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“High honeymoon expectations spoiled, very overpriced food & drink”

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Banyan Tree Seychelles
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Takamaka
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 20 September 2010

We stayed here for 11 nights for our honeymoon in Sep 2010. Overall we had a great time but the whole experience didn't meet our expectations. On arrival at our beachfront pool villa it was apparent the place is a little old, and the evidence of ageing both outside and inside the villa is obvious. We fancied a drink but the minibar prices were eye-watering (8.50 eur for a 275ml bottle of local lager!). The in room dining menu selection was ok (if not slightly limited) but again the prices were steep. 25 eur for a fairly basic burger and chips and 15 eur for three veg spring rolls is a bit rich in my mind. We ate at the "Jardin D'Epices" on the first night. A fairly bland 2-course dinner for two with the cheapest bottle of Chilean Sauv Blanc on the menu was 80 eur a head (35 eur for a fish curry is wrong, especially when the beach bar down the road does a better one twice the size for a third of the price).
The Thai restaurant Saffron was great, but then we paid 75 eur a head for a BBQ buffet at the Chez Lamar which was average at best. (200 eur all in with wine.. imagine what you can get for that anywhere else!!)
We ventured out to the 4 seasons (be prepared to pay a fortune in taxis - journey prices on average 1 eur per minute travelled) but both restaurants there were amazing and the same price or cheaper.
I guess it depends on what you want out of your trip. If you want to be in a secluded place with your own pool, jacuzzi and a stagger to the beach but you arent fussed about paying through the nose for average food, then stay in the Banyan Tree. If you want somewhere new with amazing food but a bit away from the beach, stay in the Four Seasons.
It wasn't all bad (clearly I am a foodie!). The staff were great, everything was spotlessly clean if not a little weathered, I think the massage was probably the best I have ever had (and good value) and the views were astounding. I would go back but only if they sort the food/pricing situation out. I don't mind paying those prices for food, especially in hotels, but not if the standard is pedestrian.

  • Stayed: September 2010, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Bonviveur23
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 19 September 2010

I stayed for 7 days in April 2008 with some friends and had a beach front villa. The villa was amazing - it's own pool and direct beach access. Very well designed and very calming with great indoor and outdoor living.

My friends shared the best villa they had and were allocated a 24 hour butler (Shashi) who did their ironing and unpacked their bags. Shashi was great and really looked after all of us. We spent a lot of time as a group at this main villa (which had not 1, but 2 pools!) and Shashi cooked us BBQ's and got us drinks etc.

We ate in the various restaurants every night and we were very happy with the food, especially the Thai restaurant. We had a great week there, however the resort is definately more for couples rather than a group of blokes.

The only downside is that the pool in one of my friend's beachfront villa wasn't working properly (the pump had stopped) and as a result he picked up an ear infection meaning he couldn't fly back, so I had to stay with him for an extra couple of days over the original trip. We moved to 'cheaper' hillside villas but they were still £550 per night each which when you just want to get home is not ideal.

I would go back, but this time with the wife!

  • Stayed: April 2010, travelled with friends
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Thank JasonandSally
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 September 2010

Hotel very beautiful, even if not recently renovated
(we had a very picturesque villa with a great view over the beach and privacy)
But neither service nor food were up the standard of the price level
Breakfast service to villa generally forgot 30% of the order, many items of the menu were not available (and it did not change during the week there, food was only good at the BBQ chez la mar - only open twice a week and one needed to reserve in advance as booked out)
(we ate better at constance lemuria and at the four seasons)

  • Stayed: August 2010, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Honeymooner1973
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
BTGroup, General Manager at Banyan Tree Seychelles, responded to this reviewResponded 29 September 2010

Dear Honeymooner1973

Thank you for taking the time to share your experience on TripAdvisor, and I truly am sorry to learn of your unpleasant experience at Banyan Tree Seychelles.

Generally we receive positive comments and I certainly take your comments to heart. Please do rest assured that this is not on par with the standards set by our resort and corrective actions have already been initiated.

We thank you for your comments as it is exactly feedback such as yours that assists us in achieving the service excellence that we constantly strive for. We hope that despite the issues, overall you had a pleasant stay and I do look forward to be given the opportunity to personally welcome you again to Banyan Tree Seychelles.

Regards,

Ander Dimblad
General Manager
Banyan Tree Seychelles

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 September 2010

We just returned after a 4 nights stay at Banyan Tree. I have read reviews and complaints about this resort in terms of the age of facilities, location, pests, pricy food and the like. But all of these were completely wiped out by the service levels of their staff. We are strict vegetarians and unfortunately the resort is not meant for vegetarians. However, we were given the service of an Indian Chef who handled our dining requirements extremely well. Would like to share our observations and experience:
1. Service levels of staff is amazing and extremely personalized to the extent that most of them remember your names and your Villa number.
2. Buggy service was super fast - possibly because we stayed in a beachfront closer to the lobby
3. Spa is awesome but heavily priced - 150 Euros for any 120 min massage.
4. Be careful while shopping at the gallery as some products we bought had crossed the expiry date which we realised on our return ! Apparently these were on 50% discount.
5. We traveled with an infant and were provided baby cot and baby food daily which is worth mentioning.
6. Hotel doesnt have their own cars which could transport you to the city. You need to rely on taxis which take 80 euros for a round trip to Mahe ! And there are no shops or signs of inhabitation for atleast few kilometers around the resort. So you are confined to the resort.
7. Swimming pool and Jacuzzi are great and well maintained. Pool is set at room temperature.
8. Amenities and fittings in the villa are indeed aged. Main doors are shaky, taps noisy and the like.But thats not of a great concern compared to the experience.
9. Airconditioning and Wireless internet both are serious issues. We were not even able to browse text emails. Airconditioning with fans on and still we felt warm in the nights.
10. Beaches are amazingly beautiful but extremely rough. So dont think of any activities in water.
11. The resort is extremely expensive and so pick some liquor at the department stores on way from the airport. Duty free doenst sell Seybrew !
12. Would like to name a few hotel staffs who are worth a mention:
Rina Tarigan - of reservations who took meticulous care to ensure our requierments were met
Satish Krishnan - Indian Chef who handled our vegetarian requirements extremely well
Fabian - Buggy driver who took us to the hilltop
Rian - made our candle-lit in-villa dining experience memorable
Balram - Indian chef who prepared our dinner
Marie - who handled our welcome arrangements
Bakyaraj - Security
There are some others whose names I dont recollect.
With the Four seasons coming up, this hotel is losing on guests mainly due to its overly secluded location, age of the resort and being a pricy destination.

  • Stayed: September 2010, travelled with family
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Thank rvr2000
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 September 2010

Having stayed at other 5 star resorts that had pool villas, we had high expectations of the Banyan tree. The villa was tired and needed updating - the bath/shower area was old and dirty, the TV/DVD player were extremely old models with poor picture and sound quality.
The decking around the pool was very small and did not get sun after 2pm and the sun lounger was both uncomfortable and impractical. We had to spend all our time at the main pool which defeated the object of having a pool villa!

The food and the staff were excellent, all high quality however this did not make up for the villa. The company need to spend some serious money if they want to hold on to their 5 star status and compete with other resorts. Our recommendation, if you go the Seychelles, stay in the Four Seasons. The Banyan Tree has had its day

  • Stayed: August 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank NLintott
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Banyan Tree Seychelles

Address: | Anse Intendance, Takamaka, Mahe Island, Seychelles
Region: Seychelles > Mahe Island > Takamaka
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Takamaka
Price Range: $1,109 - $3,870 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Banyan Tree Seychelles 5*
Number of rooms: 60
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Banyan Tree Seychelles offers an intimate retreat experience featuring its own signature blend of romance, rejuvenation and exotic sensuality. The philosophy behind the resort is based on providing a place for rejuvenation of the body, mind and soul – a sanctuary for the senses. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Banyan Tree Seychelles Hotel Mahe Island
Banyan Tree Seychelles Mahe Island

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