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A la Colthard/Mahaweli Reach & Kandy House Hotels

Mahaweli Reach

It looks good in the phtotos: colonial ranch style house by the pool with flora and palm trees. However it’s by the Mahaweli River, the bedrooms are dark, dank and damp and we are beset by mozzies.

The lighting system – part console by the bed, part switch – is incomprehensible and with lights switched off there is no power to recharge.

It’s amazing how a hotel gets the little things wrong and in so doing infuriates guests.

To add to this we had an extremely noisy French delegation from a construction company who sang football songs till 2 in the morning, descended on the buffet like locusts and the men chuckled Les femmes into the pool with much shrieking.

It’s now wedding season too so we have had a couple of noisy wedding parties as well.

Ollie and I nipped down to the Registry Office but it was for both of it was our second time round!

What does ‘me too’ make of arranged marriages ?


Kandy House Hotel

This came well recommended. It’s a bouquet hotel in the hills.

On arrival I thought we had been invited to a smart dinner party where the host were not present.

We passed a long dining room table set for four on its own. This is where we were seated.

We were up one end and at one stage I said “Any other business?” because of its resemblance to a boardroom table!

Later I discovered there were garden tables outside. The set menu began with a fine courgette and basil soup and followed with a less inspiring stuffed chicken breast which was not dissimilar to much of the mush we have had to endure in the buffets. There was total silence in the space.

At 11000 rupees ( roughly £50) it was pretentious and expensive by Sri Lankan standards as the set menu of 5500 rupees doubles up with various taxes and service charges. It was not a great gastronomic experience.

Sri Lankan cuisine is curry based, all of the hotels favour a buffet, but after while you want to be served – not queue up for your nosh. They should take more culinary advantage of their excellent fish.

Daphne Colthard
About Daphne Colthard

After graduating at RADA but finding no roles Daphne went into magazine journalism with Good Housekeeping. Widely recognised as one of the country's leading restaurant and hotel reviewers, particularly by herself, Daphne is the author of "Bedded and Breakfasted", a light hearted chick novel and Grand Hotels DC: the Daffers Dictionary. Daphne lives in West London and is married to an investment banker Oliver. They have 2 boys Humphrey and Tarquin. More Posts