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“Unbelievable location, nice rooms, a couple of issues”

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98 Acres Resort and Spa
Ranked #1 of 11 Hotels in Ella
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 7 February 2013

The view here is breathtaking - the rooms - built in individual buildings with 1 room upstairs and 1 downstairs - cling to the edge of the hill with balconies overlooking an incredible vista, with tea plantations and swooping swallows below.

We saw a deluxe room - extremely cool - but stayed in a standard room which was also very nice (you get the same view!). Bed was good, balcony lovely, bathroom is nice also - although water does sort of go everywhere when you shower. Because we were upstairs we also had a great vaulted ceiling which was really cool.

They have put in mosquito nets too now (on a nice wooden frame) and I'm certainly glad they did, as there are a *lot* of moths at nighttime. This didn't bother us really, but if you're freaked out by moths you won't enjoy it much.

For the price, it's not quite perfect - the finish of everything isn't 100% great, and they need to keep on top of maintenance. When we stayed I would say it was fine, but people's standards/expectations differ, especially at this price.

We turned up unexpectedly and needed a baby cot - which they did not have. They did manage to get hold of one (from where I don't know) but it was probably about 20 years old, and really only suitable for a small baby (which luckily, our toddler is). Don't think they're set up for small children really, although all the staff were lovely with her.

Dinner is up on the top of the hill, through a lovely lit path in the tea plantation. There is an issue here, in that Ella is high and is consequently a bit chilly in the evenings. The restaurant is very stylish but built right on top of a hill and with open sides - so if there's any wind (which there was) it's pretty uncomfortable up there (which is was). They could do with sorting it really - not a relaxing place to chill out. Food was good and reasonably priced.

It's in spitting distance of Little Adam's Peak but a bit of a distance from Ella town, so you'd need to get transportation in/out probably.

BUT, for any negativity, I have never stayed in a more spectacular or memorable location.

  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled with family
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Thank Didsbury_Ryder
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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1,050 - 1,056 of 1,430 reviews

Reviewed 6 February 2013

A USD150 destination masquerading as a USD500 resort. Very well trained staff and a wonderful setting. Eco friendly etc etc it is just a great opportunity to insert some very affordable luxury into your Sri Lankan holiday in the most beautiful village on the tourist trail.

  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Tony M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 February 2013

This small hotel is quiet and in a stunning location set on a hillside within 98 acres of tea plantation. Our accommodation was a two story stilted bungalow. Our room was basic, comfortable, eco style with hand made furniture, the only complaint we have is about the curtains and blinds which needed attention and made the property look scruffy. Food was taken in the open sided restaurant which was very good and excellent value for money. Our waiter was very attentive and we were visited at each meal time by the chef who sought feedback from guests on the quality of food. One suggsetion I would make is take a jumper for the evening as it can get chilly in this hill country.

My wife and myself are in the hospitality business and would recommend this location for your stay in this area.

  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank bucklehouse
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 February 2013

stayed at 98 in a weekend with few friends and it was awesome... unbeatable atmosphere and very friendly service by the staff..
wake up looking at misty mountains - sit out in the balcony n be peaceful with yourself..
i luved where the restaurent is situated n food was really good..
a must place to be n enjoy the every second of it..
thank you 98 acres staff n management for making our stay a memorable one..

  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled with friends
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Thank ranGa_illeperuma
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 January 2013

The website offered a lot of promise and we were not put off by a few negative reviews on TripAdvisor. However we weren't overwhelmed by our experience at 98 Acres even though it was quite alright and reasonably comfortable.

The view is one of the biggest sellers of this place. Yes and it is truly stunning. We saw it on our first day there as soon as we landed. We stayed for 3 nights there and after that 1st day the rain and the mist ensured that we didn't see the view again. The mist and the weather is no fault of the hotel, but it is something that you should keep in mind and remember that on some days you will be completely stuck indoors surrounded by rain and mist.

The property itself is wonderful. The setting in which the rooms / chalets are located with the tea bushes and flower gardens surrounding it is truly great. In the night a deep mist sets in making the whole place quite romantic.

The two things that really disappointed us were the rooms and the food.

The problem with the rooms is inconsistency. Since we went in quite a large group we noticed that some of the rooms were very nice while others weren't. The rooms in the far corner of the hotel are not as large as the others. Also the rooms on the lower floor feel significantly smaller than the upper rooms. The main reason for this is the low roof in comparison with the high roof in the upper floor rooms.

However one significant problem in all rooms was the bathrooms. The bathrooms retain a lot of dampness. When you get up in the morning the the whole bathroom floor is completely damp. Using a consistently damp bathroom is not a very pleasant experience. Other TripAdvisor reviewers had mentioned this and I totally agree with them. In some rooms to make matters worse the shower partition is so small that the whole bathroom gets wet whenever you have a shower.

Now to the next disappointment - the food. The options available for selection is extremely limited. There is little or no variety. Some items are repeated on the menu on consecutive days. Having a limited menu is fine as long as the food tastes great. This was not the case here. I found the dinner I had on all 3 days to be quite bland and lacking in flavour even though the soup and starter on some days were quite good. Breakfast is the same every single day with absolutely no variety. We had lunch out in the Ella or Bandarawela town and enjoyed the food in smaller places much more.

This place is much more suited to couples looking out for a romantic vacation with limited activity. You certainly can kick back and relax. For large family getaways there are much more options offering greater value in the area.

Another thing to keep in mind is that driver accommodation is not provided. So you will have find a suitable place for them to stay.

I would have rated this place higher if not for the poor quality of food and the very damp bathroom which seem to be common problems faced by many TripAdvisor reviewers.

Room Tip: If you do travel here always ask for rooms on the upper floor.
  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled with family
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1  Thank dark_horse_sl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
98acres, Owner at 98 Acres Resort and Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 1 February 2013

Ayubowan! Thanks a lot for your comments and suggestions.
We are truly sorry if we did not serve up to your expectations. At 98 acres we always welcome constructive criticism as they help to learn form our mistakes and provide a better service to our future guests.
But unfortunately I can not agree with some of your comments. We had a detailed investigation into your issues.
First of all we DO provide everything that we have mentioned on our website. All the pictures and the facilities mentioned there is 100% accurate so your implication of this issue is incorrect and will mislead our future clients.
And I assure you that the room size of both upper floor and lower floor is equal. And we have two room types. Standard and deluxe. We have six deluxe rooms and three of them have bath tubs in them. That is also mentioned on our web and the rooms are booked on first come first serve basis and as the guests preference.
And there are separate chargers for both standard and deluxe.

And we are truly sorry if you were not satisfied with our food. I had a chat with my chef and had a look at the menus given to your group. If the food and beverage were not to your satisfaction for any reason you could have brought it to the attention of our F&B manger or the chef on the first day itself. Our chef or the F&B manager always come to the table after a meal and ask for comments and suggestions. But I did not find any record on any comments. We are always prepared to amend the set menus according to the guests preference if they are not happy with anything.

You have several options for breakfast. Sri Lankan or western. On sri lankan menu we have different items and curries. We always ask for your preference the day before. But in this case you have ordered the same breakfast for all three days. We thought thats what you required and what you liked. We did not have any option but to give you what you ordered.

The dampness of the bathroom is something that we are working on. I know few people have mentioned that and we are trying our best to bring up some solutions. This only happens in few rooms and in very wet conditions and its also a bit rare. But we are doing our best we can to over come this issue. Our occupancy is very high so we cannot release these rooms for this upgrade. Anyways, thanks again for bringing this to our attention.

We do not provide driver accommodation but we do provide a list of guest houses and contacts very near by to our resort so the drivers can easily find them and have a good night sleep.

Once again on behalf of all my staff members, I sincerely apologies for all the inconveniences caused during your stay with us..

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Reviewed 22 January 2013

Wow, arriving down via Kandy and in to Ella and stay at this resort, did not have any expectations to have the chance of staying at such a place. Ideal my family enjoyed it was not what i expected but way above what I had expected. Yes, the morning and evening tea in open area was amazing. You do feel relaxed after traveling and visiting many surrounding places. For couple ideal location for a few days to relax and reminiscence. Superlink Tours thank you for offering this location, its not what you could get in Singapore with a difference.

  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled with family
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Thank Derreck B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 January 2013 via mobile

A very beautiful resort with a breathtaking view,nicely designed cottages. Decent and well trained crew,restaurant on the top of the mountain with a welcoming mountain breeze,,ieal place to forget all the city life headches,we enjoyed every minute of our stay.

  • Stayed: January 2013
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Thank exploringlobe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about 98 Acres Resort and Spa

Address: Passara Rd | Uva Greenland Estate, Ella 90090, Sri Lanka
Phone Number:
Region: Sri Lanka > Uva Province > Ella
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 11 Hotels in Ella
Price Range: £159 - £170 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — 98 Acres Resort and Spa 4.5*
Number of rooms: 28
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Luxury, Eco Friendly Boutique Resort built in a 98 acre tea estate with panoramic views.....12 villa type rooms, Large swimming pool, Restaurant serving Western and Sri Lankan food, Specialty tea menu, Heli Pad, Wifi Access, Bikes for Rent, Hiking and Biking Facilities, Wonderful Treks and Right in front of Ella's Main Attraction - Little Adams Peak. We do not provide Driver / Guides Accommodation but we are happy to provide you with contact numbers and information of guest houses / hotels in a very close proximity to the resort. ... more   less 
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