We stayed here at the last minute, so had no choice in our room allocation as we took the only remaining rooms. We were welcomed by a charming manager and her colleague, then shown to our rooms.
The first room was in the Olive Ridley block and although it was huge and tastefully designed (minimalist to the point of being spartan), I would definitely not recommend it. The traffic noise was unbearable; the sound of tuk tuks and trucks from the adjacent road kept me awake most of the night. The garden bathrooms are a wonderful idea but just add to the noise and mosquito problem. The other room that we passed in this block was even worse because everyone who entered the hotel walks past it and can see inside, especially at night. There are no curtains, just shutters and you need to climb on a chair to lock them. Some soft furnishing would add a huge amount to the decor. The padlocks are less than ideal too; a simple door key would definitely be preferable.
The second room was in the Leatherback block and although smaller was infinitely better. The garden bathroom concept worked much better here as you were further removed from the road noise. The wonderful sounds of the waves dominated the room and resulted in a perfect nights' sleep.
Our dinner was pleasant and the service was good. My only complaint was that we had to day in the corridor outside the Olive Ridley room and it was not possible to get a table large enough to seat the whole family. Fans would be useful too to minimise the number of flies. Breakfast was a totally different story. There were different staff on duty and everything seemed to be too much trouble. We asked to eat outside our Leatherback room, but they refused. They could not appear to provide the omelette that I ordered, so breakfast basically consisted of a few pieces of fruit and some toasted stale baguette.
The lap pool is lovely and the sunsets are beautiful. Galle is easily accessible from here. I have no idea why the only common indoor space has a TV in it. Granted, the rooms do not have TVs, but a shared TV for all of these rooms is a concept that really does not work. It gets particularly irritating when it is left on with nobody watching it and must make it impossible to really relax by the pool. The room would be much better utilized as a bar or quiet reading lounge.
This property has a lot of potential, and the new manager will probably make a number of changes. It's the little details that need work; the rooms need to a little less industrial and the service definitely needs an upgrade but these can easily be fixed.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Spend Time with Sea Turtles and Sparrows who visit this beautiful property Set on an improbable juxtaposition of simplicity and luxury overlooking the turquoise Indian Ocean. The Frangipani Tree is sun, sand, trees, culinary, sensuous and spiritual indulgences among Intimate, Exclusive and Elegant surroundings. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Frangipani Tree Hotel Unawatuna
- Frangipani Tree Galle
- Frangipani Tree Hotel Galle