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“Udaivilas fails a bit after setting sky high expectations”

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The Oberoi Udaivilas
Ranked #3 of 156 Hotels in Udaipur
Certificate of Excellence
Northern NJ
Level Contributor
65 reviews
48 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
“Udaivilas fails a bit after setting sky high expectations”
Reviewed 30 March 2012

If this were a lesser property, I would have thought it was fantastic. After all, the magnificent grounds, the phenomenal lake views, the beautiful pools and decor really are quite jaw dropping. But its not a lesser property - its the Udaivilas, and Oberoi is very quick to point out that its "Number one in the world".

And when staying at the property that's supposed to be "Number one in the world", my expectations are quite justifiably through the roof. It should be an experience unequaled.

Well, they set a pretty high standard, and the service didn't quite live up to that standard. Some examples:

- We were in the mood for a late afternoon cocktail. It was beautiful out, so I asked at the bar where we could go to sit outside and have a drink. He suggested the pool area. We headed over that way and sat. Although there was a server working the pool, it took him a good 10 minutes to greet us and take our order. Not a big deal. But then it took another half hour to get our drinks. A bit later, we ordered refills, and again, it took a full half hour to get our drinks. Really? Had I known, I would have walked to the bar myself.

- At dinner, we had a bottle of wine in the chiller. But they weren't quite that attentive, and didn't notice when our glasses were empty. We waved our arms to get some attention, but to no avail. It was a bit embarrassing to have to stand up and walk over to the chiller to pour my own wine.

- On our last day, we decided to have lunch in the bar. Since we would be checking out, I told them when they brought the check to be sure to post it to our room immediately because we're checking out. At checkout, I mentioned that we had just had lunch, so please make sure the lunch check is on our final bill. Well, despite mentioning it twice, they didn't do it. After we checked out, while I was walking out the door, they chased me down to pay the lunch bill. I had to go through the whole credit card process a second time.

While these issues aren't egregious by any stretch, they do represent missteps that simply should not occur at a property that proudly boasts of being the "Best in the World".

  • Stayed February 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank TheDogAteMyHomework
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
TheOberoiUdaivilas, General Manager at The Oberoi Udaivilas, responded to this review, 31 March 2012
Thank you for taking the time to share your valuable feedback from your recent stay during the busy Christmas period with us.
Please allow us to extend our sincere apologies for the disappointment you experienced.
Your feedback has been shared with the entire team and in my follow up with our Food and Beverage Service team, I have stressed the importance of ensuring that all guest requests are taken care of with utmost care to prevent future repeat occurrences and guest dissatisfaction. This is certainly not indicative of the service levels that we pride ourselves on and we hope that you are able to forgive us for our shortcomings.

Kindly contact me personally at Jan.Tibaldi@Oberoihotels.com as I would welcome the opportunity to restore your faith and regain your confidence in us. I look forward to hearing from you and in the interim, we remain at your service.
Thank you and kind regards,
Jan B. Tibaldi
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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San Diego, California
Level Contributor
134 reviews
58 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 111 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 March 2012

After having lived in India for two years, my wife and I have grown skeptical of India hotels, and all other things Indian, over promising and under delivering. Although we did the research, we headed to Udaipur from Delhi still managing our expectations.

Upon arrival in the Udaipur airport, we were met by a very pleasant gentleman and in a brightly colored hat who promptly escorted us to a waiting black, BMW 5 series. We settled in to the back and were treated to towels, water and a question on how we would like to get the hotel. The question seemed strange at first, but you have a choice to go the entire way by car or be dropped off and motored across the lake for the final leg of the trip. Take the boat!

The car trip is about 30 minutes and the driver drops you off on a small dock where the hotel boat meets graciously meets you. It is a small wooden boat that seats about 6 with an outboard motor to take you across the lake. It is a great ride and gives you a lake view of the stunning city that is dominated by the Maharaja's palace.

You arrive at the hotel dock that is at the end of the extensive property and are whisked to the front gates (yes gates, not door) of the hotel in a golf cart. There you are greeted by name by both the door/gate man and escorted through the first courtyard and into the hotel lobby. Upon entered the domed topped lobby, you are welcomed in the traditional Rajasthan way and then escorted to your room. It is all very regal and designed (successful) to be a bit overwhelming (in a good way).

The hotel property is vast. Rooms are spread out through several courtyards, gardens and other areas and all provide a unique experience. You can walk the property for hours finding new nooks and interesting views and never bore of it. Since the Udaivilas is located across the lake from the city, the city view across the lake is spectacular both day and night.

We book a Premier Lake View Room which has a semi-private pool that runs the length of the side of the hotel. The rooms are large and very well appointed with large bathrooms, comfortable beds and plenty of sitting areas. For our room, the terrace led out to the pool and had two lounge chairs for relaxing. We were lucky enough to get a room on the conservatory side, which offers a less spectacular view, but is very private and quiet looking out towards the lake and the animal conservatory.

The hotel has three restaurants of which we tried two and were not disappointed. Breakfast and dinner can be had on the patio restaurant call Chandni and lunch is served inside at Suryamahal. For breakfast, you can order hot food or eat from the very extensive and fresh buffet. I am a breakfast person and the Udaivilas does not disappoint. For dinner, you can opt for the traditional Indian restaurant or dine outside with a combination menu from all the restaurants. The outside dining experience is outstanding offering great nighttime views of the city and live, traditional music with the occasional dancer to accompany. It is elegant and casual at the same time.

Along with the experience, the food served in the restaurants was excellent. You have a wide variety of choices from Indian, Chinese and western, as well as vegetarian and non-vegetarian. The quality of the food, the freshness and the preparation were all flawless.

In my opinion, the true test of a luxury hotel is the service and the Udaivilas does not disappoint. Everyone is polite, friendly and willing to help from the waiters in the restaurants to the pool attendant. The staff is exceptional. Everyone seems to know our names and the wait staff always remembered our preferences. We even had the Managing Director stop by and chat with us at the spa pool. Everyone seemed genuinely proud of the hotel and interested in providing the best experience possible.

We did venture off the property one day. Living in India, we get our fill of culture, so we were looking more for rest and quiet. The hotel provided a car and a driver who took us to the city palace and monsoon palace. These, along with many other sights are not to be missed. The hotel car was a sparklingly clean BMW and the driver was exceptionally knowledgeable in maneuvering the narrow alleyways of Udaipur. It is well worth the money to use the hotel car, as after grinding around the streets of the old city, it is great to retire to an air-conditioned car with cool towels and cold water!

The other activity in which we partook was the spa at the Udaivilas. They have a magnificent facility with a great atmosphere and very well trained staff members. Both my wife and I had massages that were perfect! I highly recommend an appointment here!

It is rare that I write a glowing review, but it is rare that one gets to stay in a hotel that deserves one. The hotel architecture, the property and the service make you feel like you are experiencing something special at the Udaivilas. Like all good things, though, this does come at a price, but I felt like I was truly getting an experience worth the price.

Room Tip: If you are getting a lake-view room, ask for the conservatory side. Room 130 jets out from the othe...
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  • Stayed March 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank 2W3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
TheOberoiUdaivilas, General Manager at The Oberoi Udaivilas, responded to this review, 31 March 2012
We want to express our heartfelt gratitude for having chosen The Oberoi Udaivilās for your stay. We thank you for your generosity to extract time to evaluate and appreciate our product and services in great detail.

Your positive feedback has been shared with the team at The Oberoi Udaivilās and they are extremely delighted to discover that they were successful in creating moments of delight for you and your partner.

Your freehearted appreciation of our performance is a great source of inspiration for us and we are thoroughly motivated to preserve and attain even higher standards of excellence.

I sincerely hope that our distinctive service will persuade you to stay at the mélange of “The Oberoi Hotels & Resorts” properties across the world in the near future. We look forward to welcoming you back at The Oberoi Udaivilās.

Thank you and kind regards,
Jan B. Tibaldi
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cape Town Central, South Africa
Level Contributor
57 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 74 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 March 2012

Our stay at the Udaivilas left us with mixed feelings. Like in many Indian hotels, service is paramount. But there is a difference between service that is obsequious rather than unobtrusive and ingratiating rather than unassuming. At the Udaivilas, service is more of the former kind and can become tiring. We were also visiting over Christmas. I had imagined a Christmas in India would be nothing like a Christmas in a country where it was part of the general culture (and happily so - how many times can any sane person hear Jingle Bells or Silent Night while doing the grocery shopping at the mall?). No such luck. The first sign that something was afoot was the enormous Christmas tree in the foyer. And then the music. We were hoping for sitars, but instead got more Jingle Bells and Silent Night piped through the PA system day and night. The concierge seemed to struggle to find suitable dining options outside the hotel and we ended up doing the research ourselves and asking for their assistance in making reservations. But odd that a hotel of this quality would not be able to assist with these kind of queries (unless they don't expect their guests to eat outside the hotel? It's unclear). The rooms were comfortable, but not spectacular. The hotel, however is astonishingly beautiful. A stunning property that makes one feel as though you are royalty resident in a magical palace. We also went to an early morning yoga practice with the resident teacher. He was excellent and given that there were only two of us, he took the time to personalise the session and ended it with a wonderful meditation session. I would recommend him very highly.

  • Stayed December 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank JezebelleH
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
TheOberoiUdaivilas, General Manager at The Oberoi Udaivilas, responded to this review, 31 March 2012
We thank you for choosing The Oberoi Udaivilās for your stay. We acknowledge your patience to extract time to evaluate our product and services in detail.

Your feedback has been shared with the team at The Oberoi Udaivilās and in my follow up with our Concierge team , I have reiterated the importance of ensuring that all guest requests are taken care of to prevent guest dissatisfaction. We understand that apart from the restaurants in other deluxe hotels, a few stand alone restaurants could have also been recommended.
Also, our Yoga instructor is happy to learn that he made this experience for you and your partner truly memorable.
I sincerely hope that our distinctive service will persuade you to stay with The Oberoi Hotels & Resorts across the world in the near future. We look forward to welcoming you back at The Oberoi Udaivilās.

Thank you and kind regards,
Jan B. Tibaldi
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
23 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 March 2012

Everything about our stay here was suburb. The rooms were large and very nicely appointed. The bath had state-of-the-art fixtures. The hotel had several restaurants. Breakfast was a combination of buffet and cooked to order. Lunches were excellent -try the Gaspacho. Dinners were taken outdoors and were a romantic delight. The service at the Udaivilas was superb thoughout our stay.

Room Tip: Great location on Lake Pichola.
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  • Stayed March 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank richard_ridge
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
TheOberoiUdaivilas, General Manager at The Oberoi Udaivilas, responded to this review, 24 March 2012
Thank you for choosing The Oberoi Udaivilās for your stay. We really acknowledge your nobleness to evaluate our product, restaurants and services.

Your heart warming feedback has been shared with the team with a special reference to “The White Brigade- Chefs” at The Oberoi Udaivilās and they are extremely happy to learn that they played such a brilliant role in your culinary experiences, making you and your partner’s stay truly exhilarating.

Your gracious appreciation of our performance is a great source of inspiration for us and we are thoroughly motivated to preserve and attain even higher standards of excellence.

I sincerely hope that our distinctive service will persuade you to stay at the mélange of “The Oberoi Hotels and Resorts” properties across the world in the near future. We look forward to welcoming you back at The Oberoi Udaivilās.

Thank you and kind regards,

Jan B. Tibaldi
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
badgworth
Level Contributor
122 reviews
80 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 86 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 March 2012

We were lucky enough to be upgraded to a luxury suite on our recent visit. It was astonishing in both size and quality. We had our owm infinity pool and ourdoor dining area. Inside was so very spacious, with marble bathroom bedroom, office, lounge and dining area. The hotel itself is very beautiful with magnificent gardens and wonderful restaurant. The staff were very helpful and like the other Oberoi Hotels we stayed in, nothing is ever too much trouble. We would recommend this hotel to anyone who wanted a truly memorable and wonderful stay

Room Tip: If you can, stafy in a luxury suite.
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  • Stayed March 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank maxBadgworth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
TheOberoiUdaivilas, General Manager at The Oberoi Udaivilas, responded to this review, 23 March 2012
We want to express our gratitude for having chosen The Oberoi Udaivilās for your stay. We wish to acknowledge your generosity and patience to extract time to evaluate our product and services in great detail.

Your positive feedback has been shared with the team at The Oberoi Udaivilās and they are equally delighted to discover that they were successful in creating moments of delight for you and your partner.

Your freehearted appreciation of our performance is a great source of inspiration for us and we are enlivened to preserve and attain even higher standards of excellence.

I sincerely hope that our distinctive service will persuade you to stay at our manifold of “The Oberoi Hotels & Resorts” properties across the world in the near future. We look forward to welcoming you back at The Oberoi Udaivilās .

Thank you and kind regards,

Jan B. Tibaldi
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Oberoi Udaivilas

Property: The Oberoi Udaivilas
Address: | Haridasji Ki Magri, Udaipur 313001, India
Phone Number:
Region: India > Rajasthan > Udaipur District > Udaipur
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Business Hotel in Udaipur
#2 Romantic Hotel in Udaipur
#2 Family Hotel in Udaipur
#3 Spa Hotel in Udaipur
#3 Luxury Hotel in Udaipur
Price range (per night): $497 - $1,812
Hotel Class:5 star — The Oberoi Udaivilas 5*
Number of rooms: 87
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
In a city fabled for its palaces, The Oberoi Udaivilas can take its place with pride. With views over Lake Pichola to the spectacular City Palace, the hotel itself resembles a grand palace. Landscaped gardens and shady courtyards, decorative fountains and reflection pools, cool marble, ornate carving, inlay work and detailed interiors create a marvellous ambience of days gone by. Huge bedchambers with large private terraces, luxury suites with private swimming pools, marble bathrooms, walk-in closets, butler service and 24-hour in-room dining make you feel like royalty. The restaurants serve international and Indian cuisine including regional favourites. A gymnasium, two large swimming pools and a luxury spa offering a range of therapies, add to the ambience of total pampering. The facilities are particularly suited to meetings that might benefit from this exotic location. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Oberoi Udaivilas Hotel Udaipur
Oberoi Hotel Udaipur
Oberoi Hotel Udaivilas
Oberoi Udaipur
Udaipur Oberoi

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