Colonial-style, laid-back luxe
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Activity adventure | History & culture | Honeymoon | Jungle | Lodges | Mountains | Natural world | Wildlife
Thotalagala Plantation House is surrounded by 4000 hectares of plantations in one of Sri Lanka's most successful tea-growing regions, perched between lush mountain slopes and dense jungles.
This former planters bungalow has now been revived to its former colonial-style glory, and guests enjoy sweeping panoramic vistas from the lawn's edge; it makes for a wonderful breakfast spot. Later there's al fresco evening BBQs featuring premium cuts of meat alongside a fantastic wine and champagne selection, while indoors, a table for just twenty ensures an intimate experience. It's all the perfect prelude to a nightcap or two in the teak-panelled smoking room.
Just seven themed suites continue the intimate feel and are all colonial luxe, each based on those who shaped the history of the region, such as the Sir Thomas Lipton room. Dark wood furnishings, a splendid four poster bed and traditional features transport you to a time gone by, while the Rev Walter Senior room is all squashy sofas and opulent tones of gold and red.
Thotalagala lies on the slopes of a working plantation so this is a wonderful opportunity for guests to immerse themselves in learning about the tea planters' lifestyles. The term Ceylon Tea was even coined here, and Lipton’s Tea was founded and sold its first pound of tea from the factory which still stands today. The surrounds are also home to myriad delights, from the Dambatenne Tea Factory, built in 1890 by Sir Thomas Lipton, to Lipton’s Seat from where he would survey his plantations. Other highlights include Diyaluma Falls, the country's second highest waterfall, or for those who like to keep active, the plateau of Horton Plains National Park lies in the shadow of looming mountains and is an excellent spot for hiking, featuring diverse wildlife from leopard to the endemic purple-faced langur.
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