Hosteria La Estepa, El Calafate, Argentina

This hotel is 1.5k outside town so about a 30 minute walk but also only about £3 in a taxi. It also has the advantage that if you book a tour there’s a good chance that you will be picked up last and dropped off first.The view over the lake is beautiful especially from the upstairs lounge. The staff were wonderful and did everything they could to help.

We actually liked being a little out of town as on a clear night the there was less light noise and the stars appeared brighter.

The room was great and the shower very good, if there was one thing that I missed it was the ability to make tea or coffee in the room.

Having said that Hosteria La Estepa would be my first choice if I returned to El Calafate.

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Campbell House Hotel, Georgetown, Penang

This hotel was recently chosen as a global winner in the Luxury Guest House Awards, and it easy to see why. We loved the attention to detail and the friendly staff made our stay personal and memorable. We enjoyed the theatricality of our luggage being lifted to our room by rope and little touches like a surprise desert being left in our fridge or on our table at night made our stay exceptional.

The rooms that we saw were all lovingly restored and the communal areas are also beautiful. The bathrooms are lovely and the showers hot. The wifi in the room was fast.

Georgetown is famous for its street food and restaurants and this is close to many of them. Its in-house Italian restaurant is also great, as was the breakfast.

All in all, we had a perfect 4 days in Penang and Campbell House greatly contributed to this

  
  

The Mountain Heavens, Ella, Sri Lanka

The Best View Ever

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This hotel is a little way out of town and the road up to it is narrow and steep. The facilities are good, a nice hot shower, a big room. The breakfast was great; made to order a pleasant change from the usual buffet. Monkeys will watch you eat, in case you might drop anything. The wifi was good.

But the best thing about this hotel were the views. The view from the restaurant is wonderful, the view from the room terrace is amazing and the view in the morning as dawn breaks is exceptional!

This is undoubtedly the hotel with the best views that I have ever stayed in.

The Elephas Resort, Haberana, Sri Lanka

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Of the 7 hotels, in which we stayed in Sri Lanka, this was the newest and the one we liked the least. It felt like an army barracks, the bathroom was bare concrete, the bed plinth was concrete, the seat outside the room was concrete. There was no wifi in the rooms and the wifi in the communal areas was intermittent.

There was no hot water in the shower in the morning.

The restaurant is open to outside and there were mosquitos in the evening. The food was mediocre.

Be careful if booking at the weekend, they do special offers for office parties to fill the rooms – it was quite raucous on the night we spent there. We sleep well, so it did not disturb us, but worth knowing if you plan to be there on a Friday or Saturday night.

It is within half an hour of Minneriya, Sigirya and Dembulla – all of which are amazing, but I do suspect there are other hotels in the vicinity which would have suited us better.

The Hill Club, Nuwara Eliya, Sri Lanka

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The hotel was built over a hundred years ago and even today is run to give you the experience of how it was to stay in smart hotels in days gone by. It does have modern conveniences, the bathroom and shower was hot and efficient, the wifi worked well, and there is TVs and DVD players in the room.

The overall experience of the hotel, right from turning in through the entrance gates is that of arriving at a colonial country house in days of yore. You are greeted in reception, told of the dress options for dinner, shown to your room – past the billiard rooms and magazine and book filled drawing room and library.

When we arrived back in our room from dinner there was even a hot water bottle in our bed!

Don’t come here if you want a sleek modern 21st century hotel, but if you would like a short break to step back in time, the Hill Club will give you an experience that will be difficult to match anywhere else.