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Hotel Mermaid & Club
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Reviewed May 31, 2012

The Mermaid is a lovely hotel. The staff are very friendly, ever ready to help.The food is excellent. i went with my son and grandkids and my sons best friend . they all had a wonderful time .and said the same thing. Rooms are very clean the room boy Sam is excelent, We all liked him. I can recomend this hotel to any body. Good relaxing holiday .

  • Stayed: May 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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5  Thank Hemmy P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dilip S, General Manager at Hotel Mermaid & Club, responded to this reviewResponded June 5, 2012

We thank the reviewer for their stay at Mermaid Hotel & Club & sharing their holiday experience .

We are delighted to hear the special comments made about friendly staff, excellent food & cleanliness of the rooms.

Looking forward to welcoming you at Mermaid Hotel & Club.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 31, 2012

I came back from this resort a few days ago, I went here for my honeymoon. When we first got there we found the staff very welcoming and were given a welcome cocktail. As we were on our honeymoon we were given a deluxe room and it was beautiful and spacious. My first worry was that it is a very small resort I thought me and my husband might get bored but fortunately we made friends with quite a few couples so we had fun at the pool and in the evenings.


I struggled with food a bit in the hotel as some days it was nearly all spicy food at dinner, I felt they should have done a bit more milder food. I think it was wrong that if you wanted chips you had to pay for them so I just put up with bread and poppadums some evenings. The breakfasts were lovely, I had an omelette nearly every day and I found it easier to find something I would like at lunch time than in the evening. We had a special meal on the balcony of steak and chips one night and this was a lovely evening, the waiters in the restaurant are brilliant and so friendly, Saman was our favourite he made the effort to learn our names and always had a smile for us. The bar stuff were not as friendly, they often seemed quite miserable so we didn't really bother with them.

The pool is lovely, we often picked the sun loungers round here, it is so hot that it is so nice to be able to just take a dip in the pool every now and then. There are a lot of chipmunks on the grounds and they were very cute, they often try to sip your drinks so be careful there but they didn't bother us, I enjoyed seeing them around the hotel. There are dogs and cats round the hotel and they also didn't bother us, the dogs like attention so I would go up and see them on the beach. There is always a red flag at this time of year for the sea because of monsoon season and it is extremely rough, we did go in the sea thoughand the waves were about 8ft high, it is a very strong current though.

Quite a few of the people we met up with had lovely cleaners, unfortunately ours was not so. We very rarely had spare toilet roll, even if the one we had on the roll was running out. We often went to reception about this and occasionally it would be sorted, sometimes though we had to resort to taking one out of the lobby toilets. Also one night we got into bed to discover that our sheets were damp, it was too late that night for us to be bothered to deal with it so in the morning we spoke to reception about it. The man we spoke to said he would get it sorted out but we never got an apology which I think was bad. The female staff on reception were definitely more approachable than the male staff.

The entertainment was not my cup of tea, it was too loud for the resort I felt as the bar was quite small. I was a bit disappointed that there was very few alcoholic drinks to choose from on the all inclusive especially as I like to try out different cocktails.

Our first day we met a couple of the beach boys, one of them Sandy took us to the elephant orphanage and he was a brilliant guide and very friendly. I would definitely recommend using the beach boys for trips. We did do one trip with Hayes and Jarvis and that was also very good. We went on a river safari and to a moonstone mine and mask factory, it was a great day and our guide was also very good on this trip, the beach boys are slightly cheaper though.

All in all we had a lovely time on this holiday but I felt it was more down to the company than the resort. I wouldn't stay in such a small hotel if I went again. I agree with the 3 star rating this hotel has but I would not agree with the 5 star service, some of the staff were brilliant but others were quite hostile. I would say of all the places I have been this is probably the one that disappointed me the most and I think it was more because I had heard such raving reviews about the resort before we came.

  • Stayed: May 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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6  Thank Pollyd86
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dilip S, General Manager at Hotel Mermaid & Club, responded to this reviewResponded June 6, 2012

We thank the reviewer for their stay at Mermaid Hotel & Club & sharing their holiday experience.

We are delighted to hear the special comments made about Restaurant staff, swimming Pool, breakfast service & special meals.

Reference to alcoholic beverages, we offer a wide selection of locally produced alcoholic, non alcoholic beverages and cocktails made out of local spirits. Generally our guests have found our choice to be plentiful.

The other comments made by the Reviewer have been noted and we deeply apologize for any inconvenience caused.

Looking forward to welcoming the Reviewer once again to Mermaid Hotel & Club.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 31, 2012

We were at Mermaid hotel for 10 days 14-24, May. Beach staff was very attentive, rooms - always clean. We enjoyed our staying, food, nature and the ocean. We had HB, but didn't feel any inconvinience bause of that. animation in evenings was different but always musical - sining or national dancing.

  • Stayed: May 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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5  Thank Ekaterina_vic
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dilip S, General Manager at Hotel Mermaid & Club, responded to this reviewResponded June 5, 2012

We thank the reviewer for their stay at Mermaid Hotel & Club & sharing their holiday experience .

We are delighted to hear the special comments made about attentive staff, cleanliness in rooms, food & evening entertainment programmes.

Looking forward to welcoming you at Mermaid Hotel & Club.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 29, 2012

Hayes and Jarvis – Good deal, fab communication, and extremely helpful rep, who we booked trips though which were great value for money.

Qatar Airways – Flights from Heathrow, to and from Doha were great and staff really pleasant and helpful, Doha to Colombo little more cramped but still good. Partner lost Kindle on first leg as left it in seat pouch, and had loads of help from Rep, Hotel, and Qatar and it was found and flown back to Heathrow for collection…Very impressed 

Money – can only change when you get to Sri Lanka, and rates at airport were not as good as rates as at the Hotel, or when paying by card. Paying by card most places wanted some cash and some card, not keen for full payment by card, even the rep for trips.

Mermaid Hotel – what a hidden gem, we went because of the favourable comments on trip advisor, and were not disappointed. Small and had a lovely friendly family feel, with all the staff smiling and would go out of their way to help. The food was exceptionally good for an all inclusive, and the special night (seafood barbeque) and A La Carte were fantastic value for money. The seafood platter at around £15 a head was outstanding with fish fillet, squid, crab, huge prawns and lobster, mouth-watering!!! Food selection was a wonderful mix of cultures an impressive range every mealtime, (and in-between if you had room). Upgrade to the deluxe room was worth every penny as great room, service with a smile, good air con, and great facilities, though the mini bar needs watching as some chocolate went missing though we were not charged. Entertainment in the evenings was missable but if you like activities the facilities for water volleyball, beach volleyball aerobics etc were great with fabulous fun staff. The Gym, sauna and massage areas are also to a very high spec for those fitter than me. Bars are relaxed and friendly though the 5th May Buddhist festival means no alcohol is served for a couple of days.

Beach and Ocean – red flags flew constantly and there were impressive waves and a bit of an undertow, but was fabulous to dive into and reasonable swimmers would cope quite easily. Beach is fabulous and miles in either direction, people will approach you as you walk along but also will take “No thank you” and leave you alone. Outside the Hotel the Beach boys will get you anything you want from a coconut to drink to a trip almost anywhere, again friendly and will take no for an answer, and the hotel has had meetings with them to ensure some ground rules are understood and followed.

Trips – we did a couple through the rep and although the did not seem cheap they turned out to be outstanding value, and we requested the same guide “Senath” for both trips we did, he was brilliant, knowledgeable, and generous with his time. River trip day we did so much we ended up a couple of hours late back, but what a day…Turtles, silk production, river trip, cinnamon island, Buddhist temple, took tea on an Island, Sight seeing around Galle, with a three course lunch, and gem mines and wood carving…fantastic day!!! Second trip a 3 hour drive to then spend 3 hours on safari, seeing Elephants, water buffalo, crocodiles, monkeys, a jackal, and a huge range of birdlife including Fish Eagles, Painted Storks, Purple heron, Pelican, Horn bills, and many more, then on to a baby elephant feeding station and an exquisite curry for lunch, another amazing day. Longer trips need to be done over more than one day, and we will be returning for longer to do some.

Travel – we only used taxis and tuk tuk’s both were fabulous. Again the management of the hotel had met with local suppliers and we were able to get driven at a reasonable pace and waited for and taken back, you could hire them for the day.

Cocktail evening – laid on by the hotel, and attended by the management term, to take comments and constructive criticism, felt a bit colonial but also very special that as a guest nothing was too much trouble and our views were really important and taken notice of.

Fabulous experience and we are planning on a return for longer next year as there is so much to see, and would be delighted to return to the Mermaid who made us so welcome.

Room Tip: The De Luxe rooms are quiet and worth the extra....and forget the Diet !!!!!!
  • Stayed: May 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
7  Thank Stephen N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dilip S, General Manager at Hotel Mermaid & Club, responded to this reviewResponded June 5, 2012

We thank the reviewer for their stay at Mermaid Hotel & Club & sharing their holiday experience .

We are delighted to hear the special comments made about our staff, food, special nights, a la carte & sports activities at the sports center.

Looking forward to welcoming you at Mermaid Hotel & Club.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 28, 2012

I feel like i'm going to be repeating a lot of what has already been said!!
We spent 2 weeks at Hotel Mermaid & Club from 21st April 2012 and had a fantastic time. The hotel itself is excellent for it's star rating and the staff are sooo friendly. Due to the start of the monsoon season when we arrived we had a bit of rain for the first couple of days! We had a wander down along the railway line which runs past the hotel, and visited a hotel a bit further along which was a higher rated hotel and very very nice, but not at all as friendly or as wecoming as Mermaid!
I think because the staff were so friendly it made everyone staying there more sociable and friendly and we met lots of other guests and spent the evenings sharing a drink or two!! Saying that, it was not noisey there and the evening entertainment was normally finished by 10.30ish.
The only gripe really was that the beach bar closed at 6pm and it would have been lovey to sit there in the evening rather than at the bar. There isn't anywhere to go in the evenings for night life etc so if you're after the party atmosphere, this probably isn't the place for you. The Wi fi is relatively non existant so no social networking either...brill!!
Rooms were clean and cool if a bit basic, but the chap who cleaned our room liked to arrange all bottles/ containers in size order! each day asking if everything was ok. Every evening someone came with flowers for the bed and a put a mosi tablet in the machine.
The restaurant was lovely, plenty to choose from, although as always there was someone complaining! I can only guess that it must have been because there were no burger n chips or pizza n chips!!!! I defy anyone not to find something they like.Chef came around the tables regularly, just for a chat! The waiters were brilliant, Sammy and CheekyChappy especially but lots of others too whom i just cannot remember their names, sorry!!They just want to please everyone all the time.
There were pleny of sunbeds and a very attentive pool attendants to bring you a mattress and towel and arrange your bed wherever you would like it.
The main pool was clean and warm. The smaller pool through the archway in the wall is where the activities took place, aquarobics, polo etc. The activities are not very clearly advertised but do ask if you're interested. There is a small gym and a spa. We had a free massage included with our booking but it is not too expensive to treat yourself.
And so to the beach!....The view looks idillic but the sand is a bit gritty and quite dirty in places, plenty of dogs use the beach so watch where you step! The sea while we were there was quite rough and our rep ( who we only saw once!) warned us not to venture into the sea due to the dangers of under currents, plenty of people were in the sea tho.
You can walk along the beach in either direction but there is nothing much to find, from the hotel walking to the left you pass a couple of hotels and there is a shop selling gifts, carvings and fabrics etc.
The Beach Boys are outside the hotel from early morning, please do not be afraid of them!
We read reviews prior to travelling and soon realised lots of people USE the beach boys for booking their trips.We e mailed Suresh (Suresh.pushpakumara@yahoo.com) from home and enquired about a 4 night/5 day trip, when we arrived he was there to plan and arrange everything for us and we had an absolutely fantastic time with such a trustworthy, friendly person and his driver. You can identify him by his red striped, mohecan hair cut!! He also exchanges money for you at the best rates you can get! We gave him money one evening and he was there with the rupees first thing in the morning. We were invited to his home for a meal, which was lovely and also had gifts from him before we left.
This is a very poor country and although we did not encounter any beggars on our travels, the poor people here are so grateful for anything you can give them...old mobile phones, earphones or as mentioned in other reviews, clothes, pencils etc for children.
All in all due to everyone concerned and such a beautiful country, we had a most enjoyable holiday.. Thank you very much.

Room Tip: We stayed in room 304,which was quiet and overlooking the main pool. As most of the rooms are on an angle, you can just about see the sea.
  • Stayed: April 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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4  Thank lilmrsann7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dilip S, General Manager at Hotel Mermaid & Club, responded to this reviewResponded June 5, 2012

We thank the reviewer for their stay at Mermaid Hotel & Club & sharing their holiday experience .

We are delighted to hear the special comments made about our staff, setting of the restaurant, Choice of food, sunbeds in the Garden,swimming pool, attentiveness of Pool Attendants & Sports Activities at the Sports Center.

Looking forward to welcoming you at Mermaid Hotel & Club.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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