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“"Lovely Rooms" but bad customer service !” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Vivanta by Taj - Bentota

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Vivanta by Taj - Bentota
3.5 of 5 Hotel   |   National Holiday Resort, Bentota, Sri Lanka   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #5 of 27 Hotels in Bentota
Salmiyah, Kuwait
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
“"Lovely Rooms" but bad customer service !”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 24, 2013

We stayed 2 nights at the Vivanta by Taj at Bentota. Rooms very nice, buffet was excellent, in room dining was good too. But on the last day we checked out at 9:30 am at the front desk and asked for our luggage to be bought down as we were proceeding to another place. Reminder after reminder at the front desk reception - finally bags come down at almost 10:30 am - definitely disappointed with the service. A small hint to those staying there if you are in a hurry... carry your bags along and dont bother to wait for the bell boy..

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MathewVM, General Manager at Vivanta by Taj - Bentota, responded to this review, October 25, 2013
Thank you for taking the trouble of sending us your feedback about the hotel.

My sincere apologies for the inconvenience caused to you during you check out. I would like to assure you that we are re-looking at the check out process especially when the hotel is running full, so that such incidents do not re-occur. The staff are being counseled to be more sensitive to guests requests and needs. Thank you for bringing it to my attention.

Please do consider this as a one - off aberration and we look forward to welcoming you back to our hotel.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,013 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 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 (271)
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Salisbury, United Kingdom
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 22, 2013

We were looking forward to a rest after driving around India's Golden Triangle and we could not have found a better hotel & location...

One of the most impressive points that we noticed was the smile on every staff member's face - no matter what time of the day or night...

The rooms were of a generous size, light, well equipped and with a large comfortable bed fitted with what appeared to be superior Egyptian cotton sheets.

As some have reported, the breakfast buffet remained the same every morning, however does this really matter when the selection was huge? after 8 mornings there was still much that we had not tried!

The young man responsible for our room was of the highest standard, he was bright - articulate - friendly - and most likeable...(our room No. 423) and he deserves special attention...if only I could begin to spell his name! It seemed to sound something like...Thurrup??? and I believe that 2 weekends ago his wife gave birth to a little girl. this chap deserves specialist training in his field because he exudes great potential, and is obviously very loyal to his employers.

The location of the hotel could not be better...a short step away from a great beach and a short walk (or Tuk Tuk ride) in to the small town of Bentota. Here I feel I must mention the No.1 Tuk Tuk driver who goes by the name of RAJA, once again a special sort of guy who charges a very fair price for his trips in, and around the local area. Negotiate an hour or so of driving around the uluu (bush) jungle - call it what you wish; here you will see the local hotels/b&bs/ houses of the locals in the very near villages. (We did not use a Tuk Tuk to visit Temples or tourist attractions!) RAJA can be called from the main entrance by the doorman, or contacted at the gate where a squadron of Tuk Tuks await your every command!

Getting back to the hotel...the grounds were immaculate & well shaded, big enough for all. Every non-thinking guest's litter and dog ends were collected within seconds of being thoughtlessly discarded. There did not appear to be excessive amounts of beach salesmen selling their wares as we walked the tide line, in fact very few were seen whilst we were there.

The pool area was well organised and superior snacks, hot or cold were always available, along with what ever you wished to sup. Once again the guy manning the towel/beach bed area (He of the blinding white teeth) deserves special attention for his cheerful and helpful attitude...do not take him on at tennis unless you are very fit!

A final word goes to the lady in charge of House keeping...(Where did she get her absolutely stunning saris?) A most friendly and professional lady!

All in all a most laid back time was spent here, interrupted by the odd trip out - do not miss out on the train ride to Galle, the station is a short walk from the Hotel gate.
Get a 2nd class ticket (No 1st) and stand in the open doorway to see the real Sri Lanka. Only about £1 each way and the journey, I think< is about 90mins. Return by the No 2 Bus near Galle fort - it's cheap - air conditioned - - - and smelly!

I've digressed quite a bit, but the gist is - well done Vivanta by Taj Bentota.

Room Tip: All rooms appear to have a sea view...the higher the better (5)
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  • Stayed October 2013, 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MathewVM, General Manager at Vivanta by Taj - Bentota, responded to this review, October 24, 2013
Thank you for sharing your experiences at Vivanta by Taj Bentota during your recent stay with us.

We are delighted to note that you had a memorable stay. Our team of managers and associates are our greatest asset and they strive to provide the highest level of service at all times.. Thank you for complimenting Sriyantha - the room boy who takes great pride in doing his work. He is thrilled to note that you remember him and is waiting for your return! Ms Vaishalli Chatterjee - the lady in saris ( Our Executive Housekeeper) is one of our stars who is always focused in ensuring that our guests are comfortable. Chamara - the Pool animator is looking forward to offering some more tennis lessons. Our team is encouraged by your compliments and it is patron like you who propel them to provide highest level of service at all times.

We look forward to welcoming you back to our hotel.
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Gurgaon, India
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 22, 2013

Beautiful Property but not a TAJ experience. We booked 3 Premium Indulgence Rooms. We were asked twice to confirm our arrival time which we did. Twice. When we arrived the checkin was painfully slow. One room was not ready but atleast the process could have been faster. We had to go up and ask twice can we have the other 2 room keys. The Rooms were beautiful but different. One premium Indulgence had such a tiny balcony i wondered if it was the same category.

The website is quite misleading. It said about Premium Indulgence Rooms :
"Contemporary 504 sq ft living spaces blending a bedroom and garden or ocean view from a private balcony, Premium Indulgence Rooms are ideal for families with children. Creature comforts include a DVD player. Indulge in fresh seasonal fruits, evening canapés and house wine offered on a complimentary basis ……………….. Carpe diem!"

On arrival we find out its wine one evening. The evening Canapes were barely there. And even though we checked in at 2;30 when we came back to our rooms at 7. No Wine. No fruits No canapes. I mean if its called Indulgence than the least you should do is Indulge. Fruits in room is a done now. Evening Capaes if offered should have an indulgence feel to it.

The food quality is very average. Again a far cry from Taj. The staff tried hard to please but is probably not trained or managed to Taj standards.

The hotel is beautiful, the beach really nice and some nice things for kids like a great pool and table tennis. But give the current choices available i think for the price we paid we could have been "indulged" far more elsewhere.

Room Tip: Rooms with an ocean view are a definite plus. Take 2nd floor or above. A wing closet to beach looked...
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
MathewVM, General Manager at Vivanta by Taj - Bentota, responded to this review, October 24, 2013
Thank you for taking the trouble of sending your feedback about the hotel.

It is our endeavor to provide the finest Hospitality and Service in line with the standards of Taj Group of Hotels. However, we have fallen short of your expectations in certain areas during your stay with us. I have noted all your comments with utmost seriousness and have taken it up with the concerned departments for corrective action to ensure non recurrence in the future. Associates have also been briefed and training has been reinforced to ensure that service delivered is in keeping with the standards of the Taj.

Thank you for sharing your feedback with us, as sincere feedback of a well-wisher such as yours is vital for us to improve upon our existing standards.

We value your patronage and look forward to welcoming you back to the Emerald Isle.
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Doha, Qatar
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 21, 2013

We stayed at the Vivanta from Oct. 11-17, and had a really good time. The always helpful, gracious, and smiling Miss Sachila checked us in very quickly, and then escorted us to our room. Throughout our stay Sachila was there to assist with our inqueries and requests.

The breakfast buffet at the Palm Restaurant was good, with a variety of food for all tastes. On a few days some of the dishes ran out, and the staff was stretched, during the peak traffic. These problems can be avoided by going to breakfast before 9 AM, as the crowds arrived afterwards.

The grounds are beautifully landscaped, and there are even 2 tennis courts (but only one with a net) that were not advertised on the hotel's website, or any reviews. We wished that we had known about the tennis court, as we would've brought our tennis rackets. The extremely large swimming pool is the entertainment centre for children and adults alike. Since it is only 1.25 M deep it's a very safe environment. Poolside food and drink service was good, and everything was served promptly.

Bentota Beach is beautiful golden sand, clean and almost deserted during our visit. The sea conditions were quite rough, good for body surfing, but not safe for children or poor swimmers.

Our room was very spacious, had a balcony with a beach view, and cleaned very well every morning. Our only quibble was the hotel's charge for wifi service, but this can be avoided by using the free service at the lobby bar area.

The "Shack" far exceeded its modest name, it is the open air seafood restaurant, and the fresh seafood was excellent. All meals come with complementary soup and salad, and these were very tasty. Our favorite entrees were the grilled garoupa and spiny lobster.

The hotel is located within a 5 minute walk of the Bentota train station, the "Holiday Resort" compound, Bentota village, and about 10 minutes from Aluthgama.

All the Vivanta staff were very attentive, well trained, and professional. We would recommend the Vivanta for anyone interested in a seaside vacation.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 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
    • 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.
MathewVM, General Manager at Vivanta by Taj - Bentota, responded to this review, October 24, 2013
Thank you for taking your time and sending us your feedback about Vivanta by Taj Bentota

We are happy to note that you had a memorable stay with us. Because of its stunning location we do get a lot of guest who keep returning to the property. Our team members are our greatest asset and they take great pride in ensuring that they provide the highest level of service at all times. Thank you for complimenting our Front office associate Sachila. She is encouraged by your comments.

Thank you for complimenting our Food & Beverage outlets especially The Shack - our seafood restaurant which not only serves the catch of the day and has a stunning location.

We look forward to welcoming you back to our hotel soon.
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Lagos, Nigeria
Senior Contributor
36 reviews 36 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 21, 2013

Excellent beach view from all rooms. Spacious bathrooms. Lovely ambience. Lots is lacking in the food department. After the first promising aubowan garlands nobody bothered to intertwine with the rude unsmiling restaurant staff. Language problem was also a big barrier. Reasonable breakfast spread in their main restaurant PALMS never changes and apart from that no restaurant apart from the lounge bar is open for lunch where there is no service. Apart from natural beauty it was a ver inhospitable experience. Certainly don't recommend it if you are hoping to be treated like royalty to get your money's worth.

Room Tip: All rooms are good
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 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.
MathewVM, General Manager at Vivanta by Taj - Bentota, responded to this review, October 24, 2013
Thank you for taking the trouble of sending you candid views about the hotel.

I am distressed to note that you did not have a good experience at our restaurants.I would like to sincerely apologize for the service lapses. I have taken the matter with the concerned Departmental Head and you have my assurance that we have already put measures in place to ensure that such incidents do not happen.Associates have also been briefed and training has been reinforced to ensure that service delivered is in keeping with the standards of the Taj.

I regret once again the inconvenience caused to you during your stay with us at Vivanta by Taj Bentota and urge you to treat this experience as a one off aberration. Please do let me know regarding your future bookings in order for me to personally ensure that you have a pleasant and comfortable stay with us.
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Colombo, Sri Lanka
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 21, 2013

Lovely location and the beach. The beach is very nice and shallow. Even the kids can enjoy safely. There is plenty of choice of restaurants. But we enjoyed the sumptuous buffet. Excellent service. Very flexible room service as they even was able make food specially for my kids. The hotel is very clean and nice and plenty of activity for the kids. The pool is nice and clean. The hotel is very fresh as I believe would have been refurbished recently. The hotel management is very professional and friendly. All in all its great value for money.

Room Tip: Rooms on the Beach side has a lovely view. The corner suits are very spacious and lovely
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with family
    • 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

Review collected in partnership with this hotel

Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MathewVM, General Manager at Vivanta by Taj - Bentota, responded to this review, October 24, 2013
Thank you for sparing your time to give your feedback about your recent stay at Vivanta by Taj Bentota.

We are delighted to note that you and your family had a memorable stay with us.

Thank you for your compliments regarding the newly renovated hotel and its services.

We look forward to welcoming you and your family back to our hotel.
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Lincoln, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
68 reviews 68 reviews
37 hotel reviews
Reviews in 36 cities Reviews in 36 cities
66 helpful votes 66 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 20, 2013

Just back from a super stay at this lovely hotel. I can confirm that all the refurbishments referred to in previous posts, have all been concluded and the hotel and facilities are very good. The rooms are spacious and contemporary in design. The bathrooms are particularly good. All the staff were helpful and the overall quality was excellent.
The main tip I can give relates to the half board plan. The food is great, plentiful and loads of variety. However you get the impression that you can only eat in The Palms restaurant and this is not correct. Both the Sea View and the Oriental restaurants are available, simply ask for their dine around plan. If you eat at the Shack, this is an extra you will pay for. I would say that the food in the Sea View is by far the best.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 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
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MathewVM, General Manager at Vivanta by Taj - Bentota, responded to this review, October 24, 2013
We thank you for taking the time to send your feedback about your experiences at Vivanta by Taj Bentota, through the TripAdvisor.

We are happy to note that you have liked our renovated hotel and our Food and Beverage options. As your rightly pointed out, this is one of the few hotels which has got 4 dining options and a well stocked bar. This does provide choices for guests especially those staying for longer periods.

We look forward to welcoming you back to our hotel.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Vivanta by Taj - Bentota

Address: National Holiday Resort, Bentota, Sri Lanka
Location: Sri Lanka > Southern Province > Bentota
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Family Hotel in Bentota
#3 Spa Hotel in Bentota
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Bentota
#4 Romantic Hotel in Bentota
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Vivanta by Taj - Bentota 3.5*
Number of rooms: 160
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Sri Lanka is referred to as a ‘small miracle,’ for despite the island’s relatively small size, its natural wonders and beauty are in abundance. Vivanta by Taj – Bentota is located on the south west coast of Sri Lanka. The hotel lies over a lush hill that overlooks the Indian Ocean. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Vivanta By Taj - Bentota Hotel Bentota
Taj Exotica Hotel Bentota
Bentota Taj Exotica Hotel
Taj Exotica Sri Lanka
Taj Exotica Srilanka
Taj Exotica Bentota

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