This was our first stop in Sri Lanka, and I was pleased that we chose the place to start our holiday.
We landed in Colombo in the afternoon and were met by our very patient driver (the plane was delayed) who was organised by Michel from the hotel. The drive was smooth with a very careful driver which, at six months pregnant, I was very grateful for. The price was also very reasonable and I would recommend using a hotel car. Michel was also particularly helpful when I needed to print out my train ticket and the internet wasn't working as he did this for me. When we left, he also provided information about our next destination, which was really appreciated. - He really is an asset to the hotel.
When we arrived at the hotel we were greeted with a lovely welcome drink and were offered a candle to light, which was a nice touch. The check-in was fast and we were shown to our room which was very nice. The bathroom was lovely and well appointed (but bring hair conditioner as they don't provide it, which seems to be common in Sri Lanka). However, I would have liked a soap dish. The view was fantastic (though we didn't see this until the next morning, which was lovely to wake up to). The one issue that we had with the room was that the air conditioning was ferocious. One night I woke up shivering and had to put a jumper on to go back to sleep as I couldn't fix it and neither could my husband, so this might need looking at.
I particularly liked the pool, which was very welcome after spending a hot afternoon wandering around beautiful Kandy.
The location,on the hill outside of Kandy, was my preference as I wanted to be somewhere quiet and calm. It is really very close and very cheap in a tuk tuk, though it is easier to get back from than to get to Kandy, unless the complimentary bus is going (which is a nice gesture). However, I believe you just have to walk a little further down the hill.
The one thing I would say about this place, and probably the reason that I did not give it full marks is that the restaurant lacked atmosphere. We ate there one evening and for breakfast. The staff were mostly very nice, with the exception of one waiter who seemed a little over formal and stuffy which seemed to be a reflection of the atmosphere. There were also very few people eating there. Again, this may be just my preference, but I didn't find it a very relaxing experience. The food was OK, though the chicken curry I ordered was really quite cold. The breakfasts were adequate. Room service was good however, both in terms of food and service.
Overall a good choice and a very pleasant stay, especially as the staff are just so lovely. - I would recommend this place for those who would like to stay somewhere with some luxuries and which is quiet and calm. It is not for those who want to be in the centre of the action, which most people probably realise from decent research anyway.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Refurbished in 2009, Hotel Tourmaline has evolved over the years to portray a resort lifestyle that caters to the discerning traveler. With painstaking attention to detail—from its elegant exterior, cuisine and ambience, the hotel is ideal for both the business as well as leisure traveler. The natural scenic beauty that surrounds the hotel creates the perfect relaxing atmosphere to help you unwind and enjoy the many modern amenities that make your stay a memorable one. ... more less
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