We recently spent 11 days at the Avani Kalutara and were very well looked after by the entire team, we were on honeymoon and with our 21 month old son and were so happy with our stay overall.
The housekeeping team were very attentive to any requests when arranging the cleaning around our sons sleeping, this helped greatly while he acclimatised for the first few days. The restaurant teams, led by the excellent Donald and Jude, were fantastic. They were very caring and helpful at all times when arranging early meals for our son and recommending local dishes. We would highly recommend taking part in the fish market evening, the fish was so fresh and very tasty!
Melaica from Customer Service is a star and helped many times when arranging trips and options for our stay, thank you!
We stayed in a Superior Sea View Room, you can't really see the see due to the tree line landscaping, but it was lovely to see the horizon and palm trees. The alternate view of the lagoon was nice also, and may be quieter as the bars/entertainment are on the beach side. The bars didn't really keep us up as the music didn't finish too late and the all inclusive drinks got us off to sleep well... I would recommend using the spa, the hotel should advertise it better within the rooms as the massage I had was excellent, and very well priced. The products on sale are excellent too, we bought a few to take home with us.
When choosing a room I'd recommend asking to be as far along the headland as possible so your view is not of the pool and of the sea/palm trees instead, we swapped rooms upon arrival and were accommodated with our request so do ask.
The beach itself is not that great for swimming as the water here is mostly rough and can be dangerous, always tell someone of you are swimming in the sea as I am an experienced swimmer and had a challenge with the rip tides on a couple of occasions. If you swim well then definitely get in there though as the body surfing can be fun.
A big tip from our experience would to not book a trip with the beach boys, Fernando and Jambo at al, they charge 2 or 3 times that of the drivers which are based at the hotel entrance. Book with them as they have good vehicle options and drivers who do as you ask, we didn't go anywhere with Fernando or Jambos guys but there prices were high, even when negotiated down 60%... Be straight forward with the drivers also, tell them that you don't want to go to anywhere else except your chosen local locations, or you may end up at a gem store or spice garden which charge crazy rates. Don't be scared off by the potential for this as each time we stated it the driver respected it and we had a great time each time. We recommend a trip to the Turtle Sanctuary and Richmond Castle, both very interesting places indeed. Richmond Castle has a fascinating history and is within a beautiful surrounding. The Turtle Sanctuary is very good indeed, I just hope that the mission they state they are on is the full truth as it slightly feels like a tourist stunt but I'm sure they are acting in full good will to the conservation of the turtles.
If you would like a break from the hotel restaurants take a stroll south along the beach to Red Lobsters Restaurant, Philip and his family had amazing food on offer and were so interesting to talk with about the local fishing and lifestyle. Philip was so great in playing with our son and entertaining him while we debated the menu and ate. I'd recommend the King Prawns in garlic and chili, so nice!!
Overall we highly recommend the hotel, we had a fabulous time. If you are looking for a hotel where you can lock yourself away for a quality stay then the Avani Kalutara is a top choice!
Oh, the burger in the mangrove bar is excellent, try it!!
Try and get along the north side of the development, closer to the headland for a better view. Rooms...
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.