Archive for the ‘Hotel news Sri Lanka’ Category

Upcoming five-star golf resort and spa at Nilaveli, Trincomalee

Situated in the North Eastern suburbs of the Trincomalee district is a popular coastal resort village called Nilaveli, which is not a new name to Sri Lankans or foreigners.

The Royal Suite Villa under constructionNilaveli is home to some of the most beautiful coastlines and world renounce beaches of this little island nation. With the tourism industry picking up to its usual glory after the decline during the civil war, a number of new properties are being developed in this beautiful village. One such fabulous property, which will soon be available to those who would like to treat themselves to an escape to paradise in the arms of luxury. This property is another business venture of those behind the Blue Orchid Residencies (Luxury Apartment Complex) project in Wijerama and the Nilaveli Blue Oceanic Resort. The luxurious golf resort is owned by Lalith Amarasekara, Mauli Chandrika Amarasekara and their daughter Dr. Diana Amarasekara.

The property covers a total land area of 16 Acres facing the Nilaveli Beach overlooking a beautiful coral reef with direct access from the Trincomalee-pulmudai main road. It enters the market as a Super Luxury Golf Resort with Spa. The property is composed of four main types of residences.

Presidential Villas: There are only two of these for the whole property overlooking to coral reef and they represent a class of their own at the very height of special amenities, comfort and luxury living. Each of these villas is equipped with its own private plunge pool and Jacuzzi for the ultimate state of relaxation. These two villas are also equipped with an outdoor rain shower. These villas are highly spacious boasting a total surface area of 1000 square-feet. The villas open out to a full blown serenading view of the beach and gives its guests direct access to the beach unlike any other type of residence in the property. This is a product that is carefully designed for the elite traveler who wants to indulge in the beauty of the blue waters and the golden dunes at an intimate level in a luxurious fashion.

Royal Villas: Only second to the presidential villa in terms of size and special amenities, there are only eight of these in the property. Each one of them is generously equipped with their own plunge pool. These are also equipped with a rain shower like the presidential suites. These villas open up to a breathtaking view of the beach and are very spacious accounting for a total surface area of 760 square-feet. This product is a crossover between the highest level of luxury offered in the presidential villa and the affordability of the junior suites.

Junior Suites: The junior suites come with a total surface area of 530 square-feet and has a view that is shared by the beach and the golf course. There are 10 suites of this type in the property. The junior suite is expected to serve a wide customer base as it encompasses affordability, luxury and the bliss of the sea side and golf course in one single package.

Family Rooms: Each family room is composed of two separate rooms within them and accounts for a total surface area of 900 square-feet. The view from these rooms is shared by the golf course and the beach as seen in the case of the Junior Suites. The product is meant to cater to those looking for an oceanic escape with the whole ‘gym band’ as they popularly call it in Sri Lanka.

Other facilities that this great property has to offer are as follows: Infinity sea water swimming; A restaurant; Mini Snack Bar at the Golf Course; A Souvenir Shop; Fine dining space for six persons inside the kitchen from where they can see the chefs do their magic.

Activities that one can indulge in during their stay at the hotel include: Golfing for those who want to play a game of confidence, 15 mins boat riding to infamous pigeons island, jet ski riding for the thrill seekers, boat riding in the sea and lagoon for those in the pursuit of tranquility, diving and snorkeling for those who want to explore the world underwater, painting to bring out the artist in oneself, bird watching for those who value bio-diversity, hiking historical landmarks for those who are in the need to know and day tours services to Sigiriya, Dambulla, Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa.

The final touch ups to make this property the best home outside of home are currently underway and the resort will soon be opened to the public.

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Super luxury 5-star Golden Crown Hotel to open in Kandy soon

The Golden Crown Hotel, a super luxury 5-star property located on 2 acres of beautifully landscaped gardens in Kandy and designed by renowned architect Dr.upendra Rajapakse, will shortly open for the festive season.

From left: Finance and Administration Director Hansanie Wijekoon, Managing Director Chanuka Wijekoon and General Manager Rohan Fernando PIC BY NISAL BADUGEOwned by The Golden Crown Hotel Pvt. Ltd., which is a subsidiary of Serene Holdings, which already operate Serene Grand Hotel in Kandy, Serene Grand Villa in Kandy, Serene Kings Villa in Nuwara Eliya, Serene Villa in Nuwara Eliya and the Tea Village in Nuwara Eliya, which is currently under construction, The Golden Crown indeed promises to be the ‘jewel in Kandy’s crown’.

Chairman, The Golden Crown Hotel Pvt. Ltd Sriyananda Wijekoon said, “The Golden Crown Hotel differentiates from other hotels in Kandy as we offer an extensive range of deluxe accommodation as well as banqueting facilities that can cater to over 2000 persons. We have a helipad facility as well, so it is evident that The Golden Crown effortlessly combines traditional comfort with modern facilities and our own hallmark attention to detail, while a striking feature on entering the Hotel is the spectacle of a fully automated, colour changing, dancing water fountain that greets you!”

The Golden Crown Hotel is set amidst verdant paddy fields, surrounded by lush greenery and is a sanctuary to those seeking peace and luxury. 90 Rooms including 72 Deluxe Rooms, 10 Junior Suites, 6 Premium Suites, a Crown Suite and a Presidential Suite complete with a private elevator for both the Presidential and Crown suites, comprise the Hotel’s accommodation.

Veteran hospitality industry expert Roshan Fernando who has been appointed General Manager, will head the team at The Golden Crown. With almost 40 years in the hospitality sector under his belt, Fernando will incorporate his strong leadership skills and prowess as a manager to ensure that The Golden Crown stays true to its name. The veteran hotelier has made his mark in South East Asia and proved his mettle as one of the finest hospitality industry personnel produced by Sri Lanka!

Addressing a media briefing, The Golden Crown Managing Director, Chanuka Wijekoon explained the theme behind the name, “The Golden Crown is a marvel of a structure capturing the proud unique Kandyan history in a modern contemporary setting. Every feature of the hotel has been well thought through and tastefully designed to provide the guest a memorable experience.” The Golden Crown Hotel is a special project to Chanuka as it is designed and constructed according to his wishes and under his watchful eye. Director Finance & Administration, Hansani Wijekoon said that the investment on The Golden Crown exceeded US$ 15 million and that their Board of Directors felt the investment was more than worth it as they foresaw tremendous potential for tourism in Sri Lanka.

Diners are spoiled for choice with the array of restaurants and bars that The Golden Crown has on offer. The Brix (175 seater) serves an array of local, South Asian and international cuisines, while a combination of local, South Asian and international breakfast, lunch and dinner buffets are also available. The Long Bar in an Irish pub atmosphere serves snacks, salads, soups, grilled items and tasty titbits, as well as desserts, while Treats, the Coffee Shop offers a fusion of Continental and Asian influenced +‘grab-n-go’ foods and variety of freshly brewed coffees. The Infinity pool swim-up bar serves informal poolside lunch menus with salads, sandwiches, pizzas, and refreshing cold desserts, and the Lavo (175 pax capacity) situated on the topmost floor is an upscale and chic night time venue. Lavo is also available for group dining, parties, cocktails, corporate functions, etc. “Our 3 banquet halls with a combined capacity of over 2000 persons and 36,000 different shades of fully animated lighting systems to match any theme/color, is unmatched,” said Managing Director, Chanuka Wijekoon. The Windsor Ballroom (500 persons), Crown Court (500 persons), and Grand Ballroom (1200 persons) which is one of the largest pillar-less halls in Sri Lanka, are guaranteed to cater to the most exacting of wedding / conference organizers.

The Hotel’s fitness centre, sauna and spa are state of the art, while an infinity swimming pool is set on the 2nd floor with a picturesque view where the guest can relax and bask in the tropical sun. All rooms are tastefully designed and include flat screen TVS with IPTV facility, while all categories of suites have Jacuzzis, rain showers, and panoramic views. The Presidential and Crown suites both have their private elevators and are so luxurious as to befit royalty!

The Golden Crown, living upto it’s name, promises a memorable experience, while its banqueting facilities are guaranteed to raise the bar vis a vis conferences and weddings.

The Golden Crown board of directors are: Chairman Sriyananda Wijekoon, Managing Director Chanuka Wijekoon, Director Chamali Wijekoon, Director Finance and Administration Hansani Wijekoon.

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Aitken Spence : Heritance Ayurveda Maha Gedara Achieves Prestigious Travelife Gold Certification

The ayurvedic wellness resort, Heritance Ayurveda Maha Gedara was accoladed with the internationally recommended Travelife for Hotels & Accommodations Gold Certification last week for the hotel’s commitment to sustainability and ethical business practices.

Travelife, the sustainable tourism certification system awarded the prestigious title after carefully assessing the performance of the hotel against 163 sustainability criteria which included environmental issues, such as minimising the amount of energy, waste and water, positive social actions for employee welfare, working with the local community and businesses, child protection and human rights; and protecting local traditions, among others.

Results of the independent audit carried by Travelife showed that Heritance Ayurveda Maha Gedara, which prides itself for having created a holistic framework aimed at creating a balanced lifestyle experience, have managed to fashion a similar balance in responsibly managing its socio-economic and environmental impacts.

The 64-roomed hotel has long since made a name for itself promoting the importance of wellness in ones’ life and curating a tourism product to cater to this growing trend in the world market. The Travelife certification as such adds immense value to the resort and the very essence of the business model it follows. The certification scheme works in partnership with tour operators, both in the UK and internationally, who use the system to increase sustainability in the industry and communicate achievements to customers.

Among the hotels’ many sustainability exercises, the net metered solar PV in electricity generation takes precedence. Recognised as the first hotel in Sri Lanka to adapt to this system, Heritance Ayurveda Maha Gedara has benefited immensely from this system which produces energy to cover the majority of its consumption needs. The biogas plant at the hotel also successfully contribute to the hotel kitchen as a supplementary to LNG.

While continuous monthly beach clean ups are conducted in support of the environment, the arts and crafts centre located within the premises aims at creating an awareness on local culture and inherent crafts that have been passed on from one generation to another. Uplifting the indigenous arts culture of the country, the hotel encourages local artisans to demonstrate their art at the centre. The hotel also practices the 7R principles followed by all Aitken Spence Hotels with the aim of reaching zero waste to land fill status and possess the certification of ISO 50001:2011.

This is the second consecutive recertification of Heritance Ayurveda Maha Gedara as a Travelife Gold member.

Other Aitken Spence Hotels in Sri Lanka – Heritance Kandalama, Heritance Tea Factory, Heritance Ahungalla – were also Travelife Gold certified and are awaiting the recertification for the second time.

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Shangri-La to open major MICE hotel in Sri Lanka on 17 Nov.

Shangri-La Hotel, Colombo will be one of the most extensive and versatile events venues in Sri Lanka when it opens in November 2017.

The hotel will boast over 3,500 m2 of events space including two ballrooms, several function rooms and a private outdoor lawn.

Shangri-La Hotel, Colombo will be the second Shangri-La property in Sri Lanka – joining Shangri-La’s Hambantota Golf Resort & Spa, which opened in June 2016.

Shangri-La Hotel, Colombo will feature a 1,580 m2 pillar-less ballroom capable of catering seated banquets for up to 1,500 guests and 2,100 theatre style.

The property will also offer the Lotus Ballroom (470 m2), seating 400 guests for dinner and 600 for cocktails. Adjacent to the Lotus Ballroom are three flexible breakout rooms: Ginger, Saffron and Tamarind.

All of the conference and function rooms feature state-of-the-art audiovisual equipment, including clip on or wireless microphones, built-in speakers and stands.

For those wanting to take advantage of the cool sea breezes, Shangri-La Hotel, Colombo also has an outdoor events space with an open bar, lawn and suspended pavilion – a striking spot for destination weddings, fashion shows and private events. In total, the outdoor events space seats 420 for dinner and 750 guests for cocktails. On the higher floors of the hotel, guests will find several boardrooms including the Horizon Club Executive Boardroom. The boardroom not only offers some of the best views in the city but also access to the Horizon Club Lounge.

The Horizon Club provides further personalised service to make the business traveller’s stay all the more comfortable, including hotel limousine transfers, private in room check-in and check-out with the option of a late check-out as well as a dedicated Club Concierge. Located at One Galle Face along the Galle Face Green promenade, Shangri-La Hotel, Colombo will offer uninterrupted Indian Ocean views in most of its 500 guestrooms and suites and 41 serviced apartments. The hotel sits on 10 acres of land that will also soon accommodate an office tower, two residential buildings and a high-end shopping mall. The hotel is a 40-minute drive from Colombo’s Bandaranaike International Airport. The hotel is taking reservations for stays from 17 November 2017.

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Enchanting Vila Perpatua


Huddle against an edge of a mountain with a breathtaking view of a range of hills lies ‘Villa Perpatua’. This charming and relaxing villa which is hidden in an acre of land at an elevation of over 4,500 feet above sea level is situated in the cool climes of Bandarawela. The villa offers eight rooms in three different levels to ensure privacy and offer a range of magnificent views of the valley below. A uniquely placed rooftop terrace also gives the guest a spectacular view of Bandarawela.

The tranquillity of this location is truly amazing and is a genuine home away from home and is drawing a lot of repeater guests to the hotel. They also arrange leisurely walks on an adventurous trek or a challenging mountain bike ride to mountains, lakes, manicured gardens, forests, Hindu kovils (temples) and tiny villages.

The hotels panoramic expanse of the lobby/terrace area is the best place to witness a magnificent sunrise sprawling plantation and gives one a clear view of the winding rail tracks below. This new addition to the to the hospitality industry in Bandarawela is just 10 minutes away from the city centre and due to high demand they are looking at adding more rooms soon. Some of the most sought after excursions by guests include Beragala/Ella Gap, Lipton’s seat located in the Poonagala hills, Historical Dowa Temple, Ravana Waterfall and Ravana caves, Diyaluma loop, Bogoda wooden bridge, Budhuruwagala rock carving, Horton plains/world’s end and Udawalawe wildlife sanctuary. These can be accessed in less than one hour from the hotel.

Villa Perpatua Bandarawela in its quest to enhance its product will be introducing an

‘Outdoor nature Spa’ to its inventory from next month. The management of Villa Perpatua said that this is being done to offer more facilities for the inn-house guests. Villa Perpatua Bandarawela is marketed by Boutiques in Sri Lanka.

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Marriott Resort and Spa makes waves in Weligama

  • With its prime location on the coastline, sensational sea views and exquisite culinary offerings, Marriott International’s first resort in Sri Lanka is the talk of the town

By Marianne David

Boasting superb sea views from every single room and exquisite cuisine, the Weligama Bay – Marriott Resort and Spa is already making waves in the south of Sri Lanka.

Opened just two months ago, the resort has quickly proven to be quite the hit among locals and foreign travellers alike, with its offering of modern global hospitality blended with the unique flavours of a charming fishing village. From sun, sea and surfing to great rooms, super food and warm people, Marriott Resort and Spa has it all and a stay here is sure to satisfy anyone.

The property offers 198 beautifully-designed expansive rooms and suites, right in the heart of Weligama Bay, a surfer’s paradise. Whatever your purpose – a mini break, a destination wedding or corporate event – it’s certainly a blissful place to be.

In terms of design, the property incorporates local elements throughout the hotel, with a focus on lace-making, stilt fishing and terracotta. The rooms are designed to please in every sense and the sea views, bath tubs, 55-inch smart TVs and super comfy beds with intelligent mattresses in every room ensure a great experience for all guests. What all this does is make it very hard to leave the room, but eventually the beach, the spa, and most of all the food, beckon.

Find some time for the Quan Spa if you are able to – the therapists are outstanding and the treatments are terrific. With five treatment rooms and a couple’s therapy room, it offers a range of therapies which are reasonably priced.

Exquisite culinary offering

When it comes to the food here, it’s no surprise really that it is this good.

Firstly, General Manager Elton Hurtis – who has 20 years of experience in the hospitality industry and 15 years with Marriott International – used to be a chef himself so he certainly knows his stuff. Then heading the culinary offering is Executive Chef Sandeep Pande, whose depth of knowledge and passion are impressive; he is the man behind most of the culinary magic here. Also on-board is Executive Sous Chef Miguel Cirne, whose reputation in the kitchen is nothing short of legendary. Together they ensure that every dish that is served up is the best that it can be.

Our very first meal here, planned out carefully by Chef Sandeep, was at the Discovery Table at Tides. A blend of Sri Lankan and Western cuisine, the food ranged from tantalising achcharus, cold cuts and cheeses, to traditional Sri Lankan curries showcasing seafood, crunchy roast paan, hot rice and some dainty and delicious desserts.

The Discovery Table is a great place at which to eat; given the wide open design of the property, this place buzzes with energy and life. It’s also a hard place to leave – it’s so easy to just sit there, dipping into the bottles of achcharus and pickles!

“Sri Lankan food rules the stomach!” asserts Chef Sandeep, explaining the dishes. “Everything we do has to be at least 70% local because Marriott believes in going local.”

They reinforce this pledge and ensure authenticity with the use of traditional utensils which are placed in the centre of the table in Sri Lankan home dining style and by having a local woman prepare all the spices fresh in the hotel each week. Simple dishes which taste sensational, that’s what Discovery Table meals are all about.

Big Fish, which is Chef Miguel’s baby, is another journey altogether. A beautifully-appointed space in which you don’t feel the hours slip by as you sip on drinks and savour the cuisine, it’s worth driving down to Weligama just to dine here.

Big Fish is all about seafood and fresh catch from local fish mongers; it boasts a live grill too. We dined on a special menu that served up everything from oysters and lobster bisque to Portuguese seafood rice and Sri Lankan crab curry – gourmet dining at its best. If you’re trying just one thing here, make it the crab curry. Chef Miguel has perfected it.

As for the all-day dining restaurant Weligama Kitchen, it is a spacious place with well-defined zones serving distinct cuisines, while the interactive live kitchen elevates the dining experience. There’s a great selection and the clean and modern design with rustic highlights reflects Sri Lanka beautifully.

I went there for breakfast and simply couldn’t move beyond the Sri Lankan section when it came to serving myself, although I did walk around and look at everything with Chef Sandeep at my side.

“Weligama Kitchen is like a Sri Lankan house, with a lot of wood and terracotta. Everything is simple and plain, while the colours highlighted are those of the Sri Lankan Flag. Everything you see is local,” he said, pointing out the fruit selection on offer. They even serve up tea leaves as a palate cleanser!

“There is no decoration as such, the decoration is the food,” he asserts – it most certainly is, and it tastes even better than it looks.

There’s also the pool bar Surf’s Up, which serves up refreshing cocktails and simple Asian and Western nibbles, and Mirissa Baking Company, which features fine coffee and specialty drinks as well as freshly-baked desserts and snacks. Surf’s Up and Weligama Kitchen see a lot of walk-in diners.

Commenting on the food, Elton asserted: “We always endeavour to serve the best Sri Lankan food and we keep taking it to the next level. People say our food is superb, but we will not rest on our laurels. We will keep making it better and even more authentic. I want to make it as local as it can get.”

The Marriott experience

Describing the Marriott experience, Elton asserts that guests coming here will be coming to the “best resort on the southern belt. Why I say the best is not because we are pompous or because we are the Marriott. It’s because of the thought process that has gone into this property.”

Some of the highlights are that all the 198 rooms offer uncompromising sea views; the beach is seamless with no barricades; there is an extra daybed in every single room which can easily accommodate a third person, there is a bathtub in every room and the shower cubicles have the option of a handheld and a rain shower; the twin beds are so large, they are almost queen-sized; the TVs are 55-inch smart TVs on which you can mirror your phone; and every room has a balcony.

The lobby, termed the Great Room, is divided into three zones – concierge, social and individual. First is a reception area and business centre, where guests can do all their jobs. The social zone is great to meet people at the bar and the communal table, ideal for those who want to be in the presence of other people. The individual zone is more subdued, perfect for those who want to enjoy solitude.

Then there’s the unique kids’ zone. “The best part is that you can see your child, you don’t have to worry about them. The kids’ room engages the children to such an extent that they don’t want to leave even after several hours,” notes Elton.

Adding the perfect finishing touch is the presence of local elements and Sri Lankan flavour throughout the hotel, despite Marriott being an international chain. “People come to Sri Lanka to experience Sri Lanka and that’s what we offer,” emphasises Elton.

The resort is now slowly gearing up for Christmas and New Year: “We are going to have big bashes and we want to make sure this coastline is established as the New Year zone. People should drive to the south, stay at our hotel and start the New Year here!”

Given Marriott’s prime spot on the southern coastline and its superb hospitality and culinary offerings, it’s more than likely that many people will do just that.


A lot of love from Sri Lanka

Weligama Bay – Marriott Resort and Spa, Marriott International’s first resort in Sri Lanka, has seen a lot of love from Sri Lanka in the two months since it opened, asserts General Manager Elton Hurtis. “We’ve been blessed with love from Sri Lanka, locals love the hotel!”

A key reason for this love from locals is the warm and welcoming staff at Marriott, which offers the same gracious hospitality to every single guest, be it local or foreign, with no distinction whatsoever. The management sets the stage for this by loving its own people first and treating them right.

Weligama Bay – Marriott Resort and Spa Sales and Marketing Director Mano Gunasekara underscores this point: “One of the things that we emphasise on is that we take care of our own people very well. This is inculcated in our blood. It’s in our DNA!”

Elton adds: “Our founder J. Willard Marriott always said, ‘Take care of your people and they will take care of your customers’. That is our core value, we dwell on taking care of our people.”

Its emphasis on integrity also sets Marriott apart. Elton explains: “How we do business is as important as the business we do. We are very careful in keeping our word and our program ‘Spirit to Serve’ enables giving back to the community.”

Weddings and MICE

Asserting that Sri Lanka is going to be the next big wedding destination, General Manager Elton Hurtis outlines the hotel’s offerings towards this end: “We have a 500 pax ballroom while our front lawn can accommodate 2,000 people.”

MICE is also a big ticket item for Sri Lanka, he adds. “This is the way forward for the country. We have world-class conferencing facilities.”

Weddings and MICE facilities include lush outdoor lawns, open terraces, sprawling banquet spaces, multiple venues to suit every celebration, pre-wedding ceremonies and grand receptions, a dedicated bridal room, varied menu options and experienced events personnel. The resort boasts total 3,360 square metres of meeting space, a grand ballroom, dedicated pre-function area, three meeting rooms, chef curated menu options, and inventive theme breaks.

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Arie Lagoon Negombo opens


Adding another luxury property to the Negombo area, Welikala Holdings’ pilot hotel project, Arie Lagoon will be open soon.

Located in a five-and-a-half-acre exquisitely trimmed grassy parcel of land, running parallel to the famous Negombo lagoon, Arie Lagoon is Negombo’s newest four-star deluxe property featuring 55 intimate rooms.

There are three different categories of tastefully designed and spacious rooms on offer and of the inventory that includes 41 deluxe rooms, three large family deluxe rooms which accommodate four and five premier deluxe rooms, one of which has a private outdoor plunge pool and six premier suites.

There are interconnecting rooms with private gardens, rooms with bathtubs and large rooms with twin bed option.

Banana Prawn is Arie Lagoon’s main all-day dining restaurant named after a species of lagoon shrimp. The restaurant, bar and pool are designed to transition into each other ultimately leading to the majestic Negombo lagoon. The “Bar A Cuda” bar is inspired by the plush look and feel of a British pub. Kalapuwa wine lounge is the ultimate lagoon experience overlooking the lagoon.

Arie has cutting-edge facilities including two swimming pools with one of them having an infinity-edge, conference and banquet facilities for 300 guests which has its independent bar area and a terrace that does not impede the space of the hall.

In addition, the property also has a three cabin wellness spa, gymnasium, a dedicated supervised child care/play area with play stations and video games, etc., to keep children of all age groups occupied. This luxurious four-star property brags a staggering billion rupee plus investment by Welikala Holdings (Pvt) Ltd, which is a diversified group of companies with business interests in hydropower projects, condominium development, furniture manufacturing, etc.

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