This iconic hotel was designed by Sri Lanka's most famous architect, Geoffrey Bawa. It makes for a dramatic and imposing structure standing tall against the cliffs of a huge granite outcrop and seemingly blending in with the jungle as vines and greenery grow over the facade of the building. This makes the contemporary hard lines of the hotel soften as it is entwined with its natural surroundings but maintains the comforts of modern luxuries in its interiors. The hotel overlooks a huge, ancient man-made lake and stunning views can be enjoyed for miles around and out to Sigiriya Rock in the distance.
Heritance Kandalama has eight room categories to choose from with something to suit all tastes and requirements. The hotel is split into two wings, and the views vary depending on which wing you choose. Dambulla Wing looks towards Sigiriya Rock, lush jungle, or the Dambulla Rock, and Sigiriya Wing looks towards it's namesake. We recommend opting for Panoramic Rooms or upgrading to one of the Suite categories for wide sweeping balconies and the better views in the hotel. No matter which room you stay in the in-room décor is uniform throughout the property with wooden furniture, rich earthy tones in textiles and soft furnishings, and wood panelling throughout. The interiors blend very nicely with the jungle surrounds and one can relax right away with homey comforts.
There are a good choice of dining options with their all-day dining restaurant Kanchana restaurant serving international and western cuisine, to fine dining fusion at a la carte restaurant Kaludiya. There is also a Kanchana Lounge and Bar for light bites and cocktails, and the casual Café Kachchan on the edge of the forest. Private on-location dining can also be arranged such as picnics in paddy fields to candle-lit dinners in caves, truly making the most of this incredible location.
There are three impressive swimming pools at Heritance Kandalama; the Kachchan infinity pool which highlights the ingenuity of the architect Geoffrey Bawa as the edge of the pool blends with the water of Kandalama lake, giving the impression that you are in the lake itself; Kaludiya Pool, meaning “black water” because the bottom of the pool is the dark bedrock on which the hotel rests; and finally Rashmi Pool, meaning “ray of sunlight” due to the pool being located at the western end of the Dambulla wing and catches the rays of the setting sun, making it ideal for an evening swim. All these pools make the most out of the hotels locality and natural backdrop. The roof garden and terraces throughout the hotel are also charming features, and there is a spa onsite which offers ancient Ayurvedic traditions to Swedish aromatherapy massages.
Located in the centre of the Cultural Triangle, this hotel provides the perfect base from which to explore the ancient cities, palaces and temples of the surrounding area at a relaxed and leisurely pace.
Features in the following itineraries
The first condition of understanding a foreign country is to smell it.
- Mr David Wallace, North India
- Krista Weir, Sri Lanka
- Matthew Nicklin, North India
- Mr Geoffrey Johnson, India
- Leslie Siben, India
- Matthew Annable, Rajasthan, India
- Mr Richard Stoughton, Sri Lanka
- Jaime Benitez, South India
- Mr & Mrs Manson, North India
- Anonymous, India