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The stately grande dame of Galle Fort on Sri Lanka’s south coast, Amangalla boasts all the period charm of a bygone era. Combining the Sanskrit-derived word for ‘peace’ with galla, Sinhalese for the town of Galle, the resort stands at the junction of Church and Middle Streets with commanding views of the harbour and fort ramparts.
With its chandeliers and soaring fin de siècle ceilings, being welcomed into Amangalla’s Zaal, or Great Hall, is like stepping into the past. It houses the elegant Dining Room at one end and a bar at the other, with a welcoming lounge area in-between – ideal for enjoying a cup of Ceylon tea or an evening cocktail to the accompaniment of the grand piano. Upstairs, the Sunset Balcony is a picturesque spot for sundowners with views across Galle.
An intimate setting with a colonial feel, the Dining Room serves Sri Lankan and Western cuisines. Guests can also dine on the veranda, which faces the tree-lined street, or enjoy alfresco breakfasts and lunches under the flamboyant tree with views of the resort’s 21-metre swimming pool.
A wander into Amangalla's 200-year-old garden reveals the Baths, the resort’s tranquil spa facility. Massage therapies drawing on Ayurvedic healing traditions can be enjoyed in five softly-lit treatment rooms. The Baths’ wet areas include hydrotherapy pools, and there is also a Barbershop, a Salon and a yoga pavilion in the garden.
Another peaceful retreat is the Library, which houses an extensive range of reference books, novels and games. It also features an eclectic collection of memorabilia that offers insight into the history of the resort, the fort and the town of Galle.
Amangalla offers accommodation in 26 Bedrooms, Chambers and Suites, the two-bedroom Amangalla Suite and the two-storey Garden House, which is situated in the resort’s garden near the swimming pool.