Before being a boutique hotel, the Kandy House belonged to an aristocratic family whose descendant included a president and two prime ministers. It’s unclear whether any of them lived in the house, but that didn’t stop us from pretending that we were “the prime minister’s guests” during our stay. Truth to be told, it wasn’t very hard to pretend. First because it still feels much more like a house than a hotel (which is a good thing in my book) and secondly because the level of luxury there was in fact prime minister-like.
But first, lets’s plant the setting a little bit, we’re in Kandy, Sri Lanka’s cultural capital, right in the middle of the island. We felt the city had a nice laid-back feel already, but once you get to the Kandy House you definitely reach another level of relaxation. You’re surrounded by vegetation, yet you can still hear a prayer song or a drum playing from time to time. There’s a vast mirror pool at the back of the garden and white pop up chairs on the lawn perfect for a late afternoon reading session.
In a true Sri Lankan fashion, the house is surrounded by verandas. This one was right in front of our room and was our designated breakfast spot. Not bad.
There was more food than I could possibly eat on offer for breakfast : fruits, porridge, muesli, pancakes of all kind and quite a few Sri Lankan specialties. I was particularly taken with that fruit though, I don’t know its name, but this was the most graceful thing.
The room was very intimate, with dark hardwood floors, antique furniture and windows overlooking the leafy garden. I think the best part of it was the bathroom: it was only separated from the rest by a thin white curtain and had a gorgeous vintage looking tub. This gave the room a moody colonial feel that felt very personal and not hotel-like at all.
There was photo-worthy and inspiring art on display all-around the house. Who knew gold turbans on deer heads was a thing?website, and booking a room there.