Paradise Road is a vital if expensive shop for tourists, expats and well-heeled locals alike. They have a great selection of candles, textiles, cutlery, home furnishings, statues, preserves, etc. You'll rarely be disappointed with the quality or design of items at Paradise Road, but you'll pay for it as well.
Paradise Road connects highly intelligent design with local craftspeople and suppliers. While it's peer Barefoot focuses on colors, Paradise Road mainly works in black and white. Owner/designer Shanth Fernando has combined traditional Sri Lankan design and modern minimalist chic to create a compelling new subcontinental aesthetic. His style is now the default for many high-end homes and hotels - black and white, simple lines, natural materials, ethnic chill.
The shop itself is in a calculatedly crumbly old colonial building which is positively overflowing with items. Every nook and cranny is full of candles, sarongs, spoons, statues, lamps, etc. Upstairs there are jars of food, tablecloths, dishes, glasses, etc. For many newly married couples this is the only place on their wedding registry. There's also a charming cafe
in a little nook.
For gift items or personal indulgences we can't fault Paradise Road at all. It's only peer would be Barefoot and the closest competitor is Gandhara
. It is expensive, but you get what you pay for, which is guaranteed quality. Many homes use Paradise Road linen and cutlery for years and people abroad are still shlepping about with those alphabet bags. They have five branches but Paradise Road still isn't a volume business, you get handmade, thoughtful items, at a price.
They have some lovely concrete hand shaped incense holders and bookends. Their Sinhala/Tamil alphabet print items are some of the most popular in the shop.