Review of Hotel Hillview, Munnar

Are you looking for a budget hotel in Munnar, conveniently located near the attractions? Here is my personal experience and review of Hotel Hillview at Munnar.

We have been planning another trip to Munnar for a long time but every date we fixed got skipped for some or other reason. With 3 kids going to school and taking turns for catching up fever and cough, it was hard for us to plan a trip in advance.

Finally, one fine morning, my wife asked, "It's boring, how about a trip?". I didn't ask "when" or "where", instead, I said, "Let's pack". In about an hour, we were in the car and driving. We were still debating where to go. I was looking for a 1-day trip but it was voted down instantly! In a few minutes, we hit the highway and it was time to make a decision. Without much further confusion, we turned towards Munnar and that was the beginning of another unplanned, memorable vacation trip to Munnar.

Route from Kochi to Munnar

We started from our home in Ernakulam and drove via Aluva -> Perumbavoor -> Kothamangalam -> Adimaly. Until Kothamangalam, it was pretty crowded route through many small towns. Traffic slowly came down after Kothamangalam. We stopped for a coffee in a small country style restaurant just before Neriamangalam and prepared ourselves to breath fresh air and rejuvenate ourselves at one of the best hill stations in the God's own country.

The environment changes completely after Neriamangalam. We started getting a feel of what's awaiting us. Cool breeze, steep elevations, large trees, rocky mountains - we slowly passed beautiful scenic routes. In about an hour from Neriamangalam, we passed Adimaly town, the last big town before reaching Munnar. That's the time we started thinking about hotel.

Hotel availability in Munnar without advance booking

Even though we are very familiar with such trips without any advance hotel booking, we were a bit worried about the availability of rooms. Since Munnar is the most visited destination in Kerala, sometimes all hotels get occupied fully and there won't be any choice other than driving back to distant towns to find a hotel.

We reached Munnar area and spotted a few hotels. The first one we saw was "Hotel Hillview", located along the road to Munnar and just 1 km before the Munnar town. Even though it looked good, I didn't feel anything attractive there other than the Pine tree plantation and the shallow stream adjacent to the hotel. I was trying to skip and look for another one but the kids noticed the big "Free Wi-Fi" board in front of the hotel. And they didn't want to try any other hotel but wanted to book there right away.

I made many offers like I will buy paid WiFi even if there is no free WiFi but they weren't convinced. They sounded like the primary purpose of their trip was to get free Wi-Fi.

I quickly checked the room prices online and wasn't very happy since the hotel looked like just an ordinary hotel and the price looked a bit high for such a regular hotel. But I still walked into the hotel lobby and asked for the best, walk-in price. To my surprise, they offered me almost 50% discount from the online price, which was a good deal.

Experience at Hotel Hillview, Munnar

The hotel is conveniently located along the route from Ernakulam to Munnar. They have ample parking space on the side, adjacent to the hotel lobby. We stopped the car right in front of the main door and unloaded our bags. Then I parked the car in the parking area and joined my family who were already checking in. The staff was very cordial and helped us to move our baggage to the room. By the time I reached the room, kids had already started checking out the TV channels and Wi-Fi.

Free Wi-Fi: The big "Free Wi-Fi" board in the front of the hotel suggests Wi-Fi is the biggest attraction of this hotel. Anyway, it wasn't really a super speed broadband but was fast enough for us to check emails and find local attractions.

Rooms: The first room we got was close to the highway and we felt there is too much noise from the road. So we asked for another room and they quickly moved us to another room without any hesitation. We got a non-smoking deluxe room, which was big, neat and tidy. It had an excellent view of the pine trees on the side of the hotel.

Complimentary breakfast: Didn't expect anything great but the breakfast was good enough. With south Indian dishes like Dosas, Idly, Chutney, Sambar etc, along with the basic serials and bread, it was a decent breakfast on a vacation trip. I was looking for a bread toaster everywhere but couldn't find one. Kids were hesitating to eat the raw bread. After the breakfast, I went and reported to the reception that they should provide a bread toaster. To my surprise, they told me they already have one and they would toast the bread on request. The complimentary breakfast comes with all basic items including coffee and juice.

Views: Even though Hotel Hillview is located along the route to Munnar, it was a good view of the hills and valleys. If you are booking through phone or doing a walk-in, then ask for a room with good views. Avoid the room close to the road if you don't like the noise from the road.

Nearby attractions: Hotel Hillview is located at walking distance from Munnar town, if you consider about a kilometre as walking distance! There is a pine tree plantation adjacent to the hotel. I am not sure who does the property belongs to, but our kids enjoyed the time running around and taking pictures. There is a stream adjacent to the hotel/pine tree plantation and it was a mesmerizing experience to sit by the stream and relax. There is a beautiful park at about 200 metres distance from the hotel. We went to the park in the evening and spent a few hours there. Kids loved the place with many play structures and small food stalls.

Overall review of Hotel Hillview, Munnar

I wouldn't call this a fabulous honeymoon resort but it definitely is a value for money, budget hotel at Munnar. If you are with family and need a safe and convenient hotel at budget price, then Hotel Hillview is a good choice. Walk-in guests may get good discounts unless they are already sold out. Some of the hotel booking sites like TripAdvisor can show you really good prices here. I would give 5-star rating for safety, convenience and cleanliness. If there is anything lacking here, that's the ambiance of a hill station resort. Hotel looks more like a business hotel and not like a leisure hotel.


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