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“Friendly and beautiful - feels like a private home”

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Secret Garden Villa
Ranked #20 of 29 Hotels in Unawatuna
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Friendly and beautiful - feels like a private home”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 25 March 2012

Secret Garden Villa is a historic colonial villa set in a beautiful tropical garden. It is near, but not directly on the beach, which makes it a quiet and very private place. The villa rooms are generous in size, all of them with an additional, furnished space on the veranda. It's like having a suite. The furnishing is extremly nice and tasteful, with beautiful colors and decoration. It could pass as the private home of an interior designer. The staff is very friendly and helpful. There is a guard all night, which made me feel safe when walking home at night. Breakfast is served on the veranda, at any time of the day as it seems. Good coffee (!), fresh fruit and eggs, all prepared at the moment. The bathrooms are special, means, they are partly open air with plants growing into it. This is a nice touch, but might not be at everyone's taste - at least not if someone is paranoid about snakes and so (havn't seen any though). Only negative is that the beautiful rooms are very humid, with that particular damp smell when the doors are closed. This is unavoidable, as the walls are old and the garden is giving a lot af shape - means it never dries out. But he beauty of the place makes more than up for it.

Room Tip: For honeymooners and romance travellers: There is a fantastic, large suite on the back side of the h...
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  • Stayed February 2012, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Ariazur
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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128 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
    73
    28
    12
    9
    6
See reviews for
13
56
8
6
Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (23)
Date | Rating
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  • English first
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English first
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 25 March 2012

After reading glowing reviews, I really wanted to go to Secret Garden, but due to the rude, arrogant and unprofessional nature of the manageress,would rather penetrate my eyeballs with pins than set foot in the place. Although i feel that the initial problems with the booking may have been due to language barrier, I dutifully followed emailed instructions to send my bank details to confirm what turned out to be a non existent booking and, after numerous attempts to make e mail contact to seek confirmation was eventually instructed to phone the manageress. What a charmer she turned out to be! like in Fawlty Towers, she 'knew nothing', yet, although unprepared to take any responsibility, was very eager to portion blame her own staff. She talked over me with a loud voice when I tried to explain my concerns and eventually slammed the phone down. I assume that the people who wrote positive reviews didn't have the pleasure of meeting her!

  • Stayed March 2012, travelled with family
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank HarryPotter947
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, Canada
Level Contributor
8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 28 February 2012

We were in the Maymoona suite for three nights at the back of the main building. I loved it. A bit "rustic" I suppose, sure, but beautiful old colonial furniture in the rooms, and a nice open-to-sky hot shower. Don't know what the bungalows are like. The room was a bit dark, sure, but so what - that's a good thing if you're trying to sleep! Plenty of nice shady bits outside to sit and read or whatever.

STAFF: two local blokes, really really nice. Super helpful and friendly and welcoming, but without too much of that horrid cringeing subservience you get in the top-end places. Didn't meet the manageress who other reviewers say is difficult.

FOOD: very nice (not served every night I think, but whatever - other places to eat nearby). I thought it was really quite good value.

LOCATION: close to everything, but peaceful and relaxing. You can hear the bread-van-tuk-tuks annoying jingles quite a bit, which is annoying, but that's probably unavoidable round there.

Room Tip: Maymoona suite v nice. Big bedroom, private shady outside eating bit, nice outside bathroom.
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  • Stayed February 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Service
Helpful?
Thank additasum
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bratislava, Slovakia
Level Contributor
19 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 February 2012

secret garden is wonderful and peaceful oasis in unawatuna...rooms are cozy and good equipped...close to beach...friendly staff...amazing garden with small auditorium...during our stay we were lucky to attend a special concert... thanks simona[owner]...

  • Stayed January 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Marian C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Viareggio
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 February 2012

secret garden is the best place to stay in Unawatuna bay.
We spent there 13 nights and we wouldn't go away from that wonderful magic garden.
The staff of the guesthouse is the best I have ever met, they are kind and became very good friends.
when we left from secret garden we really cried so much.
I miss that people and that place every day of my life.
I surely go back there again!

  • Stayed January 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank elena_castellani
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Doha, Qatar
Level Contributor
63 reviews
28 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 January 2012

We really enjoyed our stay at secret garden. The property is nice, clean, and peaceful. The location is also ideal as it is steps away from the beach. We traveled with young children and it was ideal since there was room to roam and our kids loved the outdoor shower. We were able to use the kitchen to prepare light food and snacks. The staff is nice and friendly to help make the stay enjoyable.

Room Tip: We liked the back room with the patio.
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  • Stayed December 2011, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Meredith H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 November 2011

We stayed here for 4 nights and although we had a bit of rocky start as we were not happy about one aspect of our room (that may not concern others) - Simona (the owner) rectified it and moved us to another room at a very good rate. Regardless of this hiccup we loved it there and would recommend it. The setting is superb - beautiful garden with a stream running through and fireflies in the back garden. Gorgeous rooms with fabulous bathrooms and furnished with impeccable taste (at least to me!). It feels warm and calm. The staff are an absolute delught and cannot do enough for you. It's worth spending the extra if it's a bit beyond your budget - you won't regret it.

  • Stayed November 2011, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Sejal A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Secret Garden Villa

Property: Secret Garden Villa
Address: Beach Access Road, Unawatuna, Galle 80000, Sri Lanka
Region: Sri Lanka > Southern Province > Galle > Unawatuna
Amenities:
Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites
Hotel Style:
#14 On the Beach Hotel in Unawatuna
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Secret Garden Villa 2.5*
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Secret Garden is an oasis within the lively coastal village of Unawatuna, just 20m walking distance from the beach. It boasts a 19th century Dutch-Sri Lankan Colonial Villa with bungalows and suites and a 4000sqm tropical garden. In the middle of the garden rests a large dome, offering 2 daily yoga classes, an on call Ayurvedic therapist for massage and wellness therapy as well as free space for dance, meditation and music. Our staff is courteous and warm. A large tropical breakfast is available daily at all times, and our two chefs are lovingly prepared to cook a great eastern or western meal for you on pre-order. Secret Garden provides relaxation and serenity alongside the opportunity to dive into the blue ocean of one of the country's most popular bays, experience the myth of the Rumassala Mountain and dance away at Unawatuna's many beach bars. May all be Welcome! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Secret Garden Villa Hotel Unawatuna
Secret Garden Hotel

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