Inspired by a jewellery designer, this 2003 new born villa has all the beauty and detail you would imagine from Tiffany's.† Owners Palitha and his Dutch wife Stephanie have transformed their colonial, ancestral home and built a further resort of 17 rooms opposite.
Set at the quiet end of Negombo, just 5 minutes from Negombo's beachside you enter Araliya's 2 homes via reproduction fossil/leaf flagstones.† Garden features, bathroom surfaces, even the door knobs, are all artistically designed and demonstrate signs of Palitha's modern Italian jewellery training.
Angular, colour-washed walls, gold leaf inset tiles and box lighting turn every stride into a story.† The floodlit 45ft turquoise pool, together with the temple candles, araliya trees and burning archways around the garden, bring this retreat to a magical kingdom at night.A range of doubles, suites and apartments to meet all needs.
The pool bar and sun-loungers give little reason to leave the villa but the sunsets on this West Coast are stunning, even the blue sea gives off a red glow.
The new block is L-shaped around the pool, some rooms over-looking the pool, some over-looking the well-manicured gardens.† The 5 whitewashed, air-conditioned apartments are well spaced and quiet with a private verandha.† There are three, two- room apartments for 4 people, and two double apartments, each with 2 bathrooms and a living area.
Each room is gem inspired and aptly named - sapphire, topaz, moonstone and aquamarine.† The crisp bed linen, curtains and plump cushions add life to the dark Maron wood furniture.† Palitha has even designed the verandha chairs, which were hand-made on the South Coast.
There is a clever use of† polished colour washed concrete walls and floors, which are light and cool, finished† with uniquely shaped lights, mirrors and inset mosaic tiles. This is really shown to advantage in the bathrooms which have modern fittings and hot water showers. Soak in a long bath whilst ceiling tiles twinkle with light.†
Apartment rooms are equipped with TV's.† There is also a†separate, fully equipped kitchen and an open seating area to relax and have time out with the family.††
With a similar finish, but excluding the kitchen/living area, are the 8 double and 3 twin bedrooms over two floors. Each has its own verandha/balcony. These also have remote control air-conditioning, plus ceiling fans if you prefer.
Suites have a downstairs living area with TV and an extra bathroom. Upstairs is a master bedroom with a comfortable bathroom with tub.
The beds throughout are stylishly built onto concrete bases but the thinner Sri Lankan mattress are not for the restless sleeper.†† The room boys are very thorough and Stephanie runs a tight ship. †Fresh fluffy towels and bed linen are provided daily.
The original colonial Villa is brimming with character and antique furniture.
The locations are endless - twinkling garden, pool-terrace, Colonial restaurant equipped with stone pizza oven, Western-style saloon courtyard and wooden seating.
Whilst Palitha does not claim to offer a 5 star menu, you will not be disappointed by the pizzas.† In true tradition, Palitha wished to have the new restaurant blessed before opening it.† Hence we were not able to experience the menus but can suggest that seafood will be a key feature.
They keep large supplies of liquor but the wine list was a little disappointing considering the strong Italian influence in Negombo.
For local recommendations on restaurants, places of interest, activities and transport in Negombo,†click here.