I actually wanted to give 4 and a half stars, and decided to go with five for now....The hotel has a lot of charm and character, and the hospitality is quite good, but they occassionally mess up easy things.
For example, they did not respond to email from their website, and also when I booked my reservation through their website, they got the number of days wrong, and kept interruping us based on this glitch--one night as we were asleep, someone actually opened the door!!!
Secondly, I had reserved a Direct Ocean View room, which costs the most. However, when we showed up, they told us that they had a colonial room for us and could move us the next day into the Direct Ocean View room. So, the first night, I was a bit upset and confused about why they hadn't kept our reservation. However, the next day, they showed us the Direct Ocean View room, and we agreed that it was not very nice at all. Yet at checkout, despite being in the colonial room, they still charged us the top rate--which I was unhappy about.
Finally, I have stayed in this hotel several times, and there is a huge discrepancy between the quality of the rooms. Some rooms are beautiful---gorgeous floors, high ceilings, old colonial furniture. It's just a treat to stay in one of those rooms. However, in the same hotel, there are un-renovated rooms (I think these are the Direct Ocean View rooms), which are nothing that special--they feel like any typical hotel; you could be staying at a run-of-the-mill Hilton. So, I don't know how to explain it, but you want to be in what they call the Ocean-View rooms across the courtyard, not the ones in the building where the lobby is (I think). I am not quite sure, but that is what I believe.
Having said all that, I really love this hotel. I love the character, and the hospitality. But, I also love the 24-hour room service, the govener's dining restaurant (such great food); I love the beach huts, and the private beach. The fish market restaurant on the beach has a huge selection of fresh fish each night, and you select from 37 different ways of having it cooked! I love how everyone is so kind and helpful. The rooms have all the amenities you would expect (AC, hot running water, hairdryer, minibar, room service, etc.)
The wireless internet is provided by a card that you purchase (4 hours is 800 rupees, valid over three days), but the internet is a bit tempermental, which didn't bother me, but it would bother someone who was trying to work.
Overall, this is still one of my favorite places to be!
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- Also Known As:
- Mount Lavinia Hotel Sri Lanka/Dehiwala-Mount Lavinia