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Sri Gemunu Beach Resort
Ranked #6 of 29 Hotels in Unawatuna
Certificate of Excellence
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Best of Everything”
Reviewed 30 April 2012

My partner and I stayed in Sri Gemenu in February 2012. We had an awesome time. The staff were very friendly from the outset and we always felt like part of the family. Not sure what happened on DJDB's trip review (Not as good as it thinks it is)...!!! but i would go the opposite and say that they are "BETTER than they think they are". It is amazing value in a beautiful setting with people who genuinely care about the service that they are providing - AND more importantly about the community in which they live. I could not fault them on any of this from the entire time we were there (a week). I found the food far from repetitive....I found it very tasty, plentiful and appetising. There is always the choice to go elsewhere for dinner at night, so no need for complaints when other options are available.
The room was great, the view magical, the beach picture-esque, the rain refreshing, the staff attentive, the local people very sweet and unassuming......all ingredients for a perfect place to spend time....and we will definitely be back to enjoy some more of the hospitality, which was second to none, both at Sri Gemenu and in Sri Lanka in general.
A real treat to have been!

Room Tip: second floor for the view, if you can manage a staircase.
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  • Stayed February 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank SueEKiwi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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436 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (53)
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English first
London, England, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 30 April 2012

I stayed there some 16 years ago and my last visit returning after some 15 years was in Feb this year ,all i can say is that the location is tranquil its not meant to be Ibiza, dont u know! Just the sound of the waves .If u want more then go to Unawatuna or Hikadua . The buffet evening meal is tasty and all u want but if u want its no stress to look elsewhere with a tuk tuk ride .The staff are very helpfull and i cant belive for one minute the last reviewers comment about the staff sayin" im not tellin u" ask your self does this make sence ,No.The beach out front has strong rips as do many around sri lanka- its not the med! There is a sign saying 'swimming is dangerous ' ! S0 its up to u.!
Went snorkling in the lagoon and saw more sea life than when i went scuba diving.
All in all its a great base and i highly recommend it .

Room Tip: you get what u pay for all rooms are clean and fit for purpose its not a 5 star boutique hotel .
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  • Stayed February 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
1 Thank Matt F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London
Level Contributor
99 reviews
57 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 81 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 April 2012

Spent 10 days here before the cricket.

Got the airport pick up which worked fine, and didn't arrive at the hotel till 2am.

In the morning the first woman on the desk I spoke to put me off from the start. I asked whether there was a shop nearby to buy a few things, she replied, "I'm not telling you that, I'm here to promote our business". Unbelievable. I decided then and there I wouldn't spend a penny there.

There is a shop about 100 meters to the left, and the drinks are half the price of the hotel.

The food was ok, it gets a bit samey.

The beach is very dangerous, one woman got swept 50 meters out to sea in less than 5 seconds, it took the surfers 20 minutes to get her back in.

The beach with the lagoon is ok, but too shallow or also quite dangerous, never comfortable, and there is nowhere to relax except the tacky sun loungers at the hotel.

The staff are helpful but there are too many of them and you constantly feel like you're being watched.

The internet is very patchy in the cheap rooms.

Sri Lanka is a great country with amazing food and fabulous people, but you can get much better value and standard of accommodation than this place.

  • Stayed March 2012, travelled solo
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Helpful?
1 Thank DJDB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Essex
Level Contributor
56 reviews
40 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 57 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 April 2012

We booked in for two nights inbetween the test matches for a couple of days relaxation on the beach. The location is great and you have access to a natural pool for swimming. The hotel grounds also provide plenty of shade if required.

The hotel itself doesn't really add much to the surroundings however and as they insist on you having to have the dinner buffet as part of the package the food really isn't up to the standard you would expect. Indeed the al a carte lunch menu which you have to pay for we found much nicer than the dinner.

We were also allocated the incorrect room type and were misled about the difference between the two room types. We were given the cheaper room and told there was little or no difference to the deluxe. However when I later checked via the intermittent wifi I learnt that actually the better rooms had tv etc which would have been nice as you can go a bit stir crazy as the evenings are very dead and there is no atmosphere in the bar/restaurant as it is a bit big for the size of the hotel.

Overall, we had a nice time here but this was more because of the location and there were several other places which shared this location so I would try somewhere else if I went again.

Room Tip: Insist on the rooms you have booked, even if they do tell you there is no difference!
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  • Stayed March 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank Jubbsi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Berlin
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 21 April 2012

This over 30 year family-run hotel was the best place we stayed in Sri Lanka. The staff is very friendly and helpfull, but not importunatly. Very good service, clean rooms and a tranquil atmosphere. The garden is beautyful with big old tree in the middle. You can sit directly on the beach. The beach is nice, sometimes rocky.
We payed 9000 Rupies for the room with breakfast and a delicious dinner buffet.
When we come back to Sri Lanka, Sri Gemunu Guesthouse will be the first place we go.

  • Stayed April 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank Magnus K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
New York
Level Contributor
16 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 April 2012

We stayed three days here. A beautiful setting. The sound of the pounding surf drowns out the road noise on the land side. The views from the porch and eating areas are stunning. The lagoon, a 50 meter walk, provides an excellent swimming area. Very good food, very well run facility.

  • Stayed April 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank AMR1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Monterey, California
Level Contributor
16 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 April 2012

Just returned from my first visit to Sri Lanka and had a lovely week-long stay at the Sri Gemenu (April 5-13, 2012).
**** NOTE**** On our second to last day (April 11th, 2012), we were on the beach when a woman walking by asked if we spoke German or English. She said there had been a large earthquake in the Indian Ocean and there may be a tsunami. We grabbed our stuff and ran back to the hotel, not sure what to do. Aruna (the owner) was standing at the front desk as calm as could be. He assured us that all would be well. We took our personal belongings quickly and loaded into a truck, which took us about a mile or so up the road to his personal home and the pool/spa area. My friends and I chose to go to the pool area as it was just a bit farther inland. We spent about 4.5 hours in the jungle with about 15 others from our hotel. The other guests were at the owner's home. Staff from the hotel brought us tea and water and made sure we were comfortable. I was a bit worried we were not far enough inland, but Aruna calmed my fears, telling me that during the 2004 disaster, he evacuated the guests to the same place. I will ALWAYS be back to the Sri Gemenu because of this. Other friends staying at the main Unawatuna beach were told by their hotel they only needed to go to the top floor of the hotel and there was no need to move inland. Aruna and the staff at the hotel made my friends and I feel extremely safe and re-assured. I don't know that I would have felt as taken care of if I were staying at a big resort, rather than the beautiful Sri Gemenu family-run hotel. After the tsunami warning was lifted, we returned to the hotel where they made us a delicious dinner. I was surprisingly calm after this scare, and I owe it all to the lovely people at Sri Gemenu.

We were greeted at the airport by our driver and arrived at the hotel early in the morning. Our rooms were not ready, so we enjoyed breakfast outside while we waited. The location of the hotel is perfect. It is situated on a quiet beach, with two beach bars/restaurants that allow for yummy beverages and food without the hectic atmosphere found elsewhere in Unawatuna. Friends were staying on the main beach in Unawatuna and after spending a night at the bars there, we were even more happy with our decision to stay a few minutes outside of the main area at Sri Gemenu.
The food at Sri Gemenu was great- fresh fruit, fresh fruit juice, eggs and toast were served to you each morning while you watched the stilt fishermen in the lagoon. Dinner is a buffet and there was a nice selection of fish, chicken, pasta, vegetables, salads, soups and fruit to choose from. That said, I highly recommend visiting the small bar/restaurant immediately next to the hotel on the beach--- you have to make reservations 3 hours in advance in order to receive the most delicious homemade curry you will ever have! You can finish off the evening watching the waves come in, or if your lucky, a beautiful thunderstorm!
The beach was fantastic- it was not crowded and the lagoon provides safe swimming (the current is very strong, so follow the guidelines and do not go past the red flag that marks the current!). There are no loud bars playing techno music into all hours of the night (the main beach at Unawatuna has this and is not relaxing in the evening!). It is nice to visit Unawatuna and the other sights, and then return to a secluded hotel/beach. The only thing that is loud at Sri Gemenu is the sound of the waves crashing against the rocks. It lulled me to sleep every night!
The rooms were cleaned daily and it was a very comfortable stay! The hotel grounds are kept pristine. There are plenty of lounge chairs on the hotel grounds overlooking the beach, if you are in need of shade. Also, keep an eye out for the monkey(s) that visit every evening in the trees! The staff are very friendly and will know your name and your preferences for drinks/food/etc. by the end of the first day. I felt as if I were staying at someone's home, rather than a hotel!
If you are interested in taking day trips or tours, I recommend going through the hotel, as they are more personal than others and will provide the best rate for what is included.
I loved my week in paradise at the Sri Gemenu and am already looking forward to returning next year again. I cannot say enough about this hotel, especially after the way we were looked after during the tsunami scare.

  • Stayed April 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
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Helpful?
6 Thank meggo2002
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Sri Gemunu Beach Resort

Property: Sri Gemunu Beach Resort
Address: Unawatuna, Galle, Sri Lanka
Region: Sri Lanka > Southern Province > Galle > Unawatuna
Hotel Style:
#2 Romantic Hotel in Unawatuna
#4 Family Hotel in Unawatuna
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Number of rooms: 20
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Also Known As:
Sri Gemunu Beach Hotel Unawatuna

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