Maya Villa is a exquisite five-bedroom Sri Lanka manor house built at the end of the 19C and set on a two-acre estate inland from Tangalle overlooking terraced paddy fields and blessed by abundant bird life. The property has been caringly restored by its current owner, Niki Fairchild, a British interior designer, and the original wallawwa now houses the lounge and two bedrooms. A new building has been seamlessly added to the rear of the house which contains three more bedrooms and living spaces. The two buildings are linked by a central courtyard with a spectacular L shaped swimming pool. The exquisite heritage architecture has been retained, including verandas and courtyards, doors and windows with intricate lattice work and the clay-tiled roof, whilst the rest of the house has been modernised with polished cement floors and stylish contemporary interiors.
There are five ensuite bedrooms: two double rooms in the main house and three in the new wing. Bedrooms are spacious and airy with 25ft high ceilings and are named after tropical trees. Each room opens out to the garden or a private courtyard and is furnished with a king-sized bed dressed in fine linen with a choice of feather or organic pillows. Other in-room facilities include a/c and overhead fans, room service and laundry service. Ensuite bathrooms have hairdryers, organic herbal bathroom products and h/w rain showers. Extra single beds are available upon request and extra bedding for children below 12 years is free-of-charge.
Kumbuk: This bedroom in the main house opens to the side garden, the central courtyard and swimming pool.
Tekka: Also in the main house, this bedroom has spectacular views across the paddy fields. This room also opens out to the central courtyard and swimming pool.
Kohamba, Ehela, and Amba: These three bedrooms are housed in the new wing and are contemporary in design. Every bedroom opens out to a private courtyard at the back and the swimming pool in front.
The main house has a lounge and library whilst the new wing has an outdoor garden pavilion with dining area and large sofas. Meals are served when and wherever you please. Sri Lankan, Indian, Asian and western cuisine are on the menu. BYO alcohol. There are extensive gardens scattered with tall fruit trees and a 20 metre swimming pool. Other facilities include cable TV, DVD player, DVD library, music system in the veranda, iPod dock, and Wi-Fi throughout the house. There are also bicycles, outdoor game equipment and several board games. A relaxing Ayurvedic massage can be arranged with prior notice, as can a babysitter.
Maya Villa offers bespoke wellbeing retreats that create mind and body wellness through the ancient philosophies of Yoga and meditation. Group Yoga retreats are offered only between May and October. Private yoga packages for 4 and 6 nights are available from February to December. Individual Yoga classes are also available, as well as meditation practice and Tai Chi.
Why we like it
This stylish countryside villa benefits from neat gardens running down to the lake and is only a short drive from the coast
Maya Villa is in the peaceful village of Aranwella, only 8 kms from the coastal town of Tangalle in the south. The beaches are 15 minutes by car or trishaw and the journey from Colombo’s international airport will take about 3.5 hours via the southern highway. Avoid road travel and hop on board a sea plane from Colombo.