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“Beautiful location but overpriced for quality of facilities and service.”
Review of Ruwala Resort

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Ruwala Resort
Reviewed December 30, 2012 via mobile

The resort is beautifully located along the lagoon and next to the mangrove. However it's on the other side of the beach which is 15 mins away by car. The chalets are nicely designed with terrasses facing the water. Inside, the furniture is basic and the bathrooms piping are already rusty and in poor conditions. There are a lot of mosquitoes and flies and not a lot of waste bins outside. For 170 USD one would expect much higher quality and attention to details. There are canoes available to visit the mangrove. The restaurant is good but also pricey and the service is very slow and basic. The owners were present on the resort when we were there but they were very little engaged to check and coach the staff (which showed a lot of goodwill and friendliness but visibly has no or little training). The meals are prepared fresh so expect a long waiting time. To make up for some of the downsides, we were offered a few gestures which we appreciated. Our kids had a really nice time but overall we paid a high price for a beautiful location with mid price facilities and service.

  • Stayed: December 2012
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1  Thank Smallkidsfamily
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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84 - 90 of 117 reviews

Reviewed December 25, 2012

Perfect location and super commendable public area design. Pool is very nice. Rooms are spacious but the bathroom is a problem. Water pressure, flushing, only one bath mat and cheap rusty fttings don't justify the rates that are the same as an Air Conditioned room in star class hotel. Furniture from locality is a good concept but should function. Doors not closing including bathrrom!!!.
Service very poor but per owner due to staff on X'mas vacation. Supplements for room and meals during this period is fine but puts the resort in the league of Star class hotels so lowered level of service not acceptable. X'mas eve dinner was disappointing. Overall value for money is poor but a good experience at a more reasonable price.

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with family
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Thank Upul G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MaithriL, Owner at Ruwala Resort, responded to this reviewResponded December 30, 2012

Thank you for the review. Kalpitiya, as you would agree is still a developing area and the basic infra structure is still not in place. Running hotels in the peninsula is an uphill task in this background, hence the reason the Tourism Industry is not catching on as expected.

We are still operating on single phase although numerous requests have been made for 3-phase power. The reason for the low pressure of water, despite having pressure pumps, is inadequate power, however, this is not the case when the Generator is on. We have made arrangements for 3- phase power which will be in place by January 2013.

Kalpitiya being a predominantly Catholic Area, majority of the staff is Catholic, and it was difficult to retain staff during X’mas, we recruit and train catholic staff in order to help the local community. The X’mas Menu was not Traditional, but Exotic, it is a matter of ‘personal preference’. It was well received by the other guests.

The rate is in line with the additional costs we have to incur considering the high cost of operations in running a hotel in an isolated, laid back area, which is what the beauty of this area is about; Scenic and Rustic. More over, the hotel comprises of only 6 Chalets in a 9 acre block of land invariably the running costs are high, when the rooms are less. Basically the prize the Guest pays is for the space, and the peaceful, non polluted environment, which is quite a contrast to the busy, crowded Star Class Hotels which cater to mass nos. however, we are in the process of improving the room facilities with immediate effect.

Finally hope you appreciate our constraints and we certainly accept your criticism, as ‘constructive’ in order for us to serve better in the future.

Thank you

Management.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 24, 2012

I can highly reccomend this wonderful resort and the gracious and charming hosts - Anudini and Maithri. Their welcome and attention make this a very special experience.
The tranquility, space, great food and huge array of activities make this an unforgetable experience.
Our boat trip to see dolphin, whales and swimming amidst the reef was a fabulous time.

Try out this relatively undiscovered corner of Sri Lanka - you won't be dissapointed!

Room Tip: Rooms overlooking the lagoon are the best - boat lights visible at night from your bed
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  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with family
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Thank Shirani S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 18, 2012

Ruwala is located in Eththali within close proximity to Kalpitiya, the North Western direction of Sri Lanka. Once you turn left from Palavi, you could enjoy the scenes of the lagoon and the salterns.

We stayed in a chalet, and by the looks of it, it looked much more spacious than the cabanas. More importantly, the verandah of the chalets open out to some magnificent views of the Kalpitiya lagoon. The views during the dawn and the dust are just awesome to see. The room was very spacious and well maintained too. It had some of the important in-room amenities as well.

We had very high expectations on sea-food when we traveled to Ruwala, and the staff never disappointed us. The fish was fresh and really tasty and we enjoyed the "crabs" for the dinner as well. The fruit and the juices were 100% fresh and quenched our thirst.

Eththali is still a developing area, and it therefore has limited electricity power to run full-time air conditioners; hence they were restricted for few hours in the night; however one would not need it except during some hours in the hot afternoon.

The swimming pool was pretty well maintained as well, and we had a relaxing time in it.

On the road infrastructural side, the Negombo - Puttalam road and the road from Palavi upto Norochcholai was very good, however, from Norochcholai onwards its still under construction. Though it's at a manageable level there were too many potholes which made it difficult to motor for a stretch of about 8km. I hope the road development authority will finish off the work soon.

Room Tip: Always ask for Chalets, they've got the verandah open to the lagoon. Right now (as at December...
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  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank Deran H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 18, 2012

We had an amazing time at Ruwala. The ambience of the resort is quite magical, and you feel a sense of isolation - it was a priveledge to be there. It's laid back with a homely feel. The pool area and the restaurant is amazing, we didn't eat at the restaurant every day as we had a food budget but the devilled chicken was so good. The cabana room was basic but breezy in the evenings with a nice deck. We hired a tuktuk for a minimal price per day and drove it to the kitesurfing lagoon. There is one small lagoon near Ruwala (about 10 minutes) and the bigger lagoon is about 30-40 minutes away. Most days we went to the larger lagoon as we enjoyed driving the tuk tuk there and found it a great spot for kiting. You could probably kite surf out in front of the resort but no other kite surfers seem to use Puttalam lagoon. It's quite shallow with fish sticks and gusty around the shoreline. If you get out further into the lagoon then it isn't so gusty. We took the kayaks out on Puttalam at night which was pretty stunning. All in all a great stay. Thanks to the friendly staff, and the relaxed feeling that we took away with us!

Room Tip: Cabanas are basic - a little run down, but definitely nicer kiting accommodation than what we are us...
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  • Stayed: August 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank anna c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 27, 2012

I have no words to express my feeling towards the heavenly experience we had in “Ruwala Resort”, which is located in North Western Province, Kalpitiya, Sri Lanka.
“Ruwala” is unique as its name with mouthwatering dishes. Rooms are simple, enchanted and modern. The view of the lagoon when the sun rises is magnificent, mystical and magical. Can’t even imagine whether I’m on earth. The feeling once you visit “Ruwala” is harmonious, romantic and sensational. Service is perfect and a remarkable with a friendly manner.
The environment is 100% natural, windy and it is calm and peaceful.
It’s all about a picturesque land on mother earth.

  • Stayed: August 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank SadheeraGunawardena
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 17, 2012

Ruwala Resort's recently opened restaurant is a very welcome addition to this little gem.
On my last visit in June 2011, it was confined to resident guests but the management have recently expanded it to passing travellers looking for places to rest and eat, while visiting the Kalpitiya penninsula.
Apart from the scarcity of decent restaurants, anyone having a meal here will not be dissapointed - the food is fresh, tasty and excelletn value for money. Fresh seafood caught that day in the locality features large on the menu (Singapore chilli crab, hot buttered squid, sweet n'sour jumbo prawns....) along with staples and local favourites (mixed fried rice, rice and curries). The freshly squeezed fruit juices provide a healthy and thirst-quenching alternative to fizzy drinks (but a "medicinal" beer went well with the seafood spread...)

  • Stayed: June 2012, traveled with friends
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2  Thank g1willi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Ruwala Resort

Address: Kalpitiya Road | Kalpitiya, Kalpitiya 61360, Sri Lanka
Location: Sri Lanka > North Western Province > Kalpitiya
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #13 of 56 Specialty Lodging in Kalpitiya
Price Range: $85 - $159 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Ruwala Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 11
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
a rustic eco-retreat and adventure-park on the banks of the scenic Puttlam lagoon, located in the unexplored north-west coast of Sri Lanka, making it an unforgettable holiday getaway - especially for the adventurous and nature-loving visitor. Nestled in the remote fishing village of Thihaliya, Ruwala Resort spans 9 acres of coconut garden and is geared to provide a relaxing as well as an adventurous holiday experience for adults and children alike. ... more   less 
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