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“Fantastic stay” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Hotel Mermaid & Club

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Hotel Mermaid & Club
Ranked #1 of 12 Hotels in Kalutara
Certificate of Excellence
Hemel Hempstead, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
29 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“Fantastic stay”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 20, 2014

Last night of 17 night stay, well how many people say they don't go back to the same hotel because the worlds a big place. This is our second stay in 10 years, so took a bit of time however great stay and the staff and food just as good as I remembered. Cheeky who was our waiter for our stay and he certainly lived up to his name and made our stay even more enjoyable. The accommodation been upgraded with some beautiful suites facing the sea. We met the same beach boy (Indie) who arranged our trips again to the elephant orphanage, one you can't miss. He even took us to his home for new year celebrations, were all the neighbours do like a house swop and share food and sweets, you don't see that in london. This is one of those little gems of hotel so book soon so you don't miss out.

Room Tip: We stayed in room 112 right on the beach
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  • Stayed April 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Keno12345
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,439 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (402)
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midlands uk
Level Contributor
160 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 105 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 18, 2014

I stated at this hotel with my wife. The hotel itself is very nice, the rooms were kept clean and the staff all were all very friendly
I stayed at this hotel with my wife. The hotel itself is very nice, the rooms were kept clean and the staff all were all very friendly.
The hotel is near the train track and you can hear the train go past, this is not a problem.

There was some entertainment at the hotel which was good.
The pool is nice however a little dirty around the edges.

The small pool is very clean and was great for the activities like water aerobics, water polo and water volley ball. All were fantastic and a great laugh.

The food was buffet style which was ok.
If you want diet coke or wine you will have to pay for them as they are not included in the all inclusive deal.

The hotel does not have a tips box, so if you want to tip you will have to tip the individual however I don’t think this is fair, as all the staff work very hard including the person who washes the dishes.

The beach is very nice however be careful of the rip currents, which will take you out to sea. Talk to the locals about the best times to go in and do not swim alone.

Chat to Ravie or suresh about trips to see the elephants., you will find them on the beach by the hotel. We had a great day with ravie and it only cost £46 each.
All take the train; it is a great eye opener, it will only cost 120 rupee each one way to Galle for 1 ½ hrs trip. Be careful of the people trying to give you advice on the train, like the off duty policeman or travel rep who seem to just ride up and down on the train. These people are trying to scam you for money. We paid 90 rupee per km when we went to Galle and done 75km however we could have got it for 30 rupee 3 days later, they just share the extra profits with these people.

If you take the private transfer from the airport to the hotel be careful of the driver saying it will take 3 hours to the hotel. He will suggest taking the toll road and suggest you pay for it. It cost 1000 rupee It took two like he said but when we went back to the airport the driver just took the normal route and we hit a lot the traffic, this took 1 ½ hours and we never paid a toll!

The people are friendly and will ask where you are from and how long have you been there, tell them it is you 2nd or 3rd time they may not rip you off as much.
The temple is free to go into, if you get a guide ask how much as they will just pick a price at the end, or you can just walk around free of charge.

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank superman331
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Muscat, Oman
Level Contributor
26 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 17, 2014 via mobile

We stayed as a family of 3 in a deluxe room, if you need an extra bed they have much more room.
Staff are lovely and very helpful
The food showed a good variety, with options for local dishes and more western tastes.
They also do a la carte and the seafood platter is amazing, for a very good price. We tried the spa and that too met all our expectations.
As we visited during Srilankan new year there were extra holiday activities put on, which were great fun.
Some people were not pleased when there were restrictions on alcohol during those days. I feel they should understand that it is not the hotels fault, it is a rule of the country. Surely they can cope without it for a short while.
I would note though that the wine choice if you want it is very restricted, when available. Something they could improve.

Stayed April 2014, traveled with family
Helpful?
1 Thank Kampa64
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
York, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
17 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 16, 2014

We stayed at the Mermaid in March as a return visitor. So why review it again? Simply to give an accurate picture of the hotel and facilities and to allay certain untruths spread by holiday reps. Over the last two years, I have begun suffering from Arthritis in my knees. When we decided to return to the Mermaid, I contacted the Hotel and requested a ground floor room. I received an email the following day informing me that the room had been booked for us. Instant service! During our stay, one of the dining room waiters noticed that we liked hard boiled eggs with a lunchtime salad (we took two from the breakfast buffet and put them in the fridge in our room)., When hard boiled eggs were not available at breakfast, he asked the cooks to boil us a couple of eggs for lunch and brought them to us. This was wholly unsolicited but indicates the care and service that you can expect from the staff of the Mermaid. If the boys who look after the sunbeds notice that you have a particular preference for an area, you can bet your sunbed will be prepared and waiting for you every day. We prefer to relax under the palm trees as there is a very pleasant sea breeze which gets up around 10am each day. The pool area can get very hot as it is sheltered from the breeze. The food gets better and better every time we visit. Ari, the executive chef is always open to new ideas and if possible will produce the goods. There is always something that can tempt even the fussiest palate. My wife can testify to that. One warning for those who do not like very hot or spicy food. If a dish is labelled "Tempered" that means it is very hot. So small portions are advised unless you like that sort of thing. It says a lot about this hotel that during our visit, we met seven other couples that we had met there before. Many many couples make this an annual holiday destination simply because it such a relaxing environment. Everything that you wish for (within reason ) will be provided for you by the brilliant staff. A three star hotel with five star staff from the general manager down. During April and May, the hotel is undergoing a refurbishment program so things will get even better.
If you are planning a first visit to the Mermaid I would recommend that you totally ignore the lies often propagated by holiday company reps regarding the beach boys. These guys organise tours of Sri Lanka. They will organise a tailor made trip for you at greatly reduced prices and can be totally trusted. We have travelled all over Sri Lanka with the boys and have always been 110% satisfied with the tours and the hotels that they book for us. Reps will tell you that the beach boys do not have insurance. A Lie! All the boys are fully insured and are licensed by the Sri Lankan tourist board. If you have any doubts ask to see their documents, they will be happy to oblige. I went whale watching with Gamini - an extremely safe driver - something that you will appreciate when you travel in Sri Lanka. Gamini was stopped by the police in a random stop and check of his license and insurance. I was charged £60 when the holiday company was charging £90. as well as being £30 cheaper Gamini took us the old Portuguese fort in Galle which overlooks the cricket test ground and the harbour. We also visited the Sunami memorial site. I would also thoroughly recommend Indi as your tour guide. He pays enormous attention to detail, for example, when a couple who had mobility issues asked to be taken to the elephant orphanage at Pinnawalla and the Temple of the Tooth at Kandy, he contacted the authorities and gained permission to take his vehicle in to the sites so as to minimise the amount of walking. Something that I have never heard of and something that the holiday rep would not bother to organise. The simply take your money and hand you over to the company that provides the vehicles. So save yourselves a good deal of money and take advantage of the service offered by the beach boys. Don't be surprised if you are invited to their house for a meal after a trip. Take advantage of this, you will be offered really good in food in a most welcoming environment to further enrich your experience.
In short, if you simply want to chill and relax, you cannot find a better place than the Mermaid. Enjoy as we did and will again when we return again next year.

Room Tip: Ground floor rooms if you have mobility problems are easily organised. Just contact the hotel throug...
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  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Pete&Babs
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Isle of Wight, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
63 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 15, 2014

We arrived at the Mermaid on 2nd April and left on the 14th April 2014, What a fantastic time we had, All the staff were friendly, helpful and knowledgeable, I could not fault any of the staff nothing was too much trouble. I would have rated this hotel 5***** but the fact you have to buy the wine by the bottle was a disappointment, however, did not stop us from having an amazing time. We had gala meals, the staff kindly arranged a birthday cake for my special day along with a beautiful meal cooked perfectly, Steak, lush....... The food is amazing, and i mean amazing such a mixture of everything, we often thanked the chef who then came to talk to us to thank us, which was rather nice. I asked for recipes and received them.

Trips, well what can i say we used an adorable young man called Suresh, suresh.pushpakumara@yahoo.com . You will find him on the beach he has a red Mahican hair cut wears aviator sunnies, We needed for nothing and got so much more, I would have to say he made our holiday just wonderful, we booked a trip to Kandy to see the Elephants, not only did we see them but we rode them, fed them and bathed them, fed the babies Milk Bottles, fed the adults banana they obliged by giving us a bath. We visited the Temple of the Tooth went to see the Tea being made, We stopped where they carve the wood and make furniture, we had fresh juicy pinapple picked from the plantation, and also red bananas, yes Red bananas, amazing . We also went to Galle with Suresh, we visited the Temple, then the Turtle orphanage which is surreal, we went on a river trip and held a baby croc, saw the eagle the monitor Lizards, bat and an abundance of other birds. We saw the Secret Temple We then went to lunch on the beach in an amazing restaurant, food was lovely. We saw the beautiful Buddha that Japan built after the Tsunami, went to the Tsunami Memorial and the Tsunami Museum, heart breaker, however, take strength from how these fantastic and amazing people started to rebuild just a few days later. We saw so much with Suresh, Truely a gentleman. He bought me flowers on my birthday, when I needed something he would arrange it. We got out Tuk Tuks through him saved money and had so much fun, he gave us a guide to take to Kulatara OMG am I glad he did, Bob is so funny and got us good discounts, took us to shops where we laughed with the store keepers, he gave us a tour or the railway station and the local Cricket ground, bear in Mind we were there for the celebrations of Sri Lanka winning the world cup, fireworks Galore, Congratulations to them for the Cricket. Armid is another young man who is touring for Suresh he is lovley, he would take us to the ATM caost us 200 RP and we stopped for fresh coconut on the way back to the hotel, Armid paid not us. Please if you are going to book a guide then use this young man, he is amazing. We made contact by email before we left the UK to arrange a meeting time because he takes people on tours so if you can do email him. Suresh.pushpakumara@yahoo.com

We packed three carrier bags of lollipops crayons chalk and bags of balloons for the children from where ever, We made friends in the local village, we went to tea with a wonderful family, they were kind to invite us into their home , i was so humbled by their kindness. My husband and I because good friends with their daughter who is 8, if you plan a trip to Sri Lanka do remember the children, coloring pencils and crayons they love, balloons and bubbles, bon bons. My heart was touched deeply and it was not about what they can get, it was about friendship and happiness, laughter and joy, I hope to put some pictures on tripadvisor.

So to all concerned at Kalutara Mermaid Hotel and Club, from the room boy the the management to the beach boys and the families of the local Village, you gave us a trip to remember, love and laughter to fill our hearts for a life time, I thank you for this, As we left on New years Day April 14th, we wish you all a wonderful, healthy and prosperous New Year and look forward to returning again in the furture

Room Tip: Upgrade to a deluxe, stunning, and use Suresh for your tours
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  • Stayed April 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Tadadam
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Czech republic
Level Contributor
42 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 14, 2014

There is very nice and friendly staff at the reception, restaurant, housekeeping and in sport centre too. The room was clean and quiet, there was plenty of space even when we were 3 there. The food is very good, tasty, fresh, and the chefs are nice people with love to cooking.
The atmosphere is friendly and relaxing
The spa in the hotel is small and nice but on the beach in front of the hotel is a pink house with the best ayurvedic massage we ever had. It is also much cheaper than in hotel spa. The doctor who makes the massage there doesn't speak english well, but he is real ayurvedic professional who is not talking much and working well. The beach is nice with a palm trees. Go to Mermaid Hotel and enjoy it, we can only recommend it.

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Vaclav B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Blackburn, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 13, 2014

first visit to Sri Lanka to celebrate my husband's 50th birthday and our wedding anniversary. from the moment we arrived everything about this hotel was excellent. The reception staff were welcoming and always smiling. in fact every member of staff we met were friendly, polite and very helpful. I cannot name specific names as I would hate to miss someone out as they were all wonderful. food was excellent with plenty of choice at all meals and despite what some other reviews have said re the lack of foods for vegetarians; as a meat eater I thoroughly enjoyed some of the vegetable dishes as a change from meat .In fact I have stayed at hotels with higher star rating than this were the food was no were near as good as the mermaid. As far as the rooms go the standard of cleaning was excellent, we were in room 258. large king size beds, sheets changed at least 3 times per week, clean towels every day, fresh flowers on the bed. night time turn down service and mosquito machines refilled every night. The kettle was even filled for us every day and the water in the flask that was refilled daily was perfectly drinkable.
I am not particularly into organised entertainment so the fact that daytime games were in a separate pool that could not be seen or heard from the main pool was a very good thing for me. night time entertainment was low key but we met some lovely people and were happy to sit and chat over a few drinks in the evenings. if you want to go out for a change there are a few restaurants about 15 mins walk away from the hotel and we had no problems walking there and back.
For excursions we used Indi on the beach, there is not a vast difference in price from the reps but him and his family offer an excellent service using good standard hotels throughout. His auntie cooked us a lovely lunch on our first day there and they were always available with their tuk tuk service if we needed to go into town. they also provided coconuts daily and a nice little gift for me and the last day.
Yes the sea is rough but if you have read travel information before you book you should be aware of this.
As far as tipping goes I cannot believe that reviewers felt they were expected to tip daily. We did not find anyone who expected this and in fact after we had checked out my husband had to go to look for a particular waiter to tip him as he had just returned for his days off.
All in all a wonderful holiday with no faults to find at all. thanks to everyone at the mermaid for making this a wonderful holiday.

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Hazel C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Mermaid & Club

Property: Hotel Mermaid & Club
Address: Mahawaskaduwa, Kalutara 12000, Sri Lanka
Location: Sri Lanka > Western Province > Kalutara
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Kalutara
#1 Family Hotel in Kalutara
#1 Spa Hotel in Kalutara
#1 Romantic Hotel in Kalutara
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Hotel Mermaid & Club 3.5*
Number of rooms: 81
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Mermaid Hotel & Club lies on the golden sands of Mahawaskaduwa; a cosy fishing village in the city of Kalutara which is of religious significance, just 24 miles south of Colombo and 45 miles from the International airport. It is cleverly nestled in a vast coconut grove along a stretch of golden, sandy beach; a perfect get-away for sun, sand and sea lovers. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hotel Mermaid And Club
Resort All Inclusive Mermaid
Mermaid Hotel Sri Lanka
Hotel Mermaid & Club Sri Lanka/Kalutara

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