Cuffie River Nature Retreat

Intimate 10-room Nature Retreat in rainforest location (listing)
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Rochelle R.

Cuffie River Nature Retreat

Post by Rochelle R. » Mon Dec 08, 2003 1:24 am

:D
We spent two nights at the Cuffie River Nature Retreat, located slightly south and inland from Castara. It was the most amazing experience! The hosts, Regina and Anthony, have built a gem of an inn directly in the rainforest. It is a very unique building with ten rooms - open air, and designed in such a way that you catch all the breezes but no rain. We also didn't have a problem with insects. This place is fabulous and any nature lover must check it out! Also, the delicious food at the inn was lovingly prepared by local food "artists". I'm serious about this! The cooks did a phenominal job of preparing wonderful food with local spices and ingredients. We felt totally relaxed and pampered. Also, Desmond, an employee of the inn, is a wonderful rainforest guide and is also a very friendly fellow. He was very knowledgable. We went on a four hour hike and saw all sorts of plants, animals, and birds. Additionally, every morning, Regina feeds the birds. So, you will see lots of birds up close. There is also a swimming pool on site which is lovely and relaxing. We had such a wonderful time here. It was totally relaxing, safe, and enjoyable. I will definitely visit Cuffie River on my next visit to Tobago.

Gary Elson

cuffie river nature retreat

Post by Gary Elson » Sun Feb 08, 2004 11:50 am

Just back from Tobago. We too spent 3 great days at the Cuffie River. A totally relaxing place to be, with great birds, food and hosts.

The pool is a great addition and gives the place everything that the visitor could want. We had no real problem with insects. The highlights were the hummingbirds on the feeders and the forest walks with Desmond, who knows his stuff.

Regina and Antony have created a super hotel in magnificent surroundings that deserves to do well. We cannot recommend it highly enough. A car is pretty essential if you want to get out and about, but they can organise that for you.

N Muir

Culfie River

Post by N Muir » Tue Jun 01, 2004 10:50 am

Unfortunatly the Culfie River retreat is a little bit out of our budget. However i have visited it and taken a guided nature walk and eaten at the restaurant. It is a wonderful place, the people are very helpful and the rooms are beautiful. Its set well in the heart of rainforest and i would recommend to anyone who has the budget to spend a few days there and REALLY relax.

Anita Pineda

Re: Culfie River

Post by Anita Pineda » Sat Jul 31, 2004 10:27 pm

N Muir wrote:Unfortunatly the Culfie River retreat is a little bit out of our budget. However i have visited it and taken a guided nature walk and eaten at the restaurant. It is a wonderful place, the people are very helpful and the rooms are beautiful. Its set well in the heart of rainforest and i would recommend to anyone who has the budget to spend a few days there and REALLY relax.
well, i have just spent 3 days at the Cuffie River retreat.
unfortunately my stay was spoilt by the attitude of the owner/hostess. despite her efforts to appear friendly, for me she did not come across as genuine.
when i booked i specifically asked her what time we had to check out and she replied that she was "flexible" yet when we checked out at 4pm she wanted to charge an extra 150TT (£15)
on the breakfast menu it says that the salt fish bujiol and coconut bake must be ordered the day before. i therefore ordered it for 2 people and the hostess the following day had conveniently forgotten and we never got our salt fish bujiol or coconut bake. "oops i'm sorry, it went in one ear and straight out the other" was her reply.
My two extremely well behaved, respectful, quiet daughters aged 6 and 9 and myself were the only guests on our last day and of course everything seemed to be too much of an effort just for us, which is probably why it would have been too much trouble to make the bujiol for us.
we had paid bed, breakfast and evening meal for 3 people..........which incidently was not cheap, however, dinner, of which there was no choice, was not served until 8pm by which time my children were already asleep and therefore ate nothing.
the food was uninspiring and bland, not at all tobagonian cuisine. the vegetables were a plate of coleslaw and another plate of chopped cabbage and carrots (coleslaw without the mayonnaise!)
the rest of the staff at the hotel were extremely friendly and helpful.
there are no mosquito nets over the beds or at the windows and no air conditioning or fans.
i would not recommend anyone to stay there. the surroundings are beautiful and the walks you can do in a day trip. i went into the rainforest on a 5 hour hike with my 2 daughters without a guide and it was wonderful.

George Livingston

Cuffie River Nature Retreat

Post by George Livingston » Mon Aug 02, 2004 6:51 pm

:D

Hi all. We (a family of four) had a great experience at Cuffie River this last July (4 days). The owner of the establishment (Regina) was very friendly and accommodating. We arrived early on our first day and were hoping we could get lunch. Regina promptly made us an unplanned lunch well after normal lunchtime. She also gave us a spacious room (with the same rate as the smaller room we originally booked) in an effort to give all the guests enough space between each other. Regina gave helpful advice on where to go around the island and helped to secure a driver for us in Trinidad.

The dinner and breakfast staff made large portions (often too much to eat!) of great local style dishes. They were courteous and flexible, providing a late breakfast on one occasion. They also provided a fan for us from the kitchen.

The accommodations themselves were spacious and well designed to open the lodge to the surrounding rainforest. The rainforest around Cuffie River is varied and species rich. Feeders draw nectar and fruit feeding bird species within view of your room.

In sum, we would highly recommend Cuffie River to anyone traveling to Tobago.

Geoff Kempster

Post by Geoff Kempster » Mon Aug 02, 2004 7:16 pm

We have recently (July 04) had a six day stay at Cuffie River, and we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. Regina tailored the days out to meet our requirements, including organising a specific tour guide for one day out, who she did not know. The accomadation was very comfortable, and air conditioning was not needed, as it was possible to leave the windows open without having to worry about mosquitos. The views from the inn were spectacular, and the local wildlife were wonderful to watch. My wife was enchanted by the humming birds, especially when they used the rooms as a short cut through the building.

All of the meals were plain but wholesome local cuisine and enjoyable, but I don't believe you go to the rainforest for haute cuisine. Although they were not able to satisfy one of our groups desire for 'death by chocolate', they did manage to obtain some pumpkin ice-cream that my wife was after since our last trip to tobago.

Overall, I would say that the Cuffie River Nature Retreat was an excellent location, and I know that our party wished that we had planned to stay there longer.

Sue & Arthur Hutchins

Cuffie River Nature Retreat

Post by Sue & Arthur Hutchins » Tue Aug 03, 2004 6:38 am

:D Regina and Antony treated our party with a good deal of honest and sincere hospitality. They looked after us and made our stay most comfortable. If you want fauning and insincere attention, you won't get it here.

We were given the space to make ourselves at home and Regina and her staff never once imposed upon that.

The rooms were always made clean and the linen fresh each day. And such spacious accommodation, the dimensions are generous. They were well ventilated and the insect presence was negligable.

The food was reasonably seasoned where appropriate and the vegetables were fresh and always cooked perfectly. One of the cooks, Jean was particularly friendly and attentive and certainly talented at making the most delicious bread.

Dinning was not only made enjoyable by the food and the people who made it happen, but also by the humming birds and large butterflies which would on occasion flit through the building.

We had the pleasure of two guided walks with Desmond, :lol: a charming, knowledgeable and enthusiastic gentleman who enriched our experience with his own love of the Island and its forests.

Another guide of outstanding knowledge and skill was Mr Milton George whose two tours, one to the wetlands areas and one to Little Tobago and the Coral Reef off Goat Island were outstanding in professionalism and customer service.

Our stay was delightful through out, and the location and setting blissful. We will return to Cuffie River for all that it has to offer, and would recommend it to anyone, except those few people who's expectations exceed their abilties to appreciate such a place.

Anita Pineda

Re: Cuffie River Nature Retreat

Post by Anita Pineda » Tue Aug 03, 2004 9:23 pm

George Livingston wrote::D

Hi all. We (a family of four) had a great experience at Cuffie River this last July (4 days). The owner of the establishment (Regina) was very friendly and accommodating. We arrived early on our first day and were hoping we could get lunch. Regina promptly made us an unplanned lunch well after normal lunchtime. She also gave us a spacious room (with the same rate as the smaller room we originally booked) in an effort to give all the guests enough space between each other. Regina gave helpful advice on where to go around the island and helped to secure a driver for us in Trinidad.

The dinner and breakfast staff made large portions (often too much to eat!) of great local style dishes. They were courteous and flexible, providing a late breakfast on one occasion. They also provided a fan for us from the kitchen.

The accommodations themselves were spacious and well designed to open the lodge to the surrounding rainforest. The rainforest around Cuffie River is varied and species rich. Feeders draw nectar and fruit feeding bird species within view of your room.

In sum, we would highly recommend Cuffie River to anyone traveling to Tobago.
well, what a coincidence that there are 3 responses regarding cuffie river so soon after my honest report of my experience there.
it seems very strange to me that 3 new visitors to myTobago.info all join on the same day within a few minutes of each other and contradict everything that i truthfully wrote??????????!!!!!!!
There ARE mosquitoes, there ARE NOT mosquito nets, the food WAS bland and very small portions, and for us the hospitality extremely insincere, however the waitresses, the driver and the guide are wonderful people....... what a shame that Regina FORGOT to organise our salt fish bujiol and coconut bake that we were so looking forward to, i would then have known how good jean's bread was.....ooops.
Perhaps these 3 new visitors have some interest in cuffie river.

John Cook

Post by John Cook » Wed Aug 04, 2004 5:34 pm

It was sad Anita had such a bad time at Cuffie River: I'm going there next month for my TENTH visit!! I have travelled all over the world & can honestly say Tobago (& Cuffie River in particular) is the FRIENDLIEST place I have ever visited!! Regina & all her staff are real gems & they all go out of their way to be helpful. Maybe a nature retreat in the middle of the rainforest isn't the "height of sophistication", but I have always found Cuffie River to be very comfortable & it doesn't suffer from the continual whine of air-conditioning units...the "air conditioning" is the continual trade winds blowing through the rooms!! Perhaps, Anita, with two young children, you should try Disneyland next time??

Kristian Juell

Re: Cuffie River Nature Retreat

Post by Kristian Juell » Wed Aug 04, 2004 8:29 pm

Anita wrote
Anita Pineda wrote:
George Livingston wrote::D


well, what a coincidence that there are 3 responses regarding cuffie river so soon after my honest report of my experience there.
it seems very strange to me that 3 new visitors to myTobago.info all join on the same day within a few minutes of each other and contradict everything that i truthfully wrote??????????!!!!!!!
There ARE mosquitoes, there ARE NOT mosquito nets, the food WAS bland and very small portions, and for us the hospitality extremely insincere, however the waitresses, the driver and the guide are wonderful people....... what a shame that Regina FORGOT to organise our salt fish bujiol and coconut bake that we were so looking forward to, i would then have known how good jean's bread was.....ooops.
Perhaps these 3 new visitors have some interest in cuffie river.
I have to agree with you Anita, this is just silly. Four new visitors to myTobago and they all give cuffie river to good of a review. Strange :wink: !

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Steve Wooler
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Post by Steve Wooler » Thu Aug 05, 2004 9:39 am

May I please respond to those readers who have expressed concern, either directly or through posts above, about the sudden rush of positive reviews following Anita’s comments on the Cuffie River.

As stated during the forum registration process and in our forum Announcements section, we log the IP address of every computer connecting to the site. Emails similarly carry routing information in the message header that shows where the message emanated. This information is invaluable when investigating suspect posts, or should we wish to trace a user.

I have now had email correspondence with the three authors and have completed investigation of the logs/emails. I am totally satisfied that the three users are physically located where their profile claims and have absolutely no reason to believe that these posts were other than genuine attempts to express their own views about the Cuffie River, prompted by Anita’s post.

It should be stated, however, that Sue & Arthur Hutchins were members of the same party as Geoff Kempster. Naturally each member of a party is entitled to express their own views. However, as a general guide to readers, may I stress than when posting a review or comment, you should ALWAYS declare any association with other posters in the same thread. Different members of the same party expressing views without declaring the association can, and invariably will, be seen as manipulative.

It appears that the owners of Cuffie River contacted at least one guest who was staying at the property at, or around, the same time as Anita. I am assured by that person that they were not asked to post a positive review and that Anita’s negative post was only mentioned as an aside. However, it is obviously perfectly acceptable for a property owner to mention such posts if they feel that they have been subject to unfair comment, even if in doing so they are hoping for the support of the person to whom they are writing. It would only be unfair if the property owner offered inducement to post a positive review. I have ABSOLUTELY no reason to suspect that any of these users have any commercial or other association with the establishment.

I’ve never visited the Cuffie River, so can’t really comment from personal experience. However, I have to say that the comments of George Livingston, Geoff Kempster and Sue & Arthur Hutchins are totally representative of everything I’ve ever heard about the property.
Steve Wooler
myTobago.info - the definitive Visitor Guide to Tobago

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