Wall-to-wall allure: Ambassador's House, Galle Fort, Sri Lanka
Stay in ambassadorial elegance in Sri Lanka’s historic Galle Fort.
By Katie Milton | Published #67, Spring 2016
In Galle, Sri Lanka’s burgeoning cosmopolitan capital, salty sea-winds freshen the air and the average temperature rarely falls below 26 degrees Celsius. This ancient coastal city on the country’s fashionable south coast retains its old-world charm within the historical walls of Galle Fort – a UNESCO World Heritage site and an impressive example of Dutch-colonial architecture.
Right in the heart of Galle Fort is Ambassador’s House, a restored 17th-century grand villa that was once the family home of a Sri Lankan Ambassador. With five ensuite bedrooms and a private rooftop terrace, the villa is set among Galle Fort’s restaurants, cafes and boutique stores, and is a 10-minute drive to nearby beaches.
Upon entry, the villa opens out into an expansive living room that leads onto a double-colonnaded veranda. The first floor bedrooms are spacious; the alfresco feel emphasised by high ceilings and four-poster beds veiled in white mosquito netting. Two single beds occupy the twin room, while the master bedroom features a king-sized bed, a lounge area and a white terrazzo bathtub. The three bedrooms on the ground floor are furnished with king-size four-poster beds and wooden shutter doors that open directly onto the rectangular pool area.
Guests can relax in the downstairs paved courtyard or watch the sunset and enjoy a glass of wine on the dual-level roof terrace. Alternatively, an air-conditioned living area sits opposite the pool terrace and includes a movie library, satellite TV and numerous games for all ages.
There are several staff on hand during stays, including an in-house chef and a housekeeper. Guests are able to choose from a selection of Sri Lankan and Western dishes. While guests are required to cover the cost of the food, the preparation and service of the meals is included in the rental cost.
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Weather to go
Sri Lanka’s weather greatly varies according to the region. Between December and March, the Hill Country as well as the west and south coasts are dry and warm. The east coast experiences the best weather between April and September, while the rest of country experiences monsoon season. The east sees monsoon season between October and January. The ‘Cultural Triangle’ is located within the ‘dry zone,’ and only sees rainfall in November and December. The rest of the year is warm and dry, though June and July may see hot, strong winds.
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