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“Still OK but losing exclusivity?”
Review of The Fortress

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The Fortress
Ranked #1 of 5 Hotels in Koggala
Certificate of Excellence
Manchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
76 reviews
43 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 150 helpful votes
“Still OK but losing exclusivity?”
Reviewed February 16, 2011

It may be becausr the cricket world cup is on it's to Sri Lanka but the sight of football strips around an hotel pool always makes me wonder if I wouldn't rather be elsewhere. We went to the fortress in January 2010 and it exceeded all our expectations, this February it was stiil good but, less staff have meant slightly less crisp service, supply problems do mean that the lower priced white wines were largely unavailable so you will be paying something around £28 for a splash of with dinner, the place is getting more crowded due fo the ebb and flow of groups of a dozen or so for weddings. If you want boutique intimacy, this may no longer be for you, if you want probably the best hotel directly on a quiet beach in the area it should do the trick but.....

  • Stayed February 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Jondi1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Barcelona
Level Contributor
160 reviews
62 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 90 helpful votes
Reviewed February 12, 2011

Amazing hotel, beautiful large pool on the beach, huge rooms with king bed, enormous bathroom with bathtub and shower. Perfect service, very helpfull and professional. free internet wi-fi in the room. The Fortress is a beautiful building, the big wall protects from the noise of the road. It's 20min from Galle in tuktuk. The only thing to improve is the buffet dinner. While the breakfast buffet is great. Cuidado con los chicos en la playa que intentan venderos tours u otros servicios.

  • Stayed February 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Xuan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
21 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
Reviewed February 11, 2011

We stayed in three similarly priced hotels in Sri Lanka and for us The Fortress was the clear winner. What for us madeThe Fortress stand out from the others?

Firstly, the staff are exceptionally well trained and polite. The hotel is incredibly beautiful and has excellent facilities namely spa treatments, jacuzzi, sauna, steam room, enormous infinity pool, gym, shop, free WI-FI, and all in a calm and peaceful setting.

Our Ocean Room (US$450 per night including taxes) was large and spacious with balcony overlooking the Indian Ocean. The sound of the waves rolling in and out really added to the pleasure of staying such a room and waking up to a view of the ocean is something I think most can get used to quite quickly.

The restaurant had a large selection of different types of food including some really great Sri Lankan dishes. My girlfriend and I are vegetarian and had no issues in choosing some great options from their well thought out menu.

The spa centre has some superb therapists. We decided to have hour long aromatherapy massages every day...why not when you're on holiday! The costs of the treatment were probably similar to what you'd pay in London.

My only two gripes are as follows:

The WI-FI in my room often didn't work although it was always available closer to reception. For some reason our room network just didn't work and as a result we were relying on connecting to the more distant reception network.

The Tuk Tuk business outside is sadly on massive con. They claim their prices are unionised and fixed. This is utter rubbish and nothing more than a scam in attempting to charge tourists 3 to 4 times what they should pay on the back of the fact that they are staying or coming out of The Fortress Hotel.

They attempt to charge more than a London taxi travelling the same distance. If you simply stand firm and refuse to pay what's written on what they claim is non negotiable....surprise surprise the price becomes negotiable. You should be able to get into Galle for around 600-700RS although to save arguing longer than a minute or so you could agree 1,000RS. Feel free to take their laminated sheet with the 'non negotiable' prices and tell them what it's worth. We did and never paid any of their 'non negotiable' prices. Your ability to be negotiate will get better each time you get in one. I honestly don't mind paying anyone a fair price for fair journey but this is something that The Fortress should really change as they put this laminated price list in each room.

Okay, so leaving aside the Tuk Tuk racket and the room WIFI, this hotel is absolutely amazing and I would recommend it to anyone that's looking for luxury on the south coast of Sri Lanka.

  • Stayed February 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank LondonDavid123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington DC, District of Columbia
2 reviews
Reviewed February 11, 2011

Excellent hotel situated on the Indian Ocean. Our ocean view room had gorgeous, breathtaking views of the Ocean and the Infinity Pool. Room was clean, a;though we had to request x2 to have the room made up after being away from it for 6 hours.( and we did see one cockroach), bathroom was luxurious with rainshower and regular shower...meals were just superb, specially the Sri Lankan night and culture show.All in all a 4 star hotel with a 5 star price, but worth it!!

  • Stayed January 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank steamboatl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Doha, Qatar
Level Contributor
31 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed February 2, 2011

The Fortress is a beautiful hotel, in a lovely postion over looking the indian ocean, we had an ocean view room which was lovely a modern spacious room with mood lighting and an ipod to provide music. The food was a bit disappointing for a 5 star hotel the restaurant run the same menu lunch and evening, with themed nights 3 times weekly. All prices quoted have 25% tax and service added, not sure why as places outside the hotel only seemed to add 10%. The spa was beautiful too, but again for us was expensive and we thought this was reflected in the fact no hardly seemed to use it. But then the pool is the biggest I have ever seen so would you want to pull yourself away?

All the staff were so helpful with nothing being too much trouble, we were on bed and breakfast and the breakfast buffet had plenty of choice and again very attentive staff. The rooms were kept very clean with a nightly turn dowm service.

We did not use the hotels transfer service from the hotel to the airport as it was more than double other providers, as were excursions, the local tuc tuc drivers are great at providing a good service with good local knowledge and are very keen to please, Ours Chandula we found via a previous trip advisor recommendation for The Fortress, he took us to Yala and met us from the airport as well as being our taxi for the week, between him and the hotel we got the best of the everything, a beautiful hotel in a stunning setting, with beautiful rooms and very attentive staff, and a local guide who gave us a real feel for the area and life in the area. Would I recommend this hotel, yes I would, would I recommend local tuc tuc drivers yes I would! Mail Chandula on [--]. If you want a relaxing away from it all type if trip this is for you. Hope to go back soon If you want more info on this amazing place feel free to mail me.

  • Stayed January 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank ladydog1010
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Northern Ireland
2 reviews
Reviewed February 1, 2011

The hotel it self looks like a fortress and we felt very welcome. The staff are genuinely caring and the rooms we were very satisfied with the rooms. We have a room over looking the ocean and it was fantastic. We felt the hotel was well managed and well looked after. Everything was up to standard for the price paid. A big thank you to all the staff at the Fortress in making our stay special.

  • Stayed January 2011, traveled on business
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank toshikosh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lausanne
Level Contributor
17 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed January 28, 2011

After two weeks of site visits and culture, this was our R&R on the beach. The food and service was exactly what you would expect from a top class hotel. We would have liked to swim in the sea but it was too rough to be safe so we used the 60, yes sixty metre pool the only problem was that after ten lengths, we were getting tired.
The only quibble; the staff like the rooms to be cold and are apt to change the A/C settings; leave them a notice 'do not touch'

  • Stayed January 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Oldfeller
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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