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“"Very disappointed"”
Review of Club Bentota

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Club Bentota
Ranked #1 of 6 Hotels in Aluthgama
Brighton, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“"Very disappointed"”
Reviewed December 31, 2012

Please read our complain letter to KUONI:
I have just returned from our honeymoon to Sri Lanka and the Maldives. We booked with kuoni as we have previously used your services and were confident that you provide high quality holidays.
We were therefore shocked when we arrived at Club Bentota in Sri Lanka and were taken to our room. It was dark and dank,tired decor and a view of a fence some ten feet from our window with a broken chair and discarded broken palm leaves.
We were do to see our Kuoni rep the following morning and queried if this could be the deluxe room we had been given as a honeymoon upgrade. He spoke to the manager who said there were no rooms available but that a guest was leaving the following morning and we could have that. We accepted this and went to check the room from the outside as he had told us which one it was.
On our way, we saw a sign showing which rooms were superior and which were deluxe. As we suspected our original room was of the lower category, but even worse so was the room we were supposed to be moving to. We went straigh back to the manager and pointed this out. He then finally arranged for a transfer to the correct class of room. After a long flight and transfer we really didn't expect to have to fight to get this sorted out. Kuoni is normaly so organised and efficient that we felt really let down and that our dream honeymoon was turning into a cheap package holiday.
We also found it hard to believe that the Club Bentota could be classified as 3,5 star hotel resort. There was not the usual warm welcome upon arrival as they seemed to just want to confirm our identity and send us to our (wrong) room. When it came to the all inclusive package we were sadly dissapointed at the quality and standard of what was available. We have been on many much cheaper all inclusive holidays which provided a much better service. The 2 all inclusive coctails of the day remained the same throughout our entire stay. When made they comprised of extremely sickly sugar syrup. We thought that if we paid for a 'proper' cocktail we might actually get a decent drink. Unfortunately all cocktails appeared to be made with the same syrup and it was hard to differentiate between them. All the soft drinks were made of sugar syrup and tasted the same, so we ended up drinking water during our stay. If we wanted fruit juice we had to pay extra. Food in the all inclusive was of a very low standard, with very little variety from day to day. Seafood was only available twice a week if you paid an additional charge (approx £10-15 for 200g prawns for example). Several times during our stay given dirty plates,glasses,cutlery. On one occasion I even witnessed the cleaning of glasses in the bar which consisted merly of runing it under the tap and wipeing it with his finger.
When it came to the internet conection we started by purchasing an hour and attempted to use the computers provided by the hotel. These were unusable as they were extremely slow and apparently full of virus (confirmed later by one of the staff on the desk). On two further occasions we purchased one-hour access and tried to use via Wi-Fi with an IPad. Again we had very little success with this and when we went back to the desk we were told that the signal was frequently down and that we should try again later. We pointed out that although we had managed to log in we had been unable to log out and therefore lost a total of three hours internet connection. The staff simply said that can happen and there was no offer of a refund (nor did they warn us of this beforehand).
What summed up the stay for us was on our departure in the early hours of the morning. We had to find out the details and arrange this ourselves. The single person on the desk showed no interest in us other than to remove our all-inclusive wrist bands. He didn't ask if we had enjoyed our stay or wish us well on our journey. I appreciate that this isn't necessarily part of the service but we just expect a little more from a Kuoni holiday

Room Tip: Go to deluxe room, higher floors!
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank SzP26
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Colombo, Sri Lanka
Level Contributor
6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed December 29, 2012 via mobile

We went there for day out with office mates. Location is superb. Food also very good. Swimming pool is too small compared to size of the hotel. Overall experience is. Very good. Specially boat ride to the entrance was fantastic.

  • Stayed December 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Sanju037
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
lancashire
Level Contributor
12 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
Reviewed December 29, 2012

My Fiance and I chose this hotel to get married. It was reasonably priced to allow family to attend and also saved our budget for the honeymoon in the maldives. However having read some of the reviews I was extremely nervous to say the least and had pretty low expectations. I needn't have worried, it was wonderful.

Yes the hotel is a little tired in places but it was built in the 1980s, we were upgraded to a suite which I have to say was the most spacious hotel room I have ever stayed in and I slept like a log every night.

This is not the most luxiourous hotel you will stay in but it is an excellent all rounder. The drinks menu for all inc, is very limited and the food if there for longer than two weeks can also be repetitive but you can always find something to eat or drink and the food is good quality. The grounds are beautiful as is the quiet beach. The sea is fantastic to play in the waves but please listen to the lifeguards who move you depending on the current. Some people decided to ignore the lifeguard and got themselves into difficulties.

The service is mixed some extremely friendly and helpful staff and some less so, our favourites were Tari and Jageth who both went out of their way to make our stay a memorable one.

Mr Kumara the wedding planner was exceptional and even ended up helping us with issues with our room as the kuoni rep wasnt interested. There is much to see and do if you go out exploring locally, ask for a tuk tuk driver named Lily who is the most informative and friendly person you could wish to meet. Also Sam on the beach is good for arranging trips but does throw a few added stops in to various places which could be a bit tiresome.

The hotel is full of weird and wonderful nature, we found this appealing as we loved watching the chipmunks, water monitors, ants, fruit bats, eagles, buzzards, butterflies and we even saw a snake. We embraced this side of the hotel but others seemed to find it off putting.

Overall a spectacular time was had by all, the wedding was amazing and I would recommend this hotel to anyone as it is great value for money. In fact we found ourselves wishing we had stayed here instead of paying an extortionate amount to go onto the Maldives where the food and drink were definitely better but that was about it.

Please do tip the staff when you think they have provided an excellent service, we waited a couple of days and then tipped those that went above and beyond without any suggestion of a tip.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank poeticjustice2008
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Manchester, England, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
23 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed December 24, 2012

Stayed in Club Bentota for my 60th birthday Nov'/ Dec, cant fault it, the staff where all brilliant and the boys who clean the rooms where great all dead friendly.
Luba who does the trips on the beach is the best person to go with he is cheap and very sincere and reliable, we went with him on a few and would highly recomend him, If you go to the beach you will find him there.

Room Tip: The upstair delux room are best
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Elaine S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Scotland
Level Contributor
10 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed December 18, 2012

After the 3 hour taxi from airport, we were met with cold towels, cool drinks, and before we knew it we were in our lovely room, #334. Staff very welcoming, and attentive.
Food was very good, loads of choice, and if you like a spicy dish, all were very tasty.
Grounds were just great, sunbathing watching a 3 foot lizard walk by, the squirrels! were great fun, some were very tame, fruit bats in the evening, were just a few highlights
Entertainment was great fun, along with the local beer, and spirits.
Take a 'santa' ride into town for some shopping, and fun haggling with the locals, 'luba' will find you for some interestng road trips too.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank hawfinchScotland
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Moscow, Russia
1 review
Reviewed December 17, 2012

just back from lovely srilanka!! had a superb time with this romantic hotel!!
after we arrived to the hotel premises bit tensed until get to the hotel!!
then we get a small boat to get in to the hotel wawww really superb!!
we have treated very well!! rooms are simply superb according to the hotel standard
food was super!! restaurant manger lady was very kind with us made some special dishes for us
lobby is not so buzy! relaxing on the beach gave us new life!!
had a superb time at beach playing volleyball etc...
no negative on this superb beautiful hotel overall our trip was really wonderful except
shopping we have done!! we was very sad!! we have bought some gems & jewllery a shop called SENANI in aluthgama, a driver took us to this jeweler he told us his cousin started new shop come and see we bought some gems & jewelery!1 after returning here i checkd the quality of what we bought unfortunately the jeweller has cheated us bought a ring they told it is 14k & Blue sapphire after we chek here gold amount was like 9k & sapphire was a treated one!
we are shocked! tarvels plz be carefull of this! srilanka is country with nice people but i dont know why people do this kind of things!!

we have visaited yala & kandy with our rep! coz we have already booked him! trip was ok
our guide rohan took us many places in yala sow leopards many kind of different animales who you can only find in srilanka!

on the way back to air port we used the highway nice view!! but road was too narrow has to be more larger!!
had a nice time in srilanka!! last little advice!! be carefull of the fake jewelers!!

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank alexsendra
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed November 30, 2012

Myself and my mum stayed at Club Bentota for a week between 14th-21st November and could not fault anything!! We absolutely loved every aspect of this holiday.
After a 15 hour delay (!!) we were warmly greeted and showed to our rooms straight away which we were very impressed with considering some of the things you read on here!
Positives: The staff, the location, the beach, the food, the cleanliness, the fact it never seems over-crowded, the rooms (especially the shower!!) - the ONLY negative is that the beds are slightly on the hard side!
We didn't actually stay up late enough to watch the entertainment so can't comment on it but i heard from others it was good.
The chipmunks are adorable (if you like that sort of thing!) and i regularly fed them on my balcony!!

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Kim B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Club Bentota

Property: Club Bentota
Address: Paradise Island, Aluthgama 12080, Sri Lanka
Location: Sri Lanka > Western Province > Aluthgama
Amenities:
Beach Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Spa Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 6 Hotels in Aluthgama
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Club Bentota 3*
Number of rooms: 150
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Discover the wonders of the beaches of Sri Lanka during your stay at Club Bentota. A hassle free vacation for you and a fun-packed adventure for the kids: we provide exciting water sports, an extensive Ayurvedic spa and so much more on a secluded, breathtaking beach front. Built on a peninsula referred to as Paradise Island, Club Bentota is located on the South West coast of Sri Lanka and is flanked by the Indian Ocean and the Bentota River. Have fun under the sun with jet skiing, wind surfing, beach volleyball, croquet, river boat cruises and much more. Unwind by taking a dip in the pool or Ocean, play a game of cards with friendly guests from around the world, or read a book in our hotel book shop. Choose from our all-inclusive or full-board packages and book a vacation to Club Bentota, where the sun and sand await you. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Club Bentota Hotel Aluthgama
Bentota Hotel Aluthgama
Club Bentota Sri Lanka/Aluthgama

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