van was about 5 hours. If you want to see elephants get a taxi driver to take you there only."
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"Had a fantastic 3 week holiday at the Uday Samudra in Jan 2007 (first visit was Feb 2006). This hotel offers real value for money and excellent customer service - the staff are helpful, friendly and never without a smile.
Despite comments from other reviewers we actually requested to stay in the old block (room 118) which is right behind the temple, next door to the shop and 5 feet away from the breakfast tables. Yes, it is a basic room but we don't go on this type of holiday to sit in our room. Our room was cleaned every day, and we had fresh sheets and towels also daily. We like to hear the staff getting breakfast ready (saves an alarm call) and the noise from the week long festival at the temple was loud but was all part of our holiday experience and in no way spoilt our holiday.
We had quiet, lazy days by the pool (one of 3) at the hotel, never having any problem getting a sun bed. The beach outside the hotel is very small and not suitable for swimming - this wasn't a problem as Lighthouse Beach is only 20 minutes walk or 5 minutes in a tuk-tuk (80-100 rupees).
Food is really good at this hotel - breakfast is a buffet and offers Indian, continental, eggs however you like, fruit, cereals, toast - more than enough to cater for all tastes, and you could help yourself to as much as you wanted. Try The Lounge Bar where they serve snacks or meals from the restaurant menu - order yourself 'one more beer' and ring the bell for the excellent service. It does cost more to eat in the hotel but there are plenty of other good restaurants next door - The Third Rock, The Waters Edge to name a couple, also Lighthouse Beach restaurants which are good are Fusion, Waves, and the Swiss Cafe does excellent coffee if you need a pick me up. At the end of the day nowhere is expensive though.
In addition to reading these reviews do some research of Kerala so you have an idea what to expect.
We will definitely be making a 3rd visit ."
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"Just returned afer our 5th visit in 5 years to the Uday Samudra in Kovalam. Over the last 5 years it has grown in size quite considerably, building work is not yet finished but you can take a 5 minute walk through the grounds of the neighbouring Samudra hotel to Samudra beach, not only is it a wonderful small beach but you are very well looked after by the guys who run the sun beds. I cannot imagine why anyone would want to sit by the pool in the hotel all day when there is such a great beach so close by. Much of the time the only noise is the sound of the sea, no building work to annoy you there.
Yes there is a temple next door to the hotel and at the end of January for 1 week the noise is deafening. Every eveinig all the locals come down into the square outside the front of the hotel to watch the plays, bands or dramas etc on stage, this is obviously something very important to them and at the end of the day this will have been going on much longer than the few years the hotel has been there.
We normally go for 3 weeks and if we time it right during the second week whilst it`s Temple festival time we go by train up the coast a few hours and stay at Lake Palace on the back waters at Allepy.
We ask ourselves every year if we want to go back to the Uday Samudra and we always do, it is in a good location, it is very good value for money, there are so many places to eat out at such good prices. I don`t think I have ever had a poor meal eating out. In 5 years we have never stayed in the hotel at night for a meal.
Outside the front of the hotel are all the taxi`s and rickshaw`s. Every time you set foot outside the hotel you will be asked if you want to go somewhere. We have always used Rajeev and he has taken us all over Kerala and he arranges our trips for us at much less cost than through the tour operators. This includes, the Southern Tip "Kanniyakumari", really a sight worth seeing where 3 different seas meet. Periyar National Park, the boat ride on the Lake in the evening is just superb. Coconut Lagoon and Lake Palace on the back waters are wonderful reorts to visit, they are so peacful, at Coconut Lagoon during the late evening the sky absolutely fills up with large fruit bats flying past.
We absolutely love the Kerala and for us the Uday Samudra is right where we want to be at the price we want to pay. Already booked for next year."
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Explore areaClosest airport: Thiruvananthapuram (TRV) 6.6 miles
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" 3rd rock, Mollys is ok but very english, not really what we wanted but a nice place to go. "
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" So diverse, well worth the visit. We cannot wait to go back. tuk tuk rides not for faint hearted!! "
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Uday Samudra Beach Hotel is also called:
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Address: GV Raja Road, Samudra Beach, Kovalam Thiruvananthapuram Samudra Beach, Kovalam 695527, India