Claughton House offers a rare opportunity to stay in a villa designed by Sri Lanka’s most revered architect, the late Geoffrey Bawa. Situated within eight gloriously manicured palm-studded acres, the house is perched at the summit of a headland rising magnificently above the sea. As with all of Bawa’s designs, the house, built in 1985, was conceived with great attention to detail and with consideration of the environment, and it beautifully reflects his signature flair for blending indoor and outdoor areas. Richard FitzHerbert-Brockholes, the original owner, named Claughton after his ancestral Lancashire home.
In quintessential Bawa style, the living areas of the house tumble down a series of levels, artfully incorporating little nooks furnished with built-in sofas, cement cube tables and woven lounge chairs. Claughton’s interiors were refurbished in 2013 – brand new bathrooms were added and much of the furniture updated – and they complement the simplicity of the build and the handiwork of its famous creator; the locally sourced fabrics and new design-orientated furnishings inject just the right amount of contemporary flair into this minimal space. Whether you’re in bed, dining or relaxing, the open design allows you to gorge on fabulous views of Kudawella Bay and the Indian Ocean beyond.
Dotted around the garden, but in inspired locations, are tables and chairs-for-two, designed to provide both quiet seclusion and perches for absorbing the views. For yogis, a sala sits at the top of the hill. Further down the hillside is an art deco swimming pool carved into the rock and flanked by a terrace, beside which is a pavilion for living and dining; this is a magnetic space by day or night. There’s a second pool on the huge grounds whilst a rickety gate leads to the beach below, a haunt of local surfies.
The house is staffed by a helpful team, including a chef who prepares all meals at cost price.
Mawella Lagoon Airport
Yala National Park
March 2nd, 2015 - March 5th, 2015
“Claughton House is truly outstanding, the location, design, decor, ambience are amazing and we had such an enjoyable relaxed holiday thanks to the staff and the chilled out atmosphere.”