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“Wonderful stay”

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The Spice House, Mirissa
Ranked #3 of 192 Mirissa B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Edinburgh
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Wonderful stay”
Reviewed October 9, 2013

Stayed for 5 nights in the spice house at the end of my Sri Lanka visit. The 1st 2 nights I stayed in the cottage at the bottom of the garden. It's a magical place, very peaceful overlooking the jungle with the monkeys playing in the trees. The shower is outside the cottage and also looks out over the jungle but is very private and a lovely touch of luxury. The other 3 nights I stayed in the main house. The owners Phil and Wathsala have thought of everything to make your stay a great one. My room was large and felt more like a room in a boutique hotel than a home stay guest house.
This is a 1st class place and if you are fortunate enough to stay here you won't be disappointed, that is unless you expect 5 star blandness at a family run guest house.

  • Stayed October 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank Podgal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (115)
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English first
Melbourne
Level 4 Contributor
39 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
Reviewed October 9, 2013 via mobile

We stayed in the mud house for 5 nights and loved every minute of our stay. The mud house is in the middle of the garden, separate from the main house and almost feels like your in the jungle, it's perfect for families with bunk beds in a separate room. We were a bit worried about no a/c but it cooled down at night and we were very comfortable.

We felt very welcome at this guesthouse, Phil and his wife were always there to help our or just for a chat and all the team were lovely and friendly. For our kids, the stars were the dogs, Chudie and his 2 pups Banjo and Chocko.

Dinners were fantastic, such great food lovingly prepared by chef and great conversation with other guests. I was lucky enough to have my birthday dinner here.

Do yourself a favour and stay here when in Mirissa.

Stayed October 2013, traveled with family
Helpful?
1 Thank Adam G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ruislip, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
319 reviews
63 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 211 helpful votes
Reviewed October 5, 2013

I keep telling myself that it is wrong to give such a low score to this hotel. I mean, the place is charming, and the people and service is absolutely wonderful. I wanted to fall in love with this place, but unfortunately, my experience was not as positive.

I arrived quite late at night, and the only room available on my arrival was around the back of the estate. It was a large room away from the main house with a bathroom and mini-fridge. The room was fine- but I felt so uncomfortable being there. It was like the scene out of a horror film, and with a cemetery not so far away, I thought it was best to wait till 11pm for a room to clear in the main house.

The main house is beautifully kept, and it is really an opening up of the home to guests. When I arrived, guests were convened in the patio, living room and backyard, relaxing and sharing stories. It's such a friendly atmosphere.

I was given a room upstairs, overlooking the front garden with a veranda. The room was fine, very large, with a wooden four poster bed, and a nice sized bathroom. The bathroom shower area was quite cramped and not as clean as I had expected. Therefore I could only really enjoy a quick shower. The toilet was also not flushing properly. I also believe that due to the haste that the prior guest left and I entered, the bathroom was not cleaned as well as usual, and there was sand and other elements on the floor. It was very much a get in, get out type of experience.

As it was late, I settled down to sleep, and that is when the problems really started. Firstly was the temperature. There is a fan in the room, but it was just blowing around warm air. And the nights in Mirrissa do get quite humid- so it was very hard to get cool enough! I would really really encourage sticking in some air conditioning units, because this may take care of the second and worse problem- the insects.
The night was spent in battle with myriads of insects, but especially the mosquitos. Unfortunately the mosquito net had a few holes in it, and some of these blood loving creatures decided they wanted to destroy me that night. For 3 or 4 hours I was squatting insects, and it looked like a war happened on the blood soaked sheets the following morning. Now- a hole-less mosquito net would have helped, but again, if there was air conditioning, then you automatically reduce the temperature to too low a level for these insects and it kills 2 birds with one stone.
So the sleep wasn't ideal that night- and unfortunately then, I decided to reduce my 3 day stay to that night alone.

The following morning I was greeted with a beautiful breakfast and gorgeous views of the fruit garden and the swimming pool area. I also had a lovely nice, long conversation with Watshala, who is a wonderful host and great company.
Both Phil and Watshala caringly arranged my transport to Tangalle as well.

The beach is a 5 minute walk away which is quite nice.

So overall- the service, feel and people are wonderful, but the experience I had sleeping in the room was not so pleasant. May be this was a one-off.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled solo
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank SBhatt87
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
thespicehouse, Owner at The Spice House, Mirissa, responded to this review, October 16, 2013
Firstly thank you for the many positive things that you said in you're review but I would like to address some of the less positive ones -
You did warn us that you were an aspiring travel writer but you're flight of fancy about being shown a room that was " like a scene from a horror film with a cemetery not far away " is just total gibberish & entirely misleading! What you meant was that as you arrived at 10pm it was dark in the garden.
The initial room that you were given is our newest and probably best, situated above my parents in laws house at the bottom of the garden ( with a separate outside staircase up to it ) it is surrounded by jungle on two sides with lots of monkeys and birds around. Lots of our guests choose this room for its homely feel and for the natural setting.
However as this room was not to you're liking we did offer to move you to another room at 11pm after some of our other guests had left for the airport so I do agree that the room cleaning may not have been up to our usual quality as it was quickly done by myself so apologies for that.
You are correct that we don't use AC in the house ( only ceiling fans ) which is a personal choice of mine, the house is traditionally built with high ceilings and air spaces to allow the air to flow. We are always quick to let any of our prospective guests know this and there are plenty of other GH in Mirissa which do offer AC for those that need it.
However I would like to apologise for there being a hole in you're mosquito net and we are sorry that it stopped you getting a good nights sleep, this problem has now ben rectified.
Kind Regards,
Phil & Wathsala - Owners of The Spice House, Mirissa
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bedford
Level 1 Contributor
2 reviews
Reviewed October 1, 2013

Better late than never!

We stayed at the Spice House for three nights at the end of our two-week holiday in Sri Lanka in July and we cannot recommend this place enough.

Phil and Wathsala bent over backwards to make our final stay on the island one to remember.

The hotel is gorgeous, set in a beautiful surroundings. The views from the rooms at the back - overlooking the pool - are fantastic, and unlike anything else we had encountered during our holiday.

The room. Fab. Four-poster bed, a real homely feel and a great bathroom to boot.

The food. Oh the food. When they ask "are you joining us for dinner tonight" do not turn them down. Cooked by a very, very friendly local chef, it was the tastiest meal we had all fortnight. What's more you get to eat with your fellow guests at the table, giving you the opportunity to share your travelling tips and stories of spiders and the creepy crawlers you have or haven't met during your journey around the island.

On our final night we had to get a taxi to the airport at 2am. Phil and Wathsala organised this and they stayed up until this time to wave us off and wish us well. Phil also told me not to forget to write this review...! Sorry it's taken so long!

If we ever return to Sri Lanka we'll back here first!

Andrew and Barbara.
Bedfordshire
England

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Andros P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Adelaide, Australia
Level 3 Contributor
18 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed September 30, 2013

Waksala and Phillip have a great home here and the ambiance is great. We stayed for two nights and were made to feel very welcome. I did a cooking class with Dayanda, who was patient and a fountain of information and will attempt the recipes by myself when I get home. There is a lovely pool, huge rooms, with private balconies. No airconditioning, so it could be a little warm, but we managed. Loved our stay

Room Tip: We had a garden view balcony room and were very happy.
See more room tips
  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Lynne C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed September 28, 2013

We visited the spice house after touring around Shri Lanka and it was the perfect place to relax and just chill out. Phil and Watsalla are great hosts ensuring that you feel right at home in their beautiful house. We had a room at the bottom of the garden which was very private with a great terrace to relax on and watch the array of wild life that live in the jungle around the house. The pool and gardens are a quite oasis but if you wish to swim in the sea and catch a few rays on the beach it is just a short 5 mins walk away. If you wish to eat in the rice and curry is some of the best we had on our trip however Phil or Watsalla are happy to recommend local restaurants and we experienced some great fresh fish at some of the places on the beach.
We will be back, thank you Giles and Janet

  • Stayed September 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Bunny58w
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vancouver, Canada
Level 4 Contributor
27 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed September 22, 2013

Beautiful rooms and gardens, peaceful pool with plenty of comfy loungers to sunbathe. Phil & Wathsala were lovely, friendly & welcoming. The food was AMAZING, we ate here every night and it was the best food we ate in Sri Lanka.

Easy walking distance to the beach and main town, wouldn't stay anywhere else in Mirissa!

Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
1 Thank HolHolden
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Spice House, Mirissa

Property: The Spice House, Mirissa
Address: Km 151, Galle Road, Mirissa 81740, Sri Lanka
Location: Sri Lanka > Southern Province > Mirissa
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 192 B&Bs / Inns in Mirissa
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 7
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Spice House, Mirissa is a beautiful Colonial style guesthouse with its own private swimming pool set in a peaceful, landscaped garden full of tropical flowers, fruits, spices, ponds & hammocks. It is ideally situated only one minute from a beautiful, reef protected bay & 1km from the main bustle of Mirissa beach. The guesthouse is English owned by an experienced traveller and his Sri Lankan Wife which allows us to offer our guests the perfect mix of Western comfort & luxury alongside Sri Lankan charm & service - we like our guests to feel like part of the family. The house is shaded by coconut palms & cinnamon trees to the front while the back is terraced which allows wonderful views over the surrounding jungle. Local wildlife is often seen in our garden with daily visits from monkeys, kingfishers, peacocks, woodpeckers & squirrels. We can also help with Airport transfers & booking whale watching trips during the season (November - April). ... more   less 
Also Known As:
The Spice House Hotel, Mirissa Hotel Mirissa

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