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“Perfect lunch, fantastic setting.”
Review of Galle Fort Hotel

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Galle Fort Hotel
Ranked #7 of 23 Hotels in Galle
Certificate of Excellence
uk
Level Contributor
70 reviews
43 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
“Perfect lunch, fantastic setting.”
Reviewed December 14, 2011

We sadly didnt stay, but dropped in for lunch instead. The food here is quite outstanding. Service discreet, friendly and helpful. The menu simple with imaginative options. The venue is an oasis of colonial charm in a beautiful location.

For four of us this was a wonderful meal and I cannot recommend it highly enough. four meals and four drinks totaled SLR 6300, which for what you got and the quality of what you got was very good value. This hotel restaurant is well worth going out of your way to visit. Try the noodles for lunch - they were some of the best I have ever had!

  • Stayed December 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank dlbUK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
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Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
14 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed December 11, 2011

I stayed at the Forte for only one night, which was no way enough. The hotel is beautiful with real authentic colonial charm. I was in a garden room which was perfectly adequate. Staff have great service ethic and food was great.

I am quite surprised by some of the negative reviews about this hotel experience. Some people are obviouly very spoilt or expect too .

Keep it up GFH

  • Stayed December 2011, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank brewju
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
UK
Level Contributor
13 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
Reviewed December 10, 2011

We were slightly disappointed with this hotel - particularly as our expectations had been heightened by so many great reviews. There is a definite wow factor when you arrive given the courtyard pool area and the feeling of calm that goes with it, but below the surface there are issues that need addressing. The rooms are fairly dark and privacy is an issue as it is easy to see in through the windows if you open the shutters in order to let in some natural light. The rooms also seemed to be a breeding ground for mosquitos to the extent that we could properly enjoy the downstairs area of our loft suite because we were constantly being bitten. Bathrooms could do with a refurb too in our view. Management seemed to lack focus. We didn't have breakfast, but did have dinner one night - it is a set menu, so no choice at all and pretty average given the price. If we did the trip again, we would have stayed at one of the beach hotels just up the coast (try the Fortress) and gone on a day trip to Galle - there is not that much to see or do and it can easily be done in day.

Stayed November 2011, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
4 Thank RedberryUk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Colombo, Sri Lanka
Level Contributor
43 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed December 3, 2011

Beautifully restored Dutch period house (18 century) converted into small hotel. Elegant courtyard with small swimming pool with Frangipani trees in bloom. Had room on ground floor facing central courtyard with large four-poster comfortable bed and period furniture. Tasteful. Privacy requires closing wooden shutters that makes room dark. Should consider blinds.
Full breakfast served overlooking courtyard is a delight. Did not have other meals as limited menu did not seem particularly interesting.
For price ($250 per night without breakfast) does not offer accomodation or meals for driver unlike most 4+ star class hotels in Sri Lanka. Does recommend nearby guest house which adds $30+ for room and meals for driver. Limited or no parking at hotel.

  • Stayed November 2011
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank RAnilC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
104 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 130 helpful votes
Reviewed November 28, 2011

This was our final stop on what had been a great trip around Sri Lanka staying mostly in homestay/small hotels, and this was our little treat. The design of this hotel is beautiful and very well done. We had a tour of some of the expensive rooms and they are gorgeous! It is "modern boutique made to look old" at its best.

Our room, a garden suite was lovely and the linen is every bits as good as people say! Only quirk is a strange atrium which is shared with the room next door. Neither room has a curtain over this door so you could easily wonder out there and see into the next room - if you wanted!

One gripe, which is shared elsewhere, is that they don't try to find you good rates on taxis. They quoted Rs12,500 (inc taxes) to Colombo Airport, off our own backs, we got it for Rs7,500 - a massive saving with limited effort!

Restaurant - I suppose having stayed in homestays for the rest of the trip (where we had lovely food - lots of rice and curry!), and having read the reviews, I was expecting / hoping for something quite special from the food (i had read comments like "best food on the island" etc), and I'm afraid it disappointed a little. At 2,400 ++ (expensive by Sri Lankan standards) you would think they may raise the bar with some clever Asian fusin style treats. Our first night we opted for the cafe menu which was nice, veg rice, well cooked prawns and some dry tasteless overcooked chicken satay skewer. The second night we had the main menu (no choice mind) which was Tom Ka Gai to start (nice enough) then prawns and red curry and chicken. Again fine but nothing you wouldn't get in a high street chain in London. Pudding was sorbet which was poorly made, lots of chunks of ice, though the flavour was nice. You would think in a high end hotel that they may try some clever flavour combinations but it was all fairly standard and flew out of the kitchen at an alarming rate - we had to ask them to slow down or we'd have been finished within 45 mins! Breakfast again expensive and not included in the price, was good but no more. I had a much better breakfast at Waterfalls Homestay and that was included in the Rs3,500 a night price.

So if I went back to Galle, I might stay here but certainly would have all my meals eleswhere like the Peddlars cafe or Mamas for curry. Be aware that no prices include taxes, so your $150 a night stay is easily likely to be above $300 a night inc food and drink.

  • Stayed November 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Chris S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed November 23, 2011

You would expect colonial minimalism at the GFH and you won't be disappointed, the rooms surround the garden pool which is a fantastic centrepiece as you stand on the threshold of the restaurant area. Having a drink or eating the good food from the albeit limited menu is a veritable pleasure as night falls, the lotus flowers close and the garden is illuminated in candle light.

It really does feel gently opulent without the unnecessary facets of our busy existence, the only indulgence to modern times it seems are wifi and the essential ac. We truly enjoyed our stay there but.......it wasn't perfect. There are a plethora of staff, always willing, always courteous but no one really knew who we were. On the one hand lack of 'interference' is to be applauded but...how can I say this without too much criticism?...there was a lack of consistency in who we saw and therefore a lack of 'intimacy' for want of a better word. Or even interest in what we were doing or whether we were enjoying ourselves. Indeed, staff were not well primed wrt local activities, or willing to go out on a limb and barter with local tuktuk drivers so you don't get ripped off. We did a half-day cycle tour around the paddy fields out of Galle, which is a must, but only lasted 2 hours and cost us 50% more than GFH indicated. It would have been a nice touch if the hotel had expressed more than mild indignation and done something about that. So it is a great place to stay but don't expect to feel special.

Room Tip: We stayed in the Porcelain Suite on the ground floor which conveniently opened onto the pool, cheape...
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  • Stayed November 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank SteveLaking
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Galle Fort Hotel

Property: Galle Fort Hotel
Address: 28 Church Street, Galle, Sri Lanka
Location: Sri Lanka > Southern Province > Galle District > Galle
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #7 of 23 Hotels in Galle
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:5 star — Galle Fort Hotel 5*
Number of rooms: 12
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Winner of the 2007 Unesco Award of Distinction for heritage conservation. A charming, friendly, award-winning and affordable heritage boutique hotel in the heart of the Galle Fort world heritage site and a perfect base for the best beaches, tea plantations, temples, rain forests and cultural attractions in southern Sri Lanka. Famous for its Asian fusion food made from fresh local seafood and market produce. ... more   less 
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