Living Heritage Koslanda
PRICE: Punchy but doesn’t blow the budget
Living Heritage Koslanda is a perfectly formed bundle of joy. Sitting in its own vast estate, surrounded by forest, with awesome views over Sri Lanka’s rolling tea plantations. It’s beautifully created by local craftsmen, with the blueprint coming from the highly respected Sri Lankan architect Channa Daswatte; classic Sri Lankan architecture guided by astrological principles, combined with the ultimate requirements of contemporary lifestyle.
This is a bolt hole made in heaven. Actually the area is called God’s Forest and for sure the big guy must have spent a disportionate amount of time creating such a spellbinding location. How many hotels do you know that have their own (almost) private waterfall and natural swimming pool? The man-made infinity pool at the summit of the property drops away into verdant paddy fields and the valley below. This easily makes it into our Pools Made For Instagram shortlist.
The food is superb and very reasonably priced. The Sri Lankan food is cooked up by a wizzard of a chef and you’ll feast here like never before. The sambals and the rotis will make your tastebuds blossom with delight. And the Western food is also lip-smackingly perfect.
The rooms, actually three suites and one deluxe room, are so much more than just a place to lay your head. Colours and textures recurrent through the centuries are used throughout, and the rooms are furnished with beautiful antiques. There is no aircon but at an altitude of 1,800ft, you have the whisper of mountain air to cool you.
Each villa has a private courtyard, outdoor plunge pool and hot water garden shower – if you’ve never showered by moonlight before, it’s an experience we guarantee will leave you reluctant to go back to your usual routine…
And the Forest Pavilions are an experience to behold (and yes you really can live the high life without aircon and sealed windows to keep the bugs out!). Open air and built in to the jungle using local materials they are the ultimate back to nature experience with a generous helping of refined comfort thrown in.
You can swim or laze by the infinity pool or settle back on the cushions in one of three ambalamas – open-sided, roofed houses which were the meeting place within every village in years gone by. There’s also a long veranda, another aspect of traditional Sri Lankan living, ideal for relaxing, chatting, having a drink and enjoying the tastes and smells of delicious Sri Lankan food being prepared.
The cooking lessons here are amongst the very best. You’ll do it one-on-one and you’ll leave knowing your snake gourds from your brinjals.
On your doorstep
Nothing! Living Heritage Koslanda is in the middle of nowhere. Come here to escape the rat race and find your inner soul. Surely discovery enough for anyone!