TV Times

Hotel Topaz : Top attraction in the hills

By Sanath Weerasuriya, Pix by Shan Bandu Weerasinghe

Hotel Topaz, one of Kandy’s premier hospitality institutions has now taken a complete turn in providing quality services to its clientele. Hotel Topaz started its operations nearly three decades ago, during the period of tourism boom in early 70’s.

The hotel underwent a major refurbishing project of Rupees 70 million few years ago, giving the cutting edge of the hospitality industry in the present days. The lady of Anniewatte, popularly identified by the ardent Kandyan fans of her, Topaz draws the best of the tourists visit the hill capital.

Located on the Aniewatte hills of Kandy, Hotel Topaz boast of panoramic views of Hantana range, Knuckles group, Hunasgiriya Mountains, Matale slop and the Bible Rock. After thirty years, this grand ole lady of Kandy still stands tall amidst, all the new comers to the business. Topaz and Tourmaline hotels in Kandy are owned and managed by McLarencs Hotels Limited.

‘We have further boosted the standard of the property to attracts the new age of tourism after thirty years of conflict’ said Anura Basnayake, the joint Managing Director of the McLarencs Hotels Limited. The hotel has upgraded to four star status after the refurbishment programme.

‘The main entrance, the lobby, restaurant area and the other public areas went under refurbishment programme. Most of the rooms have been upgraded and some have been graded as luxury ‘A’ grade rooms’ Basnayake said.

Topaz has seventy five tastefully furnished A/C rooms including newly added eight suites. Apart from the suites, all other rooms are with piped music and hot and cold running water, TV, mini bar and a private balcony with a breathtaking view.

‘The personalized service is the most outstanding, among the string of facilities we offer to our guests. Our main asset is the friendly staff. It is useless having all the facilities under the stars without having a friendly smile on their face. Our service is very personalized and that’s one of the reasons of our popularity throughout the last thirty years’ Anura Basnayake said.

Main restaurant serves Eastern and Western cuisine along with Sri Lankan specialties. ‘We have a large clientele base of Sri Lankans patronizing the hotel during the weekends. So Sri Lankan food is much in demand and especially Kandyan dishes are popular amongst the foreign tourists. We get at least 8 to 10 corporate customers daily and weekends are largely family outings’ he added. Apart from the traditional menus hotel offers theme nights.

Anura Basnayake

Sri Lankan, Indian, Mongolian, Chinese, Bar-ber-que and Continental nights are some of the popular events on the cards. ‘Tornhill’ is the most popular area for Bar-ber-que nights.

‘It is an open air area in the hotel premises specially designed for gigs under stars. Specially Sri Lankans love to party at Tornhill’ said Harsha Karunathilake, the Front Office Manager. Topaz has two restaurants catering to parties and wedding receptions, Rooftop open air restaurant and main banquet hall can accommodate 350 pax.

‘The three bars reception bar, rooftop bar and pool bar are well stoked with a wide range of wines, spirits, liqueurs, beer and Fresh fruit juices’ explained the chef of the hotel. The swimming pool is situated in between Topaz and Tourmaline hotels, giving a fantastic high and low elevation views of both hotels on either side.

Indoor games, floodlit tennis, Kiddies Park, jogging track, Tornhill, cozy TV Lounge are some of the other facilities of the hotel. The weddings and other conferences are major attractions at the Tourmaline Hotel as it is called the convention centre of Topaz.

Large banquet hall and ample parking facility gives the Tourmaline a cut above the rest. ‘Tourmaline will soon be turn to a high end boutique hotel. The refurbishing programme is underway now’ he said
The latest addition to Hotel Topaz and Tourmaline is the fully equipped discotheque, ‘Deep End’.

Deep End is situated just underneath the swimming pool. Unique location of the Deep End attracts the young music lovers to the hotel. ‘It is just few months old but popular among Kandy youth. The Deep End mainly activates during the weekends. This is mainly for in-house guests’ said Basnayake.
For more information call 081 2224150.

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