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Reviewed 18 February 2019 via mobile

My husband and I arrived late last night after two long flights from the United States. We were warmly welcomed. Our room was cooled to just the right temperature, the bed perfect and everything was spotless. We had a wonderful breakfast today. I would very much recommend this hotel.

Date of stay: February 2019
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
2  Thank Jeanie K
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
I8744EImarkn, Owner at Waterland, responded to this reviewResponded 13 April 2019

Long flights can be incredibly draining. We're glad we could offer you a welcome respite after the tiring flights.

Thanks for noting the cleanliness, the comfort of the bed, the excellence of the air-conditioning, the quality of the meals, and the attentiveness of the staff.

We hope that your trip around the island was a good one and that you left Sri Lanka with fond memories.

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Reviewed 5 February 2019

This place is really off the beaten track, through small winding roads passing local houses. We rented the peacock villa for two nights with our two girls, to start our Sri Lankan journey. Upon arriving at the hotel, we found out that we had accidentally booked the airport pickup on the wrong day (mixed up the date vs. month), but the hotel and its partners managed to get a car to pick us up, albeit after a bit of waiting time of course. We greatly appreciate them organizing something so last minute, but maybe it would've been better to let us know the error in advance over the telephone, so we could've just quickly picked up a taxi after the long plane journey with two tired kids.

I think we also came at a funny time because it was national day, and the next day was Tuesday, which is when the restaurant is closed for lunch and dinner. The spa staff was also unavailable, although the hotel offered to organize us a massage elsewhere if we liked. On the first day, after swimming in our villa's pool, we had dinner at the floating barge which was delicious. On Tuesday when the restaurant was closed, we enjoyed a leisurely breakfast served on our balcony. The staff kindly organized a three wheeler to get us to a restaurant for dinner that night.

Thanks to the staff for being so friendly, and being very kind to our kids (we got free ice cream one afternoon, were showed the hotel's pet turtle, and they even got a little fridge magnet souvenir)!

I think you won’t be disappointed if you stay here as long as you keep your expectations reasonable. For us, good and friendly service is worth it's weight in gold. A great bed and cleanliness are also key and Waterland definitely delivers. The peacock villa is spacious, clean and comfortable. Of course there are signs of wear like the padded mats on the loungers, quirky details like the far reaching toilet roll holders , and that the stairs of the double story peacock villa is outside the building envelope (meaning we can't hear our kids downstairs when we are upstairs). But it is not really marketed as a kids-friendly hotel anyway which is fine with us and our two independent girls.

Some very minor comments for improvement: Replacing some of the ceiling lights in the rooms with lower wattage warm-white bulbs would be nice and less glaring. The phone in the peacock room was unavailable / being fixed. Wi-fi for our room was not working on the second day but we could use another villa's. TV did not seem to work after following the setup instructions (but we didn't ask for assistance). Again, these were just minor hiccups on an otherwise fabulously relaxing stay. Thank you Waterland team, we will surely return if we are ever in Sri Lanka again!

Room tip: All rooms seem special. View from the top of peacock villa is fabulous.
Date of stay: February 2019
  • Trip type: Travelled with family
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank suruel
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mark N, Owner at Waterland, responded to this reviewResponded 24 August 2019

Thanks so much for taking the time to write such a thoughtful and extensive review.

We're delighted you had a fabulously relaxing stay and appreciated the setting, pool, location, comfort, cleanliness, and service.

Over the summer, we closed for 3 months so we could remodel and significantly upgrade the property and services. As part of that upgrade, we addressed a number of the areas you noted including expanding the meal service so we serve 7 days a week, reupholstering all the sofas and sun loungers, making sure all the toilet roll holders are within easy reach, offering mobile phones to guests upon check-in to facilitate communication with the front desk, and changing the internet service provider.

Your suggestion to change the lighting to lower wattage warm white lighting was excellent. We have balanced that with the benefits of providing well-lit spaces and have changed some of the lights to lower wattage warm white bulbs.

Your review provides travelers with insights that will help them make informed decisions. Your review also helps us to identify areas in which we are doing well and how we can improve. Thank you!

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Reviewed 4 February 2019

Waterland is a wonderful place to stay. We reserved the Peacock villa for our family. The rooms were comfortable, private, spacious, clean and well equipped. The staff were extremely accommodating of our late arrival. Breakfast was lovely. We only had a one night stay and would definitely return for longer.

Date of stay: December 2018
  • Trip type: Travelled with family
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank Suzy F
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mark N, Owner at Waterland, responded to this reviewResponded 8 February 2019

We're pleased that you and your family had a wonderful stay at Waterland and that you found the staff accommodating, the breakfast lovely, and the interiors comfortable, spacious, clean, and well equipped.

Thank you for choosing Waterland and for reviewing your stay.

We hope you had a happy set of adventures around the island and hope that we can welcome you again in future.

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Reviewed 2 February 2019 via mobile

This is a lovely hotel with beautiful views. My husband and I were gutted that we only stayed there for one night. The staff were friendly and the surroundings were stunning! I would definitely recommend this hotel to my friends and family!

Date of stay: February 2019
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
1  Thank KellyCanfield
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mark N, Owner at Waterland, responded to this reviewResponded 12 February 2019

Thanks so very much for taking the time to review your stay. Guest reviews are immensely important for a small boutique hotel such as Waterland.

We are delighted that you had such a good experience that you wished you had stayed longer.

It's marvelous to hear that you will be recommending Waterland to friends and family.

We look forward to welcoming them and hopefully, to welcoming you again one day in future.

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Reviewed 27 January 2019 via mobile

Very nice, well equipped villas with own pool between a canal and the river. Service is great! Beach is in walking distance, city center by tuktuk. Prices for food and beverages are in $ and upscale. Very good breakfast - try the wood apple juice.

Date of stay: January 2019
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
1  Thank Thomas F
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mark N, Owner at Waterland, responded to this reviewResponded 28 January 2019

Thank you for reviewing your stay and for touching on so many elements including the beauty, the great service, the villas, the private pools, the setting, and the proximity to the ocean. Thanks too for noting the excellence of the meals and that the upscale meals.

We 're glad you liked the woodapple juice. The color is not the most beautiful, but the taste is remarkable. We are fortunate to be able to serve a number of other fresh juices made from exotic fruits including pineapple, passion fruit, and soursop. The tamarind juice we serve as a welcome drink also has quite a fan base.

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