Painting a canvas of serene blues and pure whites with a touch of the orange of the rising sun, Chaaya Blu Trincomalee, opened its doors yesterday on the white sands of the East Coast.
The very first four-star resort on the East Coast, Chaaya Blu was also a first investment decision by the John Keells Hotels Group with the dawning of peace last year.
|Chaaya Blu’s inviting beach front
With its retro-chic 1970s double arched architecture inspired by the James Bond movie, ‘Die Another Day’, Chaaya Blu was conceptualised by master architect Channa Daswatte who wanted to complement the unique landscape of Trincomalee rather than simply add yet another resort onto the horizon.
Deputy Chairman of John Keells Holdings Ajit Gunewardene says, “This ‘70s property now revamped as a stylish retro-chic product will also set trends in modern resort interiors being outside the typical Sri Lankan resort design. Despite the uniqueness of its design, what the hotel truly promotes is an exploration of its surroundings; from the scenic white beaches to the popular sites, flavours and culture of the locality.”
Daswatte says he wanted to have some retro-fun with the old building and went “slightly off the wall!” Given that Trincomalee’s landscape has fewer trees complemented by a sea that transforms from emerald to turquoise depending on the time of day, he has brought in the ambience of easy relaxation.
Take in the mosaic walls in the foyer; the cool interiors of the white rooms with their white painted clay lamps and terra cotta tiles dipped in white paint for a touch of the Caribbean; polished cement beds with tie and dye drapes, mosaic walls and wetakeiya rugs and lots of denim complimenting the mid-century Scandinavian limed furniture.
The design encompasses the unparalleled view of the sea from anywhere in the resort – from the bar, the restaurant, the combination of bleached wood decks that encircle the resort or the centralised spaces where wining and dining is mandatory.
There’s even a beach bar built around a Banyan Tree which overlooks Swami Rock and a timber deck that stretches from the reception, all the way to the beach and out into the sea to create an infinite panorama. Chaaya Blu has 80 rooms including 36 beach chalets and two suites and is positioned as a resort, “Where Great Stories Begin” – this theme realized in an abundance of experiences, excursions and explorations whether on land or sea.
Yet another raison d’etre that makes Chaaya Blu special is the abundant sightings of Blue Whales.
Executive Vice President Jayantissa Kehelpannala opines that the broad white beaches and abundant marine offerings of the East Coast, not forgetting that the discovery of great blue whales in Trincomalee is a further tribute to the amazing diversity of Sri Lankan tourism.
"We take pride in bearing witness to this and launching a resort of the calibre of Chaaya Blu, a first of its kind on the East Coast, within a mere year of gaining peace in Sri Lanka.”