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“Could be better”

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AVANI Bentota Resort & Spa
Ranked #4 of 25 Hotels in Bentota
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 19 June 2012

I'm terribly late in writing this review but here goes.

I got married in December and This was sort of an unplanned honeymoon stumble by! Initially I thought it was a fabulous place, with bawa architecture and beautiful simple interior. However the hotel disappointed me quite a lot.
Firstly when we were swimming the pool area was being fumigated for bugs/mosquitoes which was fine. understanding the plight of living in a tropical country we headed to our room. However without any prior notice they started the fumigation process on the hallways/ corridors which lead to the rooms. Our room was filled with fumigated air from both the corridors AND the Garden/pool side. This is terrible. There was no prior warning. When we complained the staff did not even attend to the phone call. Which is not at all good customer service. After complaining further to a manager we were asked if we wanted to move to a different room. which we declined since we decided to leave the next day without prolonging out stay. However we were not offered any apologies on this regard.

Secondly while using the toilet I found it wasn't clean namely the *bidet shower*. Lets just say it wasn't cleaned well after the previous occupant.

This i found to be disgusting since I did not want my honeymoon to be cooped up in a room. It was supposed to be much more!

Staff was not super friendly nor helpful. might have been because i was sri lankan too... ho hum

But the rooms were great! I loved the bed! very modern. Food was nice. again not planned and don't think they handled the breakfast crowd well. a bit disorganized!

I'm quite disappointed. Not value for money that I paid.

  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Dilini W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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1,158 - 1,164 of 1,438 reviews

Reviewed 15 June 2012

We were booked in elsehwhere but through mishap came here and what a blessing it was!!! A lot of hoteliers around the world need to take a leaf out of this hotel's book as from arrival to departure the standard of service was impeccable. We dinner we had the pleasure of a 6 course a la carte meal courtesy of the executive chef Bjorn VanDenOever. Fine dining at it's best.
The location was great, the pools are very inviting and the frangipani blossoms on your pillow of an evening are a special touch.
All in all a wonderful experience.

  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Greg S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 June 2012

We called and fixed in advance.
We were given a room on the ground level right across from the beach access.
We reached here absolutely knackered straight from Habarana and ordered some French fries to take the edge out of my kids’ hunger.
The serving staff from the restaurant- Nilantha, gets the dish of fries in his hand with his fingers (obviously) touching most of the fries.
Asked him if they don’t use trays- he answers right back- what for, after all it’s just a plate of fries. Completely taken aback, I asked him why were his fingers touching my food? Prompt reply- so what?
With that he thrusts the bill in my face and asks me to sign.
I search for my husband who luckily is still checking in, we put our bags in a cab and hop to Taj down the road.

The rooms at Avani looked nicely done up and modern/ the bathroom in the room we had been given felt cramped and dark though!
And I am sure this incident doesn’t happen to everyone seeing the rave reviews. But if this one man really couldn’t care less about the food service etiquette or politeness- it has to say something about the hotel in general, as for me always- every single employee of the hotel IS the hotel itself.

They did try to ask what the matter was, but offered no real apologies/request to stay.

We were offered welcome drinks on arrival .
So all the politeness of the reservations/corporate office staff or their own check in staff goes to naught at least with one set of travelers- us.

Room Tip: Please ask for rooms on the first floor as the ground floor ones have serious privacy issues!
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  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled with family
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3  Thank MalanAnuj
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 June 2012

Great location. Nicely designed. Bit of a odd policy on the tv. You have to tell the reception to switch it on if not it won't work! That's soon after you check in.

There is free wifi even though we didn't use it.

Food is average but ok.

Overall - value for money.

  • Stayed: June 2012
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Thank VaruniV
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 June 2012

Avani was beautiful, a very serene and relaxed feeling at this Hotel. The pools were great, rooms were big and beathrooms were lovely. If your staying Bentota then you should stay here. Only downside is the very expensive food, go HB or AI.

Room Tip: Spa is amazing!
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  • Stayed: May 2012, travelled with friends
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3  Thank LondonUK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 June 2012

Avani Bentota is a recently renovated hotel and located somewhat in the middle of the Bentota Beach hotel and the Taj hotel hence sharing the same beach.

First impressions were very good, the lobby and reception staff were very welcoming, providing us welcome drinks and a swift checkin. We also got a small surprise voucher of LKR 1,000 ($ 8) that we could use for SPA or dining.

We were given a room on the upper floor and we were impressed with the design of both the room and bathroom, particularly the window in the bath area allowing direct view of the sea.

The main issue we faced was that the AC was not working properly and on our complaint to guest relations we were simply informed that there is a lot of load on the main AC plant and it should start working within half an hour. The AC never started working properly and we had to make do with the fan instead. We had arrived late in the evening after a long and tiring drive and went to sleep immediately waking up in sweat in the morning. On another complaint, the technician arrived and claimed to fix the AC as we left for our breakfast. On our return we found the AC leaking water, thankfully our stuff was not near. After further complaint and waste of an hour we were ultimately transferred to another room on the ground floor.
Other than this shortfall the resort is pretty amazing and just about rightly priced for its star rating (note that the star ratings and prices in Sri Lanka are generally exaggerated and if we compare to Dubai, the sri Lankan 4 star would probably meet the 3-3.5 star rating and so on).

The breakfast spread had a lot of variety and quantity, but avg. quality. One can easily have a brunch here and avoid lunch. Being muslims and not allowed to have pork, we were impressed to see that the chef at the live egg cooking station had a separate frying pan that should not be used with pork, however, a further suggestion from our end would be to use separate utensils, oil and crockery as well otherwise the initiative is lost.

The beach is very close at less than 200 metres from the hotel grounds. The beach was very clean and we were only bothered once or twice by vendors on our 2 day stay, but the sea was very rough for this time of the year. Note that none of the beach hotels in Sri Lanka can actually own their private beach so you may never get the main beach part all to yourselves.

Water sport activities are not offered directly by the hotel but they direct you to a 3rd party vendor that offers such services on the Bentota river at outrageous prices.

Both the swimming pools were nice and clean.

Other recreational activities only include carom and table tennis.

My wife used the SPA and loved the service (thanks Ms. Joy). They have both Thai and Sri Lankan staff.

The grounds and garden are amazingly beautiful and we understand a trademark of the local architect Geoffrey Bawa.

We did not have either lunch or dinner at the hotel restaurants during our stay.

Will definitely return to the hotel when we visit Bentota again.

Room Tip: All rooms have beach/sea view. The ground floor ones have direct access to the ground, but lower pri...
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  • Stayed: May 2012, travelled as a couple
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Thank Humaid_Ahsan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 May 2012

very nice sceneries.beautiful buildings.the sea adds a fizz to the experience.the food could improve.probably a wider range and better quality would do.if the price staff were very friendly and helpful.but for the price,would expect a bit more.if the price was lower, for this expeirence i would have given 4 stars.

Room Tip: go for the upstair rooms.they have a nice balcony!
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  • Stayed: May 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank voges
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about AVANI Bentota Resort & Spa

Address: Bentota, Bentota 80500, Sri Lanka (Formerly Hotel Serendib)
Phone Number:
Region: Sri Lanka > Southern Province > Galle District > Bentota
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:
#3 Luxury Hotel in Bentota
#3 Family Hotel in Bentota
#4 Spa Hotel in Bentota
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Bentota
#7 Romantic Hotel in Bentota
Price Range: £60 - £330 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — AVANI Bentota Resort & Spa 5*
Number of rooms: 76
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Get away to our Bentota hotel, beach haven. Soak up colonial charm in nearby Galle. Laze by the ocean as AVANI Bentota Resort & Spa combines contemporary style with sun-filled days on the southwest coast. Spice up your appetite with local flavours. Sail gently through the mangroves for a relaxing afternoon. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Avani Bentota Resort And Spa
Avani Bentota Hotel Bentota
Serendib Hotel Bentota

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