I had a 2-day business trip in Colombo. Due to the travel distance, I scheduled to arrive a day earlier and budget another day before I departed. With so much to see and so little free time, I needed advice and a good company. After checking a few sites, I settled with Blue Lanka. Dinesh was very quick in responding my queries. I picked Kandy as my Day One destination. Dinesh, out of his busy schedule, came to be my guide. He asked about my interests and projected the time it would take to return back to Colombo, and remained flexible with our time and itinerary throughout the day. During our long drive, Dinesh talked about his dream, his ambition, vision and value. I was very impressed by how he carried himself, how he ran his company, how generous he was to his staff (trusting, empowering and mentoring them). He walked the walk!
I was scheduled to meet up with him again for Day Two to go to Galle. However, two of my colleagues wanted to join me after they heard so much about this wonderful company. Instead of a city tour, they wanted to go to the countryside. In less than 12 hours before the start of the next next trip, I called Dinesh to change the plan. He came to meet me and assured me to provide the right vehicle to go to the new destination of our choice. We chose Sigiriya and Dambulla. Driver and guide Aruna came promptly at 4am as agreed upon so we could be there before the crowd arrived, but also to ensure we had time to see the sites and returned to the airport to board the flights home. Aruna was so caring and cheerful... It would have been a wonderful day and visit as it was. However, what set this company apart from the rest was the care for their clients.
I unexpectedly came down with food poisoning from the dinner the night before. I vomited and went on bio breaks during the museum visit. Aruna went to get water, made sure I was ok to continue. At lunch time, I did not have any appetite so he called in the chef to see if he could cook something for me (it was a buffet). Once we left the restaurant, he went to look for an Ayurveda drink to cure indigestion and food poisoning. The drink tasted like liquid plastic, but it took care of it!! For the remainder of the afternoon, he paced the speed so we could enjoy the time at Dambulla, taking photos for us, giving us anecdotes our temple guide didn't. He was so personal! Also we found out later that our car tire was punctured on our way to Sigiriya. Aruna took care of it during our climb but didn't miss a beat by coming back in time to take us to the next stop. During lunch time, he went to get a more permanent fix so we would not risk missing our flights. On our way back, Aruna kept with pace in heavy rain, made sure we were dropped off at the airport safe and sound, and early enough to do more shopping if we wanted.
In short, the staff (I met three in my two day trips) were very professional, knowledgeable, on time (an exception by local standard), honest in their assessment, delivered what was promised, and were very caring, flexible and attentive to their clients' interests. I would highly recommend it to my friends and colleagues who come to this part of the world. In fact, Blue Lanka makes the already very charming Sri Lanka even more so! I had a wonderful experience. I wish I could stay longer!
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