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“Grandmother of Sri Lanka”

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Galle Face Hotel Colombo
Ranked #4 of 51 Hotels in Colombo
Certificate of Excellence
Nottingham
Level Contributor
33 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
“Grandmother of Sri Lanka”
Reviewed 13 July 2012

I'll say the same about The Galle Face Hotel as I do about The Mount Lavinia Hotel..if you want modern luxury, this is not the place for you. BUT, if you want to experience the old world charm of a hotel that still feels Sri Lankan then The Galle Face will not dissappoint you.
On the plus side, the location is very central for getting around Colombo. The sea breezes in the evening sitting outside on the lawn are hard to beat.
The whole atmosphere of the hotel is colonia to the tea!
The staircases are full of history and the signs in the hotel are written in an old Indian way which are very charming.

The rooms though are generally rather somber. This shouldn't necessarily put you off staying, but it isn't The Hilton or The Cinnamon Grand.

That said, its nostalgic with it's ratten and white linen.

Hard not to love this grandmother...

  • Stayed June 2012, travelled solo
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Thank custardNottingham
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
35 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 July 2012

I must say that I was forewarned about the Galle Face by others so I was not terribly disappointed when we got there. The service was lovely, the food in the restaurant was good and the location is great. On the down side the rooms were shabby in the old wing and the room service menu is ordinary which was important to us because we were traveling with a baby who went to sleep before the restaurant opened. Finally breakfast started at 7.30 which was annoying when we needed to leave at 7 but had paid for breakfast.

  • Stayed July 2012, travelled with family
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Helpful?
2 Thank Mumdadnlil
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
380 reviews
134 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 245 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 July 2012

We stayed 3 nights in April 2012 and had a most pleasant stay. The location was great and the hotel exudes old world charm in all its colonial splendour, albeit with some wear & tear. Fortunately we were booked into the newly renovated Regency wing - where the rooms were done up in neutral shades of beige & cream and included the various mod-cons one would expect of a good hotel. The room we had was large & the bathroom was more than adequate with a nice overized shower. Had a peek at one of the rooms in the unrenovated wing & it had certainly seen better days - so though they cost more, its definitely advisable to book a Regency wing room.

Service overall was excellent. Check in was a breeze ( even though we went to the original wing & you had to check in separately at the Regency wing). Breakfast is excellent with a good range of Western as well as Sri Lankan foods. The waiting staff & captains were all old school & service was prompt and with an air of colonial dignity yet always accompanied by the warm Sri Lankan smile. We had dinner at the surf restaurant in the hotel (seafood BBQ buffet) - excellent. Food was fresh, plentiful, cooked beautifully & the setting right by the water was perfect.

We misplaced our camera bag while in the hotel and the staff from reception to security to the duty manager were helpful & professional in helping us conduct a search. The bag was eventually found - thanks to the efforts of the staff.

The swimming pool is salt water and was the perfect place to cool down after a day of sweaty sight seeing. The only complaint here was the grumpy pool boy who was more like pool grand dad who was totally uninterested in handing out pool towels and would reluctantly hand one out when guests asked. A younger and more energetic pool boy would be more efficient.

Overall an excellent stay - the hotel is charming and although a face lift is required & quite a bit of money probably needs to be pumped in - this really is the grand old dame of hotels in Asia of this genre. Highly recommended - even if just to soak up the atmosphere.

Room Tip: Eat at the Surf Restaurant in the hotel. Excellent value for fresh seafood.
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  • Stayed April 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank scorpioshanghai
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
bangalore
Level Contributor
21 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 July 2012

Great location, on the ocean, walk along the Galle, great service, breakfast listening to waves crashing - perfect. Snacks good value for money (always useful with the kids). Checked in late at night but still quick and efficient.

  • Stayed June 2012, travelled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank bangaloreshaw
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
38 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 July 2012

Booking: Three nights in the Regent Wing booked via Agoda. com

Check-in: I went to the Classic Wing then I was told I need to check in at a different desk in the Regent Wing. When I arrived there the receptionist was waiting for me. Check-in was quick and efficient.

Room: Although the Regent Wing is considered new, the room décor is somewhat dated, but furniture and the bathroom are decent and comfortable. AC in the room was difficult to control – there was very little difference between low and medium settings.

Restaurants: My room came with breakfast. Breakfast was served in the Veranda restaurant in buffet style. The quality of food was rather mediocre.

Overall: Not a good value for money.

  • Stayed June 2012, travelled solo
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Helpful?
1 Thank Don E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 July 2012

My husband & I stayed at this glorious hotel in September 2011. We came from New York for a wedding. The hotel is in a great location, central to wonderful restaurants, shops, an amazing jeweler that my family uses. The hotel itself has a colonial old-world feel about it, which I enjoyed. The breakfast every morning was wonderful, the hotel provides a huge selection of Sri Lankan & western options. You cannot beat the sunset from the Galle Face Hotel; in fact it is listed as one of the 1000 places to see before you die. Just sitting out by the pool, reading, drinking fresh coconut water or lime juice with sugar syrup accompanied by the warm cashew nuts, is a sheer feeling of bliss. This is a vacation spot that you will remember for the rest of your life.

  • Stayed September 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Anouska14
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mumbai--
Level Contributor
8 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 July 2012

I recommend the Galle Face Hotel in Colombo for traveler's wanting to live in a colonial building with huge rooms and super food and service. Its a hotel with a history. The lawns by the sea are worth sitting back to enjoy a chilled brew. The food is an array of international and local flavors.

  • Stayed April 2012, travelled on business
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Helpful?
1 Thank MUMBAIDEE
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 51 Hotels in Colombo
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:5 star — Galle Face Hotel Colombo 5*
Number of rooms: 158
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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