Reviews of Hotels and Guest houses

21 Nov 2010

I think Unawatuna is overated although the beach was nice the restuarants were a rip off, advertise one thing then give you something completely different and expect you to eat up and shut up. Apart from breakfast ate outside the resort, we were travelling with friends and they stayed on the beach which was much better.
The staff were quite rude when we ordered a drink 2 turned up and when we said we only wanted one we were told in no uncertain terms to drink it as it was our fault?????
Wouldnt stay there again. Not real clean the toliet was damaged and covered up by a bit of putty.

28 Nov 2010

We checked in at the flower garden much later than anticipated at around 10pm after a long and delayed drive from Kandy following a punctured tyre. The staff couldn't be more helpful to swiftly take us to our cabanas and arranged for us to have a later dinner around 11pm. We stayed in a cabana which had it's own veranda and garden. The tropical gardens that sorround the hotel are beatifully landscaped and maintained. The hotel is tucked away at the beginning of the road that leads to the beach (5 min walk) and has numerous restaurants, cafes and shops all around. We had the opportunity to sample both western and sri lankan cuisine during our stay and were surprised by the exceptional standard. It's also great value for money with a 3 course meal starting around £7. Our favourites were beef in baudelaise sauce; fish unawatuna style and jumbo prawns! 3 out of 4 of our party are ethnically Sri Lankan and felt that the traditinal Sri Lankan curries were also excellant. We'd definetly stay here again!

01 Dec 2010

this was a hiddem gem; I stayed with family and friends and enjoyed my luxury large elegant bungalow from where you can hear the jungle animals noises and birds at all times- Nice pool, very kind staff and a fantastic restaurant where the owner SASSI cooks in a wonderful way. it is a 5 minutes walk to the nice beach where at la tartaruga an Italian srilankan small place you can enjoy the beach with a sunbed and eat quite well at reasonable prices.

05 Dec 2010

We stayed in Tisara Villas for six nights and can recommend it highly! It's the perfect place to unwind and relax after long hours of travel on the island. Service and food are excellent and amongst the best we have experienced during our many travels in South Asia.

Rooms are very cleand and fitted with AC and mosquito nets. Each villa has a private garden with access to the communal pool. Our meals were served on our private terrace. Food was excellent, fresh and lovingly prepared. The curries were amongst the best we have eaten in Sri Lanka!

We had some massages which were excellent.

06 Jan 2011

We spent 9 glorious nights at Ambalama, Galle, Sri Lanka. From the moment we stepped through the front doors, after personally driving 5 hours south from Colombo airport (approximately 123 kms in distance) and our nerves at breaking point, we were instantly transformed...being greeted with a refreshing lime soda and cool towel to wash away the outside world!

The large main living area encompassing the entrance, dining and lounge area was the ideal spot to share family time, enjoy perfectly made G&T's and to play some dice whilst listening to beautiful music shuffling through the iPod (note: bring your own iPod to utilise the onsite docking station).

The pool area, looking directly over the lawn and out to the ocean, was amazing...each night the sunset was different to the last. Each morning we enjoyed breakfast beside the pool...what a dream!

The 4 bedrooms (each with their own ensuite, 2 with internal bathrooms and 2 with external bathrooms) were beautiful, spacious and comfortable.

As we walked along the beach we rated the other villas in the area and believe that ours (Ambalama) was the best by far...there must have been some "Villa Envy" for those on the other side of the low rock wall!

The staff were amazing and only too happy to accommodate any request - Roshan (the Chef) delighting us each day with delicious food (the seafood BBQ was our group favourite), Sujith and Chandrasiri (House Staff) were always there to greet us with bright beaming smiles, the security guard always on the lookout for our safety (please purchase a new torch for him..he is in desperate need) and the gardener made sure the pool and garden area was in perfect condition for our daily enjoyment. Thank you to each one of you for making our stay all the more memorable.

We should mention a couple of tiny minuses - we had strangers walking in off the beach asking if we had any "rooms for rent"...obviously the beach walkers thought the Villa was a small boutique hotel...this didn't happen just the once, it was basically a daily occurence...we suggest a small sign be posted near the beach entrance saying "Private Property". Also, the men were keen to watch the Boxing Day Cricket test but there wasn't a televison onsite so they went to the local Unawatuna Beach Resort ("UBR") - this wasn't a problem, but it should be noted.

The position of the Villa was fabulous...not too far from Galle town, being able to see the stilted fisherman from the beach rock wall and walking distance to Wijaya Beach Cottage (great pizza's, people watching and ambience).

Lastly, the Christmas tree was spectacular and really added that special was the beginning and the end of the magic for Christmas 2010....

PS: We did try and attach some photos but, for some reason, TripAdvisor didn't have the option....sorry.

13 Jan 2011

What a cracking place! Ambalama is one of the best positioned and idyllic houses that we have ever stayed in, and very hard to leave! After escaping the cold and grey of the UK it was an absolute joy to relax in such a stunning location. Set right on the beach with the Indian Ocean giving a picture postcard view. The pool was also exceptional and the children spent countless hours enjoying it. The beach in front of the villa is golden sand, and although the sea can have strong currents and is in places rocky (so not ideal for young children or weak swimmers) it does mean that very few people linger in front of the spectacular view. It is a short 5 minute walk to the local beach club/bar with a sheltered lagoon in directly in front. The interior design and detail were faultless, beds and bedrooms great and on arrival it was almost like walking into a photoshoot for Homes and Gardens. Added to this, Roshan the chef was outstanding and we enjoyed some delightful lunches and dinners. My family loved every minute of our week there. The house is close enough to Galle to travel to for shopping (or cricket!). I had wondered if the road to the rear of the house would be noisy, but not all all, and at night all one could hear was the lapping of the waves on the beach. Very grateful to Chris and Tai, and we will be back!

26 Jan 2011

We have just returned from 14 nights at this wonderful Villa. The location is picture perfect and the staff are amazing. Roshan (the chef) is amazing we actually only ate out once because the food was so good,and the staff wow they do a fantastic job always smiling and they work so hard.
The night watch man (we called him Ted) was so nice we had a party of 4 staying up the beach and every night he walked them back to their villa. he even woke us all up so that we could see the turtle lays its egg on the beach right outside our villa this was a highlight!!!!
The Villa sleeps 8 but we had my nieces staying at a hotel two doors up and they came to the Villa for all their meals and spent the days with us, the staff were brilliant in the way they dealt with this and they handled the extras so well (we had passed this with managment before we left)
However their are a few things that really do need to be fixed
The villa needs a bit of TLC, about half the outside lights didn't work including the outdoor bathrooms.
The A/C in the room that my daughters had didn't work (but when we told Tai he had it fixed in two days)
Some of the shutters on the blinds were broken or missing, our bathroom door had a rusty key that was stuck in it, this scratched my husbands back and left a very nasty scratch
The ipod station was not working when we got there but when we told Tai was replaced in two days.
There is no TV but in saying that we didn't miss it but would be nice to have in case of bad weather.
The fish pond is terrible all green and slimy and there is no pump so the water then starts to attract mossies.
The Villa sleeps eight however there were only 6 sun loungers and two of these were broken.
The plumbing clogged up in two of the rooms and then spewed waste all over both floors, this was cleaned up straight away but one room was without a toliet for two days as no one seemed to know where the sewerage tank was located. We didn't see Tai at all during this point however he apparantly came whilst we were out and left a bottle of champagne as way of apology??
We did tell Tai (the manager) all of these things and apart from the sun loungers and the A/C getting fixed I never saw him again (however we did leave a day early to return to Colombo) he stated that he has a hard time getting the owner to invest money in the property however if you want to charge this amount of money the Villa really does need some TLC.
All in all it was a amazing holiday and we fell in love with Sri Lanka and the staff.
Would def go back as the issues we had were minor but worth mentioning to give a fair review.

08 Feb 2011

Wir hatten Glück . Aufgrund einer fehlreservierung in einem der Best angepriesensten Unterkunft haben wir nach dem lesen der schlechten Bewertungen dann doch zum shangri La gefunden. Und wir sind positiv überrascht . Die cabanas sind sauber, die Inhaber sehr freundlich und der Garten wundervoll. Wir konnten keine der zuvor formulierten Beschwerden bestätigen. Wer natürlich den Pool sucht und darauf hofft dass in Asien die mosquitos bei seinem eintreffen verschwinden, der sollte sich hier nicht bemühen einen Bungalow zu ergattern. Eine cabana mit heißem Wasser , groß , mosquitonetz kostet zu Hauptsaison 30 Dollar . Wir sind schon viel herumgereist und können das shangrila nur empfehlen

23 Feb 2011

Wir haben uns sehr, sehr wohlgefühlt. Hier herrscht eine familiär Atmosphäre, was uns dazu bewegte, gleich wieder für das nächste Jahr zu buchen. Für uns war es ein Traumurlaub. Das Cabana war sehr schön mit seinem grossen Badezimmer. In der Anlage war es sehr sauber, wie auch die Zimmer. Ueber das Essen gibt es nicht viel zu schreiben. Es war ausserordentlich gut und abwechslungsreich. Manch Restaurant in der Schweiz muss sich sputen, um solch ein Essen auf den Tisch zu bringen. Wir haben noch nie so viele nette und liebe Menschen kennengelernt, wie im Flowergarden. Sassi ist so ein sehr guter Gastgeber und Organisationstalent. Er versteht sein Handwerk und verdient mit seinem Team nur die Höchstnote

27 Feb 2011

We stayed at Tisara Villas for 3 nights and wished it could have been longer. If you are looking for a posh resort, this is not the place. If you are looking for a Home Away from Home, this is ABSOLUTELY the right place. The environment was so relaxing and completely sealed off in its own world. We walked to the Koggala beach with the kids and grandma (so that means its really not far away) and it was absolutely clean and beautiful. No debris, rubbish or even washed up dead seaweed!

Tuk tuks can easily be arranged to go anywhere so its really convenient. Food was simple but great! Nothing fancy like the big hotels but always nicely done. Service is great with friendly staff.

Ms Sandra who manages the estate is ever so helpful and friendly.

Conclusion....if we ever set foot into Sri Lanka again, we'll definitely stay there again and for a much longer time!

23 Apr 2011

After hearing nothing but positives about this place we arrived with high expectations which were, to a certain degree, satisfied. We were staying in a deluxe cabana which on first inspection seemed nice enough - comfy bed, spacious etc. However, after a night we began to notice the flaws more apparently - the room was dark and, because of the dense garden/jungle environment of the grounds, particularly dank. In short, the room was a breeding ground for mosquitoes. We had a mosquito net but it was sadly insufficient - holes and tears allowing the little blighters easy access to an all you can eat and drink bonanza. The bathroom was low grade - no ventilation, poor shower etc. The pool was very nice - but the lack of space around it and the number of sunbeds renders it pretty much pointless unless you've got kids with you who need entertaining. The staff were excellent - exemplary in many respects - and the restaurant/bar is also a big tick for the establishment. Perhaps our biggest gripe was the distance between the hotel and the beach - at least a ten or fifteen minute walk - which admittedly doesn't sound so bad, but in intense heat is an absolute killer. For me, the hotels that are beachside are a much better option and from previous experiences are just as nice in terms of the accomodation provided. In conclusion, despite this review being tinged with negativity, the Flower Garden is still a good little hotel - i'm just not sure that it lives up to the hype.

24 Apr 2011

Nach der ersten Nacht haben wir sofort das Hotel gewechselt. Warum ist es so gut bewertet? Es liegt nicht am Strand so wie viele andere Hotels sondern. Die Zimmer sind so dunkel, dass man kaum etwas sieht.
Für den gleichen Preis habe wir ein super Zimmer in erster Reihe mit Meerblick, exzellenten Service und einer super Ausstattung bekommen.

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