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“Good...yet there is room for improvement” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Baywatch Eco-Resort Kalpitiya

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Baywatch Eco-Resort Kalpitiya
Dutch Bay Island, Kalpitiya, Sri Lanka   |  
Hotel amenities
Nugegoda, Sri Lanka
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Good...yet there is room for improvement”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 31, 2014

We saw a string of negative comments posted by recent travelers after we booked & paid an advance to the hotel. Naturally we got alarmed, contacted the head office management & raised our concerns. They assured us that everything will be ok.

The boat ride across the lagoon at Thureyadi ferry point & the subsequent tractor ride was a thrilling experience. However you need to get in touch with hotel management (not only the head office staff in Colombo) & inform of your arrival well in advance to ensure a smooth transfer without any delays. We were also told that you can alternatively visit the place by a 4x4 vehicle using the mainland.
We were given 4 eco-chalets & 2 standard rooms though we booked 6 standard rooms. All rooms were clean yet a few things here and there improve the ambience. The open toilet concept (as in no door) in chalets was a surprise but was not a concern to many people in our group.

The staff had the motivation to serve but lacked experience & many of them told that they joined a few days back. As mentioned in the reply of the hotel management to a previous negative comment, we too feel the difficulty of attracting staff & retaining them in this place due to sheer lack of logistics & infrastructure. For example the hotel runs total on generators & drinking water is not available within close proximity.

The food was scrumptious although it lacked variety offered on other destinations in Sri Lanka at similar rates. However it seems unrealistic to have high expectation for a better variety given the severe sourcing & logistic issues faced by hotel.

The location is superb & an ideal place to get away from the crowd & enjoy the relaxing beach on your own. The hotel management was kind enough to offer us a complimentary ride to a place called “Dream Spot”. It is a thin strip of land towards the edge of the mainland surrounding the Dutch Bay where you can enjoy stunning views of the sea & lagoon on your sides. It is an ideal place to relax & view the sunset.

We did a Dolphin Watching + Bar Reef tour which was fantastic. It took us a while to spot dolphins but when we did, we saw them in abundance. Bar reef was a slight disappointment for some of the group members who had seen better diversity at Hikkaduwa & Trincomalee. Nevertheless snorkeling at the Bar Reef was an interesting endeavor.

The hotel seems to be equipped with a wide range of water sports equipment such as Jet Skis, Banana boats, Speed boats, etc….However when we wanted to use the Jet Ski on the first day they said we can only use it on the following day as fuel has to be brought in. As promised it was available on the following day.

Tips:
All in all, the advice to anyone visiting the place is that you need to inform all your requirements before reaching the hotel to avoid delays & disappointments. Also do not use only the price yardstick to compare this hotel with others & expect the same level of service for the amount you pay.

Room Tip: Beware of open bathroom concept if you select chalets!!!
See more room tips
  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
IqbalHassen, Owner at Baywatch Eco-Resort Kalpitiya, responded to this review, February 19, 2014
Thank you for your input and we will work on the shortcomings. hope to see you again soon.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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22 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    8
    3
    2
    2
    7
See reviews for
3
7
Solo
0
Business
0
Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (7)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Russian first
  • Any
English first
Brighton, United Kingdom
2 reviews
1 of 5 stars Reviewed January 19, 2014

We stayed here over Christmas. The location is amazing if you like somewhere off the beaten track. We liked the boat trip and the tractor ride across the island. It really is a very unspoilt area of Sri Lanka the problem is the actual hotel.
We stayed in the new block near the beach. These were large rooms but very basic and not cleaned very well. We had a room facing the beach and when I attempted to open the sliding door the whole panel fell out and was potentially extremely dangerous. This summed up the general standard of finish to the whole place. Electrical wires hanging out of the walls and building materials left all over the grounds. If were kite surfers and this was a backpacking place it would be ok but it does not currently represent good value for money. Activities such as the jet ski's are advertised but look as if they haven't been used in a while (we were told that the batteries needed charging)
When we stayed there was a massive problem with flies so meals were very unpleasant. We had booked for 3 nights but left after 2. The location is stunning and there are few places in the world where you can walk on a stunning beach and not meet another soul but Baywatch is a massive disappointment.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
IqbalHassen, Owner at Baywatch Eco-Resort Kalpitiya, responded to this review, January 24, 2014
I am posting the same response as the problem was in the same period.
Hi Went thru your review and sorry to see the shortcomings you have faced.
Not as an excuse but just would like to let you know that we have rectified everything and the reason for this Disastrous January we had was for Two reasons,if you see almost everyone was thrilled and happy with the service and food before then.
1.It was very disappointing that a Middle East Group which visited our hotel and was very happy with the service and even gave very generous tips to the staff stabbed us in the back by recruiting 8 of our staff members at three times the salary to their "Wadi Resort ' in Qatar. Theses staff were locals trained by us and the supervisors of house keeping and Chef amounting to almost 45% of our staff strength. .This put our hotel into total Disarray as you know we are in a very remote location and re recruiting is a major task. We have spoken to the other hotels and have solved the issue by having a back up staff which also increases our cost.
2. We had a terrible series of stormy weather and the Island was lashed by these two storms and cyclone winds 3 times during this month.

We have now rectified most of the shortcomings and 100% will be done before the end of Jan.

Once again sorry and hope to see you again for a better experience
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed January 17, 2014

Donot go there ,


The rooms are not even sweeped,the bath room door is not closing ,rust in the sink ,no water in morning , not enough beds( didnt reasive a bed insted of a air bed )sand in the pool, not clean after few months , no bed tea,got qoils but no mach sticks,unclean beach,no life gards,no diving , no kight surfing,no good food ,doors are not closing so mosquitos are comming ,no welcome drink , nothing .its a very bad hotel no facilities.the location is good but the hotel is very very very very bad..

Stayed January 2014, traveled with friends
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
IqbalHassen, Owner at Baywatch Eco-Resort Kalpitiya, responded to this review, January 21, 2014
Hi Went thru your review and sorry to see the shortcomings you have faced.
Not as an excuse but just would like to let you know that we have rectified everything and the reason for this Disastrous January we had was for Two reasons,if you see almost everyone was thrilled and happy with the service and food before then.
1.It was very disappointing that a Middle East Group which visited our hotel and was very happy with the service and even gave very generous tips to the staff stabbed us in the back by recruiting 8 of our staff members at three times the salary to their "Wadi Resort ' in Qatar. Theses staff were locals trained by us and the supervisors of house keeping and Chef amounting to almost 45% of our staff strength. .This put our hotel into total Disarray as you know we are in a very remote location and re recruiting is a major task. We have spoken to the other hotels and have solved the issue by having a back up staff which also increases our cost.
2. We had a terrible series of stormy weather and the Island was lashed by these two storms and cyclone winds 3 times during this month.

We have now rectified most of the shortcomings and 100% will be done before the end of Jan.

Once again sorry and hope to see you again for a better experience.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Colombo, Sri Lanka
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed January 15, 2014

Me and my family spent a night at the hotel from 14th to the15th January 2014. The food served there was horrible. When we contacted the management they said the chef had gone home for the holiday. They do talk big about water sports. When we ask management came up with some lame excuses like jetski battery nedds to be repaired and it will be available the next day. Which was never done. Pool was dirty as ever on both days and staff doesn't even bother cleaning it. We stayed in A/C rooms and the building which had rooms was like it was never refurbished after a huge tsunami. When asked for towels they gave us wet towels. It take ages to have a shower in the bathrooms due to very poor water presure. Tea/coffee are not available in the rooms even though its mentioned in the website. Overall a horrible experience and would not recommend to anyone.

Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
IqbalHassen, Manager at Baywatch Eco-Resort Kalpitiya, responded to this review, January 21, 2014
I am sending the same Response to all the complaints as it is a general problem we had.

Hi Went thru your review and sorry to see the shortcomings you have faced.
Not as an excuse but just would like to let you know that we have rectified everything and the reason for this Disastrous January we had was for Two reasons,if you see almost everyone was thrilled and happy with the service and food before then.
1.It was very disappointing that a Middle East Group which visited our hotel and was very happy with the service and even gave very generous tips to the staff stabbed us in the back by recruiting 8 of our staff members at three times the salary to their "Wadi Resort ' in Qatar. Theses staff were locals trained by us and the supervisors of house keeping and Chef amounting to almost 45% of our staff strength. .This put our hotel into total Disarray as you know we are in a very remote location and re recruiting is a major task. We have spoken to the other hotels and have solved the issue by having a back up staff which also increases our cost.
2. We had a terrible series of stormy weather and the Island was lashed by these two storms and cyclone winds 3 times during this month.

We have now rectified most of the shortcomings and 100% will be done before the end of Jan.

Once again sorry and hope to see you again for a better experience.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
vienna
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 8, 2014

You reach the so called Eco resort after a short Boat ride crossing the lagoon and a 15min tractor ride crossing the island and it looks pretty nice there! A deserted beach and luckily several non functioning old jet skis on the beach! Our spacious room was really nice with an open bathroom and 3 palms inside( and trees growing out of the wall) - so that you can enjoy the sound of rain also inside your room - I really liked it!!! The big problem is the very close Generator house with no sound insulation - that sucks really in the middle of nowhere! Rooms 1-6 are affected by the generators noise - almost 24 hours; only the concrete bunkers in front of the beach with AC should be better - but the rooms there are absolutely charmless........Food was ok, but not so many options for Vegetarians. Stuff is friendly! Nobody told us that you have to pay for transport leaving Dutch Bay Island!So we would only come back when the noise problem with the generator is solved!

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
IqbalHassen, Owner at Baywatch Eco-Resort Kalpitiya, responded to this review, January 21, 2014
Hi .
Sorry about the Generator being too loud on inquiry we found that the Generator was heating up and the Technician had left the Silent box open and the Genny room open to let the wind blow thru to cool the Gen Set. We will make sure this does not happen and also we intend to move the Genny room futher into the mangrove jungle to mute any genny noise.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Pune
Top Contributor
57 reviews 57 reviews
42 hotel reviews
Reviews in 35 cities Reviews in 35 cities
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 6, 2014

Wow is the word - location excellent, a boat ride helps you cross the lagoon and then a 20 min tractor ride in the coconut plantations helps you get there! The rides are awesome and so is the hotel. It is right on the beach and best of all - its only for you!! The food is good, rooms neat and tidy, friendly staff - just everything you wish for!

Only one negative - they charge extra for the boat & tractor ride, which is nowhere mentioned. It comes to you as a surprise when you settle your bills...!

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
New Delhi, India
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed January 6, 2014

Based on the website descriptions, post making calls to the reservations office (long distance) to confirm if "Whale watching, as advertised by them, is possible in Jan". On receiving a positive reply, we went ahead to make our bookings at Baywatch. A lot of things remain unsaid and mis-represented by the management of Baywatch. Whales can be seen in March - April is what we were told after doing a 5 hrs drive all the way from South of Srilanka to this resort!

Arrival & departure transfers from the boat jetty to the hotel is extra (not mentioned anywhere!). It takes almost 45 mins to get the resort post parking one's car at the Pier. Boat and the tractor transfers are highly erratic and are never on time (Unless you tip the boatman & drivers generously and take their private mobiles numbers to book directly).

Air-conditioning (we paid extra for this) has never been activated in the rooms and of the 3 days that we spent here, not a single day did we manage to get a hot shower or even water in the bathrooms! Managers do not have any solutions to the guest concerns!

Pool is not operational and has not been so since the resort has been opened (2 years now).

The only redemption to this place was the Dolphin Watching boat ride and good winds to kite surf. Do ensure that you negotiate your boat ride before embarking on one. The resort may change the prices by the time you return from the boatride!

Location too is way out - Dutch bay which is very difficult to access.

Management does not have the skill, inclination or intention of doing anything to address the endemic problems this resort has.

Room Tip: Chalet rooms for those feeling adventurous. The Deluxe AC room are a waste of money and time!
See more room tips
  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 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 Baywatch Eco-Resort Kalpitiya

Address: Dutch Bay Island, Kalpitiya, Sri Lanka
Location: Sri Lanka > North Western Province > Kalpitiya
Amenities:
Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #13 of 23 Specialty Lodging in Kalpitiya
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 17
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Baywatch beach and Lagoon is one of the best coastal tourism sites in the Kalpitiya region of Sri Lanka. The Government of Sri Lanka has now identified the location as one of the best potential tourist destinations and up-market Beach Resort Region. Our Cabana style Resort which is based on ethical Eco-tourism is attracting the local tourists and also the foreign tourists from number of destinations in the world. Most people are unaware of this beautiful pristine piece of Sri Lanka. IMPORTANT NOTICE Bay Watch is an adventure, sports based Eco resort primarily for wildlife enthusiasts, kite surfing , Dolphin watching, canoeing, reef snorkeling, sand dunning bird watching and fishing fanatics situated in a remote location and is only connected by a sand strip to the mainland Sri Lanka. The resort is not for the faint heart; it's for the traveler looking for a difference and appreciates a rustic and Eco friendly atmosphere, not for travelers wanting luxurious clinical accommodation with all modern amenities. The Water used in the resort is Natural mineral rich ground water with no chemicals which is used for the toilet and showers; Electricity is self-generated by Solar panels and Generators. PLEASE CONSERVE WATER AND ELECTRICITY. As this is in an Eco-sensitive environment island no fogging is done as it would eliminate all insects and there bye affect the abundant bird life and transcontinental migratory birds. ... more   less 
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