ISSN: 1391 - 0531
Sunday April 27, 2008
Vol. 42 - No 48
TV Times  

‘Swiss Residence’ : Kandyan traditions in Swiss touch

By Sanath Weerasuriya, Pix by Nilan Maligaspe

Most of the overseas holiday travellers visiting this country mark Kandy as the top attraction on their tour apart from their destination - beach, wild or adventure. It has been a tradition to visit Kandy, as it has a blend of old charm and the character of its own.

The Swiss Residence Hotel in Bahirawakanda is a popular place for the guests coming to the hill capital. Built in the picturesque location and surrounded by the scenic mountains, Swiss Residence is a three star property of Kandyan traditions with a Swiss touch.

Standing on a one-acre land at Bahirawakanda, The Swiss Residence has successfully captured a charming blend of European and Kandyan culture in its modern architecture. Hotel Swiss Residence offers 40 tastefully designed rooms inclusive of one Suite and 14 deluxe rooms. All rooms are with private balconies and a panoramic view of the city of Kandy.

'Our hotel always bound to serve the wants and needs of the guests. It offers a totally relaxing atmosphere and enjoyable holiday by the cool mountain breezes. Beside all overseas travellers, it is in a big demand with Sri Lankan clientele. Atmosphere and the services give Swiss Residence an edge over the rest' said Lalith Ellepola, the Manager of the hotel.

All rooms are equipped with modern facilities that a 5-star hotel offers. The suite features a 'Jacuzzi' bath tub with a massage and soothing effect. All other rooms are with modern facilities such as telephone, mini bar, television, safety locker and a modern bathroom.

Most of the interior decor at The Swiss Residence has a typical Kandyan aspect. The woodwork and woodcraft, a common sight in most Kandyan 'walauwas' seem to be the theme at the Swiss Residence. An attractive and unusual feature is the hotel's wooden ceiling.

The cuisine plays a major role at the hotel. Excecutive Chef of the hotel, Terrence Ratnayake said, they offer cuisine around the globe for their guests. 'Theme nights too are popular here. Sri Lankan, Indian, Chinese, Italian, Mongolian, Indonesian and Continental culinary are the most popular among the guests' he said.

‘The Swiss Bar is designed for relaxation or to have a good time with the boys is guaranteed. The cosy atmosphere puts you at home, as you relax and unwind your knots to some gentle melodies with the company of your preferred beverage. The Swiss bar is certainly so much more' he added.

‘Private dining at pool side or garden or at out side location is too possible on request' he said. The Swiss Banquet Hall caters for all guest's requirements. The conferences and seminars can be accommodated with the main hall, which is capable of having 150 pax and the mini conference hall with 50 pax capacity.

'Space is not an issue, as our hall can comfortably accommodate up to 350 individuals for weddings and other parties' said Ellepola. The hotel has a beautiful swimming pool from where guests get a pictuesque view of the hotel as well as the surrounding nature. The hotel has a beautiful swimming pool from where guests get a picturesque view of the hotel as well as the surrounding nature.

The 'Blackout' is the hotel's discotheque with all modern facilities. 'We do not open the discotheque on regular basis. It is on request for big groups and for private gigs' Lalith said. The hotel being in close proximity to the Dalada Maligawa, Asgiriya Cricket Stadium, Udawatte Kele forest reserve, the holiday makers love to visit these places in a relaxed mood.

Also the excursions to Udawatte Kele, Knuckles Range Corbets Gap are popular with adventure tourists. Peradeniya Botanical Gardens, Sigiriya Rock Climb, Pinnawela Elephant Orphanage, 'Victoria Golf Course' too are popular places of interest and has made the Swiss Residence an idyllic tourist spot.

Indigenous Medical Treatment and Ayurveda Spa is the latest addition at the hotel.‘It offers various kinds of Ayurvedic treatment and herbal therapies for hotel guests. It has a specialized doctor and trained therapist at the Centr’ said Mr. Ellepola.
The design and planning of this unique hotel has been done by Sarath Bandara Wijesuriya, head of Zurikan Hotels and Travels (Pvt) Ltd. the owning company of Swiss Residence. Sarath is a Sri Lankan expatriate turned Swiss citizen.

The hotel is owned by Sarath and his wife Ruth Wijesooriya and Melani Perera, a long standing member of the hotel has been appointed as a board member of the hotel.

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