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“Hotel, yes, park, no.”
Review of Jetwing Yala

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Jetwing Yala
Certificate of Excellence
Brisbane, Australia
Level 4 Contributor
37 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
“Hotel, yes, park, no.”
Reviewed February 16, 2014 via mobile

Much of what is relevant has already been mentioned by previous reviewers. The hotel is new, it is big and it is staffed, where possible, by young and enthusiastic locals. So, there are some teething problems. The rooms are generous, comfortable and up to date, although the single empty power point in the room was hardly sufficient in these days of needing to recharge untold numbers of devices.
The view from your expansive verandah over pool, sand dunes to the Indian ocean is wonderful. If he is available, get the delightful young naturalist to accompany on a walk along the foreshore. He is bright, knowledgeable and committed.
As someone else has commented,the hotel does look like it has been set up for large groups of tourists and if you score one of the rooms furthest from reception, you will get lots of healthy exercise! But the restaurant seems to handle large numbers really well. The system was well organised, everyone was made to feel important,even the smaller tables for one or two,service was efficient and the food was delicious.
Now, Yala National Park. My comment. If you want to safari, got to Africa! This place was a shambles. Our vehicle, like others, started out just after dawn , as that's when animals are at their most active. However, this did not take into account the 40 minute wait, along with untold numbers of other vehicles at the ticket centre. I'm reliably told there is only one ticket machine for the 400 or so vehicles all attempting to get into the park at roughly the same time. It is a disgrace. Some of these vehicles held children , bored out of their minds, their anticipation of their adventure draining away. You people in the hotel industry, vitally connected to the park, need to use your influence to get the system streamlined.
There are also far too many vehicles for a relatively small park. And not enough animals to be shared around. There was one ludicrous incident, ot a distant sighting of a leapord up a tree, causing a major traffic jam as 50 to 60 vehicles converged. Then we all just sat there, unable to move.
So, keep your safari expectations low
On the other hand, your expectations of the Jetwing Yala Hotel may well be exceeded.

Stayed February 2014, traveled solo
Helpful?
1 Thank Brishelen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jetwing H, General Manager at Jetwing Yala, responded to this review, February 17, 2014
Dear Guest,

We are delighted to learn that you enjoyed your stay at Jetwing Yala. We are overjoyed to see your comment in the Trip Advisor ! We thank you for taking time to write a very constructive review , which will be valued by many ! Your comments make us motivated and focused. We ll direct this message to relevant authorities who are responsible for the operations of Yala National park.

Thank you again & looking forward to welcoming you to Jetwing Yala again !

Ayubowan ! ( May you live long ! )

With best regards,

Gamunu Srilal
General manager.
Jetwing Yala
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Surrey
Level 4 Contributor
47 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed February 15, 2014

I agree with all the previous reviewers about teething problems but this hotel really has the wow factor. When all the new and charming staff have had a little more experience this hotel will be top notch. The service, the food, the beautiful crockery, the huge balconies, the massive trendy rooms and bathrooms, the hammock type chairs over looking the sea...all of these make this a memorable hotel. Great gym and pool too. When we left I spoke to one of the managers to say how much we loved it and to her credit she thanked me and immediately asked if there were any negatives. The only thing was that there is no hotel information and no numbers on the phone to know how to ring reception or room service.
The safari was a little disappointing as although we did see a leopard there was then a rush of about 20 jeeps to the same place to see the poor leopard and it was a bit like being on the M25. The leopard must have thought we were all mad!

Room Tip: We were on the third floor which I would highly recommend.
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank annelizabethSurrey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jetwing H, General Manager at Jetwing Yala, responded to this review, March 11, 2014
Dear Guest,

We are pleased to hear that you enjoyed your stay at Jetwing Yala ! We thank you for taking time to write a review in the Trip Advisor which makes us happier. Your reviews are great strength for our morale.

Looking forward to welcome you to Jetwings Yala ! Thank you again !
Ayubowan ! ( May you live long ! )

Gamunu Srilal
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Colchester, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
132 reviews
42 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 85 helpful votes
Reviewed February 12, 2014

We stayed here for three nights at the start of our holiday. It's in a perfect position for safaris but unfortunately we stayed just before the ' grand opening ' consequently work was going on everywhere, the worst part was the room beneath us had drilling and hammering still going on at 10.00 pm and my husband had to phone up twice to get it stopped particularly as we were up every morning at 04.50 for the safaris....not a great start. We returned every day at 10.00 am for breakfast which to their credit continued until 10.30 for the safari return people and I should add that they provided tea, coffee and pastries before you went off in the morning. Our afternoon safaris started at 14.00 so we were looking forward to spending time at the magnificent pool which we couldn't do as they were painting the decking but more importantly there were no parasols for the sunbeds that were there, no way could you sit in the sun without a parasol in the middle of the day...another disappointment.
Service was extremely haphazard and although the staff were extremely pleasant management is to blame for lack of direction, I understand the staff project that they are taking on which is very commendable but not at the expense of the paying guest .
The food was very good and the wine very reasonable, we enjoyed our meals.
Staff at reception particularly Cemy from Indonesia (apologies for spelling ! ) were great and the guys in the office went out of their way to help me with my dodgy IPad particularly the IT man who I have renamed the wizard..he only had to switch it on and it worked ... thank you all you are a credit to the hotel !
All in all I wish we had visited 12 months later...I think the hotel opened too soon.

Room Tip: Some of the rooms are a long trek to reception so if that is a problem make sure you check beforehan...
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank silverfox026
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jetwing H, General Manager at Jetwing Yala, responded to this review, February 16, 2014
Dear Guest,

We thank you for taking time to write a review in the Trip Advisor ! We understand the agony you have gone through you during your stay due to the “bad timing “ as you said in your review. We humbly apologize for the inconvenience caused to you due to the completion work before the grand opening. Since the grand opening we have come a long way where people are more relaxed & the staff too settle in to the system. We thank you commending our efforts on upbringing of the local people in to our business.

Thank you again & looking forward to welcome you to Sri Lanka again !

Ayubowan ! ( May you live long !)

Gamunu Sri Lal
General Manager
Jetwing Yala
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Colombo
Level 3 Contributor
16 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed February 7, 2014

We stayed 2 nights. The hotel was yet to have its grand opening when we went there; but despite that, it had everything in good order. The staff was extremely helpful and friendly. Rooms are modern and very spacious. Only negative thing we saw was the lack of variety in food. The same a la carte menu was offered to us on both days. The hotel is located inside Yala national park, so easy to go on safari tours. Another must visit in the area is the Bundala bird sanctuary. Will visit this hotel again for sure.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank Dulani R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jetwing H, General Manager at Jetwing Yala, responded to this review, February 10, 2014
Dear Guest,

We thank you for taking time to write a very constructive review on Trip Advisor and we thank you for your compliments too. We have in the mean time revised the A la carte menu with more variety. Just after the Grand opening, we continued using the same a la carte menu that we used during the dry run to train the staff on food & food service. Thank you and we look forward to seeing you again.

Ayubowan ! ( may you live long ! )

Gamunu Srilal
General Manager
Jetwing Yala
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
54 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
Reviewed February 7, 2014

Our stay coincided with the official opening; the design is unusual but very effective. The room was large and very comfortable, the pool is fantastic, especially after a dusty morning bumping around the park in a Jeep!! The food was very good - another talented Sri Lankan chef.

A big positive that I should mention is that Jetwing has a highly socially responsible policy with regard to its staff, in that they try to hire and train as many local people as possible. We gather that they put their staff through a comprehensive training course - and it shows - the people we met were delightful and fantastic ambassadors both for Jetwing and the country.

Maybe we were overly favourably disposed to Yala - we did see leopard on both our game drives, so a very memorable stay!!

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank J0nah
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jetwing H, General Manager at Jetwing Yala, responded to this review, February 10, 2014
Dear guest,

We are glad to hear that you enjoyed your stay despite all the formalities of the grand opening of Jetwing Yala. We thank you for taking time to a review with loads of compliments. It is gratifying to receive such comments, which contribute immensely to boost the morale of the entire team and we look forward to welcoming you to Jetwing Yala again !

Ayubowan ! (May you live long !)

With best regards,

Gamunu Srilal
General Manager
Jetwing Yala
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bucks
Level 5 Contributor
63 reviews
54 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 71 helpful votes
Reviewed February 5, 2014

The hotel had only been opened 2 months when we were there, so there were some teething problems, but this did not spoil our stay.
The hotel is ultra modern and open plan. There is so much space, you feel you are almost the only couple there! Rooms are modern and spacious, with a huge balcony with spectacular views down to the sea. The "wet room" is big enough to have a party in !
The food was excellent, and the staff attention great. The restaurant was open down to the beach and it was great to sit outside with the candles and the sounds of the sea.
Excellent pool and facilities, and a walk along the beach is spectacular.
It is surrounded by national park and the safaris start points are easy to get to. We saw a leopard on our one, despite the pouring rain! We have some superb shots of hugh wet elephants marching down the paths. Spectacular!!
We went on an early walk the next day, to the nearby lakes, where our guide showed us so many different animals and birdlife - well worth a visit. The hotel gave us breakfast boxes the contents of which we ate sitting by the lake. Great.
We would definitely go back again.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank ChilternsBucks
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jetwing H, General Manager at Jetwing Yala, responded to this review, February 10, 2014
Dear Guest,

We are pleased to learn that you enjoyed your stay with us, Thank you for taking time to write a review in the Trip Advisor. As you very correctly pointed out we are experiencing few teething problems and we are in the process of rectifying them.

We sincerely apologize for any inconveniences caused and hope we will have another opportunity to welcome you to Jetwing Yala again ! Thank you !

Ayubowan ! ( May you live long ! )

With best regards

Gamunu Srilal
General Manager
Jetwing Yala
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
Reviewed February 4, 2014 via mobile

I stayed at the hotel with my family for 2 nights. From the moment we set our foot in the hotel, the reception we got from the hotel staff was wonderful. The cleanliness of the hotel and the room was very good. Room service was the best I have seen as the staff had arranged the room for sleeping in the evening as well. Room has a balcony from which you can really relax and enjoy the sea breeze and sea view throught the day.
Quality and taste of food was excellent. Service of the restaurant was very good and friendly. Their set menus are good expecially the breakfast.
Safari jeeps are available on request.
It was a great place relax and enjoy yourselves with your family.
I would highly recommend Jetwing Yala to anyone who is looking to have a good time in Yala.
Dr. Chamila Nagodavithana

Stayed February 2014, traveled with friends
Helpful?
Thank NA N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jetwing H, General Manager at Jetwing Yala, responded to this review, February 10, 2014
Dear

Dr.Nagodawithana, We are humbled by compliments you offered to us in your recent review in the trip advisor. We are pleased to hear that you enjoyed your stay at Jetwing Yala,

Thank you for taking time to write a review in the Trip Advisor. We look forward to welcoming you to Jetwing Yala again !

Ayubowan ! ( May you live long ! )

With best regards,

Gamunu Srilal
General Manager
Jetwing Yala
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Jetwing Yala

Property: Jetwing Yala
Address: Tissamaharama | Kirinda, Yala National Park 82614, Sri Lanka
Location: Sri Lanka > Yala National Park
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Yala National Park
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:5 star — Jetwing Yala 5*
Number of rooms: 80
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
For centuries, the incredible destination that is Yala has been revered as an unparalleled testament to the beauty of the wild, in its purest and rawest form. Arguably the best place in the world to spot leopards, sloth bears, elephants, and a whole host of birdlife, Yala promises unforgettable discoveries and exciting adventures.Akin to a phoenix rising from the ashes, Jetwing brings a truly one-with-nature concept to a more refined and elegant form with Jetwing Yala. Set within the immediate outskirts of the Yala National Park, Jetwing Yala boasts a tremendous commitment to sustainability and the environment, bringing a wildlife experience complemented with the finest in luxury and comfort. Located on the beach, the property also boasts the only swim friendly ocean stretch is Yala which also houses a fully fledged lifeguard station and beach bar so that guests can enjoy the Indian Ocean to the fullest degree. ... more   less 
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