Skye House is faintly nostalgic: its wraparound balconies – edged by a delicately carved railing – shiny hardwood floors and whitewashed ceilings are redolent of the colonial era despite its otherwise contemporary build. Designed by celebrated Sri Lankan architect Ranjan Aluwihare, the house was completed in 2005. Its free flow of space, cooling central lily pond, exotic gardens and series of interconnecting, footsteps-apart buildings follow a tropical, almost Balinese aesthetic. Skye House’s picturesque location on an unspoilt palm-fringed beach – the domain of nesting marine turtles – greatly adds to its allure.
The house’s bedrooms are spread across two floors, and as you’re lying in bed in one of the spacious upper-storey master suites (or soaking in the bath), the views of the ocean are spellbinding. Aside from three double bedrooms, there’s also a twin room and a kids’ bunk room, and with facilities such as stair gates, a childrens’ playground, a table tennis table and a cupboard full of games, this is an exceptional house for families – perhaps up to three travelling together. Groups will love it too, and due to its position on a pretty stretch of beach it is also one of Sri Lanka’s most appealing wedding and events venues.
Skye’s dedicated staff team up the ante by setting up tables on the beach for amazing moon-bathed barbecues (where you might even spot a turtle), as well as booking local activities and participating as willing opponents in a game of cricket on the beach or front lawn. The house chef prepares all of your meals at cost price, or for a change of scene, there are restaurants a short distance away. A turtle hatchery is just 200-metres up the beach, and Koggala Lake for tranquil boat trips and spice garden visits, is within easy reach.
Perched on a hillside overlooking Nuwara Eliya, Brockenhurst is a century-old classified heritage home set in a one-acre garden with two-tiered lawn. Featuring 4 comfortable bedrooms and a cosy lounge with open fireplace, this serviced property is a nostalgic base from which families and groups can explore the hill country.
An evocative 160-year-old bungalow overlooking Nuwara Eliya town surrounded by a well-maintained garden of clipped lawns, preened hedges and scented roses. With 4 comfortable bedrooms, open fireplaces, cosy lounges, an elegant dining room and plenty of colonial character, this is a gorgeous holiday home in the hills.