Eliyanth Udawalawa Hotel is located around a 20 minutes drive from the safari. It is located in a rather secluded area without any restaurants in the vicinity. There is a convenience store (with very limited items) around 200 metres away.
The room was spacious. Insects are to be expected in the room given the proximity to the forest- spiders, mosquitoes, houseflies etc. The mosquitoes had a good feast when I was sleeping at night.
There was a small TV monitor which had a limited choice of international channels, which included CNN and Discovery Channel.
The toilet was good- the water was hot with good water pressure.
The Wifi was extremely slow and/or not working the first day we were there. However, the second day, it worked perfectly fine.
When we first arrived, we were served with a cup of watermelon juice. All's nice and well except that they added sugar to an already sweet cup of juice.
That's still fine until we got presented with a New Year Eve's menu. There was a "special" menu just for New Year's Eve- when we asked whether they had the normal menu, they said no.
We were very surprised when we saw the NY Eve's menu. They charged 3500 rupees for the BBQ chicken set (which included toasted bread, rice, meatballs, dessert etc.) and the cheapest on the menu was 2000 rupees for BBQ sausages. By any measure, this was exorbitant by Sri Lankan standards.
Given that we had no food options in the area and did not want to starve on New Year's Eve, we decided to share one portion. Honestly, this was absolutely the worst New Year's Eve dinner I have ever had. Despite it being a "BBQ", everything on the plate was cold. The sausage which was supposed to be BBQed was cold, and so was the fried rice. They also served cheese biscuits which had softened.
At the end of the meal, we were asked what ice cream flavour we wanted. We were not served with the caramel pudding that was supposed to be part of the set and had assumed that the ice cream was a substitute. We were shocked to find out when checking out that they had charged for this. After some to and fro, they waived the charge of the ice cream.
Breakfast- definitely can be improved. Cups of watermelon juice were left untouched on the tables. Houseflies were circling around the bread. The eggs tasted weird I didn't finish them.
Although I didn't get to try their Sri Lankan dishes, they may be better off not doing Western food until they get the hang of it.
Service can definitely be improved.
The staff are friendly- but they need to be able to better communicate. When one of them asked whether we wanted any drinks at dinner, we said no. Five minutes later, he asked if we wanted any water, we said no. Ten minutes later, he put a bottle of water on our table. For breakfast, he asked what eggs we wanted, I said "sunny side up". Once again, he looked very perplexed.
The owner was the only person who could communicate fluently in English and he was willing to accept our suggestions / comments.
This place has potential, but they need to have better food and better communication.
2036/4, Walawegama, Udawalawa 70190