Illuketia stands majestically on a small hill overlooking paddy fields, tea plantations, rubber trees and temples. This four bedroom home – voted one of the best plantation houses worldwide by The Independent (2004) – dates back to the nineteenth century with later renovations resulting in the construction of a magnificent two-tiered roof. The house is exquisitely designed throughout; its main focus being a wraparound pillared veranda that spills the living room gently into the garden. From here, stunning views of the wildlife-filled estate with its ancient trees and lush tropical foliage unfold. The atmosphere is nostalgic and relaxed, enhanced to an almost meditational level in the late afternoon when the chanting of Buddhist monks from neighbouring temples melodiously floats in the air.
Illuketia’s ten acres of undulating lawns, meandering pathways, mature trees, aged stone statues, tropical foliage, lotus-filled ponds and colourful blooms are hopelessly romantic, although kids will also love its potential for games of hide and seek. Ringing with vivacious birdcall, the garden is a haven for wildlife; as many as 156 bird species, 20 mammals and a variety of reptiles and frogs have all been sighted here. Situated below the main lawn, and out of sight of the house, is a Pond House with two double bedrooms (cost extra). Its veranda features a romantic double swing hanging provocatively above a pond topped with violet lilies in a scene reminiscent of a tropical Monet.
A 25m swimming pool blends in at the end of the garden, and as the last blushes of sunlight filter through the trees, this is an excellent spot for a barbecue. Illuketia is fully staffed and the chefs are responsible for a restaurant-style menu that includes fresh seafood and a famous Sri Lankan curry spread, with as much produce as possible freshly plucked from the organic garden. Illuketia shares the same owner as Apa Villa Talpe – a beachfront property 8km away – where guests can have a dip in the infinity pool or sample a spot of lunch beside the ocean. The villa has a tuk-tuk that’s available for local trips (extra cost).
No reviews yet at the moment
|• Main House: Hibiscus Suite||King|
|• Main House: Lotus Suite||King|
|• Main House: Citronella Suite||Queen|
|• Main House: Waterlily Suite||Queen|