Situated literally ‘on the beach’, this bright white building with its patches of glistening green, welcomed us with a promise of summertime pampering. Villa Amandhira is in Thalpe, between the cities of Galle and Matara and within a very short distance to some of the best beaches on the island plus the Southern most tip of Sri Lanka, namely, Dondra. With its private setting of living, dining and play areas and 3 bed rooms, this villa is ideal for groups or families. In low season individual rooms might be able to be booked but in the recommendation is to book the whole Villa and enjoy the total experience.
Villa Amandhira’s eco friendliness in structure, utilities, amenities and operations, was one of the most attractive points.The wood work, furniture and fittings; almost all made of reclaimed timbre, solar power for practically everything needing electrical current, rainwater and well water re-harvesting, recycling of waste, are just some of the eco friendly methods with which this villa operates.
In contrast, the architecture and interior is surprisingly modern in its setting,.. White walls offset dark brown timber, patches of green and potted plants dotted inside and out, modern furniture with a hint of tradition in the base of a leg or tip of a bedpost, adorned with a wealth of Sri Lankan ornaments such as wall hangings, vases, lamps- the whole set up is very contemporary. Colours splatters the white canvas through a cushion, a flower, a table decor, creating a very lively atmosphere.
We received a unique homely and cozy welcome upon arriving, with three smiling faces and hands joined in the traditional Sri Lankan gesture of Ayubowan. A refreshing welcome drink and the sentiment that this is only the beginning of warm hospitality. True to our thoughts, our whole stay was made memorable with the extremely attentive staff catering to our requirements with dedication and loyalty. The head chef’s delicious western and Sri Lankan cuisine, cooking demonstrations, and Sri Lankan traditional treats at tea time kept our anticipations high and expectations exceeded. One of their best features was permission to bring our own liquor which was a bliss since we were sure of having our favorite drink to wind down in the evenings without the hassle of choosing and ordering.
With a natural reef pool right outside the perimeter, a pool within, and pristine beaches, coral reefs, scuba diving, whale watching and many water related sights and activities available all over the southern coastline, Villa Amandhira is perfectly situated with convenient access to all of it, and more. For the history and culture lover, Galle Fort, Dondra lighthouse are some of the main must see places.
Ideal for groups and families, Villa Amandhira caters to approximately 6 guests with the number varying depending on accompanying children and their ages. Individual rooms can be booked if available, but recommendation is to book the whole bungalow for a private stay, in order to get the maximum effect of the personalized service.
The three rooms of the villa are decorated in the same theme as the main building with stark white walls off settingthe dark brown wooden furniture and fittings. What is beautiful is the pure white netting covering the four-poster beds under the white ceiling with timbre beams and the bright colors of the pillows and throws to go with the theme of the room, peeking out from the white linen through the white netting. It gives a feeling of a dream and instantly puts you in a relaxed mood. The rooms and bathrooms have the best of modern amenities and provide all the modern day comforts such as air-conditioning and safes.
The most luxuriously spacious room, Tangerine, situated in the upper story has one of the most breathtaking views we have ever seen. With floor to ceiling glass doors, the ocean view is unhindered and gorgeous. The room with its own living area and dressing area with a king sized four-poster bed and ensuite bathroom has yet more space for additional bedding if required.
The room Aqua, also situated in the upper story, has its own private balcony overlooking the ocean while the third and final room Safron is situated in the lower level and opens to the green lawn overlooking the ocean.
No matter which room you take, the view of the ocean and feeling of the sea breeze will be permanently available to your senses.
Meals can be had inside or outside the building, both with fabulous views of the beach and ocean, depending on your mood and the weather. The formal dining table inside is adorned with chic furniture and overlooks the beach with unhindered floor to ceiling glass windows which can be kept open if preferred.
Set menus of western and local cuisine is prepared by the chef and his team after discussion with the guests, all ingredients of which are sourced from organic and locally grown farms. We were invited to visit the local farmers market to choose our favorite fruits, vegetables and meats and cooking demonstrations were arranged for our favorite dishes as well. A tuk-tuk was arranged and it was a fun experience to choose our own ingredients, and then have it cooked with us observing and learning. One of the best experience was to visit the early morning fish market and be able to choose the best catch of the day to bring back and have the chef prepare a culinary delight for us.
As guests checking in, we were treated to a refreshing drink of king-coconut water and varying with the seasonal availability of local fruits, all guests are treated to a local refreshment upon arrival. Tea and Coffee is available throughout the day and an evening snack awaited us every evening.
Villa Amandhira is truly situated in the heart of the oceanic paradise. the best beaches such as Galle, Jungle beach, Unawatuna, Hikkaduwa, Matara, Mirrissa, are some of the exotic beach locations of the island. Not just the beach though, many water based activities such as coral reefs watching, whale watching, dolphin watching, scuba diving, snorkeling, motor boat rides, jet ski rides, can be accessed in these beach locations.
For culture and history lovers, Galle Fort, Galle Lighthouse, Dondra Lighthouse: the southern tip of the island, Rumassala temple, Japanese peace pagoda in Unawatuna, Kushta Raja Gala in Weligama are some of the main attractions. Walk to any fisherman areas and see the wondrous and mesmerizing stilt fishing in action; the picture it paints cannot be described as you watch them persistent and still, waiting for the fish to bite, and make their days labor worth it. With the sun rise you will see the fishermen coming in with their haul from the previous night, through boats and hauling of the nets to the shore. You can participate in the haul of the fishing nets and witness and buy the fresh early morning’s catch of the day.
The nature lover will find Rumassala sanctuary, kogglala lake, dolphin and whale watching and coral reefs in all its wondrous setting. Each beach will be different to the other as you explore Hikkaduwa, Galle, Unawatuna, Matara and Mirissa beaches. The reefs, sand, and water have different textures and colors and will keep you enticed throughout your stay.