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“Hit and miss”
3 of 5 bubbles Review of The Fortress

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The Fortress
Ranked #1 of 5 Hotels in Koggala
Certificate of Excellence
Dubai
Level Contributor
121 reviews
54 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 66 helpful votes
“Hit and miss”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 8, 2013

We spent 3 nights in October at The Fortress and it would have been really nice if it wasn't for the nosy staff constantly checking up on you or interfering in your business, and the overpriced but merely average food.
At check-in staff did everything they could to accommodate our wishes and changed our rooms from the one with a plunge pool (who on earth wants a plunge pool in the bedroom when outside humidity is 80%), to a room with a day bed. Gorgeous room, we loved the elevated bed and the open plan bathroom. The lay-out of the hotel and grounds are beautiful.
Throughout our stay we constantly felt watched by the staff, not in a friendly, but more in an intrusive way. We'd have to say good morning/afternoon/evening to every single staff member we encountered, to some more then once because they all seemed to be on auto-pilot. We arranged our own transportation and were constantly asked where we went and with who, as if they were anxious to miss out on the commission they receive when sending guests to certain shops or restaurants.
At the restaurant nobody seemed to know what they were doing. 5 different people would come say hello and ask us what to drink, but the drinks wouldn't come until halfway dinner or breakfast. For a five star hotel the food was mediocre, what Sri Lankan chef cannot prepare a decent curry? Our best meal was on the last night, when we decided to order room service because we just couldn't handle the staff anymore. The view from our terrace is the same as from the restaurant and we were finally able to relax and really enjoy the surroundings.
This hotel really has potential, but they have to hire another chef and train all other staff.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Miriamdxb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,378 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (423)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • Finnish first
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English first
Glasgow, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 6, 2013

The travel from Glasgow via London, Maldives then 3 hour drive to resort was not enjoyable. However in December with media reports of gales, rain and travel chaos reflecting on our environment was very gratifying. Not only is the specific location of this resort perfect the staff are the 'Stars', your arrival is anticipated, from there on you are their sole focus of attention. No need to give room number, they already know it, Ocean view day, evening & night the tranquil atmosphere is natural. The variable dinner menu each day is a combination of locally sourced ingredients with impeccable presentation to fabulously tasty 'fine dining' experiences. The emphasis is on quality not quantity. If I had any concerns there is little or no opportunity to walk off a meal or mingle in surrounding community. Extending your knowledge of Sri Lanka I found, was during the day where several organised trips proved enjoyable. Our room was spacious, luxurious and maintained to 5* standards.

Room Tip: Only ground and 1st floor. Check but I believe all rooms have ocean view
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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Brians8132
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chelmsford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
18 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 4, 2013

We had a truly fantastic time at this hotel. The view, surroundings and rooms are beyond five star. The service by the staff is exceptional and the food is quite simply out of this world.

We stayed here the first week of October and cannot recommend it enough. The luxury within the fortress meant we truly had a trip of a lifetime. The staff were amazing and struck the perfect balance of being helpful and not intrusive.

We were half board and the food was out of this world. One night we sat outside overlooking the ocean, with a chef special seafood BBQ evening taking place, we ate the most beautiful seafood, drank cocktails and listen to the live classical guitar band playing next to us in the restaurant was quite simply bliss.

There are no negatives about this hotel at all. Whilst staying here we did visit Yala national safari park for one night then returned to the fortress. Yala is definitely worth visiting but if you are touring my tip would be to head from the tea plantations to Yala then to the fortress (we went tea plantations, Colombo, the fortress then Yala.) Colombo was not worth the detour.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Barber442013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
UK
Level Contributor
13 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 30, 2013 via mobile

I had high hopes for the Fortress for the last 4 nights of our Sri Lanka trip. The room was really beautiful and we were upgraded to a "plunge pool" room. The surroundings were lovely.
But in the mornings it felt somewhat like a busy Spanish resort with people reserving deck chairs at the crack of dawn..... The food compared to other places was average and overpriced. I sent a meal back and had it returned in a worse state than I first got it.
The plunge pool pump ran all night which couldn't be turn off & it made the room unbearably humid, which aircon didn't help.
Tuk-Tuks out the front charged excessive prices for short trips.
Like I suspect a lot of this area, you could not swim in the beach. But what it did have were hawkers who leaned over the barrier & hassled people with their monkeys whist they relaxed. There seemed to few other activities.... I could go on.....
There were some nice little touches like the "cocktail party" prior to he cultural show, staff pointing out turtles in the bay and the different beautiful flower arrangements on the bed every day.
I did write a review for the hotel when we left, which got a response from the hotel addressing some concerns after we got home which was nice.
Overall i guess was just expecting high quality in all aspects and it just didn't materialise.
I think if I came back to Sri Lanka however, I would look at other beach hotels.

Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
5 Thank UK_Jen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sherwood Park, Canada
Level Contributor
6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 26, 2013

We spent the last four nights of our stay at the Fortress before leaving Sri Lanka. The location, service, food and room were excellent. Would highly recommend. The attention to detail re our stay was much appreciated.

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Stanbs
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
32 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 18, 2013 via mobile

This was our third visit and this is one of the best hotels on the south coast. Asela the F&B manager is great he remember little dear ails and is a credit to this hotel. The food although limited in choice is of very high quality. If you want to go out for a meal unawatuna and Galle are only 15-30 minutes away.

Stayed November 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank Dekretser
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Basingstoke, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
36 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 18, 2013

The fortress has simply become my most favourite hotel. We were on a family holiday and this was our first visit to Sri Lanka. The hotel is absolutely fantastic and the views are stunning. The staff were attentive, efficient and very friendly. Our large luxurious room had an excellent sea view. The restaurant atmosphere was warm and inviting and the food was always delicious. The spa had a range of pampering ayurvedic treatments. The fire dance show on the Sri Lankan night was very traditional, energetic and impressive. Overall we had an amazing holiday in Sri Lanka and would definitely love to stay in the fortress again!

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank TheWorldAwaitsYou
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Fortress

Property: The Fortress
Address: Route A2, Matara Road, Koggala 82104, Sri Lanka
Phone Number:
Location: Sri Lanka > Southern Province > Galle District > Koggala
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 5 Hotels in Koggala
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:5 star — The Fortress 5*
Number of rooms: 53
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A luxury 53 room boutique resort located on the Southern shores of Sri Lanka. The Fortress has been styled after Galle’s powerful ancient Dutch Fort, blending the country’s Dutch and Portuguese influences with Sri Lankan motifs and indigenous furnishings to echo the historic days of Old Ceylon. This has been artfully and sensitively fused with innovative architecture, high design features, state-of-the-art technology, sensual living spaces with naturally modern design, and incredible gastronomic experiences, to stunning effect. The Fortress will offer unprecedented levels of service, extraordinary innovation, attention to detail and a unique blend of Old Ceylon with Modern Asia. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Fortress Hotel Koggala
Fortress Hotel Galle
Fortress Galle
Fortress Sri Lanka

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