Buckingham Place is a great place, a real find, made special by Nick himself and his superb staff.
The place itself is nicely tucked away on a strip of land between Rekawa lagoon on one side and the sea on the other, all rooms pointing towards the lagoon with a nice view of the water, whilst within earshot of the crashing waves from the sea behind. The rooms are mainly individual chalets set apart from each other, resulting in a very peaceful atmosphere and good privacy. We were in room 7 called "the treehouse" as most of the bathroom (including the shower but not the toilet!) is open to the elements and there is a tree growing in part of it. This is very unusual and you know you're a long way from home! To be honest we found the bathroom slightly on the dark side at night, but we found most of the hotel bathrooms in Sri Lanka to be a bit too dark! The room itself is very spacious and the air con works well. There is no room fan, and the look is very minimalist/industrial concrete - personally we found the look a bit too utilitarian, but again that's purely personal taste.
The hotel restaurant is a lovely building, with open sides giving a good view over the grounds and the swimming pool. The grounds are quite spacious and so quiet, which is a rare thing in Sri Lanka!
The staff are very well trained and very friendly. Nick himself is a real character, very interesting to talk to, and someone who clearly has a very definite view of what he wants in a hotel. We agree with his view that breakfast should be served to suit the guests not the hotel. We very much liked being able to order our evening meal at lunchtime, which enabled us to ask for alternatives if we didn't fancy what was on the menu, and the staff were only too happy to try to accommodate us. The choice itself was relatively small (2 starters, 3 mains, 2 desserts) but the quality very high and the prices very fair. There is no decaf coffee (but to be fair this is surprisingly hard to find in Sri Lanka) and the cocktail list is a short one, but we are being very picky here!
One of the other great things we liked was the ability to walk the 5 mins to an idyllic unspoilt beach which was unsuitable for swimming but lovely to walk along. Equally there were interesting walks to the lagoon and around the surrounding area. The birdlife on the nearby ponds/reservoirs was fantastic.
We took a tuk tuk to Multikirigala temples (45 mins or so) and drove to Bundala national park which was very interesting and only an hour or so away.
We haven't even mentioned Ginger the pony yet! She is as much a character as Nick, pottering around hoping to be fed by the guests!
So to summarise, this is a great place, with good food, great staff, comfy rooms and very peaceful in an interesting location. What more can we say? Congrats to Nick and his team for creating such a lovely place to stay a few days.
- Also Known As:
- Buckingham Place Hotel
- Buckingham Place Hotel Tangalle
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- A Boutique Class Hotel. Contemporary luxury architect style - spacious bedrooms & suites. Exclusive, relaxed, imaginative, hidden away, un-pretentious, interactive. Buckingham Place is refreshingly different and generally suits; quiet discerning FIT’s in search of sanctuary, birdlife, turtles & wildlife and a natural environment. ... more less
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