A beautiful hotel steeped in history set atop a promontory overlooking the ocean.

This hotel is famed worldwide for its colonial charm, amazing location and over 210-year history. Once the home of British Governors, it overlooks a stretch of private beach and oozes old world-style elegance and ensures a high level of service as well as excellent food. You can really get a sense of the hotel's history during a guided tour of the hotel; this intriguing look behind the scenes takes you down into the secret tunnel that was used by the governor to meet his lover, Lovinia. With its relatively close proximity to the airport, the hotel is also a fantastic choice for your first night or two on the island; it is often used as the start or end point of a small group escorted tour or a private car and driver itinerary.

The hotel has quite a few options for foodies, and if you particularly love seafood, The Seafood Cove will be a little slice of paradise. Serving fresh fish and other delights down on the beach, you can pick your dinner, request how it’s cooked and then dig your toes into the sand as you’re serenaded by the calypso band. Another popular spot is the Fish Tale Bar, a relaxed Cajun-style beach tavern where you can order a range of beverages for your enjoyment down on the beach. This is the perfect stop-off before or after your visit to Seafood Cove.

The historic charm continues into the rooms with those in the Governor’s Wing being particularly in keeping with the history of the hotel. There are a range of comfortably furnished rooms in the modern wings which have views of the hotel’s grounds or the ocean.

TripAdvisor rating

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Key information

On a stunning promontory overlooking the Indian Ocean, 30 minutes from Colombo

Airport transfer time: Approx. 1½ hours by road from Colombo airport
Rooms: 210

Good to know

Compulsory Christmas Eve and New Year's Eve gala dinners, supplements apply.

Accommodation information

210 rooms

Activities

• Join a guided tour of the hotel (Monday, Wednesday or Friday), learn about its fasciniting history and discover the secret tunnel where the British Governor used to meet his lover, the beautiful Portuguese-Sinhalese dancer called Lovina • Board a train which will take you into the heart of Colombo where you can visit the World Market (departs Saturday) • Explore a local fruit and vegetable market (every Sunday) • Enjoy a private dinner on the Baywatch Tower which is located on Paradise Beach* • Treat yourself to a massage at CocoSpa*.

Dining

3 restaurants, 2 bars

What's included

Breakfast at the Governor's restaurant.

Meal upgrade options (per person per night)

Half Board from £23 • Breakfast and dinner at the Governor's restaurant

Full Board from £30 • Breakfast, lunch and dinner at the Governor's restaurant.

*Denotes local charge