There's a warmth and spirituality to Aditya that Sri Lanka's newer luxury hotels can't match. It may be because it was initially intended as a home, or because the decor features carefully curated antique pieces, or perhaps it's simply the sheer excellence of the staff. With some of the country's best-appointed suites and villas, everything here comes together for a perfect celebration of life. [Indi's Note: like having a baby? Or doing ecstasy? What is this?]
The boutique resort stretches across a secluded beach strip on Rathgama. Just 10 minutes from the crowded and loud Hikkaduwa beach, Aditya manages to feel absolutely private. The beach is usually serene, but you'd need to be an experienced swimmer to do more than a shallow paddle [do you not paddle very deep, or does it refer to the depth of the water? Is it a doggy paddle? But some dogs are experienced swimmers. Like Labradors]. There's also lots to do in the vicinity, from surfing and diving to temples and historic sites like Galle Fort.
As it stands, Aditya has 16 suites and 2 pool villas. Each with a unique name, theme, and view. I've been fortunate enough to visit Aditya a few times, a different suite on each occasion.
The Shanthi Suites (pictured above) are generally inward-facing garden suites, whereas the Sagara Suites offer sea views. Each massive suite comes equipped with a plunge pool, double beds, home entertainment systems and sprawling ensuite bathrooms. These are also the least expensive options you can opt for, starting from about Rs. 43,000 - Rs. 53,000+ on a double board bed and breakfast basis.
The 2 villas are separated into pool suites and sky suites.
Rudra is an upstairs sky suite, that features lovely sea views from the breakfast balcony, a bedroom expansive enough to feature a cosy sofa set, entertainment system, and kitchenette. The suite also play host to a rooftop hot tub that overlooks the sea. We do wish the tub wasn't blue plastic, but with a glass of bubbly in hand we're not complaining. The lowest retail on this is about Rs. 58,000.
The Aditi pool suite was my most recent Aditya experience, and it was heavenly. Probably the best suite on the property, you can expect to shell out about Rs. 78,000+ per night for the sheer luxury of bedding down here during off season.
At 1,250 square feet, Aditi boasts a private pool, lawn, direct beach access, and a bathroom larger than my first apartment (this is actually true).
The plush suite came complete with a kitchen and living room, courtyard, tastefully appointed bedroom, and a beautiful warm al fresco pool. These were all complemented by lovely antiques, vintage photographs, reading material, and art.
The ambience here is an experience in itself. Carefully cultivated gardens, ponds, and lawns meet stone sculptures and antiques from Bali, India, and Sri Lanka. Hand-picked and curated, the space plays host to an eclectic collection of art, including kind of scary large traditional puppets hanging from the ceiling (super frightening when you're trying to sneak into the library at night to get a DVD out).
The place is built like a lush holiday home, with a high-ceiling communal dining area, lots of seating areas scattered about, and a large pool twinkling lazily in the sunshine.
That being said, Aditya is now eleven years old, and it's starting to show ever so slightly. The bright blue pool tiles are now a bit dated as is some of the upholstery of the plush couches in the villas, but this are minuscule details only the true fusspot could detect.
Your dining experience here is totally personalised, so you can go a la carte, choose from their shorter full board menus, or if you're really craving something just give them prior notice and a sweet smile and they'll try and set you up (within reason. Please don't go ask for like a Beluga-topped [caviar or whale] gold plated croquembouche [I'm not even going to spell check this]). Their breakfasts are multi-course, generous (unlimited) portions of either Sri Lankan or Western cuisine. We strongly recommend their local fare, complete with loads of fresh juice, hoppers or kiribath, and a selection of perfect curries.
If it's a special occasion, they generally do something special like a romantic table on the beach or a little mousse cake (just speak to the GM Shamindra Fernando - he's always keen to create the perfect celebration). The dinner here is generally a relaxed affair with about 5 courses, plenty of time to walk about in the starlight, and enough leeway to get a lovely drink in. While generally well-executed, we do think the Continental menu could do with a bit of an update, as a lot of the dishes smack of the early 2000's, like Hong Kong style seafood with grilled vegetables or chocolate flan with vanilla ice cream.
The service here is absolutely perfect. Most of the staff is from the South, have been trained internally and have grown along with the hotel. They anticipate your every need, are always friendly, attentive, and informative. The level of personalised attention you receive here is exceptional - just ask the numerous international returnees each winter.
Over my visits, both the General Manager and a waiter I've had the pleasure to encounter on each visit, Indika have ensured the service has been unparalleled. The staff is also happy to set up activities for you, suggest things you can do or see in the neighbourhood, and even give you free cooking lessons. I learnt to make Batti Beef in their kitchen, which was quite exciting (and delicious)!
If you're honeymoooning, celebrating a birthday, or just in dire need of some pampering, head Down South. Lounge in your private pool with a cocktail a book, and your arm around someone you love. Waking up to the smell of sea-salted air, the soft rush of the Laccadive Sea, and breakfast served with the warmest of smiles [Did you eat the smiles Kinita? Did you? How do you know the temperature?] is well worth the splurge.
Prices mentioned are during the low summer season, for 2 people on a bed and breakfast basis, and are liable to taxes, change, and discounts. Use booking.com or contact the hotel directly for the best and most current rates.
Aditya is one of Sri Lanka's original coastal luxury hotels.
The place has a charm of its own, which is best discovered in person, as it’s hard to explain in words. Room rates are upwards of Rs.24,000 on BB basis depending on the season.
The property is in Rathgama, before Galle and after Hikkaduwa, and if you don’t keep your eyes peeled, you might miss the sign that leads you down a tiny lane to the hotel. Although the hotel tells you to get off the Baddegama exit from the Southern Expressway, it is easier to locate when driving back towards Colombo via the Galle road, after exiting the expressway from Galle.