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Travel Blogs from Colombo
... still looked fairly much like the main character from Jethro Tull's excellent album Aqualung which I am listening to as I compose this tip. Still, it would have to do as it was the best I had.
I turned up in good time as it is impolite to keep a lady waiting and the lunacy of the Galle Road traffic is always unpredictable, and then I was faced with my first problem. Treshi had told me to meet her at the hotel but it is absolutely huge. ...
... sounds like complete gibberish, I apologise but I know some of my readers will get it and I do recommend you read some of the early Discworld books.
After about 90 minutes or so, I was approached (along with the other half dozen or so bereft travellers) by a very personable young man with good English, winkle picker shoes and a totally improbable hairstyle who asked me a couple of questions and then directed me to the baggage handling desk which was run ...
... little tuks tuks darting in and out of the traffic, old buses with beautiful curtains at the windows and all kinds of colours and buildings and sunshiness :) Our hostel (City Beds - cheapest in colombo) was so lovely. We were met by a young guy who booked us in and loved that he said 'and Bobs your uncle' when he had finished! The sweetest friendliest people work there and instantly felt homely. Our window overlooked a train ...
... people, who for the most part seem more honest and welcoming than most other places I've been in Asia, if not all of it.
It is a shame that my time got cut short because it was shaping up to be pretty special. I had plans to catch the bus down to the beach at Galle, a few hours away to the south. Best of all was my plan to approach one of the tuk-tuk drivers and ask them to teach me how to drive it for a few minutes, getting a bit ...
... get off and go swimming/surfing for most of the journey. After about three and a half hours we arrived in Mirissa and checked into our BnB which was very nice. They owner had lived in the UK for a bit and was sporting a fairly new Liverpool FC shirt. he was a nice guy, probably about my age, and was very happyntonhave some english people staying, after checking in we dumped our bags and headed for the beach as everyone was pretty keen on having a swim. Ciara and I ...
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- Swimming pool
- Room service
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TravelPod Member ReviewsHilton Colombo
i stayed at the hilton due to all the hotels in colombo being full due to the ashcloud drama when all flights over europe were grounded,i asked for a single room,they gave me a 2 bed suite with 2 on suite bathrooms,the room was on the 18th floor with great views of the city,it was massive with wifi complimentry wine snacks fruir newspapers,they only charged me for a single room as all single rooms were full,the food was great nice staff,good bar,really enjoyed my stay here...
This review is the subjective opinion of a TravelPod member and not of TravelPod.com.
Historical Traveler Reviews Hilton Colombo
Nice hotel and friendly staff
I was a bit apprehensive prior to my arrival at the hotel as I recieved an unfriendly response from the reservations staff on more than 1 occassion. However on arrival, I was pleasantly surprised by the excellent attitude of the staff. I was checked in at the HHonors desk and upgraded to a suite room. I was offered a cool limejuice drink as well while my check in was processed. I had a suite room which consisted of a separate lving room and bedroom with 1 bathroom. The room appeared a bit worn out and outdated but nevertheless comfortable and efficient. The staff were very helful and smiling always. The buffet breakfast had an enormous spread and quality of food was good. The lobby was bright and spacious and the hotle had a very nice garden. Overall I was very happy with the servise offered and can easily consider it as the best option to stay while in Colombo
Friendliest hotel I've ever stayed in
I came to Colombo for a conference. Stayed at the Hilton 1 nite then went up country for 12 and then returned to the Hilton for 7 nites. When I returned to the Hilton after 12 days, I was greeted by several staff by name - after being away 12 days!!! Everyone at the hotel always smiled and always greeted me. The greeter at breakfast always welcomed me as Mr. Steve. It seemed as if everyone was interested in my trip up country. I shared photos with many staff and everyone showed enthusiasm. Sri Lankan people are friendly - but the folks at the Hilton really made me feel at home. It was truly the best hotel experience I've had in all my long years traveling. I am simply amazed at how many people remembered my name.
The breakfast buffet - included in my room rate was superb - western - eastern food - fruit juices - yoghurts - fruits - muesli - hoppers - eggs. I ate at the Italian, Sri Lankan, Japanese, restaurants - all very good and took advantage of the half-price happy hours in the lounge. The gym is very well equipped and open long hours. My room was clean - quiet - cool - and kept immaculate.
For a comfortable and uber-friendly hotel - I'd say the Hilton is a great choice. I certainly will go back.
Service was awful
At present I live in India and my job takes me all over the world. I was recently in Sri Lanka for meetings at HQ and was put into the Colombo Hilton for my weeks stay. Until the day I left, it took the staff each morning over a half an hour to get my coffee. I would repeatedly have to ask for it and each server would go away saying they would get it. When it would finally come, it was always 'someone elses' fault the delayed happened. Also, if I decided to eat the buffet for lunch or dinner, each time I would get up to get something different from the buffet - I would return to a completely cleared table. Anything I would leave half eaten was gone. Another complaint I have/had was the IT person installing my internet service. The guy was a crook. He was obviously wanting money to be paid to him and in return, he promised me free service for a day. When I reported this to the front desk, they appeared shock but then called back some time later to say the IT person was confused with the room he was in. The manager, or whoever I spoke to, said the IT person was suppose to give free internet service to a room close to ours. I reminded the man that the IT person was insistent that I keep the deal quiet. If, in fact, the free service was legit, why was he making such a big deal about it being kept quiet? No comment on the other end.
I would just beware. I travel so much and see so much corruption in these institutions that I am leery. If I were a holiday maker who did not travel much - this would be a major disappointment to me.
Good value for money
I spent 4 nights at the Hilton at the end of October. The deluxe room I had was well maintained and of a decent size, with good internet access. It is worth requesting for an ocean-facing room instead of a harbour-facing room, as the view is better. Service levels were generally acceptable. The food was very good, and was far better compared to more luxurious hotels that I have stayed in. The Hilton's location is also good. Overall, I would strongly recommend the Hitlon, particularly for business travellers.
Beware of the Night Duty Manager
Arrived Oct 08th. at 1.30am and had to deal with the night duty manager which was one of the most unpleasant adventures we ever had in a hotel. as having HHhonours gold status we would have expected a spotless service but instead they tried to move us 3 times into already used rooms commenting it " oh, there just slept a crew captain ", or " I didn't know this room was not made up " - to be honest we couldn't believe we were at the Hilton!!! At 3.00 am
suddenly they found a room which was not used and we could find a little rest after after a 30hour trip from San Francisco.... next morning we called the general manager's office, but to be honest, the gm didn't seem to be to affected when we informed him about our nightmare experience. would really appreciate if Hilton's head office would check their own corporate quality in some of their properties more often and more intense.
Probably bst of the bunch
The room is nice and ok size for a city hotel, bit dated but maintained. Large safe in the room and a coffee and tea set up. To get to the pool is a bit of walk across the bridge but ok. plenty of choice for restaurants and the buffet presentations were exceptional (better than I have seen in most 5 star hotels!!), best chocolate pudding I have ever had. There is a Mlesna tea shop in the lobby for last minute tea purchases. The hotel taxi is a big rip off, you need to be specific and ask for a public taxi or just walk out the front of the hotel. We had laundry done and the results were very poor, had I noticed when we were there I would have demanded a refund. Overall OK. Security were present but poor in their attention to things "out of place" I did not feel that they would be on the ball when needed.
Sri Lanka has so much to offer - Go Now!
We have just returned from a 2 week break of which 1 week was spent in Sri Lanka. We had booked prior to the Tsunami and ofcourse were a little apprehensive however we knew these people would need us. We booked the Classical Tour through Kuoni which had two base hotels. The Hilton in Colombo and then Elephant Corridor near Sigiriya. We were assigned our own driver - Lal - from arrival at the airport. For 3 of us, the air conditioned people carrier was absolutely brilliant and spacious. Sri Lankan drivers are a different species so it was bliss that non of us needed to drive. First our checkin to Colombo Hilton. The hotel itself has lots to offer and is presently slowly being overhauled but not affecting residents. Before arriving in Sri Lanka we were a little apprehensive as to how the food would be - but gosh - Spoons Restaurant in the hotel will outclass many top Restaurant here in UK ... the steaks and desserts were to die for! Colombo seemed particularly humid and was a real bustling City. We did a tour of the City on our first full day- you can't beat a local person taking you to places! We then had lunch at the Galle Face Hotel which is right by the ocean - a typical British colonial place. The afternoon was then spent at the Hiltons swimming pool which was lovely and refreshing in the humid heat. Our tour returned us back to the same hotel at the end of the week. On the last evening we were booked into the Gallery Cafe - the atmosphere and ambience was gorgeous and the food again of wonderful quality ... second to non. (Without the tour we would never have know about this place - not to be missed). If you are contemplating going to Sri Lanka - please go - it was sad to see that not many tourists are having the guts to go there. The people really need you and do you know - they are the most beautiful people you would ever wish to meet - very smiley and accomodating. We did not see any devestation whilst we were there - but we spoke to many a family who had suffered lots - all the people of Sri Lanka are however suffering in some kind of way as the folk really rely so much on Tourism, through the many craft wares they sell. Many of their hotels too are going to fold if they don't get US back - thus making further unemployment. The Country has sooo much to offer other than the Beach - History/Culture - Beauty - Where elso could you stop by the roadside and drink from a King Coconut - whilst eating the biggest tenderest pineapple and munch on Cashew nuts all for a pittance - whilst watching the water buffalo in the paddy fields and kingfishers flashing by? GO NOW! YOU REALLY WON'T REGRET IT!
Food poisoning at the emperors wok!
Great hotel and very helpful staff but they totally refused to accept any responsibility when My partner and I contracted food poisoning from their chinese restaurant. we had only eaten hotel food all day and are both vegetarian and spent 2 days with vomiting and diarohea!!
not the best start to a month long trip around Sri Lanka.
Since returning the hilton have completely refused to acknowledge my complaints and have tried to put the blame on dehydration!!
Wouldn't stay there again on principle
....really quite good
comfortable hotel, a bit dated looking - apart from trendy restaurant - which was actually very very good - would definitely recommend it - so good I went twice - don't be put off by the overly "designed" look! good service throughout hotel no complaints. You need to cross on an overhead bridge to get to the pool - planting around the pool coulc be a bit more lush but pleasant enough. Room's comfortable -all in all not bad at all. ... and wonderful fresh cookies in the lobby - buy a bagful before you hit the rest of Sri Lanka - you will won't regret it! and the lobby is a bit livelier than some of the Taj - with lots of people sitting and chatting.
Lovely staff, beautiful gardens
A lovely hotel with very friendly staff and beautiful gardens and swimming pool though the pool is a fair walk along a bridge over a busy road. Ask for a room overlooking the lily pond. IF you are there don't miss the seafood restaurant in the gardens. Wonderful seafood platter with fresh lobster and crabs! Very reasonable and delicious.