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“relaxing place,quiet,clean,friendly staff”
Review of Kalu's Hideaway

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Kalu's Hideaway
Certificate of Excellence
piliyandala ,Sri Lanka
1 review
“relaxing place,quiet,clean,friendly staff”
Reviewed April 19, 2010

it is located very close to udawalawa national park,little kalu's concept is wonderfull,three very large rooms with every facilities and very clean,very safe pool, nice garden,beutiful restaurant,child's play area,vollyball court and everything is there.especial thing to say ,manager lucky and his staff is very freindly and their service is excellent.

  • Stayed April 2010, traveled with family
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank 69696969pullaperuma
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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552 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (106)
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Russian first
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English first
San Francisco, California
Level Contributor
11 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed April 7, 2010

Kalu's Hideaway is a wonderful jungle retreat. The setting is beautiful, the management team goes out of their way to accommodate you and the hotel is very close to Uda Walawe National Park.

Let's get this out of the way at the start: Kalu's isn't a 5-star resort, nor does it claim to be. The rooms are simple and have all the essentials (excluding shampoo.) Every effort is made to keep the rooms and common areas clean. Let's be realistic though, this is the jungle. There bugs, critters, and yes there is even a dirt road. Anybody who is complaining about bugs in their room should not even be travelling to Sri Lanka. I'm sure there is a Four Seasons somewhere else in the world where you would be more happy (and you'll pay 5 times the cost of Kalu's.)

Now on to the good stuff: The staff at Kalu's is amazing! Lucky, the manager, is very kind and helpful. He was very concerned about us because we showed up late. We told the hotel in advance we would have a late arrival, but Lucky was still genuinely concerned for our well-being (he knew we rented a car and drove ourselves, crazy Americans.) Even though we arrived after 9pm, dinner was ready for us. We paid for half-board which is an excellent option in this part of the country. The food at Kalu's is delicious and the portions are huge. The staff even played with our 9 month old while my tired wife and I ate dinner.

Our room was a nice size with two twin beds pushed together to form a king size. The staff had procured a crib for our daughter as well. The bathroom was basic, but functional, with an electric shower. There was almost too much heat with the shower. Any previous review complaining about no hot water couldn't figure out how to turn it on (the outlets themselves have a switch to power on.)

The hotel has 5 rooms and they plan to add another building with some more. If you are able to get the upstairs room, that is the best option. It has great views over the countryside. There is a very nice pool right off the open-air dining area with deck chairs, towels and two bathrooms. The staff was constantly working on cleaning and improving the hotel grounds. Everybody was quick to give us a smile, but completely respected our privacy.

If you are going to Sri Lanka, I highly recommend going to the interior of the island. Uda Walawe is a great place and you are guaranteed to see Asian Elephants, water buffalo and plenty of other wildlife. We also went to the Elephant Orphanage to watch the babies getting fed. This was a 45 minute excursion and well worth the price. Even if you can't get to this part of the country, try to get to Kandy. The interior of the island is very different than the coastal areas.

All and all we couldn't be happier to have chosen Kalu's Hideaway. The staff is excellent, the grounds are beautiful and the accommodations affordable.

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
1 Thank ganks
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Copenhagen
Level Contributor
27 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed April 1, 2010

After reading the other reviews on this hotel I was expecting a rundown shanty type of place. What we got was something completely different.

Getting there takes time, a local bus does run by on the road, but as we had a car and driver we were able to get there without any hassle. It's off the beaten track but it is definitely worth the time taken to get there.

Lucky, the manager, greeted us when we arrived. Cold, fresh juice was served whilst we waited in the lobby, a lobby that was adorned with beautiful pictures and fine furniture.

We were accompanied to our room, and felt instantly at home. We had booked the first floor of the chalet, and had a spacious room, with two queen size beds, an en suite bathroom with hot water, flushing toilet and our own balcony, complete with outdoor lounging bed. Mosquito nets were above each bed, 2 A/Cs and a ceiling fan helped keep the temperature at a desirable levet.

The service we received from the staff was excellent. We had tea and snacks in the room before going over to the comfy armchairs on the balcony ajacent to the dining room. The staff were on their toes all the time, checking to see that we had all we needed, be it snacks, drinks, lights or fans.

Meals were excellent, the evening meal being rice and curry - prepared for European taste buds - and as we had an early morning safari Lucky served tea for us at 5.30 A.M and had prepared sandwiches for us to take with us. On our return breakfast was served, an excellent spread of curd, toast, eggs etc.

We didn't try out the pool, but it sure looked inviting.

Overall this is definitely a hotel I would recommend for a day or two.

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank W0lf68
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Aalsmeer, Netherlands
1 review
Reviewed February 27, 2010

As film/photo-crew of Friends of the Elephant we have stayed in 2 other hotels in this area and find this small hotel an oasis. The staff was friendly and helpful, the room was large and well decorated and give us the feeling like at home. The food was excellent and the mixed fruit juice the most delicious I have ever tasted. The only disadvantage was that the shower had no warm water. We enjoyed our stay and will come back next year for sure.
Rob Faber, chairman FotE.

  • Stayed February 2010, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Elephantfriends
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Leeds, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
27 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
Reviewed February 20, 2010

Just returned from Sri Lanka where we had an overnight stay at Kalu@s before going to the national park. Certainly in a hideaway place, nice , quiet surroundings , but for me, very disappointing. the room smelled very strongly of mothballs,;there was only mildly warm water in the shower, none from the wash hand basin; there is no alchohol sold on the premises to have when relaxing or with your meal (they do offer to phone a local wine shop and have it delivered by tuk tuk but a long wait is inevitable); as a vegetarian the meal at night was very poor - vegetable soup, chicken curry with rice and some vegetables, no choice for a veggie; brealfast was fruit, . curry and a live station where you could have an omelette or fried egg. For me an ok place for an overnight stay but I am glad that I was not staying for longer.

  • Stayed February 2010, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank tinkerbel1l66
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wimborne Minster, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
83 reviews
61 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
Reviewed January 25, 2010

We stayed here in January with a couple of friends. We had the two rooms in a separate building and our first impressions were excellent. The rooms were large with air con and ceiling fans. The windows contained mesh, not glass and were covered with shutters so the room was cool and dark. The shower room also gave a good first impression. When we started using the shower room we realised that the window ledge and shelves had not been cleaned for some considerable time. There was an empty drinks glass on the wall surrounding our terrace when we arrived and when we left the following day it was still there.

On arrival we were given a welcome drink and cold towels which were excellent - a smile would have been a nice touch as well - unusual in a country as full of smiles as Sri Lanka!

We made it clear on arrival that one of our group was vegetarian and they accommodated this at lunchtime. When it was dinnertime however there was no choice at all at the buffet. The soup was chicken and the main meal was rice, chicken, potatoes and boiled vegetables so our friend had a very limited meal. At breakfast there was fruit, bread (no spread of any kind) omelettes and Sri Lankan curry.

Having read reports on Tripadvisor we checked on arrival whether they had beer. They said they had. This was true - they had 6 bottles of Barons beer at 8.8 proof! Our driver was annoyed about this as he had specifically told them that we drank beer and if they didn't have any Lion beers he would go and get some for us.

I think the owner needs to decide whether this is a hotel/guest house run as a business or a holiday home that takes in the occasional guest to cover the upkeep. The location is wonderful and with a little more care and a couple more staff this place has the potential to be a superb business but it certainly isn't there yet.

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Traveller1003
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ramsgate, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
Reviewed December 23, 2009

Kalu`s Hideaway is owned by a former cricketer, his name escapes me. Very friendly and helpful staff, the rooms are huge with a lovely pool in front of the restaurant. Sadly i found the food disappointly considering the cost of a night stay. But any accommodation in this area is more expense than the more popular areas of Sri Lanka, due to the lack of accommodtion choices around the park.

  • Stayed December 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank ahougham69
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Kalu's Hideaway

Property: Kalu's Hideaway
Address: Walawegama | Udawalawe, Uda Walawe National Park 00300, Sri Lanka
Location: Sri Lanka > Uda Walawe National Park
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 23 B&Bs / Inns in Uda Walawe National Park
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Kalu's Hideaway 3*
Number of rooms: 14
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
With 14 Fourteen Spacious rooms including 5 Superior rooms,6 Deluxe, 2 Chalets & 1 Suite, the hotel caters to the most unique clients. It provides the butler service with personalized dining menu of your choice. The Hotel is located just 5 Minutes next to Udawalawe National Park & Udawalawe Lake. From Colombo 187 km to the Hotel and around 04 hours drive from Colombo. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Kalu`s Hideaway Hotel Uda Walawe National Park
Kalu's Hideaway Sri Lanka/Uda Walawe National Park

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