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Lighthouse Hotel & Spa

Galle,  South Coast

Overview

One of Geoffrey Bawa's earliest and most famous works of architecture. Designed to harmonise with the natural beauty of its surroundings, the Lighthouse combines luxury hotel with an ayurvedic spa. A most distinctive feature at the hotel entrance is a sculptured metal ballustrade enclosing a spiral staircase which sweeps to the roof top.  It depicts a tale of the Dutch invaders, featuring  the Sinhala king playing his flute and life- size horsemen in battle.  

The hotel sits on a rocky outcrop above the beach with terraces sweeping down to the golden sands and the Indian Ocean. The hotel sits alongside a natural reef and bay which is safe for swimming nearly all year round.  The large pools and adjoining sundeck  allow you to enjoy an unterrupted view of the blues and greens of sea and sky.  Or stroll down through the gardens to the beach side and the Serena spa.

The main body of the hotel has corridors dappled by shadows  from tall slender pillars and colonial night lamps ( a further mark of Geoffrey Bawa).  The 60 rooms lead off in somewhat regimented rows.

Ideally located for Galle's fascinating historic Fort and the cosmopolitan restaurants but sufficiently far away to escape the noise and grime of  the bustling City.

The active may wish to venture on a fishing trip for whale and dolphin spotting, or challenge their partner to a game of tennis, squash or pool.  The more serious athlete may wish to interrupt the sunbathing with a work-out in the gymnasium.

For most, this is a perfect hotel for 1-3 nights stay whilst you explore the South coast, crafts and fishermen before heading further East, North or West for more adventure.

 

   
   Child Friendly
   Swimming Pool
   Beach Access
   Groups Welcomed
   Ayurveda
   Fine Dining

Rooms

The Lighthouse has luxury rooms in the modern style and it is only the sheer size and number of rooms that prevent this hotel from being a  perfect private retreat where exclusivity reigns.

60 well furnished and spacious rooms each laid with polished teak floors throughout. The large kingsize beds with complimentary modern teak bed heads are dressed with beautiful hand painted covers depicting the many Dutch coats of arms. Brightly coloured  window shutters and settee cushions liven up the white walls and  give a real feeling of a beach hideaway.

The ensuite bathroom is very inticing. Soak in the bath surrounded by mirrors and a marble vanity area. A separate shower room if you prefer. Fuffy white towels await as you step out towards your walk-in dressing room. There is plenty of storage space and each room is equipped with all the modern services like telephone, music, mini-bar, safe, and satellite TV. Each has a balcony or terrace which overlooks the garden and out onto the sea, shaded by the swaying coconut trees.

The three suites complete the feeling of  luxury and privacy with a n elegant four poster bed and a large sitting room with bureau. A small kitchenette and guest cloakroom adjoins should you wish to entertain guests. The balcony is large for private dining. The bathroom has the extra luxury of a jacuzzi tub. Thoughtful touches of complimentary toiletries, butler service, flatscreen TV and DVD /Cd theatre system and the adjoining deluxe suite for children make these suites a memorable choice.

The spa lies at the sea side of the gardens with a separate pool. It has a team of highly trained ayurvedic therapists and a range of treatment rooms. Husband and wife can enjoy a massage in a dual suite or indulge in absolute tranquility and have a top-to-toe treatment in solitude.

 

Dining

Lighthouse has a choice of four restaurants plus 24 hour room service.

Cinnamon Room for fine dining. Fresh crisp linen is taken for granted in the airy dining room, softly lit from the beams above. International dishes cater for all tastes. Views through the adjoining covered area to the large pool are enhanced at night by many twinkling golden lights reflected in the water. Seafood features heavily on the menus such as lagoon crab and yellow fin tuna.  However much you enjoy the fish the wild rabbit soup should not be missed.

Cardamon Cafe is the main restaurant for dinner, buffet lunch, afternoon tea and snacks and has a more infomal atmosphere. The views over the Indian Ocean are wonderful and you can opt for the outdoor tables if your prefer.

Anchor Bar & Grill down by the poolside will whet your appetite at lunch time. Light snacks of sandwiches, salads and basket food can be prepared for you to nibble by the pool.

Coats of Arms Bar  is a colonial lounge which is ideal for a pre-dinner cocktail or after dinner game of pool.

 For a really romantic experience, enjoy dinner on the beach, lanterns flickering in the warm breeze and your personal chef and butler service. Arrange in advance if you only have a short stay in Galle.

Things to do & local tips

  • The Lighthouse Serena Spa is a big attraction and will rejuvenate mind and body.  For a more intense ayurvedic treatment, you would need to attend an Ayurvedic Retreat for at least 2 weeks.  But this should give you a taste of the healing properties of this ancient medicine. A combination of Eastern and Western treatments are on offer including Naturopathy.
     
  • The Lighthouse offers a host of activities and sports for the active. The in-house jewellery and Barefoot stores will keep shopaholics busy. There is a hairdresser if you are preparing for a special occasion.
     
  • There is a nature room and libary with a resident nature specialist who can guide you on excursions -by foot, by boat or by jeep.
     
  • Galle Fort  is worth a day to meander through the old lanes and soak up the atmosphere.  The cosmopolitan restaurants and cocktail bars buried in these colonial houses (cleverly disguised from the local  Muslim Community) are a wonderful escape from the mid day sun.
     
  • Maritime museums and antique bazzars fill the streets but do beware of touts and locals selling "special historic maps".
     
  • Head North around the coast and you will pass through many villages worth an hour's viewing - masks, puppetry, antiques, fishing, lace.
     
  • Further South you will discover Unawatuna beach resort - a fabulous reef for snorkellers and divers.
     
  • Further still is Welligama and the daily stilt fisherman. The fish market is an amazing experience if you can get out of bed early to await the first catch and open market.
     
  • Mulkirigala Cave Temple is  a day trip and is often combined with a trip to the Kataragama holy temple serving many religions on the South East corner of the island.

For further details of opening times, places of interest , restaurants and transport in the region, click here.