ISSN: 1391 - 0531
Sunday, March 25, 2007
Vol. 41 - No 43
TV Times

Oh! Dear Park

By Sanath Weerasuriya. Pix by Nilan Maligaspe

Deer Park is actually not a park, but is a dear place for nature lovers. It is one of the ideally located eco friendly hotels in Sri Lanka.

Deer Park is located on the banks overlooking the beautiful ancient Giritale tank.

This beautifully structured hotel is just five hours away from Colombo via Kurunegala, Dambulla and Habarana. But for adventure lovers and travellers, who want to experience the different, wild road via Kurunegala, Ibbagamuwa, Palapathwela, Naula, Elahera and Bakamuna would be an ideal drive straight to the hotel.

It is set within the Cultural Triangle that consists of ruins dating back 2500 years. The hotel is surrounded by a number of National Wildlife Sanctuaries namely Minneriya, Kaudulla and newly opened Huruluwewa National Park. Deer Park is a refreshing contemporary hotel set within the jungle of ancient royal hunting grounds.

Though hotel consists of 77 cottages, which are furnished with a blend of vibrant colours and nature with Asian craft, the present occupancy rate has dropped to nearly 30% from the packed arrivals sometime back. Sixty one of them bring a touch of nature with its open-air garden bathrooms. The exterior of the cottages is designed to assimilate with the surrounding jungle.

Despite the travel advisories, still European nature lovers find this place better than Thailand or its competitors in other parts of Asia.

It is mainly Sri Lankan holidaymakers make the business for the Hotel.

Deer Park is managed by Angsana Resorts and Spa, known for its exotic retreats, contemporary approach and signature Angsana Spa.

Six Angsana Cottages overlook the serene Giritale Reservoir, ideal for relaxing after a day of sightseeing within the Cultural Triangle. The exclusive Deluxe Pool Suite offers total privacy with its very own private pool.
Deer Park has two restaurants, 'Tree Tops' and 'Ebony', which offer a wide selection of healthy cuisines, including vegetarian and organic fare.

‘We always want to keep the guests happy. In culinary service too, we have give the guest a choice to select from our eco friendly food or other culinary delights. Since, we are one of the top eco friendly hotels, we want to promote the relevant dishes too' said Sunil Samarakoon, who was the acting head of the hotel at the time we were there.

Two bars, The Oriole and Sandpiper, feature a large selection of beers, wines and local snacks
Business Centre and meeting facilities and sports centre, Spa and Mahout Adventure Club (MAC) are some of the attractions of the hotel. Sports Centre is a popular place with both Sri Lankans and foreigners, which includes basketball, volleyball and squash courts, gym, sauna and swimming pool with three-tier waterfall.

With five outdoor and four indoor spa pavilions, Angsana Spa pampers and revitalizes with its extensive range of massage, body and beauty treatments, Angsana Gallery, a lifestyle - oriented boutique, carries an array of home spa accessories, fashion apparels and handcrafts.

The latest attraction is Mahout Adventure Club (MAC), the total answer to all wildlife activities.

'We arrange wildlife excursions, nature tours, bird watching tours trekking and camping, safaris and elephant drives according to the choice of individuals' said Samitha Harischandra, the product development Manager of Mahout Adventure Club.

Apart from the Deer Park Hotel, other Angsana Resorts are Angsana Bintan, in Indonesia; on the azure waters of the Great Barrier Reef, Australia; and the picturesque getaway in Thuru, Maldives.

For more details of Colours of Angsana log on to

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Copyright 2007 Wijeya Newspapers Ltd.Colombo. Sri Lanka.