Gileemale Walawwa & EstateSri+Lanka/Gileemale+Walawwa+&+Estate

Starting price: 60 USD

NEED HELP ?

Contact the concierge on

dream@secret-retreats.com

BOOK

A celebration of Sri Lankan history, culture, and spirituality, the Gileemale Walawwa estate and boutique hotel is set within a verdant valley beneath the legendary Adam’s Peak Mountain. This two-storey luxury accommodation can trace its origin back to the rule of King Rajasinghe the 1st (1581-92) and has been added to over the subsequent centuries, with the distinctive Victorian colonial facade and the upper floor being completed in 1911. The Gileemale Walawwa and Estate is today an eco-responsible nature retreat surrounded by 25 acres of vegetation including cinnamon, cardamom, tea, rubber, and coconut plantations that have created a wonderful sanctuary for a kaleidoscope of birdlife. As well as providing boutique accommodation, guests at the Gileemale Walawwa Ratnapura Hotel are invited to enjoy a variety of stimulating activities such as a fully immersive yoga experience with a visiting yoga instructor with the stunning scenery of the Sabaragamuwa region as your yoga shala. Available to beginners, intermediate, and advanced practitioners, the course includes meditation, waterfall visits, lessons on plant medicine, and a cooking demonstration using locally sourced ingredients. Other activities on offer at Gileemale Walawwa include bird-watching tours with an experienced guide, a plantation experience where visitors are invited to explore the local natural resources of the surrounding plantations and farms as well as taking part in rubber tapping, and a visit to a gem mine and the local Gileemale Rajamaha Viharaya shrine. Guests with a day to spare will enjoy exploring the 7 hidden waterfalls of Gileemale. This involves a gentle rainforest hike through the picturesque foothills of the Adam’s Peak Mountain range stopping for refreshing waterfall dips, a local farm visit, and a soothing traditional Ayurvedic massage. Visitors looking for a bit more adventure are invited to take advantage of the onsite cycling and kayaking facilities.

Your Host and The Team


“The Gileemale Walawwa is conceptualised and materialised by its current sole owner Ishantha Avinda Senerath Dassanayake who is a sixth-generation member of the lineage of Pagoda Punchi Bandara, the original owner of the mansion and the village “Gileemale”. Ishantha has achieved a delicate balance infusing his own character and innovative vision while preserving the mansion’s ancestral history of more than 300 years to build an entity of sustainable hospitality that rekindles the bygone glory of the Sabaragamuwa culture. ”

“We want to provide a unique culture and heritage experience of Sri Lankan plantation within an eco-responsible nature retreat in the heart of Adams’ Peak valley.”

Relax in Sustainable Hospitality at the Gileemale Walawwa and Estate

The majestic Gileemale Walawwa and Estate is just a 30-minute tuk-tuk drive from Ratnapura City. Here guests are invited to travel back in time to the Sri Lanka of yesteryear. The current owner, Mr. Ishantha Avinda, has carefully preserved the mansion’s 300-year history and the legacy of six generations of his ancestry by offering a delicate balance of culture and heritage in an eco-responsible boutique hotel and nature retreat. Behind the Gileemale Walawwa Ratnapura hotel’s Victorian colonial facade is a two-storey mansion (Walawwa is the Sinhalese word for mansion) featuring authentic Sri Lankan architecture, with the hotel it houses offering modern comfort, and traditional hospitality. Visitors are offered a choice of six spacious beautifully decorated bedrooms – four double, and two singles. As well as being used in the construction of the mansion, ebony and jackwood also feature in much of the colonial-style furniture and other aesthetic elements. Because the property has remained faithful to its original and classic architectural design, there are no private bathrooms. The three shared bathrooms feature several showers and washrooms with complimentary toiletries and freshly laundered towels. Gileemale Walawwa Boutique Hotel also features a gorgeous on-site restaurant. Café 1911 boasts an impressive menu of Sri Lankan specialties and Western cuisine and is open for brunch, lunch, and dinner. All dishes are prepared from fresh locally sourced ingredients and complemented by teas and organic fruit juices grown on the Gileemale Walawwa Estate. With the capacity to seat 12 diners, Gileemale is happy to entice guests and locals into the restaurant or onto the terrace with signature gastronomic treats such as Musanda and Pennywort porridge, Ala Kola, and Fiddlehead Fern. Other facilities include a Yoga Shala which can accommodate up to eight, and an Ayurvedic Spa where guests can enjoy a relaxing traditional massage. A business center is also available and was created to accommodate gem buyers visiting Ratnapura to trade precious stones.



“The Gileemale Walawwa Ratnapura Hotel in Sri Lanka’s Adam’s Peak Valley is an impressive eco-responsible nature retreat housed in a lovingly preserved 300-year-old mansion. Polished hardwood interiors and furniture shine with the patina of heritage, and the hospitality of this family owned and run boutique hotel and estate is as professional as it is warm and welcoming. The family and team at Gileemale Walawwa have successfully paired boutique hospitality with culture, history, and heritage with a focus on sustainability and the local community. ”
Kim, the discoverer.



Gileemale Walawwa Offers an Immersive Sri Lankan Experience

A stay at Gileemale Walawwa is a chance to experience the incredible Sabaragamuwa culture while participating in sustainable practices and carefully curated community involvement. The Gileemale Walawwa Ratnapura hotel staff are on hand to recommend a range of immersive activities such as cycling, hiking, trekking, bird watching, and river rafting around the sacred Adam’s Peak. Guests booking a room between December and May can enjoy the Adam’s Peak Experience which includes a two-night stay at Gileemale Walawwa and Estate and a trek along the Rathnapura route on Adam’s Peak. A relaxing post-hike deep tissue Ayurvedic massage follows at this wonderful Sri Lanka heritage hotel, along with a local Sabaragamuwa cooking lesson. Guests are also invited to take a historic tour of the Gileemale Walawwa and visit the property’s cinnamon and tea estates. December and January are the ideal months for birdwatching, and the Gileemale Walawwa team have created a three-day package for twitchers that includes accommodation and two days exploring the surrounding plantations, waterfalls, and countryside with an experienced naturalist. Birders are also invited to indulge in a relaxing massage and learn the architectural history of Gileemale Walawwa Ratnapura Hotel amongst other activites. From December to August, the Gileemale Walawwa hosts its Gem Mining Experience which includes accommodation and a tour of the local gem mine with a gem specialist. A gem awareness session is followed by the chance to peruse and purchase locally sourced cut and polished gemstones as well as enjoy a lunch with local miners and dealers. The program also includes a trip to the gem buyer’s paradise, Rathnapura, for a tour of the world-renowned Sapphire Market. Although the vision behind the Gileemale Walawwa and estate is to provide a diverse and distinct Sabaragamuwa experience, the hotel’s owners are just as keen to create a tranquil haven where guests feel free to relax and escape the pressures of the modern world in surroundings that evoke a bygone era that chimes perfectly with slow, responsible and eco-conscious travel.


Rooms

In order to preserve the original 300-year-old architecture of Gileemale Walawwa as much as possible, there are no en-suite bathrooms. The bathrooms for the rooms are shared and offer several showers and washrooms.

Single Rooms (2 units)

At approximately 9 sqm in size, the two single rooms at Gileemale Walawwa, are perfect for solo travellers. Named the Alexandrite Room and the Ruby Room, they are both set with a single bed fitted with mosquito nets, hardwood antique furniture including a dressing table, and a pedestal fan.

Double Rooms (4 units)

At approximately 17 sqm, the 4 double rooms at Gileemale Walawwa are perfect for couples or friends travelling together. The Star Sapphire room is set with twin single beds, this room can also be set to sleep 3 people (additional charges apply). The Padmaracha room and Yellow Sapphire room are set with a king bed, and the Blue Sapphire room is set with a queen bed. All the beds are dressed with mosquito nets, and hardwood antique furniture adorns the room, including a dressing table, and a pedestal fan.

Hotel Facilities and Highlights

Gileemale Walawwa & Estate highlight
  • 24h Reception24h Reception
    WifiWifi
    BoutiqueBoutique
    Wedding/EventWedding/Event
    Historic HouseHistoric House
    Eco FriendlyEco Friendly
    Private IslandPrivate Island
    NatureNature
    GardenGarden
    LakeLake

Useful Information

GENERAL
Total number of rooms: 6
Annual closing:
Open all year

Time zone: (GMT+05:30) New Delhi
Currency accepted: USD, LKR, EUR
Credit cards accepted: Visa, Mastercard, American Express
Electricity voltage: 230V
Electricity plug type:
CONTACT
Gileemale Walawwa & Estate, Gileemale, Ratnapura, Sabaragamuwa, 70002 , Sri Lanka
CONTACT HERE
ACCESS
96km from Colombo center, and just 15km from Ratnapura.
Airport: Bandaranaike International Airport (CMB) - 133 km
Train Station: Avissawella - 55 km



CONCIERGE
Your concierge is ready to assist you with planning and completing your reservation,
contact them on dream@secret-retreats.com

We Care

Roots of Good
Sustainability has been important to the owners of Gileemale Walawwa since its founding more than 300 years ago. As a core belief, sustainability sits behind everything the owners and the hotel team do. The focus of their actions is on making a positive impact on the social, economic, and environmental conditions of their Adams Peak Valley home and the beautiful neighbouring village of Gileemale.

Gileemale Walawwa is a plastic free property, and they have eliminated the use of single-use plastics at the hotel and estate. Guests are provided with refillable water bottles in their rooms, plastic straws aren’t used in the beverage service, and all packaging is plastic-free. The hotel also practices waste segregation and recycling.

Restoration and preservation of Gileemale Walawwa has been a great passion of the owners, who are the 6th generation of the owning family of this beautiful Sri Lankan heritage home. They have taken great care to ensure the integrity of the property and its architectural heritage will be preserved for future generations to enjoy.

We are sure that a highlight of your stay will be the delicious and wholesome homegrown Sri Lankan Sabaragamuwa cuisine. Most of the produce used in the restaurant’s kitchen is grown and sourced locally.

Supporting the Local Community
Family owned and family run, the team at Gileemale are all recruited from the local village. Like one big family, the hotel and estate team are trained and mentored in-house. The owners strive to support and nurture their staff in every way possible to help them really progress in life as well as in the hospitality industry.

The team at Gileemale Walawwa also share their experience and provide awareness on environmental sustainability to the village school and the local villagers. Additionally, the hotel offers guests the opportunity to participate in sustainable actions with tree planting ceremonies and riverbed cleaning projects.

Gileemale Walawwa continues to strive as a family for sustainable excellence, to preserve the Gileemale village both environmentally and culturally for future generations to come.

Unique Travel Itineraries and Secret Experiences
in Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka
Wildlife and Culture of Sri Lanka

13 days / 12 nights
4,220 USD
Learn more
Sri Lanka
Wildlife and Culture of Sri Lanka

13 days / 12 nights
4,220 USD

Sri Lanka
The Soul of Ceylon

10 days / 9 nights
3,450 USD
Learn more
Sri Lanka
The Soul of Ceylon

10 days / 9 nights
3,450 USD

Learn more
Sri Lanka
Noel Rodrigo’s Leopard Safaris Packages

3 Days / 2 Nights
400 USD

Sri Lanka
Noel Rodrigo’s Leopard Safaris Packages

3 Days / 2 Nights
400 USD
Learn more
Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka: 50 Shades of Green

7 days / 6 nights
2,270 USD

Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka: 50 Shades of Green

7 days / 6 nights
2,270 USD

BOOK

instagram youtube linkedin blog tiktok

Travel Asia with Secret Retreats

Secret Retreats is a curated community of independent boutique hotel, villas, yachts and river boats keen to share their Asian Homes with travelers, sustainably and responsibly. Conservation of the environment, culture and traditions of Asia is of paramount importance to all in Secret Retreats. A community of like-minded hospitality professionals, we offer our guests authentic travel experiences that go beyond typical offerings to unveil the essence of Asia. Supporting the Asia based hoteliers and hospitality professionals and providing incredible holidays in Asia and tailor-made Asia travel itineraries direct to public ad travel agents.
Get inspired and make savings!
By booking direct with Secret Retreats and enjoy peace of mind from our full on the ground support. Contact our concierge and plan then book your Asia holiday now!