Taj Samudra Hotel

, Colombo, Sri Lanka
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Taj Samudra Hotel

, Colombo
25, Galle Face Centre Road - Colombo - 3 - Sri Lanka Hotel Website | 11-244-6622
364 Traveller

Reviews - Taj Samudra Hotel

Submitted by: John in 04/06/08
  • Age Group: Under 18
  • From: United States
  • Traveller type: Young & Single
The hospitable service and the great food kept me speechless. Hats off!!!! your countries beautiful culture is reflected here itself. What else can I say...It's worth more than a visit. Keep rockin' Dudes....

Historical Traveller Reviews of Taj Samudra Hotel

’t expect a swimming pool

from LucV
The Taj Samudra in Colombo is well described in the other traveller’s comments.
I only can add that you have to make sure not to be booked in the wing next to the disco – it operates loudly till 4 – 5 am. And don’t expect a swimming pool. That will take another year!

Rude awakening!

from A TripAdvisor Member
Splendid hotel in an ideal tourist location situated on the main Galle Face Centre Road in the heart of Colombo. It's approx 40 mins to Colombo International with plenty of taxis at hand.

First impressions on arrival were 'hhhmmm nice!' Italian opulence and Rajisthani delight best describes the lobby and lounge - but as always the grass does look greener from the other side! Read on...

Although the staff were friendly and smiling, check-in took a touch too long. It felt like a check-point. Finally I was allocated a room on the 4th floor.

After an 11 hour flight to Colombo, 45 mins to the hotel and 30 mins at the check-point, I mean check-in desk - I deserved a nap. Until I was rudely awakened by an inconsiderate band! I saw red mist and requested an immediate room change.
They obliged. In my pyjamas I strolled across the hotel wings to a junior suite. A free upgrade I suppose ;-)

The following morning I realised the hotel wasn't all that kosher.
House-cleaning was spot on but the room was stale. The carpet appeared worn and furniture - best described as preserved wreckage.

The hotel food made me ill so I skipped meals but to my delight found a Pizza Hut just up the road.

I'm not a nit-picker but this is Sri Lanka and this is the best you'll get. I certainly recommend it as a stopover.

Thanks for reading. Hope it helps.

Under Hopeless Renovation

from Marylou
The Taj is a famous Indian hotel management group with some great hotels around the world...but not in Colombo. Granted we stayed there while it was under renovation (which of course we did not know until we arrived) but even after the renovation the hotel will not meet our expectations.

Initially, we were checked into an unrenovated room on the business executive floor. Upon hearing that there was renovation work, we asked for a renovated room which they kindly complied. Clearly, renovation simply meant that they re-painted the rooms and maybe changed the mattresses / linens and not much else. For example, the post renovation room had bathrooms still over 20 years old, the furniture was old and the overall workmanship was very poorly done. To make matters worse, the rooms were infested with ants! On two separate days, the elevators were not working.

Breakfast was included but served in a Chinese restaurant with unattractive ambience. The food selection was mediocre. I felt sorry for the guy making omlettes as he couldn't help scrambling the eggs.

The staff are friendly and they certainly try their best. However, they could use a bit more training. For example, they asked me to fill out a survey upon check-out. I joked with them saying that they shouldn't watch while I complete the survey. After I handed back the survey they joked 'only good service for the front desk staff?'. Out of courtesy, I changed the survey to 'excellent'. The lady actually had the nerve to ask for my signature to authenticate the amendments.

I saw other hotels in Colombo but not the rooms so I can't say if there are better choices. The TransAsia hotel seemed promising as the restaurants were excellent!

Will not stay there again

from A TripAdvisor Member
I stayed in Taj for 3 nights in September and was not happy about their services. The hotel was under renovation, so there was no swimming pool. Also, they didn't have a working voice mail system. I had to call the reception at least 5 times to hear the message because every time I called, I was either put on hold and then cut off or told that they would call back. The internet was also expensive. They didn't have a one-week option (longest was one day).

One thing that really upset me was the guy at the bookstore in the hotel. He tried to sell me a book, which cost only US$19 in the US, by over US$35 and said that the price on the book is only valid in the US. Sure, imported books are usually a little more expensive, but I didn't want to pay almost double the price. Later I found out that at another bookstore nearby, the same book was sold by US$20.

We moved to Cinamon Grand, which offered much better services and was cheaper than Taj.

Hotel under renovation

from A TripAdvisor Member
This hotel is 20 years old and currently undergoing a renovation that should have been done 10 years ago. I spent the first night in a room on the 6th floor, which has not been renovated yet. It smelled of mildew and everything was really old. I was then moved to a "renovated" room on the 1st floor - but the renovation was more or less limited to replacing the carpet with a plastic floor (to fight the smell). The GM explained to me that due to financial problems the renovation was limited. So you still get the old furniture, old fittings in the bathroom etc.. with all the problems that such old things come with - oh yes, they did put in new showerheads.
Staff was friendly, but incompetent. During the second night there was a party in the ballroom, which is located on the top floor. Usually parties here have live bands, which you can hear even on the 1st floor. The night manager promised the party would be over at 11pm, but when it was still going loud at midnight, I was moved again to another room in a side wing, where I did not hear the noise from the party. Instead, I was "entertained" by hacking noises from the renovation over the weekend. It took numerous calls to the duty manager, a meeting with the GM and the better part of Saturday to get the renovation work moved to another area of the hotel so I could concentrate on my work.
Overall I would rate my stay, the facilities and the rooms as "terrible". Due to the renovations, which will last until end of 2007, there will always be the risk of noise pollution or other inconveniences.

A Great Experience

from A TripAdvisor Member
Judy from Norway, and Jennie from Australia both enjoyed our holiday and agree that this hotel supplies a centrally located haven for the visitor.
We were shocked at the devastation the tsunami wrecked in your country and wish you all well and look forward to our next trip.
We particularly loved the Indian restaurant in the hotal and the bookshop, and the sumptuous breakfasts.
wishing you all the best.
Best wishes to everyone.

excellent but let down by smelly aircon

from Carhirer
Public areas - glamorous Raj style

Food and service - excellent and good value.

Rooms - spacious and OK but as others have complained they smelt a bit stale. I think this came from the aircon which was a pity because otherwise it was quiote a good experience.

Interesting location by Galle Face Green

Taj Samudra in a perfect location

from A TripAdvisor Member
While I was flying to Trichy/TN-state/India, for the first time I flew
via Sri lanka to have my first experience. I have booked a room
overnight at Taj Garden Airport Hotel well in advance however, upon my arrival the Taj hotel counter at the airport informed me that no room was available at the Airport hotel but a room was arranged at
Taj Samudra-Colombo. Here I will give a minus point to Taj Group
for not been able to keep their promise.

The Hotel taxi and the friendly driver took me to Taj Samudra Colombo.
The reception staff was very friendly and they have allocated me a
room on the 6th floor after completing check-in formalities quickly.

All in all, I must say that the hotel is in a good location, have nice
coffee shop and restaurants. Service personnels are friendly and
are dressed very clean. The swimming pool Ok and not so crowded.
Linens and pillows were very clean and the toilets as well.
Unfortunately the furniture and floor carpets need to be replaced
for the longer run but is within the acceptable range.

When I returned from India, again I have stayed 3 nights in the same
hotel which was booked through expedia and did work out
everything well. During 3 days, hotel taxi took me to city centre
(avoid 3-wheelers and private taxi if you are travelling with family
and valuables!! as hotel taxi is much much safer) and I had a
pleasent stay at Taj Samudra. If you like to have a nice walk through
beach side, try it in the afternoon and ensure that you return to the hotel before dark! My overall impression: very positive!

I think the 5 star rating is a mistake

from A TripAdvisor Member
I would like to agree with the 21 September reviewer - what a disappointment the Taj Samudra was. The rooms are frankly hideous with an awful smell about them. We were upgraded to the "Presidential Suite" on the 1st floor which had 4 bathrooms all of which were vile with dirty green tiles and a nasty shag pile carpet.

The only Plus points were the staff who in the main were friendly and attentive, and the food which was mediocre.

Lets pray that the Taj put some much needed money into this tired dated hotel.

Comfortable city centre refuge

from A TripAdvisor Member
Stayed at the Taj on two occasions, Dec 2003 and Jan 2004. If you are visiting Colombo for business or pleasure and want to tour the City or the shops then this is as good a base as any.
Set at the back of Galle Face Green overlooking the sea, the hotel is well situated. Hotel has a nice pool, but for the beach you need to head South from Colombo towards Mount Lavinia which is half an hour away.
Public areas are cool marble, there are three excellent restaurants (recommend the lobster in the Chinese). Rooms are comforable and the air conditioning is quiet. If you negotiate, you can get a room with breakfast for US$50 which is fantastic value considering its a five star.
Make sure to visit Odel Unlimited and House of Fashion if you stay in Colombo.

Top Local Tips for Colombo

watch the guides Watch out for the people who say they are approved guides. They will take you to high priced stores and tailors. Ask the manager of the Taj for a recommendation.

Travelling in Colombo Standard 3 wheels cost there is 200 RS. Do not pay them more.

Tuk Tuks There worse than thailand!!


Other names for Taj Samudra Hotel

  • taj samudra hotel colombo
  • colombo taj samudra hotel
  • Address: 25, Galle Face Centre Road - Colombo - 3 - Sri Lanka
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