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The Fortress Resort & Spa
Ranked #1 of 5 Hotels in Koggala
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 28 March 2012

HOTEL - highly recognized by architectural community for its unique design, the hotel is at the same time very cosy and welcoming and is a pure pleasure for the eye and senses. Huge fortress like reception hall brings a lot of air and openness in the establishment, and you are close to the ocean all the time and wherever you are.

ROOMS - we have been upgraded 3 times in the hotel, which was due to our late booking and our desire to stay there by any means, so we were really jumping from room to room and saw all types of rooms in the hotel (including presidential suite). We were stunned when entered the STANDARD room - super-contemporary amenities, spatious room, ipod music, separately standing bathroom, huge chillout sofa - very clean design. View on the ocean and marvellously lighted pool area - superb. The BEACH ROOM is located on the first floor and while it is located closer to the ocean, I did not see many advantages as compared to the standard room. Some of the beach rooms have a pool inside, however the water in the pool is quite cold, so I would really suggest the standard room or at least one without the pool, since it provides additional humidity in the room. Well, the presidential suite with a separate roof pool is amazing - I will not comment on that.

BREAKFAST - beautiful selection of local and european food.

BEACH - to the left of the hotel the beach is often crowded with locals, but they do not mind and do not bother if you join them for a swim, we even managed to join some dancing party on the beach and were very much welcomed. That is also the only place to swim net to the hotel. A lot of hotel guests were going there without any problem. To the right of the hotel there is a marvellous neverending stretch of white beach, where nobody swims because of strong waves, but you can do amazing long walks along the beach.

SERVICE - everybody's comment was that for the prices you pay the service is very slow, though everybody is trying hard and in the end everything was perfect. It seems like personnell has not been trained very well. Waiting for drinks at the pool for 30 minutes - was pretty standard situation.

SPA - a little overpriced and not very professional. But you can always go into the exterior spa area available to all guests with 2 saunas and jakuzzi.

I loved the place and whenever I will go to Sri Lanka, I am sure, I will stay 1-2 days here to sink into pure and overwhelming luxury.

  • Stayed: February 2012, travelled with friends
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1  Thank Beatriise
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 28 March 2012

I stayed at the Fortress for 2 nights with some of my friends. Overall the hotel was an amazing property and a treat for the eyes! As soon as we entered through the dramatic main entrance we were greeted with a welcome drink and were offered a tour of the hotel. And to make things even better one of our rooms were upgraded to an Ocean Loft; so we had room No.12 which was the Ocean Room and room No.13 which was the Ocean Loft. Since both the rooms faced the ocean, needless to say we were treated to amazing views 24/7. Apart from this, our ocean loft had its very own plunge pool and could easily sleep upto 4 adults. The breakfast at the hotel was very satisfying and had a wide range of Sri Lankan and Continental cuisine. Apart from this we had dinner from the hotel's a la carte menu and were able to choose from traditional Sri Lankan rice and curry to steaks to east Asian dishes. The hotel's pool is a stunning vision during the day time and since this hotel is more of a boutique hotel than a resort, it is not as crowded. However coming to the negatives of the hotel, room no.13 had a minor leak in the bathroom ceiling and it took some time for the hotel's maintenance to figure out the problem and sort it out. Although this was a relatively minor issue, these are not the sort of problems you expect to encounter in a hotel of this calibre. Also whoever who would like to stay at this hotel needs to understand that there is not much a beach along this property and it is definitely not safe to swim in the part of the ocean by the hotel. We had our own driver, hence getting to Unawatuna was not a problem for us. I would recommend this hotel especially to couples due to the quiet ambience of this hotel. In fact one of my best friends will be spending her honeymoon here. If you are a traveller who prefers boutique hotels to larger resorts, then the Fortress is definitely a place to be experienced.

Room Tip: Definitely go for a room with an ocean view!
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  • Stayed: December 2011, travelled with friends
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2  Thank Sharan2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 March 2012

Aboslutely stunning hotel! We had an ocean loft with plunge - amazing! Wedding planner made our day very special indeed. Lots of attention to detail, excellent staff, would most definately revisit this hotel! Met a man on our beach called Susil who was excellent at arranging all of our tours, lovely man, very knowledable and cheap, highly recommended. Thank you to everyone at The Fortress for making our wedding day so perfect!

Room Tip: Room 15 Ocean Loft
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  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled as a couple
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Thank hazelnails
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 March 2012

Just returned from an outstanding 12 nights at the Fortress, Koggala. We were wowed from the moment we arrived, all the weariness of our long, long journey immediately banished by the stunning building itself and the reception staff. And like other reviewers, even though you think you know what to expect, slipping through that inner gate to the main courtyard and "that" view, simply takes your breath away. We arrived at night and it seemed to make it even more special. The room, an Ocean Room for us, was amazing although showing some signs of wear and tear in places. The quality of the materials from the marble in the walk in shower to the comfort of the bed, pillows and bed linen, all shout 5 star and you do feel you are getting value for the room rate. Housekeeping was excellent and the rooms kept spotlessly clean. Lots of lovely hi-tech mod cons to keep you happy plus a really effective and quiet air con system to make you comfortable at night.
The food was excellent and even though we booked B&B only, we ended up eating all our meals here. Yes, the food and drink prices reflect the status of the hotel but if you have paid out for the hotel, why skimp on the dining experience? We actually spent less than we expected on food and wine and that included using the mini bar some days - a happy surprise. We agree that the menu can seem a bit limiting at first but there are three buffet nights through the week to add choice and all are excellent. Breakfast a particular delight with a capable chef team on hand to cook you anything from a perfect fried egg to omelette and pancakes. Do try the egg hoppers or curry and milk cake for breakfast as they are delicious.
There was the occasional sense of disorganisation amongst the waiting staff with us often being approached by three different people for our order then left waiting for drinks. However special mention to Michelle and Sugath for their attention and keen eye that we were wanting something. Other great service from Samith on reception, always ready with a smile and checking we were happy with everything.
We used one of the beach touts, Sescil, for our trips out and about after a recommendation from another couple. He sits by the two central palm trees on the sea wall and wears a black hat with white stripes. We would highly recommend him as trust worthy, reliable and well priced. Just tell him what you do or don't what to see and he'll sort you out. We would also recommend his jewellery contact, Wimalarathna Gem and Jewellery on Wackwella Road in Galle. Exceptional jewellery made up just for you and at a very good price.
Overall, an fantastic holiday in an amazing location - we will return!

Room Tip: Ocean Suite for the stunning view and being able to lie in bed and watch the ocean - what a start to...
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  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank ocean66
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 March 2012

I made the mistake of thinking we were staying in the historic Fort area in Galle when my husband said we were booked at the SLH (Small Luxury Hotel) called The Fortress. It turned out that we were a couple of miles further out at the Koggala beach front area in a charmingly architectured development which although having an air of historicity about it is actually a new build.

What was most impressive was the grand entrance. The car had to stop in front of a massive wooden gate beyond which it could go no further. Proceeding on foot across the well-landscaped courtyard to the open concept lobby ahead of us, we were greeted by a smiling server on top of the steps with a welcome drink in her hand. Check in was a breeze, and we were personally escorted to our beach room by our butler who took great pains to walk us through the high-tech room with its top-of-the-line equipment (including a Nespresso coffee machine). The bed was laid out with a pretty pattern of freshly-strewen rose petals both the nights we were there.

I liked that we were on the ground floor, which allowed us to walk straight onto the beach and to the well laid out pools. What i did not understand was why there was a small square pool of water in the little sitting area leading out to the patio, too small to stretch out in to swim, and missing a jacuzzi which would have made sense of this provision. The spacious bathroom had an excellent jacuzzi however.

Service was first class and we enjoyed our breakfast and dinner in the main restaurant there, spoiled only by the need to watch out for crows which were a constant feature.

I would have given this hotel an excellent rating if not for: a) its location from Galle town, b) the same tropical resort feel at the swimming pool area that one gets from other resort hotels in Asia (in contrast to the Jetwing Lighthouse that we visited en route), and c) its lacking the authentic feel of a true blue historic building.

Room Tip: You need to book early if you want an ocean facing room, as this is a much sought after award-winnin...
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  • Stayed: February 2012, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank lilacfields
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 March 2012

We got married here through Kuoni and it was perfect. The friendly service, the food the scenery - everything!

We were blown away by the Ocean Loft rooms, they overlook the sea and the finish is superb from the ipoda dock with incredible sound to the seperate showers and jacuzzi bath.

We didn't have to worry about a thing with the wedding itself, the events planner was superb.

Room Tip: I woudlnt bother with checking out the Galle Fortress, but teh Tuk Tuk ride there is pretty cool. Th...
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  • Stayed: November 2011, travelled as a couple
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Thank drummingboy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 March 2012

This is a new property but has been constructed in an old colonial achitectural style which adds a lot of charm to the hotel. It is a long drive from Colombo airport to Galle (where the hotel is located) so plan your arrival accordingly. We arrived late at night which is best avoided. The rooms are extremely spacious and modern with the latest gadgets (in terms of television, music options, et al). The bathrooms are a highlight and include jacuzzis. We had rooms facing the sea and the pool area which was absolutely great. Great service (the locals are extremely pleasant people) and the meals we had were nice-the brekafast has a nice mix of western and local delicacies. We had a magical dinner, al fresco style with great seafood. The pool area is the highlight of the hotel, with an infinity style pool which is partly shaded by trees and still has open areas. The children had a marvellous time. The property is great but there is not much else to do in Galle. The Fort takes 30 minutes and then your are pretty much done. So, the sort of place where you put your feet up and enjoy the hospitality. Unless your are in time to watch cricket at the Galle Stadium

Room Tip: Choose a room facing the sea/pool area
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  • Stayed: June 2011, travelled with family
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Thank GoggleEyedTraveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Fortress Resort & Spa

Address: Route A2, Matara Road, Koggala 82104, Sri Lanka
Phone Number:
Region: Sri Lanka > Southern Province > Galle District > Koggala
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 5 Hotels in Koggala
Price Range: £179 - £1,058 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — The Fortress Resort & Spa 5*
Number of rooms: 53
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A luxury 53 room boutique resort located on the Southern shores of Sri Lanka. The Fortress has been styled after Galle’s powerful ancient Dutch Fort, blending the country’s Dutch and Portuguese influences with Sri Lankan motifs and indigenous furnishings to echo the historic days of Old Ceylon. This has been artfully and sensitively fused with innovative architecture, high design features, state-of-the-art technology, sensual living spaces with naturally modern design, and incredible gastronomic experiences, to stunning effect. The Fortress will offer unprecedented levels of service, extraordinary innovation, attention to detail and a unique blend of Old Ceylon with Modern Asia. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Fortress Hotel Koggala
Fortress Hotel Galle
Fortress Galle
Fortress Sri Lanka
The Fortress Resort & Spa Sri Lanka/Koggala

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