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Reviewed 9 August 2022

The properties of CGH Earth had always been in my list of places to visit for a long, long time. This became a reality thanks to their passport membership which they opened up for a specific period of time, at a very reasonable price. Some of my friends and I took up the annual membership which, in addition to other benefits, entitled us to a 3 nights stay (all inclusive, with food) in any of their resorts within the period of membership.

After a lot of deliberation, it was decided that Kumarakom would be the destination (other options considered were Gokarna – dropped due to the potential heat of the summer and Wayanad – accommodation not available for our preferred dates.

Plans were also made for keeping us occupied during the three days there (visit to museums, the bird sanctuary, a boat house ride). Little did we know that all of these plans would become irrelevant when we got there, since the resort had enough to offer for everyone’s needs.

The property is situated right on the shores of Lake Vembanad and feels like being in Venice with canals criss-crossing the entire resort. It borders the Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary, split by a small waterway which serves as the main access to the resort. The parking enclosure is on the highway and guests transfer to the resort through their launches, operated from the jetty that adjoins the parking area. We were welcomed by traditional Kerala drum beats, sandal paste and tender coconut to quench the thirst.

Though we arrived early, well before the check-in time, we were allowed to use the property’s facilities until our rooms were ready and allotted. A quick walk through the property makes you realize that long walks were on the anvil, thanks to the little canals running through the place. The neighboring cottage might be there, right next to you, but you may have to walk a bit to the bridge that gets you across the separating the cottage from yours.

The resort has three types of accommodations – Cottages, mansions and lake facing villas with private pools. We had opted for the cottages, which were very spacious and comfortable. Every cottage came with a small sit out overlooking the waterway or the gardens, vast greens of lawns and ample trees to provide shade around. Interiors, the ceiling included, were completely in wood with antique furniture to suit the mood.

The cottages sported an open-to-sky bath with a small garden. This was a welcome break for fresh air, as the room needed the air-conditioning, given the heat outside.

Most of the plans made to keep us occupied for the three days went down the drain the moment we stepped into the resort as we knew we had enough to do within the property. An agenda was already published with options that guests could take – be it a property walk, a bird watching walk or a nice, soothing ayuvedic massage.

Since the resort has a large amount of trees, it is also home to a number of birds, thanks to the bird sanctuary right next door.

Food is served at a partially open (no walls) restaurant that had many live counters during every meal. The selection of food was abundant – with both local cuisine to enthuse the adventurous and regular fare to keep the others happy. Though the property was full, there was never a feeling of the place being overcrowded, thanks to the vast space of the resort and the enclosed spaces like the restaurant.

Further, since we were a large group, the staff had set aside a group of tables that were always available to us for the duration of the stay.

A combination of a sumptuous lunch, the warm climate and comfortable beds resulted in a welcome post-lunch siesta. The attraction for the evening was a boat ride into the lake to watch the sunset. This would be preceded by high-tea, of a different kind, we would later learn.

Tea was served by the staff, led by an elderly lady manning a canoe with the tea and coffee. One of a kind that I’ve never seen elsewhere. It had its own brass boiler for the hot water and everything that is needed for a typical Kerala Tea shop. Tea was excellent, the strong type that I personally prefer, served with freshly baked cakes and fried masala vadas.

This was followed by the evening cruise into the lake. Again, since our group was large, the staff had arranged a separate launch just for our group. The ride started slow and remained slow – we realized that it couldn’t get any faster as the water was continuously wobbly, thanks to the large number of boats in the region. Just as we were getting bored of watching the never ending waters, there was a silence of the boats engine. The boat had stopped (and all the boats around too) as the sun was now ready to showcase an end to a beautiful day. Everyone watched the sun go down – some holding their breath - until it disappeared over the horizon. This was followed by the noise of applause from most boats (not sure if it was for the sun or the boatmen).

Once back at the resort, we sat in the garden overlooking the lake, watching the sky, as it turned from one color to another just as dusk was setting in and darkness was falling.

Turning away from the lake, the resort now presented a different feel – with warm lit lights and the calls of birds settling in for the day. The day was wrapped up with a cultural show of traditional Kerala dances portraying stories from the Ramayana or Mahabharatha, performed by the artistes from the neighboring village, followed by dinner in the candle lit restaurant.

The following day started with a visit to the Allapuzha beach (too rough to play in the water) followed by the most of the day spent in the large swimming pool. The water in the pool is clean and the depth is just about right for kids and adults. Though there is a kids pool, there is enough equipment to allow the kids to play safely in the larger area of the pool. Further, there is always an alert staff keeping watch over potential safety hazards and steps in when needed.

Some of the other activities one could indulge in includes an Ayurvedic center providing a variety of traditional Kerala themed massages, a specialty sea-food restaurant overlooking the lake, yoga with an instructor, bird spotting walks through the property (you do get to spot a large number of birds) and just about do nothing. In spite of the options this place has to offer to keep yourself occupied, one can just lie around in a hammock, around the pool under the shade of the trees, sit on the benches overlooking the lake and just do nothing.

One thing that this place stands out for is it’s staff. Immaterial of what time of the day it is and how long they’ve been working, they always have a smile on their face, looking forward to serve the guests courteously.

As much as the company of good friends made the three days memorable, the warmth of Coconut Lagoon and the hospitality of the staff made it an excellent summer break.

Date of stay: April 2022
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank Kanagesh
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Reviewed 7 August 2022

One of my friends who had been to Kerala years back and actually had stayed at the Taj recommended that I check Coconut Lagoon out cause she remember the place leaving quite an impression on her back then.

Overall:
There are some places that have the potential to remain etched in your memory and this experience that I got to share with my mom is one of those! We went for a week in August. Coconut Lagoon is one place to gather some exquisite local experience along with luxurious comfort that CGH Earth promises and did indeed deliver.

Details:
It was a last-minute trip so I wanted to pick a place where we could just have a good time and the folks at Coconut Lagoon really went an extra mile! It felt like they had our backs all the time while we were there (and despite the crazy rainy weather). It is described as a ‘treasure in the backwaters of Kerala’ and honestly that did not feel exaggerated from our experience. We had booked the Heritage Bungalow and got an amazing view of the backwaters where in the evenings, we could sit and enjoy a tea ritual, soaking in the serene nature all around us. You get to see eagles (& all their antics!), kingfisher, and all these other birds without even going anywhere!

Sustainable Tourism
The entire property is very carefully designed to preserve elements of the local environment rather than making it stand out like a sore thumb like how some luxury resorts than to do. For example, they have taken care of even intricate details like using coconut shells to hold orchid plants tied to each coconut tree because of its water retention property! It looks amazing and is such a wonderful way to use what would typically be thrown away to create something so beautiful. They have a water purification and bottle sterilization facility along with a bio-gas plant to ensure they are handling tourism while actively looking out for sustainable ways (just to give you an idea, in a month they serve about ~13K purified water in glass bottles to guests thus saving an equivalent number of plastic bottle consumption!) Even the bins do not use plastic bags there.

Highlights:
The butterfly garden was my favorite corner to be at every time we could a lucky break from the rain and sun came out. It hosts the 2nd largest butterfly and so many different species and it’s an experience that you have to see first-hand to really understand how magically it feels to see them flying around and hear the mixed sounds of birds in the background. My mom got to see a kingfisher catching and eating a fish too! It’s priceless to see it for real. Every member of their crew is so knowledgeable, like their naturalists Umesh and Vishnu who share stories and folklore that’s so rare to hear about otherwise. Lekha, Arya, and the rest of their front reception team there were on top of everything for every guest and spoken/unspoken needs. I observed how they would retain information unique to every guest and make them feel at home. There were folks from all different parts of India and the world and their hospitality catered to each one of us. I find a kind of warmth that is hard to fake and non-transactional in nature and it's a rare find. For example, the little touches in between make a difference such as we were waiting for our food at dinner time and it was also very busy and yet one of the servers came over with a plate of yummy ‘Pani puri’ for us to try out. Another example is, last morning we have to leave really early like at 6 AM, and without even asking for it, they packed us some baked fresh goodies for our cab ride back to Kochi.

Food:
What can I say about food?! Let me just say that each food item from the breakfast buffet and otherwise felt like it was carefully crafted by the chef and the team, the flavors and spices were so authentic that for a foodie duo like us, it was a big hit! Must try the lobster seafood platter (the shrimps were so fresh, a bit expensive though), the dinner buffet is great to taste a mix of local cuisine along with a mix of other common favorites and the prawn biryani! Also, don’t forget to try the tender coconuts. They are orange in color and so sweet. Everyone there works so hard, from early mornings to night and yet you will not see them walk past you without making eye contact and giving a smile.

Experiences:
We even tried the famous Ayurveda massage one day and it felt super relaxing for the body and mind. Each evening we got to experience a cultural dance program at the resort itself which again is something that an art lover or anyone who wants to really experience Kerala’s richness in art and culture could find something to be grateful about having at their doorstep without making additional arrangements to go anywhere. At night, at their main restaurant, there were live musicians playing beautiful melodies while you enjoy delicious meals while looking out at the natural landscape. My intent for the trip was to be curious and open hearted while enjoying quality time with mom and I am so glad that we made it happen at Coconut Lagoon cause they definitely had a big role to play.

Oh and before I forget, one delightful addition was one rainy evening, we even got to relive our childhood time at their recreation center by playing carom! They even had table tennis and other stuff for kids there.

Especially when the weather is not cooperating, the likelihood of one being disappointed and cynical is even more but I can only find good things to say about our visit. The downside was the weather as I mentioned not being the greatest - it was raining & so we could not make use of the included activities such as sunset cruise, etc every day, the wifi did drop at night at times, and this trip was on a pricier side for me. Worth every penny overall!

Date of stay: August 2022
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
Thank WanderBugzie
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Reviewed 7 August 2022 via mobile

Excellent in all spheres we enjoyed the stay at coconut lagoon kumarakam to the maximum ,not to express in words. Only one can feel it during the stay.The best place at kumarakom not comparable with any other resorts

Date of stay: July 2022
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
Thank Arthasseril52
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Reviewed 7 August 2022 via mobile

We intially booked Thekkaday trip then due to heavy rain /red alerts in kerala finally changed plan to Kumarakom.
One main advantage of this property is 30 acres land and multiple villa..Good re creation activities kayaking..Carroms. Table Tennis all enjoyed..
Food lots to try but dosa can improve its taste.
It's very safe place @staff all very helpful any time .
Drinking Water is free of cost ..
Cycling in village also enjoyed its free .
If ok try to get pool villa property it got beautiful view to the lake and private swimming pool..
Lots of fish dishes can try..
Cool windy always in the resort due to lake /location ..
Property is well staffed and well maintained..never seen any dirt.

For a suggestion can add cricket pitch or football small pitch .
Lagoon got own boat jetty so option to park your car in away dedicated car park and reach resort in boat .

Date of stay: August 2022
Trip type: Travelled with family
Thank JainVarghese
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Reviewed 7 August 2022 via mobile

Awesome experience! Impressed by the service orientation, responsiveness and warmth of the team on the ground. The attention and ownership to make every request actioned, however small is greatly appreciated. Keep up the good work Sravan, Nidhin, Jomol and several others on site!

Date of stay: August 2022
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
Thank ZachBlr
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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