We were there to bring in the New Year 2016 & had booked a Cottage. There have been many positive improvements since our last stay, which made us happy. Most of the Cottages have been renovated, the Mattresses have been changed, the Flooring is New & Good, the Furniture has also been changed, there are Reflective Bollards lining all the inner roads, nice Reflective Sign Boards have been fixed outside each Cottage/Room to indicate their number, making them easy to find & some landscaping with new flower & other plants has been done, making the whole place look much better than earlier. The food in the restaurant has also been improved & is quite good now, particularly the Kebabs & other Tandoori Items, which are very good. The Complimentary Breakfast (which was never actually Complimentary) has now been stopped & the room rates have been reduced to reflect this, which is very good, as you can now order a la carte breakfast, asking for what you want & pay for the same accordingly. The Restaurant rates continue to be very affordable.
Many of the earlier downsides however still continue, with maintenance still being a major issue. The Electrical Switches in the Rooms are often loose & hanging, the Taps & Plumbing leak at some places, the Bed Sheets, Pillow Cases & Towels are shabby & a bit frayed as well, the TV Cable Wires are very untidy outside the rooms & most of the Intercoms do not work.
If only MTDC would ensure proper maintenance, this would probably be the Best Place to stay at in Lonavala. However, despite all these minus points, it is still a great place in the lap of nature & will be preferred by all those who like a Rustic Setting & do not mind a few inconveniences. Being MTDC, the rates are also very reasonable & it is very good value for money.
Room Tip: If a Couple, go for a Garden Room or a Cottage with 1 Bedroom & if 4 persons, go for a Deluxe Co.
I and my wife were planning a short break in Lonavala for 1 night, 2 days and hence decided to give Fariyas a try. We had heard a lot about the property and hence, in spite of the premium cost, decided to go ahead with the same.
However, the decision seemed incorrect right from the word go. After we had booked the place, we called up the hotel to ask a couple of things like transfers, booking confirmation, etc. For a resort that calls itself a 5 star property, the staff was mediocre at best - they simply didn't know how to speak on the phone and most of the things they said were either incorrect or incomplete. The 2nd disappointment was the car that they sent for the pick-up (they charge an additional amount for this) from Lonavala station - have never seen a 5 star resort use anything but a sedan class vehicle - Fariyas sent us a mid-end SUV. But that was the least of the issues.
When we finally reached the hotel, they forgot our welcome drinks (we never got it actually). The check-in was quick though and the staff at the reception had our details at the ready. The staff of the hotel seems to be the only saving grace for the property.
We were given a room on the 2nd floor and this turned out to be another disappointment. There was a distinct damp smell prevalent in the room at all times. In fact, the room was so badly maintained that there was mould (fungus) of some kind growing on the ceiling of the balcony (See photo attached). The toiletries and other essentials were as expected - thank God for that.
Next demerit was the food. We had lunch at the in-house buffet and were impressed neither by the quality (taste, texture, etc. ) nor the quantity (spread). There was barely 1 main course in the non-veg section and another item was super spicy. The dessert section, though well-stocked, left a lot to be desired in terms of taste and quality. There was an over-bearing aroma of eggs in a couple of items.
Last but not the least, was the super hot and extremely uncomfortable climate that was maintained in common indoor areas like the coffee shop (where the buffet is served) and the main reception area. I was literally sweating while eating - have never seen a "5 star" resort use coolers to maintain the climate. Needless to say, they were grossly inadequate. In fact, besides us a couple of other guests also complained about the same.
I almost forgot to mention that the resort does not provide free WiFi. I mean for the price they charge, this is the least that they can do. WiFi is almost like an essential necessity nowadays.
To conclude, I would say that if in Lonavala, please look at all other options before deciding on this place. The view is also not great.
1. Amazing room service. Absolutely quick to respond. 2. Delicious food. 3. Good rooms. Good toiletries. 4. Good location. 5. The activity section on the ground floor is also pretty decent to spend time with your loved ones.
Situated away from the hustle and bustle of Lonavala market town and even farther from the now-infamous chikki brigade of stores, it's a peaceful getaway retreat. The rooms are good, with all your basic amenities covered, with a few extra bits and pieces of luxury added on top.
Pros: Located towards the Pune side of the Pune-Mumbai highway, it has a 20-30 mins faster access to the highway than hotels on the Mumbai side of the highway. So for dinner one can hit the road and grab a nice meal at Sheetal da dhaba (recently renovated and now can be considered a luxury resort than a dhaba).
Cons: A bit overpriced, could expect to have shaved off 20% off the base price. My wife and me had quickly grabbed a discount offer of Rs. 1500 and had availed the deluxe room at Rs. 3000. Else, you may look for other options, but I found hotels in Lonavala to be slightly overpriced anyways.
After coming across generic mentions of Della Adventures multiple times, we finally decided to try out the resort to celebrate a special family occasion.
We had initially booked ourselves in Camp Della but had to reconsider the decision once we checked-in and were directed towards our room. The tents were on top of a hillock, accessible only by Della's vehicle. Once we reached the top, the steps leading down to our tent proved to be a major hindrance to senior family members. Also the rooms were quite compact.
We then shifted to Della Resort & Villas at the base of the property. Though the rooms were not too big, the interiors were quite a delight. Luxurious upholstery, plush beds and sprawling bathroom made for a muted luxurious tone of the room. Soaking in the wave & bubble tub took away stresses to an even more distant place.
The adventure park is suitable for visitors across age-groups with a wide bouquet of activities being offered for people across different dare-levels. Being an animal enthusiast, I personally quite enjoyed interactions with the horses and the dogs. The adventure activities left for another time when we visited with a larger group.
What really stands out beyond this is the helpfulness of the staff across the property from giving due consideration for change in rooms to providing alternative arrangements for drowsy family members who missed their breakfast buffet to the drivers who drove endlessly to ferry hotel guests from one spot to another to guards who summoned for these vehicles.
The only drawback is that response time of room-service and housekeeping staff was a bit of a let-down due to the vast scale of the property. Also, I personally found the beds to be too soft - the kinds where getting out of the bed is a task since you almost sink into the bed the moment you get onto it.