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“Amazing room- not the best management”

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Galle Face Hotel Colombo
Ranked #4 of 54 Hotels in Colombo
Certificate of Excellence
New York
Level 6 Contributor
104 reviews
76 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 172 helpful votes
“Amazing room- not the best management”
Reviewed 12 May 2011

This was the last night of a two week honeymoon in Sri Lanka and I had paid $250 extra to be put into their best room (Regency side). There are 2 incredible rooms with balconies overlooking the pool which faces the Indian Ocean. The main selling point for us was the hot tub on the balcony and the idea of having a drink in it while watching the sunset on the Indian Ocean. If the hot tub wasn't broken, I would've given the Galle Face Hotel 5 stars.

My main issue was the fact that I had engineers working on the broken hot tub while we watched the sunset. It was bothersome because it was broken before we arrived and they couldn't fix it and spent several hours trying without the management getting involved, even though we called them a few times to see what was happening. It wasn't until I called our driver William, who then called our tour operator, Vinod of Paragon Holidays (they are awesome btw), that things changed for the better for us. The hotel manager finally came to the room and realized the debacle we had been presented with and offered us a late check out including a free lunch to make up for it, which was ok but not great.

The room itself was unreal. It was huge, comfortable and had the most amazing views from the enormous patio. the hotel pool was packed so we didn't spend much time there. We did enjoy the Veranda restaurant as the food selection in the buffet was very good. We really loved the room at this landmark hotel and would come back in a heartbeat.

Room Tip: get one of the rooms with the balcony
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  • Stayed March 2011, travelled as a couple
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Thank Gimper90
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Marin County, California
Level 4 Contributor
17 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 79 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 May 2011

We spent two nights at the Galle Face Hotel (old section) at the beginning and end of our week long stay in Sri Lanka. The first room (214) was HUGE (probably 25'x25') and fabulous. It was above the entrance, so we had views of the green next door and the ocean. The bathroom was redone and very nice size and there was even a separate room with a little table and stocked refrigerator. We had breakfast at the buffet the next morning and though I hate buffets - both my hubby and I loved it! We were with friends and they also really enjoyed the breakfast buffet. They stayed in the new section and they said their room was "OK".

Well the second room we got was an absolute nightmare. It was the night of the cricket finals between Sri Lanka and UK and the hotel was booked. When we got to the room, I wouldn't even sit on the bed and told my husband to call the front desk as I refused to stay in the room. It was at the front of the building right next to the busy road and was extremely loud. The room was dilapidated, stained and dirty (see pics) - not that they didn't clean the room - just run down dirty. IF I had not stayed in the other room, I would NEVER recommend this hotel. The hotel was very nice and moved us (we had to wait a couple of hours while they made it up). The room was better than the room we left but not half as nice as the room we had the first time. I went to turn on the light and got a shock. Also, we had to leave at 7am the next morning and the restaurant was not open until 8am which I thought was a little odd for such a large hotel.

Our friends stayed in the new section in an "upgraded" room (twice what they spent on the previous room) and it was really nice. Balcony looking over the pool/eating area out to the ocean, clean, all recently redone.

So, would I go back? Yes, but would make sure I got a refurbished room in the older section.

Room Tip: Get the refurbished rooms in the old section.
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  • Stayed March 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank franztini
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, UK
Level 3 Contributor
14 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 May 2011

I would very much recommend people stay here. The hotel is beautiful, as is the service and the breakfasts are among the best I've ever had (I still dream of the sambal and egg hoppers). You will pay a lot more here than elsewhere for alcoholic drinks, etc, and its more old-world charm than brand-spanking new mod-cons but if you have the cash it's a lovely experience.

  • Stayed June 2010, travelled with friends
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Thank JaneInLondonStill
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Maidenhead
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 May 2011

We just got back from a tour of Sri Lanka. GF was the first hotel we spent the night in and boy were we disappointed. It looked the business from the outside and parts of the hotel are very colonial and twee. We were put in a family room in the old wing facing the green. It's a travesty that this room is being used - it should be roped off and used as a museum piece. The bathroom was awful and the electrics were a little suspect. The wires coming out of the wall into the bedside table were visible and there was a creepy crawlie on the bed. We have 2 kids and although we had asked for 2 rollaway beds we only got one. They charged us for the extra rollaway. This seemed to be the story of our holiday. Another way they squeeze the tourists. Sounding cynical but after 2 weeks it gets to you.

Room Tip: Get a room in the new wing
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  • Stayed April 2011, travelled with family
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2 Thank TheSages
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Vught, The Netherlands
Level 5 Contributor
55 reviews
34 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 April 2011

This hotel is a relaxing place in the not in every aspect relaxing city of Colombo. With the beach (although small) and the fine swimming pool it may even look a bit like a beach resort. Fine rooms (we stayed, according to our travel agent in the new wing) and great views towards the see. We drove (very early in the morning, 3.00 h.) from here in 75 minutes to the airport.

  • Stayed August 2010, travelled with family
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Helpful?
Thank bert-jan01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sheffield, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
19 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 April 2011

A nice hotel with great views. Our room was in the old wing and as some reviews have mentioned, very old fashioned. The bathroom was overly large and in need of updating but was clean and in perfect working order. The furniture was all in keeping with the theme of the hotel. We loved how traditional the hotel was, with lifts like I'd never seen before which added to the character of the hotel. On arrival we received a free pass for happy hour in one of the bars where we received free drinks for an hour and half which was a nice added extra. Staff were extremely friendly and helpful bringing us drinks by the pool all day. We used the hotel taxi service to take us to the airport which was very competitively priced and was the first air conditioned vehicle we experienced through out our week in Sri Lanka. I'd certainly recommend this hotel just don't expect modern furnished rooms, the hotel was built in 1864 and is in a developing country.

  • Stayed April 2011, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank Ned46
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
sri lanka
Level 3 Contributor
20 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 April 2011

We spent 2 nights at the Galle Face Regency Hotel at the end of our 28 day trip to Sri Lanka. We were upgraded to the most fantastic room overlooking the pool and sea. We had sun longers and a jacuzzi on our terrace. There are 3 restaurants - 2 are buffet and one a la carte with a wine cellar. We went to both buffet restaurants - one inside and the other one outside which had seafood, both were excellent and even though the hotel was full there were no long queues for the food. At breakfast if you ate outside they had a waiter on guard to keep the crows away, but if you ate inside they weren't a problem.
Good location and a lovely hotel to finish our fabulous adventure in Sri Lanka.

  • Stayed April 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank casablancaSriLanka
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Galle Face Hotel Colombo

Property: Galle Face Hotel Colombo
Address: No. 2, Galle Road, Colombo, Sri Lanka
Phone Number:
Region: Sri Lanka > Western Province > Colombo
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 54 Hotels in Colombo
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:5 star — Galle Face Hotel Colombo 5*
Number of rooms: 156
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Presented proudly as Sri Lanka's iconic and historic hotel, Galle Face Hotel is located in heart of Colombo City, along the seafront and facing the famous Galle Face Green.The hotel has 158 well-appointed rooms and suites, with some offering excellent views across the Indian ocean and the fascinating view of evening sunset.There are three restaurants, a gym, spa and unique saltwater swimming pool, overlooking the seafront. Guests here will be convenient as the hotel offers close access to many of the business district,historic cultural sites and landmarks in Colombo, as well nearby shopping. The hotel is a 45-60min journey from the airport.Guests seeking a glimpse of Colombo's history will enjoy the charm of The Galle Face Hotel with its unique, unaltered setting since 1864. ... more   less 
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