We were a family with an 8 year old girl, We booked a superior room for 2 nights from 16 August 2012.
The room was very nice - the hotel is almost all chalet style, built at different times (ours in the 1920s). We had a large, characterful room with a king bed, a dressing room large enough to be classified as a separate bedroom in some hotels due to its size (approaching 20sqm), and a large bathroom (also approaching 20sqm). The room had a working fireplace (it gets cold in ooty at night, even in august). Actually, the rooms must vary and not be easy to categorise - one of us had stayed before (in Dec 08) - this room was in better condition and was much more homely than the one allocated on the first stay, even though that was supposedly a heritage suite and was much more expensive.
Grounds at the hotel are well kept, the dining room has great old ambience, lovely wooden panels and a pianist.
On the downside:
1 service at the hotel is very slow (and sometimes it's hard to find the staff except at meal times). Mealtimes are prescriptive: lunch starts at 1230 and dinner at 1930, full stop, which isn't really great if you have kids who get hungry earlier than that, unless you want room service (which is more expensive than the corresponding item in the restaurant and you miss out on the ambience).
2 the hotel has an ayurvedic centre, but this was not operating at the same level as on the first visit. Indeed, it was hard to arrange an appointment for a massage at short notice - not because they were busy but because the masseur seemed only to come in the event of a confirmed booking. It is a shame the centre was not well used, as the staff and massages were very good.
3 the hotel housekeepers make a big deal of coming to light your fire in the evening, keen for tips. This time this was a gimmick as the sticks used couldn't hold a flame (same issue for the fire in the hotel's dining room, out within a couple of minutes of lighting). If they're going to do this they really need a source of more substantial - and drier - wood. For sheer bizarre experience, we did enjoy getting a filled hot water bottle put in the bed (in South India!)
Overall, you won't be disappointed if you see this hotel for what it is: a character place with a long and glorious history which is perhaps slightly past its best. Taken that way it is wonderful, don't expect an ultra-luxurious 5 star hotel - standards have moved on whilst this hotel has declined. The whole place feels underinvested in...to the extent that you wonder what Taj's plans are for its long term future. That said, we liked the faded grandeur and would return happliy again.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Ensconced high on a rising hill, the Savoy Hotel sprawls over six acres of landscaped gardens, offering colonial style cottages that were built between 1834-1865. Colorful flowerbeds merge to form a multi-coloured quilt around the cottages, adding to their gentle refinement and old English Charm. A quiet retreat, the Savoy Hotel offers a little pocket of paradise. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Savoy Hotel Ootacamund