After browsing various hotel websites and several reviews later, I finalized this hotel for my family vacation in Kandy. It was my mother’s 50th birthday and we decided to take some time off and travel to Sri Lanka. Kandy has very few good hotels and Cinnamon Citadel was definitely one of them.
Set amidst historic monuments, enchanting forests, a great river and breath-taking vistas this hotel is comfortable, stylish and probably the best choice I could have made in Kandy. If you plan to stay here do not expect anything too fancy, unlike other plush five star resorts, this one is a traditional property located on Kandy’s lush wooded outskirts offering amazing views of the Mahaweli River.
Location: Kandy is approximately 2 hours away from Colombo airport. On entering the main city it took us about 20 to 25 minutes to reach the hotel. After several twists and turns on a narrow road surrounded by trees and the Mahaweli Ganga River, we reached an area which was extremely peaceful, away from the hustle bustle and the tuk tuk horns. It’s important that you hire a private vehicle to go around the city centre. Apart from the nice surroundings it is also close to all the main sights in Kandy.
Check In/ Check out: The moment you enter the lobby local ladies in Sri Lankan saris will greet you. For me, the check in process took a little while even though we arrived late, as it was a little difficult communicating with the staff. But we were told to have our breakfast in the meanwhile till our room was ready. Twenty minutes later we were handed our keys and the luggage was already taken to the room. The checkout was quite quick and hassle free.
Hotel Interiors-Unlike the other plush five star hotels, the interiors here are rich and traditional with a lot of wooden elements. The Sri Lankan touch is visible in the entire property. Since it is more like a natural escape away from the city life surrounded by the forest and the river you will notice that the lobby is partially open to the pool area and faces the forest and the beautiful river.
Room: Deluxe Double Room
A small pathway and a few stairs down we reached our room. It was a spacious room with mostly wooden interiors and cane lanterns which opened up to a private balcony facing the greens and the river. The room was also well equipped with toiletries, tea/coffee maker, TV, locker, hairdryer, minibar. The interiors are a mix and match of heritage red, with mustards and crimson to highlight royalty and majesty for which Kandy is known. The rooms are located on three different wings giving guests the choice of either the view of the garden or the river.
Restaurants: One of the major reasons I loved this hotel was for the delicious food they served. The quality, presentation and taste were simply outstanding. Each and very dish was decorated so well and served with a smile.
They have a bar located in the centre of the lobby. In the evening a live band plays while you sip on your drinks and indulge in the appetizers (they serve sheesha too). You can either try the main course here or move to Café C, their fine dining restaurant where you can try rich Sri Lankan delicacies. On request the staff had decorated a small section of the restaurant with red balloons for my mothers birthday and offered us a cake too. Their breakfast was served at Panorama, like the name suggests this place offered splendid views of the forest, river and the pool. Their outdoor dining area was spectacular. The breakfast buffet was massive with a great variety ranging from appams to omlettes and other traditional items (see pictures for more details).
Pool: The hotel has an amazing outdoor swimming pool, which offers breathtaking views of the river too. There are sun beds where you can relax in the day and star gaze at night.
Ideal for: a family holiday
Service: I would definitely go back because the service was simply amazing. The staff was kind and extremely welcoming especially Duminda, he took great care of us.
Note: When booking a room, request for the lake view.
Contact: Cinnamon Citadel Kandy
124, Srimath Kuda Ratwatte Mawatha Kandy,
Tel: +94 (0) 81 223 4365-66
Fax: +94 (0) 81 223 2085
Click the gallery below to view pictures!