Thalassa Sri Lanka


It grew to 85OO square feet on two floors of covered space. There are seven double beds, which all have sea views, and seven en suite bathrooms, a huge sitting room with a piano, two outside sitting rooms, a big dining room, a pool in the inner courtyard, a massage temple, a great kitchen, a study with satellite TV, internet, DVDs and books and games and spacious staff quarters.

They have used only Sri Lankan materials, furniture and fittings throughout the house, and were delighted to discover how luxurious these are, and often beautifully designed too. There are luxurious 10 inch mattresses, mosquito nets and fans in every room and stunning use of coloured polished concrete in the bathrooms and elsewhere. The furniture is a mix of state of the art - a vast stainless steel chandelier and barbecue - and genuine eclectic antiques. The Burmese teak floors in the two biggest downstairs bedrooms, the study and sitting room are recycled from a defunct ballroom in Nuwara Eliya, and the walkway has pillars from a collapsed South Indian temple. Dutch and old Brit antique chests and planters’ chairs sit side by side with modern white sofas and Chinese cabinets. There are Sri Lankan and other pictures everywhere.

There are really three gardens. The seaside garden is often windy and has 25 palm trees and a one-minute walk from the house to the beach. There are hammocks and loungers and built in benches along the front of the house and a croquet set and table tennis. The courtyard garden contains both pool and massage pavilion and is sheltered and the bougainvillea and hibiscus thrive here. The back garden is defined by the gravelled driveway and the family dogs, cats and hens live out here too. Big shady trees abound in all of them.