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“Quiet, lush, amazing staff”

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Secret Garden Villa
Ranked #19 of 31 Hotels in Unawatuna
Certificate of Excellence
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Quiet, lush, amazing staff”
Reviewed 27 October 2013

Two friends and I stayed at the Secret Garden for 6 nights in early October. Simona was nice enough to upgrade us, and we had about half of the main villa. The house is lovely in itself - you feel like you're back in time - but the verandas were great for chilling in the evening, and the daily breakfast was amazing. I'd definitely go back!

Room Tip: Our room didn't have windows but the doors opened, which made them quite airy during the day.
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  • Stayed October 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank annie m
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
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (23)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Russian first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 21 October 2013

Stayed there on the 28th and 29th September. we were made to feel like celebraties, Very helpfull staff ready to make like confortabel with a smile. My highlight of the stay was breakfast and open air toilet and showers. Just amazing. Will stay there again when ever in Unawatuna.

Room Tip: Choose the separate chalet. it is great.
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  • Stayed September 2013, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank Tushpatel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Schoonhoven, The Netherlands
Level Contributor
56 reviews
29 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 October 2013

We always compare the price we paid with the quality of the hotel. And thats why we give 3 points. The room was dark and we had bugs. We needed to get outside to go to the shower/toilet. The garden is nice but we did not go to Unawatuna for the garden! you go there for the beach. We surely had much better hotels during our trip in Sri Lanka. We do not know why this is the Top Choice in the Lonely Planet. There must be better places in Unawatuna!

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank JanPaul11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Singapore, Singapore
Level Contributor
14 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 September 2013

This was the place I was most excited about staying during my 3 week trip to Sri Lanka - I had emailed in advance of travelling - approximatley 2 months ahead. I also asked to book the yoga which I was told I could do on arrival. The yoga was also one of the key reasons for choosing Secret Garden. The garden itself is beautiful and the breakfast was the best I had during my 3 week stay in Sri lanka - the outside shower was also a nice touch! Was disappointed on arrival to be told the Yoga master had gone home - fair enough but why not tell me in my email when I booked ? However it turned out to be anything but tranquil when on our 2nd night the neighbours ( late teens early 20s ? ) decided to bang out loud music around 2am and party in the garden for about 2 hours! Not the relaxing holiday I had planned. When I tried to help the situation he advised me he was friends with the owners and on him questioning the occupancy to the lovely Sri Lankan Manager the next morning I guess this was true. I nearly said "lower since your arrival!" As they were staying another night I decided that we were not - and so went across the road to the villa which had gorgeous sea views. I have to also say the local staff who were working at Secret Garden gave he best customer service and really looked after you . Just a real shame that it was let down by the people that that owners ask to "keep an eye on things" when they are not there.... Shame really!

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank MichelleT77
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
11 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 June 2013

If you like being ripped off for dark, dank, damp, bug-infested rooms, then Secret Garden is your place. If not, avoid it at all costs. The lonely planet writer was clearly a certain type of “traveller” with a very clear agenda – do not trust him.

  • Stayed May 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
5 Thank Vincent584
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
10 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 April 2013

If you're planning a stay in Unawatuna, do not look anywhere else. This location has it all - the beach is a stone's throw away, it's centrally located near all of the town's amenities, and it's tucked away from the road in its own lush retreat. The buildings are spectacular, the grounds are pristine, and the owners and caretakers could not be more friendly. Oh yeah, and did I mention the food? The food is ridiculously good. Enjoy some under the overhang and listen to the sweet noises in the garden, or perhaps do some yoga in the dome? I had a great time exploring Unawatuna, but at the end of every day, I honestly couldn't wait to come back to the Secret Garden - it's one of those gems that you only find every once in a while, where you could just stay forever. I'm sad I had to leave, but I can say that I will definitely be returning to this place more than once. Thanks to the owners and staff for the best stay!

  • Stayed March 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank MountainTopSeaFloor
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Exeter, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
19 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 March 2013

We had a bungalow set in the tropical gardens which was beautiful and full of character. We had our own veranda and seating area, a lockable wardrobe and an ensuite with open air shower. We turned up without a booking but were treated straight away to fresh flowers and incense burning in our room. The breakfast is pricey by Sri Lankan standards but will certainly set you up for the day as the portions are very generous. It really does feel like a little sanctuary from the dusty and often busy street outside, set behind a stone wall and accessed through a little wooden door it's very peaceful and highly recommended.

Room Tip: Would definately recommend the bungalows
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  • Stayed February 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Cia1987
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 80600, Sri Lanka
Region: Sri Lanka > Southern Province > Galle District > Unawatuna
Amenities:
Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites
Hotel Style:
#13 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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