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“Expensive and rooms had moldy smell”

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The Waterside Bentota
Ranked #13 of 24 Hotels in Bentota
tucson
Level 3 Contributor
19 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
“Expensive and rooms had moldy smell”
Reviewed February 16, 2014

This was the most expensive place we stayed in Sri Lanka,and on top of that they charged for bottled water. The setting was nice -- rooms overlooked a swimming pool and beyond it the river. But the moldy odor in the room didn't make it a pleasant place to hang out. Breakfast was a random affair, with servers wandering around and never asking us what we wanted to eat, but bringing cold toast and eventually this and that. The attitude of the staff was only fair compared to every other place we stayed in Sri Lanka.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank littlehillsranch
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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133 reviews from our community

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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (37)
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English first
London, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed February 16, 2014

I have been with my partner to this lovely, quiet, boutique hotel by the river and had a fabulous time. This was truly a wonderful experience all the way from check in through to the service In the restaurant. The rooms were absolutely fantastic, the additional facilities such as the free boat ride to the beach, swimming pool and beautiful garden make this hotel very special.

Kamal the hotel manager gave us some special attention on a regular basis and made our stay very memorable. The breakfast was fantastic and the seafood platter was delicious.

I highly recommend staying here!!!!

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank Divina C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Montpelier, Vermont
Level 3 Contributor
8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed February 7, 2014

Hotel Bentota was lovely (the rooms light and airy) but of all of the places we stayed in Sri Lankan it was the only hotel that did not treat our driver with hospitality. For example, while we were offered juice upon arrival (a traditional way to welcome guests) he was not. I would suggest that there are probably other places in Bentota that would provide a better value and better hospitality.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank debfromvermont
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Level 3 Contributor
14 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed February 4, 2014

This is a nice place but not on the beach. It's 5-10 minutes by boat. The staff took us to the beach and picked us up when agreed. The place itself if nice with a pool and pretty riverside view. It was quiet when we stayed so had the place to ourselves. The staff were helpful, possibly a little too attentive. The food was nice but the seafood very overpriced. It's cheaper in the restaurants in Bentota. Overall a restful stay but we were not overwhelmed. I'm not sure it deserves its second best hotel placing.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank lavind
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level 2 Contributor
9 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed February 2, 2014

This hotel did not live up to expectations, given it was in a nice quiet location, the staff were friendly enough but it struck us as a ship running without a rudder. There was little or no management presence and considering the number of guests totalled only 8 during our 3 night stay the service was poor. Luncheon remennants took over 3 hours to clear away and the presence of a local beach boy a former employee who appeared to be fornicating in the pool with an elderly Estonian women considerably impacted on our enjoyment . We only ate in the hotel the first evening and the food was acceptable but were made to feel uncomfortable by the antics of the beach boy and women at dinner and breakfast. I am sure the English owner , had she not been in the UK would have dealt with the problem concerned. This hotel was definitely the worst one we stayed at during our two week trip around Sri Lanka. The staff seemed bored at times and needed proper customer service training. I concurr with another review recently posted in this regard. This hotel could be superb but fell short of many expectations. Lucky was efficient and attentive and worth a mention above the other staff. Needless to say we would not recommend this hotel. A very disappointing experience.

  • Stayed January 2014
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Helpful?
Thank Karen E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Leeds, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed January 14, 2014

I spent a very enjoyable three nights at The Waterside last week following a tour of Sri Lanka and it was the perfect place to relax and unwind before heading home. Apologies that I don't recall the name of the gentleman co-owner we chatted to but he was very welcoming and took time to have a long chat with us on a couple of evenings, he told us that it's the intention of staff to create a home from home and they really excel at it! Lucky showed us to our room on our first evening and encouraged us to ask for anything we needed and we really felt that nothing would be too much trouble.

We visited the Bentota beach area two days during our stay and I have to say that the long strip of more expensive hotels along the beach seemed very unappealing and anonymous in comparison to the smaller, more homely retreat we were staying at. The setting of The Waterside is just beautiful, the garden and pool areas are very relaxing and maintained to a high standard and the outlook over the river is beautiful. We watched bats flying overhead in the evenings and could hear all kinds of wildlife round about, we even saw a possum crossing the lawn!

Our first floor room was very comfortable and large with an attractive outlook across the garden and pool (as all the rooms have). We had a very large balcony which was a real sun-trap. The bathroom is a little outdated but perfectly adequate, however perhaps a shower curtain or shower screen over the bath would be a good addition as we found it difficult not to wet the floor around the bath when showering - our bathmat was always replaced however and it wasn't an issue. Lucky is very speedy and efficient at cleaning rooms in the mornings, no sooner had we walked down to breakfast than he'd wave to us from our balcony while sweeping up!

What can I say about the staff? They were just wonderful and I wanted to book them flights to come and look after us at home in England! We got to know them well during our stay and the two cheeky chappies who serve meals in the restaurant area were an absolute pleasure to chat to and had a wicked sense of humour! Although the English lady owner was on holiday herself during our stay and we didn't meet her, I was incredibly touched by the stories I heard about her and how dedicated she is to providing work for young local people, not to mention supporting the redevelopment of a local school following the tragedy of the tsunami. She has trained her staff to the most minute detail so that you feel as though you're in a silver service restaurant and they tend to your every need but not in an overpowering or intrusive way.

The food at breakfast was very good (a choice of the usual hot breakfast dishes, cereal, a never ending supply of toast etc) and in the evenings the large food options from the a la carte menu was just outstanding. We ate there for the three nights and were never disappointed with the range of Sri Lankan curries and more western meals on offer; my husband had chicken and leek pie and mash one evening and we didn't expect to see that on the menu! One evening I had a fish curry with the largest serving of rice I've ever seen and maybe eight smaller accompaniments from lentil dahl to spicy vegetables, it was just delicious and such a generous amount of food for one serving (needless to say I was unable to eat everything!). The restaurant is open to non-guests and some local people ate there one evening which indicates how good it is.

One of the restaurant staff offered to take us on a walking tour of the surrounding village one morning and we started has his Buddhist temple which was nearby. The monks there were welcoming and showed us their herb and spice garden, as well as their collection of historic scriptures, it was very interesting and we enjoyed spending some time with our unofficial guide for the morning.

I'm so pleased we chose this hotel for our final few days, I would have been disappointed to have missed out on somewhere so peaceful and enjoyable - I highly recommend it to anyone. Don't let the distance from the beach deter you as Chami kindly took us across to the beach area by boat and collected us again each day at a time to suit us and it was only around a 10 minute crossing.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank DLeeSoulsby
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed December 20, 2013

A unique opportunity to experience a small but friendly set up with excellent food. It's a tranquil getaway and only a short boatride away from the big hotels and beaches.
We held a wedding reception at Waterside for about 75 guests. They met our every need.
The time and service given was very personal Anyone wishing a tranquil break or a function location that is not ostentatious should consider it.

Room Tip: all rooms overlook the Lagoon. If you would prefer the upper level then that might be an option. On...
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank nazneen_11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Waterside Bentota

Property: The Waterside Bentota
Address: Yathramulla Road | Yathramulla Bentota, Bentota 80500, Sri Lanka
Location: Sri Lanka > Southern Province > Galle District > Bentota
Amenities:
Beverage Selection Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#2 Romantic Hotel in Bentota
#5 Family Hotel in Bentota
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3.5 star — The Waterside Bentota 3.5*
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Waterside is an elegant well maintained Villa with restaurant,which is situated in a unique riverside location,and has magnificent views over the wide Bentota Ganga. Waterside is popular with guests of all nationalities.We have 6 ensuite (with bathtub and shower) A/C rooms with bar fridge,fan and satellite TV.The large open restaurant serves delicious Sri Lankan and Western dishes as well as mouth watering seafood.During your stay you can relax by our pool which is only a few steps from all the rooms, whilst enjoying the surrounding mature tropical garden and river views.We offer complimentary boat transfer to nearby beach, water sports or town.If you require Ayuvedic massage we can recommend several treatment centres.Excursions and tours to all the magnificent sites in this beautiful island can be arranged.If you wish to explore the local area we provide bicycles or we can organise local scenic tuk tuk rides . Fishing trips ,bird watching and river trips are available. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Waterside Bentota Hotel Bentota
The Waterside Hotel Bentota

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