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Sunday, May 14, 2017

Best Luxury Stay in Mahabalipuram: Radisson Blu Temple Bay Resort

The small town of Mahabalipuram, some 60 kms from Chennai has at least a dozen luxury resorts, all targeting business from foreign tourists and from corporate events. Though I have never stayed in any of them, I have been to many of them as part of team outings and other company events. Of all the luxury options in Mahabs, one that stands out is the Temple Bay. Formerly known as GRT Temple Bay, now it is Radisson Blu Temple Bay. Still operated by GRT Group but under the branding and franchise of Radisson Blu

I have been to the Temple Bay resort at least a dozen times for various company events and outings, but never had an opportunity to stay here. That part was fulfilled few weeks ago, as part of #GRTHotels bloggers meet. We got to spend 2 nights in this luxury resort and I was now eligible to explore all areas of the resort. (Visiting guests can't enter certain residents only areas).

This post shares my photos of Radisson Blu Temple Bay, Mahabalipuram and related details we could explore during our stay.

Radisson Blu Temple Bay is set in an 18 hectare campus (44 acres). Great landscaping, plenty of trees, many of them fruit bearing and two big pools attract lots of birds in the campus as well. Upon our arrival, we were served tender coconut welcome drink. The lobby area is very photogenic with attractive ceiling mounted lights.
Lights in the lobby- view from bottom!

After quick fresh-up we headed for the beach- the area adjacent to sea deck to be precise. Here there was generous serving of more tender coconut, butter milk and other beverages. I enjoyed drinking several tender coconuts that evening.



Above: The bar counter- notice the localized theme with boat, lanterns, tender coconut, coconut leaf walls and more...Next was time for a quick brief by resort management, followed by entertainment.

Various local artists exhibited their skills.  First was peacock dance. I made a 6 min video of this dance- do watch below: [Watch on Youtube here]
Next performance was horse dance- artists had wooden stick tied to their legs, so they were balancing precariously on those and not using their real feet. This adds to the complexity as they have to maintain their vertical balance as well manage to shake the horse frame back n forth and perform other acts using hand and face.


Balancing on the bottles- because the ground was not even (rock with grass), artist had to try multiple positions till he was convinced that the positioning is stable. Eventually he did it- standing up on the two wooden planks supported by empty glass bottles in between.
Note that artist performance may not be standard activity on all days.

He also performed various stunts such as balancing multiple items on the head, drinking juice while dancing and balancing, playing with fire and much more. He was supported by two female dancers. In one of the dangerous acts, he lifted a sharp pin with his eyebrows.

Temple Bay's activity manager was such an energetic person. All guests danced with him to their heart's content.

Next of course was dinner.




 Very colourful and energetic ambiance
Room Types at Temple Bay:
Standard Chalet: The most affordable category of rooms, around 45 sq meters (as per Radisson website, 28 sq meters on booking.com) in space and equipped with about 25 different facilities including a Patio. Rentals cost around INR 7000 per day, after including various taxes.

Chalet with Pool View: My stay was in this category of rooms. Fairly similar to Standard Chalet with with the view of Temple Bay's signature swimming pool from the balcony. Room was luxurious with essence of stone artifacts and silk embedded in.  Pool view Chalets cost upwards of INR 8000 per night after tax. (Rates are indicative, can vary with check-in date, booking channel and other means). I noticed that most of the pool view chalets are designed such that hot sun-rays do not directly enter the room. A slightly tiled design ensures better heat protection. Of course campus has lots of trees to keep the temperature down.

Above: Real stone sculptures inside the room
Below: A touch of silk right above the bed


Above: Balcony with pool view
Below: View of the pool from my balcony


Above: A bit of personal touch by the house keeping staff
Below: Eco friendly initiatives


Each room gets a  dedicated baggage storage area with locker and almera 
Unfortunately day time I had to attend to work, so I missed the property tour and other activities.

Sea View Chalets: Next luxurious category of rooms give you the view of Bay of Bengal from your window/balcony. Price per night is about 10k INR

Villa with sea view: Villas offer additional privacy and more space. Sea view villa costs about 20k a night.

Sea view villas with private pool: The most luxurious option at Temple bay offers private dining space, Jacuzzi, separate lounge area, a private pool and a host of additional facilities. Costs about 30000 INR per night

Activities to try at Radisson Blu Temple Bay Mahabalipuram:

1. Catamaran ride: When the sea is friendly, guests can go on a catamaran ride. On the day of our stay, the ride was cancelled due to rough sea

2. Play Chess with life size pawns
3. ATV Ride- only in the evening, operated by 3rd party agency.
4. Infinity Pool

5. The Meandering Pool- largest in South Asia, in terms of length it almost covers half the length of the resort campus, extending from The Water's Edge restaurant till Bodhi Spa. Around 27000+ Sq feet, complete with several bridges, mini pools for kids.




6. Zorbing can be tried in the above pool

7. Bodhi Spa: Temple Bay Resort has 2 Spa units, offering rejuvenating ayurvedic massages. There's a couple room as well (named Laila Majnu!). Do not miss a session here during your stay.

7. Volleyball by the beach

8. Cycles and E-bikes available for rent.
9. Dancing, golf, indoor games are some of the other activities you can try inside the resort.

Restaurants at Radisson Blu Temple Bay, Mahabalipuram
1. The Water's Edge

Water's Edge is the main and all day restaurant serving breakfast, lunch and dinner, located close to lobby.

2. The Wharf: The Wharf serves specialty food. Seated by the ocean under a relatively darker ambiance, Wharf is a great place for long conversations with regular supply of unique dishes.

The Temple bay resort being very huge, our coordinator had to whatsapp exact location where we were supposed to assemble. Take a close look at the map for better understanding of resort resort layout.

Temple bay has won multiple awards for their eco friendly initiatives. Tata Ace mini fire truck in the parking area is a good initiative.

Places to visit nearby: Shore Temple of Mahabalipuram, 5 Rathas, light house, shopping for local handicrafts, Tiger Cave. Krishna's butter ball, Sea Shell Museum are some of the attractions nearby. Polaris Offroad track is also nearby.

Even more places to visit nearby Mahabalipuram: Alamparai Fort * Dakshin Chitra * Muthukadu Boat House * MGM * Kovalam Beach * Crocodile Bank


Also check: Grand by GRT * Radisson Blu Scandinavia

6 comments :

rupam sarma said...

Amazing. Beautiful review. Loved all pics.

Siddhartha Joshi said...

Does look good...esp that blue pool! I am guessing it must be hot at this time of the year...

Shrinidhi Hande said...

@Sid- Yes, it is hot.. but the campus is bit cooler that rest of Mahabs due to trees, pools and sea breeze

Shrinidhi Hande said...

@Rupam- Thanks

boy lazy said...

Great post keep up the good work.
@iamboylazy
http://blog.boylazy.com
http://boylazy.com

Shrinidhi Hande said...

Thanks