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“Perfect holiday base”

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Hotel Mermaid & Club
Ranked #2 of 11 Hotels in Kalutara
Certificate of Excellence
Shaldon, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
649 reviews
99 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 261 helpful votes
“Perfect holiday base”
Reviewed 17 December 2011

Chose to go to Sri Lanka this year rather than our usual Goa as we picked up nasty salmonella in Calangute last year. Everything at the Mermaid spotless and well organised and the whole country much cleaner. Our room was lovely and overlooked the pool and was close to all amenities - felt quite safe there. Staff extremely helpful and pleasant everywhere although bar got a bit crowded sometimes as did the buffet and they certainly were very attentive when they knew it was near your departure date. Evenings could get a bit boring with same old entertainment and no decent restaurants nearby (except the Paradise along the beach) for a change. Food a bit samey but always a great variety and tasty and fresh although we suspect they used the leftovers from each meal for the next - recycling at its best. Local drinks were fine although wine cost a bit. Massages were excellent - the head neck and shoulders we had almost daily were half the price of UK. Internet access difficult - just one small computer in the office and no wi-fi which nowadays is a must. Nothing was too much trouble and we would highly recommend this hotel - probably more fun if you went in a group. Kalutara very busy market town but is ideally situated for trips to the Temples in the north and the Animal Parks in the south. The Beach Boys are bona fida tour guides only trying to make a living. We had some fabulous trips with one of them - Indi de Silva and his driver Bala and in fact he looked after us splendidly throughout our whole holiday even inviting us to his home for lunch - thank you Indi!.The hotel and travel company try to dissuade you from using them but everyone who used them had a good time as far as I know. We wanted to do the trips on our own so we could dictate the pace etc and even though the travel companies do this they charge you for the pleasure and you follow a set route. I would particularly recommend the the trip to Kandy and Sigiriya - next time we will do Polonnaruwa and Dambula. The highlight for me was the safari at Yala and we also thoroughly enjoyed the Botanical Gardens (try and get Pali for your guide - brilliant) and the lake at Kandy. Even the culture show was far better than we thought and you get a drink as well. The Temple of the Tooth is an experience all on its own!!! Also next time we might just scale Sigiriya to the top - bit rickety at the moment! (Yes us as well as the spiral staircase). We booked with Mercury Direct who were excellent although we travelled on Gulf who were OK but I was amazed that they fed you asap and then nothing after that - no cup of tea or anything unless you asked for it - not really on for two 7 hour journeys (we changed at Bahrain). As for gems then this is your place. Moonlight Gems just outside the gates - with the charming Lal and Kumara and their Dad. We bought a fabulous 5 sapphire ring for my Xmas present and a Ruby guard ring for my Wedding Anniversary present next year - both exquisitely handmade - you even get to see it being made. They put a semi precious stone in my husband's coptic cross which is in fact his wedding ring re-worked. (They laughed at this but it was always too wide - as was mine and I shall be taking the earrings I had made out of it to be reworked by them next time). He is very pleased with it. Prices reasonable and you get to choose whatever you want - fab. They also made us a couple of silver necklaces for the girls in our family - their names in Sinhalese and adorned with their birthstones. Thanks Boys. Yes if you want a pleasant clean comfortable small and intimate hotel then this is for you - far better than the large impersonal conglomerates we feel. A mixture of English German and Russians with a few other nationalities thrown in appeared to frequent this place. If you are a sun lover then it is ideal - wall to wall sunbathing all day (except when it rains) The beach and sea are turbulent I would say but may be calmer at other times of the year. I have tried to be honest and relate the facts as we experienced them.

Room Tip: All rooms seemed good to me. I looked at the Executive rooms but to be quite honest they didn't...
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  • Stayed November 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
6 Thank shish57
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Dilip S, General Manager at Hotel Mermaid & Club, responded to this review, 29 December 2011
We thank the reviewer for sharing their holiday experience at Mermaid Hotel & Club and the excellent comments made about the hotel during their stay.

We are pleased to know that they have enjoyed the Spa treatments and the comment made of
our staff.

Thank you for making such favourable comments.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (417)
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English first
London, United Kingdom
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 December 2011

My wife and I just spent 2 weeks in Sri Lanka and stayed at the Mermaid. We can really only echo everyone else's reviews here; the hotel was brilliant, exceptional in every way. Even though its only a 3 star rated hotel, the service provided by the staff here is most defintely 5*.

The rooms are clean and large (try and get a room on either the 2nd or 3rd floors and towards the beach) and cleaned twice a day. A mini safe is provided for free to keep your valuables and the bed is fairly comfortable.

The staff at this hotel are what makes the place so special. They provide exceptional service and are very friendly and accommodating to all your needs. Specials thanks to Chamal, Upali, Sudeep, Chamara, Chaminda, Suji and Nishan who were all great to talk to and really genuine guys.

We did a 5 day tour with Suresh of Suresh Tours, who is easily found on the beach. He was absolutely brilliant in arranging the tour for us along with Nishan who also is one of the beachboys. The tour itself was amazing, we went to Sigiriya Rock, Kandy, Dambulla, Nuwara Eliya, trekking on the Horton Plains and finally climbed Adam's Peak. We had a wonderful tour and everything was sorted by Suresh to our satisfaction.

In summary, we had a wonderful time in Sri Lanka, the people are so friendly and it is a brilliant country, one of our best holidays and we will definitely be going back sometime very soon!

  • Stayed November 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
8 Thank hiteshjivani
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
myfacebook, Sales & Marketing Manager at Hotel Mermaid & Club, responded to this review, 13 December 2011
We thank the reviewer for sharing their holiday experience at Mermaid Hotel & Club and the excellent comments made about the hotel.

We are delighted to hear about the special comments made about our food and our staff.

Thank you for making such favorable comments.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sheffield, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
23 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 December 2011

Had a brilliant time here. All the staff were friendly and couldn't do enough for you. Many thanks to Dilwani in the restaurant, nothing was too much trouble for her she really looked after us. The food was varied and plentiful in the restaurant you were spoilt for choice. (The fish fingers in the snack room of an afternoon were delicious !) The spa centre was so peaceful and the massages were wonderful.The rooms were clean and well maintained and again nothing was too much trouble for the staff who looked after them. We would visit again.

Room Tip: Good views from the 3rd floor, no lifts but stairs not too onerous.
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  • Stayed September 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
4 Thank ghlil
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
myfacebook, Sales & Marketing Manager at Hotel Mermaid & Club, responded to this review, 13 December 2011
We thank the reviewer for sharing their holiday experience at Mermaid Hotel & Club and the excellent comments made about the hotel.

We are delighted to hear about the special comments made about our food and our staff. We are pleased to note that the reviewer experienced our spa facility and enjoyed the treatments.

Thank you for making such favorable comments.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
South West England, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
65 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 62 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 December 2011

We stayed for 7 nights and moved on this morning to negumbo. The mermaid is a really great hotel. the level of service is more 4 or 5 star, staff were so helpfull and always their when needed. We cant name one member of staff above the others because all were just great. The food was the best buffet style meals we have had, plenty of choice and everything looking so good to eat. We also noted that when the restaurant was closed the staff were cleaning all the time. This hotel was very clean throughout. The boys who made up the room always left flowers on the bed. What we really liked though was all the time it was like being in a smile hotel. not once did we see moody member of staff. We have never done A I before but again the staff worked hard to make sure everyone had drinks when they wanted. We got friendly with a great group of people and so altogether we had a great time. Steve and Chris, I hope you made your flight. !!!!!Thankyou to the great staff and management of the Mermaid.
Whilst their if you get the chance do go on a train journey. we went to Bentota (the station isnt called that) and for 80 rupees each had a lovely day out. We didnt do any trips we are more for doing things ourselves so dont know how good they were.
While you are staying try and walk along the little road behind the hotel were you will stop and speak with the locals. perhaps take some sweets for the children, they also ask if you have pencils for school. If you can go and have a drink or snack in the banboo bar just a little walk from the hotel. the family are so friendly.

  • Stayed November 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
8 Thank 1236Holidaysaregreat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Manchester, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 November 2011

The staff are excellent, very friendly and attentive. Food was excellent too and the public areas are very clean. I too can recommend Suresh tours, when you see him on the beach and he says to you that he has a tour company you thinl 'yeah right'! My initial perception was wrong and he is a good tour operator.

  • Stayed November 2011, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
5 Thank Stephen831
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
myfacebook, Sales & Marketing Manager at Hotel Mermaid & Club, responded to this review, 13 December 2011
We thank the reviewer for sharing their holiday experience at Mermaid Hotel & Club and the excellent comments made about the hotel.

We are delighted to hear about the special comments made about our food and our staff.

Thank you for making such favorable comments.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Manchester, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 November 2011

Just returned from a fantastic 10 nights at this hotel. The facilities and staff were perfect and after several Yoga sessions with Shivantha I feel a need to take Yoga up over here. The food was always good and despite some rain here and there the holiday was a total success. The staff all seemed to get on really well, with no hankering for tips. Well done to all management and staff for a clean happy hotel. Sue and Anne will be coming back!! And hey, all the guests were brilliant too.

Room Tip: Rooms towards the beach are quieter.
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  • Stayed November 2011, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank sue l
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
myfacebook, Sales & Marketing Manager at Hotel Mermaid & Club, responded to this review, 13 December 2011
We thank the reviewer for sharing their holiday experience at Mermaid Hotel & Club and the excellent comments made about the hotel.

We are delighted to hear about the special comments made about our food and our staff.

Thank you for making such favorable comments.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sussex
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 November 2011

Once again another wonderful holiday at the Mermaid.
Having returned to this hotel again for the sixth time it was nice to see the small but significant improvements that have been made, for example the tea and coffee making facilities in your room also the shower gel and shampoo that is now provided.
If you enjoy games there's always something to do, volley ball, cricket, boules, table tennis, water aerobics every morning and for the less energetic croquet. The animators do a great job, just like the rest of the staff, nothing is too much trouble.
It really is more of an adult hotel as there’s nothing much for children to do but then again you don’t see many western children in Sri Lanka. So maybe all the hotels are the same.
We had a fabulous two weeks the weather was extremely hot in the day though through the second week it rained most evenings but this was nice as it helped to cool it down to about 26 degrees!
The entertainment is poor but this leads you to talk with other guests from various parts of the world. I can honestly say every guest except one (Purple Ronnie)were great and we do hope our paths cross again.
The food is outstanding for a buffet, plenty of choice, tastes great and always well presented.
For trips look for Tillan on the beach, always good value for money and nothing is too much trouble, a lovely lad.
Try out the Moonlight jewellers outside next to the hotel good quality at a great price.
This hotel may only be rated as 3 star but the management and staff treat you like 5 star guests.
Special thanks to the trio from Scarborough, Gavin and Two legs and the party from Bedford and Dubai we loved your company and of course to the manager and all the staff that made our stay so enjoyable,
A warm and friendly hotel. Roll on next year.

  • Stayed November 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
8 Thank juniper53
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
myfacebook, Sales & Marketing Manager at Hotel Mermaid & Club, responded to this review, 13 December 2011
We are pleased note that our reviewer experienced an enjoyable holiday at Mermaid Hotel & Club for the 6th time.

We thank the reviewer for sharing their holiday experience and making such favorable comments.

Thank you
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel Mermaid & Club

Property: Hotel Mermaid & Club
Address: Mahawaskaduwa, Kalutara 12000, Sri Lanka
Region: Sri Lanka > Western Province > Kalutara
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Spa Hotel in Kalutara
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Kalutara
#1 Romantic Hotel in Kalutara
#1 Family Hotel in Kalutara
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Hotel Mermaid & Club 3.5*
Number of rooms: 81
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Mermaid Hotel & Club lies on the golden sands of Mahawaskaduwa; a cosy fishing village in the city of Kalutara which is of religious significance, just 24 miles south of Colombo and 45 miles from the International airport. It is cleverly nestled in a vast coconut grove along a stretch of golden, sandy beach; a perfect get-away for sun, sand and sea lovers. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hotel Mermaid And Club
Resort All Inclusive Mermaid
Mermaid Hotel Sri Lanka
Hotel Mermaid & Club Sri Lanka/Kalutara

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