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“'Be Captivated by The Fortress'” 5 of 5 stars
Review of The Fortress

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The Fortress
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Route A2, Matara Road, Koggala, Galle, Sri Lanka   |  
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Hotel amenities
Special Price
30% off room rate
Ranked #1 of 5 Hotels in Koggala
Chelmsford, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
81 reviews 81 reviews
29 hotel reviews
Reviews in 43 cities Reviews in 43 cities
66 helpful votes 66 helpful votes
“'Be Captivated by The Fortress'”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 4, 2014

This is an absolutely first class hotel in a stunning location. Actively managed by Jan van Twest and his colleagues, staff in every department are happily and professionally dedicated to giving guests the best possible vacation experience.

Accommodation is very well equipped and presented with the highest standards of cleanliness and comfort - don't even think twice about the glass enclosed bathroom facilities - appropriate privacy is just not an issue!

Food is high class hotel standard and whilst we would have preferred a buffet style dinner option and found the menu just a bit restricted, that is a personal preference and does not detract from the quality and presentation of the product. The executive chef is justly proud to take guests into his kitchens where his crew are clearly dedicated to the high standards he sets. They are pleased to meet reasonable "off menu" requests and are clearly delighted when their efforts are appreciated. We simply could not fault the happy and flexible approach of the restaurant staff from greeting to leaving.

Outside the grounds are very well maintained and pool staff are always on hand with a smile.

In short, we were 'captivated by The Fortress' and recommend it as a wonderful place to stay in a lovely area of Sri Lanka.

Room Tip: Ground floor sea facing rooms have the disadvantage of guests staring into the picture windows so we...
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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949 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (300)
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Leeds
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 3, 2014

This hotel was easily the highlight of our wonderful trip to Sri Lanka. Why did we leave it to the end and only have 1 night. Not only the best in Sri Lanka but more than matches other 5 star hotels we have stayed in Asia over the years. The seafood buffet on the Saturday night we were there was wonderful and the bedrooms superb and then a great buffet breakfast in the morning. We will definitely be back.

Room Tip: Worth upgrading to a Beach front room.
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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southampton
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 2, 2014 via mobile

My wife and I have just returned from 10 fabulous relaxing days at the fortress. Excellent location overlooking the beach, providing the soothing sounds of waves 24x7. Only about 50 rooms so small enough to be personal.
Accommodation (we stayed in an ocean room) was excellent, lovely large open room on 2 levels, huge bath, shower, 2 basins and huge king size bed, balcony overlooking the pool and the ocean.
Gym and spa are great - gym was always empty (only saw 2 or 3 others during our stay) and had adequate weights and cardio kit.
Staff are generally brilliant - always helpful, smiling and nothing was too much trouble. A few carefully chosen tips in bar and poolside of 200 rupees - about £1 - helps to ensure this of course - well it's a 'tip expected' culture.
It's not cheap to eat in the hotel, but realistically c. £100/day per couple will cover you for poolside drinks, sharing snack, pre-dinner drinks (several) and a bottle of wine with dinner.
Only constructive feedback I'd give is that they can be a little 'rules driven' over minor things - for example, potato chips only available in bar during happy hour - bit petty and unnecessary for a 5-star resort.
It is a bit of a treck (3 hours) from Colombo airport, and the drive is interesting, however don't let that out you off.
The hotel arrange trips / safaris etc with hotel drivers and good 4x4 cars to take you, so consider that.
All in all great and thoroughly enjoyable relaxing break.

Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
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Singapore, Singapore
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 1, 2014

Stayed here, with a view to maybe coming back and seeing more of the country next time. Had a wonderful, relaxing week. Great hotel and fantastic staff ( thank you Pradeep) and beach, plus an easy ride into Galle for dinner etc. highly recommended.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York, New York, United States
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 30, 2014

This is among the most beautiful hotels I've stayed at -- the rooms are large and elegantly decorated, the hotel has several cool places to hang out and the food and tea-based drinks are wonderful! Gift shop is also super cool. Also, so many fun things to do nearby that it was a perfect base for a 4-day trip.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Prague, Czech Republic
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 30, 2014

Upon arrival we were very warmly greeted by the hotel manager and we were offered a welcome drink. Right after we were ushered to a room that was in one word fantastic - great views directly to the sea, perfect facilities, minibar rich, excellent bath and air conditioning solutions best I've ever seen.

Positives:
- Location of the hotel - right on the beach - all the rooms have a fantastic view of the sea directly
- Hotel is superbly cut off from the road, you hear only the murmur of the sea
- I very much appreciate the grass in front of the hotel where you can relax and no glowing sun at you as if you were lying on the beach
- Pool was fantastic - a great, great location - directly overlooks the sea and especially there was almost no one, we had it almost always only for themselves.)
- Beaches large, clean and beautiful
- Playful squirrels, who did not hesitate to eat out to the edge of its possibilities.)
- Well-equipped rooms - corresponding five-star hotel
- Air conditioning, located in the room where the bed was not - a great solution and excellent room climate - no hot or cold, really well resolved.
- Very friendly staff
- Great dinner and breakfast buffet

Negatives:
- We wanted to stay in this hotel two days lengthen, unfortunately, was completely sold out, therefore we had to go elsewhere. Too bad, but this is an indication that the hotel is really very good ...

Despite the relatively high price I can recommend this hotel, it was without a doubt the best hotel in Sri Lanka, where we had the opportunity to live ...

Room Tip: room on the ground floor, which have direct access to the pool / beach. All rooms (53) have a sea vi...
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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sydney
Top Contributor
60 reviews 60 reviews
43 hotel reviews
Reviews in 41 cities Reviews in 41 cities
57 helpful votes 57 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 30, 2014

This was the last stop on our visit to the Galle area having stayed at two much smaller boutique hotels. This is a large resort (by Sri Lankan standards) and a bit of a contrast. Not quite "you could be anywhere with a beach" - there is still a local theme and the staff are particularly friendly - but its still an international style resort..
It is therefore of course more impersonal - even though the service was consistently very good - but that is the nature of the beast.
Upsides? The room (Ocean View) was very comfortable - though we are not fans of the semi open plan bathroom set up common now in a lot of modern hotels.
The pool was large and pleasant, with plenty of lounges so no silly competitions to get there early to get a good spot. However we spent most of our time swimming on the long and beautiful beach.
Food was good, but seriously overpriced as were the drinks compared to other places we stayed. There are no readily accessible reasonable alternatives other than a 20 minute tuk tuk ride into Galle.
There is absolutely nothing wrong with The Fortress and we enjoyed our stay. Its really a case of what style of accommodation you are looking for.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Fortress

Address: Route A2, Matara Road, Koggala, Galle, Sri Lanka
Phone Number:
Location: Sri Lanka > Southern Province > Galle > Koggala
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 5 Hotels in Koggala
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — The Fortress 4*
Number of rooms: 53
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A luxury 53 room boutique resort located on the Southern shores of Sri Lanka. The Fortress has been styled after Galle’s powerful ancient Dutch Fort, blending the country’s Dutch and Portuguese influences with Sri Lankan motifs and indigenous furnishings to echo the historic days of Old Ceylon. This has been artfully and sensitively fused with innovative architecture, high design features, state-of-the-art technology, sensual living spaces with naturally modern design, and incredible gastronomic experiences, to stunning effect. The Fortress will offer unprecedented levels of service, extraordinary innovation, attention to detail and a unique blend of Old Ceylon with Modern Asia. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Fortress Hotel Koggala
Fortress Hotel Galle
Fortress Galle
Fortress Sri Lanka

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