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“Sri Lanka Holiday”

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Royal Palms Beach Hotel
Ranked #3 of 11 Hotels in Kalutara
Certificate of Excellence
Birmingham, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Sri Lanka Holiday”
Reviewed January 12, 2014

Have just returned from 2 weeks holiday at the Royal Palms, what a great place. The journey from the airport took 2 hours plus, what an experience. I would suggest not arriving at rush hour in Columbo or using the new motorway which I am told will reduce the time taken. I would add that both I and my brother-in-law were in hysterics ,however, the wives were not. The room in the hotel was very good as was the service any problems (minor) were promptly dealt with, The dining room provided a varied selection of meals for breakfast, lunch and dinner, staff as always very polite and efficient. ( only one glass of wine) The pool area and grounds were always immaculate and the staff very friendly The three day trip we went on was great as was the guide Erish . The hotels we used were brilliant .The trip was very good value but tiring..

Room Tip: All rooms have a pool/sea veiw but suggest second floor .
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  • Stayed November 2013, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
3 Thank Brian H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,233 reviews from our community

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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (244)
Date | Rating
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English first
Accrington, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
30 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
Reviewed December 26, 2013

Just returned from 3 weeks at the Royal Palms and it was an absolute delight. After a 2 1/2 hour drive from the airport we were shown to a smelly musty ground floor room but after complaining about it we were moved to the top floor and everything was fine. The staff are lovely, very friendly and helpful, the pool is fabulous and the food delicious (some nights are better than others but that is just personal preference).The sea is a no-no unless you are a strong swimmer as the current is very strong. The only thing I can complain about is the lack of atmosphere in the bar at night as very few people used it. We can only assume it was because the price of drinks to the people who weren't on all inclusive was astronomical (about £6 for a vodka and orange). We had all our washing done before we left and it cost less than £18 for everything - far better than arriving home with a suitcase full of dirty clothes. We will definitely look to stay at this hotel next year when the England cricket team tour Sri Lanka.

Room Tip: Top floor rooms are not smelly or musty
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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Julie T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Manchester, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
Reviewed December 26, 2013

Just returned from 3 weeks at the Royal palms 4th to 25th Dec, got an absolute bargain at short notice from Mercury.

After landing at Colombo airport at 8.30 am, the trip to the resort is an absolute nightmare taking two an a half hours. I would advise arriving late in the evening if possible as when we left, it took only one and a half hours to return to airport.

On arrival we were allocated room 138 on the ground floor, this room was really musty. we then looked at 142, this too was very musty. After sleeping for a few hours we were told they would move us the day after to the 3rd floor room 334. This room was identical but no musty smell.
After speaking with various staff members the Tsunami did affect this resort and flooded the ground floor rooms so seems these rooms are still showing the effects of this.

The resort is well set out and has a very good pool, the food in general is well above average compared to many other all inclusive resorts we have visited in the Indian ocean and Caribbean.
The themed nights are what they say, not just the odd pasta dish on Italian night as most do.
Indian, Mexican, Mediterranean, Asian, Italian, Sri Lankan BBQ and Around the world. Monday to Sunday, we had our favourites but in all they were very good.

Their are 3 bars on resort. Pool, Cabana and Hurricane. the latter being the main bar, The problems we found with the main bar is because the majority of people staying at the resort are on B&B or half board no one actually frequents it. Atmosphere in the evenings is non existent.
When their is entertainment on e.g.. snake show, fire limbo, people turn up and watch, but as soon as they have finished every one leaves. On many a night of our 20 night stay no more than 6 people were in the bar.
They seem to be selling this resort to the Easter block countries which may account for the lack of people in the bars, they tended to stay in their rooms with alcohol they brought with them.

If you are on the All inclusive package make sure you know what's included.
i.e. In room bar, only the 2 smaller bottles of water are included, no spirits, juice or nuts. Food at the Cabana and Japanese restaurant are not included, wine in the buffet is just one glass per person any more is payable. Pool and snooker is also payable at approximately £5 per 40 min's

There is a fair amount of wildlife frequenting the resort, Chipmunks, Lizards and the occasional Monkey. There are a few dogs and cats in resort.

All in all this is a really nice resort. The majority of the staff are very nice and helpful, any problem seems to be sorted very quickly.
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Room Tip: Ask for a Top floor room
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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank heathermel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ljubljana, Slovenia
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed December 24, 2013

The biggest hotel room i have ever seen. Pool, beach and hotel surroundings looks heavenly. Every room has view on the ocean. Food is also great, very big choice and thematic dinner every night. Also good starting point for trips.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with family
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Helpful?
2 Thank Dea M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level 2 Contributor
8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed December 15, 2013

The staff are so friendly and helpful, went beyond their duty to help me with my food allergy. Food was brilliant with a huge variety every day.
Such a nice atmosphere and relaxed environment to go to after working silly hours. I certainly didn't want to leave. I'm now regretting the 5 day trip added on to the Maldives and would have much rather have stayed at Royal Palms.
I will certainly visit again!

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled solo
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank monkster21uk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chichester, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
70 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
Reviewed December 12, 2013

What can I say except - WOW! 5 star without a doubt - now don't get me wrong, things can go wrong ANYWHERE, at any hotel, but its the way in which the management deal with these things that proves if a service is a good service or not - and they proved they give a good service. The room was MASSIVE and it was only a standard room, it was clean when we arrived and kept very clean by the room boys (200 rupees per day, left on the bed helps them - its only a quid after all). The balcony, which was large and welcoming, had a table and chairs and a sea view - they all do as far as I can tell. The shower room, which was very well appointed, was a vast and comfortable affair with everything one could need.

We chose to go all-inclusive and found this to be the best option - especially for drinks in the various bars. Although wine IS NOT INCLUDED (we found this out at reception on the first day) the other drinks are plentiful and the measures are doubles by UK standards. You can have local beer by the glass only - NOT BY THE BOTTLE. This apart, we found everything was plentiful and very adequate. The food, which was buffet style so you take whatever you want AND in whatever quantity, was always superb. It was always well cooked and the variety of different dishes was immense. the girls who welcome you to the main restaurant at EVERY MEAL are enchanting and the chefs and waiters are always very busy, so do be patient.

Everything that guests could want is there - a fully equipped gym - if you feel so inclined. There is a massive pool with a pool bar and the bar staff are very friendly. The Japanese restaurant is by the pool (at extra cost), we didn't use it, because the food in the main restaurant was so good and the themed nights - Mediterranean - Italian - Sri Lankan - Chinese etc. were a delight. The Cabana restaurant - we did use this - for the seafood and unlimited wine meal night and it was superb. The reception hall and main bar area are superb too and there is a sub-zero night club for those who want to dad-dance the night away.

The gardens are extensive and well kept and there is NO SHORTAGE of sun loungers, with a very accommodating attendant (100 rupees or about 50p is a good tip - each time he gets you a mattress and towel - they don't earn much after all). I was a bit disconcerted to learn that the next door hotel - The Tangerine Beach - a cheaper place to stay - has no restriction on their guests being allowed to use the Royal Palms grounds and presumably their facilities (there are no fences) - but we could also use theirs - so it swings both ways I suppose!

The staff - without exception - were efficient - effective - kind - polite - happy - accommodating - friendly - able - smart and good at their jobs.

Just one point I found - tips are well received and some of the staff will stand there hopefully at every opportunity - but wages ARE low - so don't be stingy! As far as I am aware it is not in the Russian psyche to tip and I didn't observe any being given. There are a lot of Russian guests in Sri Lanka now - they seem to have taken over Sri Lanka from the English and Germans as a popular place to visit - I found them to be charming people on the whole, but they don't seem to get behind the tipping ethos - lets try to change that eh!

Summary:
If you go all-inclusive you will NOT be disappointed and you will have a great holiday at this hotel - If you want a good tour company to pick you up and drop you off after having had a wonderful tour experience - wherever you choose to go on your tours - BOOK WITH BLUE LANKA TOURS - ASK FOR DINESH AND SAY RAY SENT YOU.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Raymond K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Glasgow, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
16 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed December 12, 2013

This is the hotel I will always visit on my trips to Sri Lanka. The staff, decor, food and atmosphere are completely faultless.
I particularly like the fact that there were local specialities available in the restaurant as well as more westernised options.
The location of the hotel is also fantastic, located right on the beachfront!

Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
1 Thank mark9874
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Royal Palms Beach Hotel

Property: Royal Palms Beach Hotel
Address: De Abrew Drive, Kalutara 12000, Sri Lanka
Location: Sri Lanka > Western Province > Kalutara
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#2 Spa Hotel in Kalutara
#2 Luxury Hotel in Kalutara
#3 Family Hotel in Kalutara
#3 Romantic Hotel in Kalutara
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — Royal Palms Beach Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 136
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Also Known As:
Royal Palms Beach Kalutara
Hotel Royal Palms Beach
Royal Palms Beach Hotel Sri Lanka/Kalutara

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