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Reviewed 5 February 2019 via mobile

What we really liked was the location, great garden area, colonial building, friendly staff and free bike hire. The rooms were a little basic but sufficed and came with, at least in our case, an air conditioner and well kept shower. Overall we really enjoyed being able to get out of bed, have a very filling (if slowly served) individual breakfast with very helpful and friendly staff then hit the ruins on the provided bikes. You were about 2 minutes ride from the main tree shrine amongst others.

What we didn't enjoy so much, which were minor but added up to a less than perfect stay and 4 stars:
1. annoying WiFi code system that meant you kept getting disconnected and needing a new ticket. Time to move to an unlimited use system like the rest of sri lanka. It seemed like each WiFi ticket was limited to about 200mb.
2. Alcohol free... When the delightful comfy chairs were just crying out for a glass of wine
3. Our room didn't have mosquito nets, though I saw many did (maybe as we were in the new block?). Either way at least one mozzy got in and took a few chunks out.

As a result we changed our second planned stay to their sister hotel on the lake.

Date of stay: February 2019
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
1  Thank littev0ices
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 February 2019

We loved our two days stay in the Sanctuary...elegant old residence, very well located, with very good service
Used the available bikes for beautiful tour around the lake.
Massage was excellent. To be recommended.

negative: old fashioned system with use of internet (tickets for limited time). It was suggested by us to change that into regular WIFI use

Date of stay: January 2019
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank charleside
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GM Q, Manager at The Sanctuary At Tissawewa, responded to this reviewResponded 4 February 2019

Dear Guests,
It was a great pleasure to receive your highly valuable comments. We are happy to hear that you have enjoyed our services and the spa.
Whilst thanking for your suggestions to improve our services further, We all welcome you back to spend a few more nights on your next visit to Anuradhapura.
Thank you.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 January 2019

The location is great for exploring the ancient city as it is right next door, and it is nice and peaceful, being secluded on a large patch on land. Be prepared to share the site with many families of monkeys as well as stray dogs who also roam the site, however they are largely harmless. They sometimes wait expectedly next to the porch if you are holding food.

Also if you are exploring Anuradhapuda, I cannot recommend enough the guide that took us that day. He had the best english of any of the guides or drivers we met on the island and was extremely knowledgeable about the history of the ruins, and buddhist philosophy.
He is also an official registered guide. You can contact him on wasanthamapa1968@gmail.com. Name: Wasantha.

Date of stay: January 2019
  • Trip type: Travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
Thank ralotusin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GM Q, General Manager at The Sanctuary At Tissawewa, responded to this reviewResponded 29 January 2019

Dear Valued guest,
We are extremely happy to hear that you have enjoyed every moment at the Sanctuary and the experience with the monkeys, quite rightly as you have mentioned of the registered guides in Anuradhapura most of them are well experienced guides.
We take this opportunity to thank you for sharing your experience in Anuradhapura and the Sanctuary and looking forward to see you on your next trip to Sri Lanka

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Reviewed 24 January 2019 via mobile

We stayed at this hotel in January 2019 and found the following:
1. Quaint colonial hotel set in large grounds
2. Reasonable sized rooms with reasonable bedding, nothing too high falootin so be mindful if seeking high thread count luxury.
3. Good access to amenities and local sights
4. Engaged staff who support access to local sights as required
5. Great location to access local important historical sights ie tuk tuk takes 5-30 mins for most sights and is very reasonable. Please consider local driver and tip where you can *everything zen*
6. Reasonable dining options but suggest not for the foodies seeking anything above basic menu options
7. Less than ordinary coffee but good coffee available from the Chef upon request at a cost, suggest seeking this option to avoid coffee fatigue.
8. The main comment here is to be mindful that this is a dry hotel but you can partake in a beverage in your room should you choose. The rationale for the dry status is the location to immediate historical venues and their cultural significance.
9. It’s important to note that Anuradhapura is a major historical sight. There is limited venues in the area for social interaction as per the adherence to cultural norms which is to be admired. The west could learn from this philosophy indeed.
10. This is a good basic hotel if not somewhat over rated and stuck in the memories of its past grandeur ie the use of its historical stature as Govenors residence. Some areas could use a spruce up ie the cushions in public areas, not a criticism rather an observation.
11. Value wise its a tad overpriced as personality lacks, that said this hotel holds its own as a. Good option for the visitor seeking a sanctuary from the bustling conservative-ism’s of the town proper that is Anuradhapura
12. Overall we would stay again if packing a healthy zest for adventure fuelled by some pre packed imbibement for storage in the room fridge!
Xxxxxxx

Date of stay: January 2019
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
Thank ClaraBow1967
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 January 2019

We booked at the last minute for two nights, but there was no problem in that. The approach to the colonial mansion through its lovely park is spacious and quiet and the hectic bustle of traffic is silenced. The building is beautiful and beautifully maintained, with the feel of its period past much in evidence. The double room was not very large, but very comfortable and the hot water was appreciated! The bathroom was large and well equipped, with even a bathtub. Its unique location within the Sacred City has precluded it having a liquor licence, as well as the digging of a swimming pool. But by the same token it is situated very ideally for visiting the wonderful historical and archaeological sites. We couldn't fault the quietly attentive service. The dining room provided excellent fare at breakfast and dinner. And to cap it all the hotel was very good value for money. This will be my default base in Anuradhapura. Thanks you.

Date of stay: January 2019
  • Trip type: Travelled with friends
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank Cedric H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GM Q, Manager at The Sanctuary At Tissawewa, responded to this reviewResponded 23 January 2019

Dear Guest,

We are pleased to know that you had enjoyed your stay at this hotel . Our team takes note of your satisfaction on our service and meals. We all welcome you back to spend a few more nights on your next visit to Anuradhapura.

Thank you.

Best regards,

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