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“Fantastic location only!”
Review of Hotel Elephant Bay

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Hotel Elephant Bay
Ranked #4 of 12 Pinnawala B&B and Inns
Reviewed 11 November 2012 via mobile

We spent 3 nights in this place and I have to say that it wasn't too impressed! The rooms are big but dirty especially the bathroom, the food is expensive considering the Sri Lanka average and not fresh, only one of the waiters was really nice the rest of the staff was unfriendly and unhelpful. Pinnawala is a very small village and it is far away from everything. If you need to move around don't ask for assistance to the staff at the hotel! They will find for you only extremely expensive drivers! Outside the hotel there are always tuk tuk available to take you everywhere you like including Kandy which is about one an a half hour away for very small money compare to the hotel staff! The plus point for this place is the location! You can see the elephants every day coming for a bath in the river right outside the hotel! The elephant orphanage is just across the road from the hotel and it is a must to see! There are other hotels around but I cannot say anything because I did not stay in them! Overall you can stay in this place but just don't expect too much!

  • Stayed: November 2012
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2  Thank Leopoldothesheep
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 5 November 2012

The entrance to Elephant Bay Hotel is in a little lane just off the main road, a 10 minute or 150 LKR tuk-tuk ride from Rambukkana train station. I had booked a room online, as I knew I’d be arriving at night.

The hotel staff was only too happy to speak with my tuk-tuk driver in Sinhalese and give him directions, even though it was 11pm and the majority sleep early and rise early on this island. The receptionist was kind enough to ask if I’d like something to drink, even though the kitchen was shut. My room (~6000 LKR a night) was fairly big, air-conditioned and high enough to provide a nice view of the river down below. The property is literally on the banks of the river the elephants are brought to bathe in.

The sheets were clean, towels fresh and shower hot. In the morning a 2-minute walk brought me to the Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage. The buffet lunch back at the hotel’s open-air restaurant wasn’t great but to be able to sit at my table eating and sipping on Sri Lankan coffee while gazing at the pachyderms frolicking in the river, kept a smile on my face.

  • Stayed: October 2012, travelled solo
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Thank TravelJunkie_BabuLee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 November 2012

Stayed here for one night. The staff are really friendly and hospitable. It is very quiet though and nightlife is non-existent - but this applies with Pinnawala in general. You basically only go there to see the elephants. Hotel has got amazing views though and it is jut one-minute walk from the Elephant Orphanage gate. Food is surprisingly good.

  • Stayed: October 2012, travelled with friends
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1  Thank Alex H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 October 2012

What works in favor of hotel elephant bay is the location, make sure you get the room with the balconies overlooking the river and you can see the elephants, The hotel staff are friendly. However the hotel needs to be spruced up. In our case, the bedsheets were real old and a bad odour was coming from the toilet. When we complained, they quickly sent a helper who fixed the smell (by pouring some chemical) and changed the sheets with some which were a little better but still looked real old and used. The towels were old and we had to call to get some very basic toiletries. The food in the attached restaurant was good (it was not oily or spicy).

Room Tip: Room with balcony overlooking the river
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  • Stayed: October 2012, travelled with family
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Thank pssrini
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 September 2012

When arriving at the hotel the views were amazing elephants bathing painting a perfect picture, after being taken to our rooms we felt slightly uncomfortable as our "suite" was filled with ants bathroom was filthy and beds and towels were also Pretty grim! Food was average but staff were lovely...but the Experiance of watching the elephants was fab!!!

  • Stayed: September 2012
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Thank Stephcoppel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 September 2012

We stayed here for one night to further our opportunities of seeing the elephants from Pinnewala. Despite other reviews I have read we found the room clean and comfortable and had fresh linen and a hot shower. The real selling point for the hotel however is the view from the room which we had which looked over a truly stunning river and into the jungle, with the occasional elephant from other trainers coming into view. The manager also encouraged us to wade across the river and shouted directions as we picked our way across which was a lot of fun.

Overall, the hotel is probably not worth its 3 1/2 star rating as far as facilities are concerned but it makes up for it with a great view of the elephants during both bathing times and we thorougly enjoyed ourselves.

Room Tip: River view rooms are the only ones worth getting!
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  • Stayed: August 2012, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank MATT W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 August 2012

I bought this volunteering package from a travel agent in uk . Sri Lanka, all volunteers working with the Pinnawala elephant conservation project will stay in either a volunteer bungalow or a volunteer jungle house. But this is the first time I have seen hotel ELEPHANT BAY giving helping hand with the orphanage to provide unique package .You will share a room with another volunteer and enjoy communal living spaces with standard deluxe aircon room , bathrooms with western-style toilets, showers, living spaces and a spacious restaurant . Volunteers will be provided with clean linens, towels and a no mosquito net is needed . The hotel has an on-site restaurant where volunteers will receive 3 local and western meals a day. The restaurant also has a private volunteer lounge.
It is personally wonderful experience to work with the semi wild elephants and spend your entire getaway in 2 star hotel nearby
TIPS : highly Recommend

Room Tip: river view rooms available
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  • Stayed: August 2012, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank ryondell
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel Elephant Bay

Address: Hotel Elephant Bay Road, Pinnawala, Sri Lanka
Region: Sri Lanka > Sabaragamuwa Province > Pinnawala
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 12 B&Bs / Inns in Pinnawala
Price Range: £23 - £44 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:2 star — Hotel Elephant Bay 2*
Number of rooms: 14
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located in the heart of Pinnawala, Hotel Elephant Bay is right across from the famous elephant orphanage. It provides rooms with large private balconies and spectacular views of Ma Oya River.Rooms are bright and airy, with simple decor and furnishings. They feature a flat-screen cable TV, a tea/coffee maker and private bathroom facilities.Guests can enjoy leisurely strolls in the tropical garden or make use of the hotel’s sun terrace. The Elephant Bay Hotel offers bike rental facilities for guests’ convenience. Various activities like hiking and fishing are available.Ivory Inn Restaurant serves international dishes. Room service is provided.The Elephant Bay Hotel is a 70-minute drive from Bandaranaike International Airport and a 2-hour drive from Colombo. It is an easy drive to cities like Kandy and Nuwara Eliya. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hotel Elephant Bay Sri Lanka/Pinnawala

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