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“Americans in Paradise.” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Max Wadiya

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Max Wadiya
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147, Galle road | Madampe, Ambalangoda 0351, Sri Lanka   |  
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Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Ambalangoda
Saint Paul, Minnesota
1 review
“Americans in Paradise.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 9, 2012

We were a family of four (with two teens) from Minnesota, enjoying a once-in-a-lifetime trip to Sri Lanka.

Our stay at Max Wadiya was a fantastic way to end our vacation. The place is well designed, meticulously maintained and so comfortable that we felt very much at home. We can’t say enough about Ranjan and his staff. They did a stunning job of being friendly and attentive, but never intrusive.

The food was some of the best we had on the trip. The portions were generous and the presentation impressive. We love spicy food, but Sri Lanka generally turns down the burn for tourists. The chef here definitely came the closest to offering us spicy local cuisine nicely matched with familiar dishes. We even had a hotdish that easily rivaled anything the Midwest has to offer.

Beach access is easy and yet we always felt like we had our privacy. It was too dangerous to swim in the ocean (August tides), but the salt-water pool was bath-water warm and an ideal place to relax. Ambalangoda, a short 2-kilometer walk or a very brief tuk-tuk ride happily arranged by Ranjan, was fun to explore and a nice slice of local flavor.

The place was so nice and inviting that we wished we’d spent more time there. We highly recommend Max Wadiya for a truly personal experience that is more than worth the price. Thanks to the owner Ruth for her kind help with the arrangements, and again to Ranjan and staff for making our stay an unforgettable highlight of our vacation.

Room Tip: Definitely let Ranjan know your food preferences, the chef is amazing and flexible
See more room tips
  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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94 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (22)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Birmingham, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
62 reviews 62 reviews
62 hotel reviews
Reviews in 38 cities Reviews in 38 cities
54 helpful votes 54 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 27, 2012 via mobile

Sitting on the balcony just about to leave Max Wadiya and its wonderful sea front location. We will miss the crashing of the waves the beach we had all to our own and the lovely swimming pool which the children had so much fun in. An ideal location but only a short tuk tuk ride into the town. 

Above all what makes Max Wadiya so perfect is the staff, Ranjan and his team, who could not do enough to help. The service was not only wonderful but felt genuine, we and the children felt at home here. I have of course to mention the excellent food - meal times were a delight.

Rooms are comfortable, not luxurious but you are unlikely to spend much time in them anyway. Bathrooms are a bit dank and to be honest probably need to be refreshed but we found this a common issue across the hotels we stayed in in Sri Lanka and this would not put us off coming to Max Wadiya again.

All in all location and service makes Max Wadiya exceptional.

  • Stayed August 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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London
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 27, 2012

Stayed at the Max feb 2012. I was travelling with my husband and 18mth old son.
Anyone with kids knows that travelling with them can be challenging and involves compromise. Staying at the max took all of the challenge out of it and there was no compromise.
We got to stay in this beautifully furnished, beachside residence, with a lovely salt water pool and tropical gardens, leading on to a deserted tropical beach. We had a private staff to look after our every need who were (particularly Ranjan) some of the most honest, hard working, job-proud individuals that I have ever had the pleasure to encounter.

The food is phenomenal. a breakfast of freshfuit, Sri lanakan specialities and cereals down by the beach, A special lunch would be served for our son, and then
1-2 hours later a feast of fresh fish, salads, grilled chicken would appear for us. Dinner was the same, carefully thought out childrens meals were prepared at 5pm for our son, and then once he was asleep, a banquet of food would be presented to us.

  • Stayed February 2012, 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
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Northamptonshire
Senior Contributor
28 reviews 28 reviews
19 hotel reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 15, 2012

After a relatively quick transfer from the airport via the new Southern Expressway (check your driver will take this route, as some seem reluctant to use it) we arrived at Ambalangoda. We were welcomed by Ranjan and his team with refreshing cold drinks, and our cases were taken up to our rooms in the main villa.

Time to explore! Although the property is directly on the main Galle Road, it feels very secluded and the gardens are beautiful, with hammocks hung between the coconut palms, and plenty of sunbeds on the grass - shady spots are always to be found when you feel the need to escape from the sun. We took a dip in the lovely pool straight away - the water was so warm it was like immersing yourself in a spa pool - swimming towels provided.

The first evening was memorable as we helped to release some baby turtles into the sea - and was followed by a delicious Sri Lankan meal. We retired to bed early as we were tired after the journey. Our room was spacious with a very large bed covered with a mosquito net - air conditioning is in all bedrooms, all of which have en-suite bathrooms. That night we slept with the sounds of the waves crashing on the beach - heaven. (Though be aware you may hear the trains as they pass by early in the morning - the noise did not bother us after the first night and we became accustomed to it).

The rest of our stay was amazing. Ranjan and the team are, as stated in all other reviews, extremely attentive and efficient. Anything you want to arrange or find out, Ranjan can do for you, whether it is arranging tuk tuks or a car, or booking a massage, or bringing some refreshing Lion beers back from the local town for you. I had a wonderful full body massage which lasted 90 minutes, for the equivalent of about £12.50 - fantastic!

The town centre is about 15 minutes walk, or you can take a tuk tuk. The town itself is busy, has plenty of shops and banks with ATM's. If you fancy a bit of shopping for clothes, try ASB which is a large store off the main street and is full of bargain cotton tops, sarongs, sarees, etc. Sandals and flip flops can also be found for good prices at many shoe shops along the main road. There is a supermarket for other essentials. You won't see many (or any!) other tourists in the town, it feels very authentic and friendly, and you certainly will not be harassed.

The beach behind Max Wadiya is beautiful and mainly deserted, apart from the local boys who played cricket there most evenings. Swimming is not advised however due to the strong undertow - but you have the pool for that. Every morning the local fisherman land their catch somewhere along the beach - if you are up early enough you will get some fantastic photos.

What can I say about the food? Well, we were there for 12 days, and we never had any meal repeated. We had delicious Sri Lankan curries every evening which were mainly fish (caught that morning) and vegetable based. Lunches were simple but also delicious - such as pasta, fish, chicken and salads. Each morning we had a delicious breakfast always consisting of fresh fruit salad and buffalo curd, and accompanied by something different every day, such as hoppers, roti or pancakes.

All in all, we felt this was truly like a home from home, and had a marvellous holiday here. Now we are home, we miss the place and the people, and can't wait to go back.

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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singapore
2 reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 10, 2012

As a repeat guest at Max Wadiya, I am so impressed to note that the experience remains consistently wonderful each time I return. With my family in tow for a week-long visit this past January, I was able to truly relax in a peaceful setting that overlooks a stunning stretch of beach that seems private as there is such little foot traffic. The lovely Dutch colonial furniture that populates this seaside retreat creates a romantic ambience from another era, and all the rooms and public spaces are perfectly clean and tidied up frequently throughout the day. To-die-for homemade Sri Lankan food is served in a lovely outdoor thatched hut on the front lawn, so that each meal is graced by a view of the sea and lush garden. A new addition was the saltwater pool, which is great for families with kids. Staff, including the ever-amazing Ranjan who is the Manager, are diligent, proactive, and very willing to please. For a truly unique, bespoke getaway that makes southern Sri Lanka very accessible, I could not recommend the Max Wadiya more. I will be coming back again very soon.

  • Stayed January 2012, 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 27, 2012 via mobile

My wife and I stayed at the Max Wadiya for 4 nights after a recommendation from our son and daughter in law. As a Cornishman who loves the ocean the setting was perfect. At dawn watch the fishermen set their net whilst the parakeets leave the palm tree roosts. After a daytime tumble in the surf or splash in the beautiful infinity pool sit back and watch a dramatic sunset over the Indian Ocean whilst the parakeets chatter overhead on their return for the night. Meantime Rajan and his cricket loving staff glide effortlessly dispensing tea and exotic drinks.

Ambalangoda can be reached with a pleasant stroll along the strand line and was untouched by tourism and felt authentic.

Ruth and Art have created a very special place and we trust the turtle eggs we helped them safely relocate will soon be hatched and across that beautiful beach. Now that would be a special experience for a truly special place.

Chris and Nova

  • Stayed February 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tel Aviv, Israel
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 17, 2012

We has stayed at the Max for four nights. this is what we were looking for and more - a small and family like hotel. The room is very big and beautiful and has an amazing view to the sea. Cleaned 2-3 times a day, and even the shower has a see view.
The saltwater pool and the garden are well maintained. Above all and most important the staff takes care of you like a family member and somehow are always around to spoil you with drinks and food.
Be aware, this is not a location close to the bigger known tourist beaches...
bottom line, this is Heaven!

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Max Wadiya

Address: 147, Galle road | Madampe, Ambalangoda 0351, Sri Lanka
Phone Number:
Location: Sri Lanka > Southern Province > Ambalangoda
Amenities:
Beach Free Breakfast 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 #1 of 2 Hotels in Ambalangoda
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Number of rooms: 5
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Max Wadiya is a select boutique hotel that offers an authentic Sri Lankan experience beyond 5-star. With a verdant garden opening onto a sweeping unspoiled beach, it offers a sanctuary of peace and tranquillity, a kitchen that rivals the best on the island and a professional and caring staff who will attend to your every need. Two luxury suites provide intimacy and privacy. A connected 3-bedroom villa, rented as a single unit, is just right for a family or group of friends. The entire 10-bed property, which can be expanded with extra beds for children, is perfect for reunions or gatherings of far-flung families. All rooms are en-suite with terraces overlooking the Indian Ocean. A secluded 40-foot infinity pool is a watery alternative to the sea, and ayurvedic treatments and massages are available on request. Tariffs are inclusive of three full meals, taxes, service charge and extras like coffee or afternoon tea. The Wadiya does not serve alcohol but guests are welcome to bring their own, without a corkage fee. The concept: your temporary home on the beach. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Max Wadiya Hotel Ambalangoda

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