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“Below Par Service... Discriminating Local Tourists.. Lousy Buffet”
Review of Hotel Elephant Bay

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Hotel Elephant Bay
Ranked #4 of 12 Pinnawala B&B and Inns
Reviewed 8 November 2013

We travelled on 3rd Nov 2013 to celebrate my mom's 75th B'Day. Through Trip advisor we were told wheelchair access is available. Surprise... Surprise... The Hotel does not have wheelchair access even to Lobby.... Forget about twenty odd steps you have to take to Rooms and Elephant viewing area. Lucky enough we had 4 gents with us and managed to carry my mom in wheel chair. Both Hotel site and Trip advisor state that this hotel has Wheel chair access which is an utter lie.

Prior visiting the place we have reserved a front view table to Elephant viewing area. But by the time we arrived it was given to a bunch of foreign tourists. When we gave a piece of our mind to the manager he was kind enough to explain the tourists are brought by Tourist agents who bring repeated business and get preference (WT.. Is he stupid ?). This was enough for us to get a good measure about the place and how it operates. After some heated argument they promised to arrange few tables next to Elephant viewing area. You would assume that story ends here but the smelled of sewage due to a broken pipe.

Buffet was supposed to finish at 3:00 pm, ran out of food by 2:00 pm (They did replenish some off the dishes later but it was too late). More excuses were provided.

We booked two rooms and they were one of few decent things I found for the money I paid. Rooms were clean and had a nice view overlooking the river.

Apart from above mentioned issues the restaurant staff were friendly, polite and attentive.

Room Tip: Take any upper level room overlooking river(If you don't mind climbing few stairs)
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  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled with family
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Thank RangaKan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 12 October 2013

We stayed one night with our srilankan family the room was comfortable and clean food was very good and served hot, as I love elephants this was the best place for me to be, spent two hours watching them bathe in the river. Staff we're very efficient, would recommend this hotel and we will be staying here again next year.

  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank Jo S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 October 2013

Although more expensive than most of the places that we have stayed at in Sri Lanka, the hotel was a lovely place to stay. The rooms were spacious, clean and the beds were large and extremely comfortable. The bathrooms were also very clean and the hot shower was lovely after a very rainy day! Nice areas on balconies outside rooms - we stayed up and played cards for a bit whilst using the wifi

We had a nice meal downstairs in the restaurant - a pasta dish and 2 Lion beers came up to just under £10. We were there in quiet season so it was a little eerie being the only group in such a large restaurant, but the waiters were attentive without being annoyingly so. . Really tasty breakfast included in room rate as well. The view of the elephants bathing in the river was fantastic. There is also a little shop in the hotel with nice souvenirs for reasonable prices.

The only real thing to do around the area was the elephant orphanage so 1 night is probably enough. If you are in Sri Lanka between August-September, it might be worth making the trip up to Minneriya National Park to see the wild elephant gathering (we saw about 300!) but if you do decide to go to Pinnewala this was a very nice place to stay!

  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled with friends
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Thank lily_bell-51
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 October 2013

It was a good stay. The room was well-maintained. I chose this hotel for the 2nd night stay at Pinnawala. The food at the restaurant was nice. And it has a nice view of the elephants playing in the river.
The only attraction is the Elephant orphanage across the road and the elephants going to the river to play.
The shops closed at 4-5pm and the area is dead.
Noise from the river is not too loud but incessant and can get into the head. One night stay is more than enough. Even if a tourist is to do a day trip to Pinnawala, it is alright too. The elephants made their way to the river twice a day (mid-morning and mid-afternoon).

Room Tip: All rooms faced the river, the choice of view is yours.
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  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled solo
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Thank KIM C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 August 2013

The hotel has nice large rooms, and everything was very clean. Good view of the river from room. Breakfast area is also excellent, next to the river, and with a view of the elephants coming for a bath at 10 am. Food was ok.

  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled with family
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Thank AKSarwal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 August 2013

We, my wife and I, stayed here on the 11 of August this year for one night. We had been to Sri Lanka before about 6 years ago and had visited Pinnawala on a tour but felt like we would like to spend more time at Pinnawala so I booked 1 night bed and breakfast via agoda. When we arrived, I thought wow what a plush place and value for money at £37. The room we were given was on the second floor, no lift,and overlooked the rear entrance. A quick word with reception and we were given a 4th floor room overlooking the river, what a view ! It is really such a wonderful view and we spent until darkness fell, on the balcony. The room was very,very basic, the towels were damp and the mattress on the single beds, well, our base hotel, the Hotel mermaid and club, had thicker mattresses on the sun beds !
We went for breakfast the following morning, basement-river level to fantastic views. The breakfast, oh my, the ' hot' foods was straight from the fridge and the best I could have was a piece of toast, cold and a glass of fruit juice. The remaining offerings for breakfast was dire and when asked by a, was he a waiter ?,hotel worker whether I had enjoyed my breakfast, I said it was the worst food I've ever had. I really don't think that he understood English. Within an hour, I had brought up my so called breakfast.
To save going up to our forth floor cell, sorry room to use the toilet, I used the lobby toilet, which turned out to be a Muslim toilet, no facility apart for a hose pipe. We went to the elephant orphanage and then returned to check out. After bringing our luggage down from the forth floor to reception without assistance, the male receptionist asked did we enjoy our stay. I remember saying something like they should all be sacked ! Never, never again.

  • Stayed: August 2013
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2  Thank Wayne H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 August 2013 via mobile

Perfect location for breakfast watching elephants taking a bath in the river and visit them in orphanage.
Friendly but not too effective staff. Not bad colonial styled rooms.
In general like european 2 stars.

  • Stayed: August 2013
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Thank Dom_33333
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: £25 - £61 (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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