REVIEW: IBIZA THE FERN RESORT KOLKATA
If you ever want to have a relaxing vacation where you never have to go out of your resort, IBIZA the Fern Resort in Kolkata is truly the best place for you. They have so much to do and see on their vast property, that I felt my 4 days there did not do it adequate justice to it. It is the kind of place where you just want to be, and enjoy unparalleled hospitality.
The resort is just as ideal for the solo traveller, as it is for families with kids, couples on their honeymoon, and groups of friends whether mixed-gender or single-gender.
Since this is purely a detailed review or an experiential guide for what to expect at Ibiza the Fern Resort in Kolkata, let’s move along step by step, starting with the rooms.
We stayed in one of the clubrooms on the first floor, facing the lake. Yes! There’s a gorgeous lake right on the property. The rooms were large, much larger than some of the other cramped spaces that go as hotel rooms these days. The beds were comfy and the rooms were equipped with all the standard, modern features.
What wowed me though, is their serious commitment to being eco-friendly. I mean, a lot of hotels today, ask you to not launder your towels unless absolutely necessary and ask you to conserve water and such, just to get the ‘we are environment-friendly’ bragging rights. But Ibiza goes above and beyond just that. Here are just some of the interesting things you notice:
They keep two separate bins for dry and wet waste in their rooms, to keep the waste segregated, and to ease recycling.
There is a noticeable to substitute water instead of toilet rolls. They keep a single, halved toilet roll in the room and unless you wish to keep calling housekeeping for replenishing the rolls, you are somewhat forced to use the water jet instead.
The toiletries are all by Biotique, a well-known brand for Ayuvedic, eco-friendly, chemical & preservative-free products that come in 100 percent recyclable containers.
The water here is available in glass jugs instead of their standard, sealed, plastic packaging; something that is very refreshing to see.
So on and so forth.
Oh and with regards to the rooms, if there was one thing worth bringing your attention to, it would be this. Watch out for the mosquitos if you stay by the lake. Keep the door firmly shut as much as possible and ask the housekeeping for another All Out or Goodnight. Thank us for this later.
People, a big aspect of the hospitality industry, often get far less credit than they deserve. Sadly, a few bad experiences give them tonnes of brickbats, but years of committed effort rarely ever translate to excellent reviews. IBIZA is that one place where the people really do make your stay!
Whether it is the staff and manager in the restaurant or the front office people, everyone is well-mannered, well- trained and ready to help with a smile. It is the foot soldiers that are the worthiest of credit though. I make a special mention for the staff who handles the activity area and game room, and the staff that handles the outdoor activities – such as the bridges, zipline, boating, kayaking, archery, and more. These people are especially helpful and encouraging. They even made my 4-year old talking and smiling at the prospect of enjoying multiple ‘boat’ and ‘bicycle’ rides, and she is not the easiest critic to please!
Yes, I am exactly that kind of annoying person who wants to do everything, try everything. So, except for swimming (which I didn’t do because it was quite cold on those 4 days that I was there), I tried and enjoyed just about everything. Indoors, we enjoyed the discotheque, games of pool (the billiards kind, not the water kind), table tennis, chess, carrom, and even some electronic game-room style games.
Outdoors, I conquered three bridges, including the commando bridge (worked out quite a sweat), paddle boated across the pond and back, kayaked around here and there, cycled the cycling loop a few times, ziplined across the lake, etc. and even tried my hand at archery and rifle shooting.
The Discotheque is an interesting addition here and I for one loved it. It seems the place hasn’t moved past the 90s and 2000s as yet, because the music is certainly dated. But if you like to groove, hey, you like to groove, so as long as there are some good beats!As you can see, there was so much to do and see, sightseeing outside, even the short drive to the BAPS Swaminarayan temple wasn’t something I was interested in.
First and foremost, the restaurant area is stunning. Absolutely stunning! It reminded me of my time in Bath (UK), but for some, it could be a mix of Turkey and Granada (Spain) I would guess. And if the venue isn’t interesting enough, the food is absolutely yummy.Once again, as a vegetarian tourist, I tried just about everything vegetarian there. The mushroom starter (slightly spicy) is my personal recommendation to just about everyone going there. And while I know that the place is in Bengal, the queen of mishti in India, I would absolutely recommend that you leave the roshgullas and roshmalais for your second time and try the gajar ka halwa on your first! Not overly sweet, not overly greasy, it is just perfect!
One thing to note with the restaurant is that, just as the resort is committed to being eco-friendly, the restaurant seems to be committed to clean, healthy eating. From the Hakka noodles to the paranthas, you will notice one consistent thing – maximum taste using the freshest ingredients, minus the overload of oil, grease, and sugar!! Try it and put my theory to test.
A special note of thanks to the restaurant manager Aftab who is always around to answer questions, make dinner recommendations, and even give valuable local advice. He ensured that all our meals here were full of fun, laughter, and chit chat. He manages the restaurant really well and it also shows in the menus that are set for buffets. You’d think that after staying for 4 days, I would have been repeating meals… but no, not here! Every single meal of mine, from breakfast to dinner, was a different one, with the exception that I repeated my beloved gajar halwa the night before I was to leave.
Despite an almost perfect stay at Ibiza The Fern Resort in Kolkata, I do have a short and simple wish list for how this resort can become my ultimate dream destination even in the future.
Making it pet-friendly will help, not just me but also to bring in a whole new set of pet-loving guests. Opening up this segment shouldn’t be tough for the resort as you can already see a lot of animals and birds on the property. Maybe they can convert a few ground-floor rooms into pet-friendly residences and open up the hotel to a whole new clientele.
The only weird thing here was that the rooms did not have a spa menu or brochure handy. You have to ask for it to be sent to you separately. This is bizarre since a lot of times, making a spa booking is an impulse buy on vacations where you find yourself with some free time to relax and wish to feel pampered. I would definitely want them to consider keeping these brochures in all rooms.
They already have a discotheque, albeit with outdated songs. If the songs list were updated, that would appeal to a younger, more youthful crowd. That aside, they can use this space to open up an indoor karaoke room too. Karaoke is a super fun indoor activity that is enjoyed by all age groups, and considering that they already have space and need only invest in the equipment, they can easily provide this one more activity to engage guests.
The one single thing that is less impressive than all others here is the electronic game room. There are only 2 or 3 electronic games for the grand room space allocated to the experience. Stocking up on more indoor games by installing more equipment can make the space more appealing for teenagers and kids, bringing in more satisfied adults in the process.
Let us know if this first-hand review of Ibiza The Fern Resort in Kolkata has been of use to you. Our resort and hotel reviews are trustworthy simply because no monetary payment has exchanged hands for them, making them completely independent of any interference. Similarly, this resort review is also 100 percent based on our own experience there.