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“Perfect paradise where you can truly sit back and relax!!”

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Shangri-Lanka Villa
Ranked #1 of 59 Bentota B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Stockport, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
42 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
“Perfect paradise where you can truly sit back and relax!!”
Reviewed 4 September 2010

We booked our trip in December 2009 and over the last 8 months I have exchanged many e-mails with Karen whilst we have been organising our stay and tour with Rohan whilst we were in Sri Lanka. All of my questions were always promptly and politely answered and Karen even organised a driver to pick us up at the airport so when we arrived in Sri Lanka we were not disappointed. Our flight was 1.5 hours delayed/late but Hamer was there to meet us and chauffeured us to Shangri-Lanka Villa. From the moment that we arrived there we were made feel at home and that nothing was too much trouble.
Our room, which we had booked in advance, was the top floor which is in my opinion is the room to have. We have travelled to many places and stayed in lots of very plush hotels and this is right up there with the best!! You will struggle to find anywhere that has such a large bedroom/living area (air conditioned + a large fan), huge en-suite bathroom, large dressing area, mini bar, tv & dvd player in the room along with a laptop with free internet access whilst being such high quality for a very reasonable price.
We ate out at a few local restaurants but to be fair Rohan's cooking was as good as any of the local competitors and very fairly priced. Breakfast was available whenever you woke up or indeed got up which helped you relax even more as there was not the concern or worry about setting the alarm to make sure you did not miss out.
We booked a tour in advance of our stay and we spent 5 days with Rohan being shown the delights of Sri Lanka which were truly amazing. Rohan is a true gentleman and even though we were well away from the villa nothing was too much trouble - thank you Rohan!
Whilst we had our stay it was my wife's birthday, after speaking with Karen & Rohan they organised fireworks, a spit roast suckling pig and even a birthday cake iced with my wife's name on it!! A very nice night!!
Some previous reviews have moaned about being charged for water and I now see that water will be complimentary going forward which is a bonus but to be fair I agree with "the travellingbioteacher" in the respect that tea and coffee were free along with dvd's, books, internet access, etc so we had no quibbles. At the end of the day, if you are going to moan about being charged the equivalent of £0.60 pence for a litre of water then you need to pinch yourself for a reality check and if 60 pence is too much then maybe you should go to Butlins or Alton Towers next year where you can pay £1 for a can of coke!!
We spent a few nights relaxing in our room watching dvd's and I found it very relaxing opening the mini bar, getting a cold beer and chilling out knowing that it was only going to cost me roughly 60 pence - some people have got their priorities wrong :-) This was all about relaxing.
Shangri-Lanka villa is an absolute paradise and with there only being a few apartments/rooms you really get that personal touch from Karen & Rohan and all their amazing staff. Also, you know that there is never any need to get up early to ensure that you get a sun lounger :-)
Overall, we had a wonderful time and would absolutely recommend Karen & Rohan’s villa to any one going to Sri Lanka – thank you for an amazing experience!!

  • Stayed August 2010, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank Martin_Zoe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Milton Keynes, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
109 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 September 2010

Shangri-Lanka Villa was everything we had hoped it would be! Beautiful big, airy room with very large lovely bathroom and good pool set in tropical gardens with monkeys swinging from the trees. Karen and Rohan were superb, friendly hosts with great staff and three lovely dogs. Plenty of things to do in the area, walk along the beach or through the friendly, tranquil villages, visit the Jeffrey Bawa Estate. Some good restaurants in the area and seafood to die for!

  • Stayed August 2010, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank mandv888
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Durham, United Kingdom
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 September 2010

We stayed at Shangri-Lanka for 5 nights at the end of August after a 10 day tour of the country. We booked in April and organised to be picked up by Rohan (one of the owners) in Unawatuna and transported to the hotel. The e-mail correspondance was always quick and they were very helpful in giving us advice about our trip. We were allocated the bottom floor room which was simply amazing. Huge bed, impeccably clean room, very stylish aftwork on the walls, and enormous boutique bathroom. It was simply the best accomodation we have probably ever stayed in. Ignore the 'Morama' review about the hotel owners putting their 'friends' up in the best room. When we arrived we met some of the other guests, one family was a relation of Karen (the owner) and in no way whatsoever were they treated any better than we were. In fact they happily bought cakes for us to have with them with tea and coffee in the afternoon. That evening all the guests were seated to eat together so in no way was the relationship between Karen and her family expressed as more important than the relationship between Karen and Rohan and their guests.
At no point during the stay did we have to pay for tea or coffee. This is briiliant. Although I have read the earlier review complaining about water not being complimentary the tea and coffee is. And surely this is better. We bought several large water bottles in the local supermarket and stored them in the fridge in our room so buying water was actually much cheaper than if we'd had to pay for all the tea and coffee that we drank!
For most of our stay we relaxed by the pool soaking up the sun after the exhausting tour we had done. However on our last day the monsoon rains came and we were confined to our room. We were provided with a laptop to watch DVDs and surf the net (all for free) we were able to select books from a big selection to read (all for free).
We ate at the hotel for most of the stay. The meals were excellent. The best meals being the curry and the enormous prawns. Rohan was happy to explain how dishes were made so we could attempt to make them at home! If there is one improvement they could possibly make is to give a more thorough list of meal options for the evening meal. For a small establishment a large menu obviously means that all the guests may each choose something different which may make the cooking taks more difficult, however if it is stipulated to guests that all evening meals are pre-booked by lunchtime this should make it easy for them to cook what the guests would like. This is not a criticism however, as when we asked Rohan what we could have for evening meal he replied with 'I can make whatever you would like'! I simply think having a more detailed list of options could give the guests an idea of what they can ask for! On one night we were offered a meal of suckling pig, we were not told (and mistakenly did not ask) the price of the meal before we got our total bill on the day we left the hotel. When we were settling the bill we questioned the amount charged for the suckling pig as it was so much higher than all the other meals (even the seafood meals) we had eaten. Karen said it was the correct price and apologised for not telling us prior to agreeing to having suckling pig. After settling the final bill we only had a few rupees spare (as we had not anticipated the high price for the suckling pig) to pay for the meals at lunch and dinner that day (our flight was not until late evening). We offered to pay for the food that day in GBP(£) but Karen said that as we had not been told the price of the suckling pig meal and that obviously we were unhappy at the cost she would be happy for us to have food for the rest of the day on the house. That included water, omlettes and chips and salad for lunch, and chicken and prawn and veg curry with sambal and popadoms and chutneys as the evening meal. We were even offered cocktails and beer. ALL complimentary. Nowhere else have I experienced this hospitality and treatment of guests before. You can really see that they didn't want us to be unhappy with anything in our stay.
I want to say a huge thank you to Karen and Rohan for making our stay in Sri Lanka so memorable. In the future we really will be comparing all our other hotels to Shangri-Lanka, they'd have to be something really very special to beat it. This place cannot be beaten for price, service, hospitality, location. There are so many places in the world we still want to travel to but if we do return to Sri Lanka we will definitely stay at Shangri-Lanka again. If they have rooms available I advise you to snap them up. It simply is the best place to stay in Bentota. It is a little piece of paradise.

  • Stayed August 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank travellingbioteacher
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Birmingham
Level 3 Contributor
16 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 August 2010

Our stay was delightful, the staff were just a delight they couldn't do enough for you. We went out most evenngs to restaurants as that is just what we so much enjoy doing when we are on holiday. Fanastic restaurants nearby, just to die for. The accommodation was excellent, the most lovely rooms, and a bathroom to die for. Hamar who took us up to the tea trails was a wonderful guide. He took us to local restaurants that were so cheap but the food was fantastic...if you like spicy food. Worth looking around and talking to locals as we found tuk tuks so cheap in comparison as to what Roahn was charging for day trips and places of interest nearby. We did so enjoy our stay,but my advice is go out and explore the lovely cuisine in local restaurants. Again the staff were delightful, they just couldn't do enough for you. My husband fell in love with a picture in our bedroom. They took us to the artist and he replicated this for us. We now have it framed and on our bedroom wall. You wont be dissapointed with Shangri Lanka Villa. But make the water complimentary!!

  • Stayed July 2010, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank KatePhilBirmingham
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
shangrilanka, Owner at Shangri-Lanka Villa, responded to this review, 26 August 2010
Thank you very much for your review and feedback. We are so glad you enjoyed your stay with us.

We will certainly make water complimentary from now on.

We already give internet access in the rooms/ lap top's and tea and coffee all day complimentary.

We give honest prices for our day trips. Some drivers in town, but by no means all, will take you to shops free as they get a large commission when the shop over charges you to pay them. We have a reputation for not giving or taking commission so just charge fair price for the driver so he doesn't need to do this.

We really appreciate you taking the trouble to keep us informed on our service.

Karen
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
142 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 84 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 August 2010

My wife found this amazing littel boutique guest house just on the outskirts of Bentota for a little honeymoon after our wedding at the GFH in Colombo back in June.
And OMG! what a little gem of a place - as a hotelier I do enjoy the finer things in life and have been lucky to experience some of the best in the world, but I have to give credit to Karen and her husband for bringing me back to earth and truly appreciating hospitality at it's very best.
This place is so amazing, chilled, relaxed and carefree it's a wonder they have not expanded.
The guest house is made up of 5-6 rooms, each with it's own balcony and view onto the pool. The place is a short tuk-tuk ride from the station (5-10min) and in the middle of a jungle (sort of).. BUT you have to go here. no matter what, if they have availability - GO!
The rates are so cheap, they really shoudl increase their prices...
the food is enjoyable, try the SL chicken curry (ask for spicy, SL style!) you get non-stop tea all day and breakfast was a godsend... NO TV in the room, made it even more relaxing and did the 2 dogs running aroudn the place (and I don't like dogs!!)
They have their own littl tuk-tuk for guests use and the fare's are so cheap it's like spending pennies.
Bentota itlself is lovely but a tad overrun with hotels and guests houses, we went off season so enjoyed it a bit more than you would do normally, there are little towns here & there which are great for trinket shopping, but do beware of the constant number of guys apporaching you and trying to lead you to some store where they get a commission...
Street-ffo is hit & miss, but we were lucky that the ShangrLanka' tuk-tuk driver knew exactly where to take us...
Beware the bugs in the evening if you take one of the rooms on the 1st or 2nd floor - the bright light attracts all sorts of interesting little mites and mozzies... so take dinner downstairs where the dogs look after you :)....

  • Stayed June 2010, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank John M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Paphos, Cyprus
Level 4 Contributor
35 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 August 2010

Stayed here twice now. Its good for 2-3 days to relax and enjoy the calm.
Seafood excellent. Rooms always clean and fresh. Here you get the personal touch of a small boutique hotel.

Stayed August 2010, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank BritKyiv
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Haslemere, United Kingdom
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 14 August 2010

The location is great. Very quite but only short tuk tuk ride to Bentota and short walk to beach. Unfortunatley we could only paddle as the seas were too rough due to the monsoon. We booked two rooms which were huge, very clean and had wonderful views over the jungle. We enjoyed seeing the wildlife from the balcony and from the poolside particularly the monkeys, the woodpeckers, Sea Eagles, Kingfishers and the bats flying over at sunset. Great breakfasts served on the balcony. Sri Lankan omelettes, English breakfasts and great fruit juices. The Rice and curries for dinner were great and one nightth we had huge prawns on BBQ. Hosts are excellent and gave us good recommendations for dinners in Bentota and for activites such as visiting the monday markets, watersports, boat trips for crocodile and water monitor spotting and trips inland through tea plantations for swim in pool beneath waterfall. We spent one day just chilling out by the excellent pool and had good sandwiches for lunch.
We highly recommned that you book this guest house i promise you will not regret it!

  • Stayed August 2010, travelled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank AussieWelsh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Shangri-Lanka Villa

Property: Shangri-Lanka Villa
Address: 23 De Alwis Road | Horanduwa, Bentota 80500, Sri Lanka
Phone Number:
Region: Sri Lanka > Southern Province > Galle District > Bentota
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 59 B&Bs / Inns in Bentota
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Number of rooms: 5
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Unique boutique guesthouse situated in the heart of a traditional Sri Lankan village. Surrounded by nature yet only minutes from the magnificent Bentota beach. We offer a holiday experience with a difference. No hotel receptions, standard packages, crowds, time restrictions. Just great hospitality and a genuinely personal service, with all the facilities you need. Experience the culture of authentic Sri Lankan village life where ancient customs and traditions blend with modern amenities and services. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Shangri-Lanka Villa Boutique Guest House Hotel Bentota

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