The Coco Royal Beach Hotel offers a blissful experience, treating you to the best of the sunny, coconut-fringed south coast.
Words Yomal Senerath-Yapa | Photographs Vishwathan Tharmakulasingham
Coco Royal in Waskaduwa, Kalutara, stands out quite distinctively with its monochrome, solid, spacious and breezy character that is evident even from the frontage. Walking between soft grass bordered with palms, the guest arrives at the large, open central lobby that looks out to the pool and beyond, the Indian Ocean.
The hotel’s motif is the coconut palm and a regal, golden-orange cluster of thambili welcomes the guest at the lobby. Coco Royal is a distillation of the idyllic spirit of the southern beach. All the spaces are touched with the signature feel of the beach and the ocean: brilliantly sunny and blue and yellow with a shimmering calmness. This magic has brushed off on the rooms as well, with the blue and white bedspreads and the subdued and elegant décor.
The stay here is homely and relaxing. The elegant, tasteful and subtle architecture blends with the beachscape of spindly coconuts and the groves of beach shrubs. Even within the hotel rooms, guests are never far away from the sight of the sea.
The main restaurant, ‘Rasa’, is smart and chic in tones of black, white, brown and silver. The diner looks over the lawn with columns of coconut palms, the poolside, and the panorama of the distant ocean. The strong appetite whipped up by the sea air helps the diner better enjoy the lavish buffet thickly laden with Sri Lankan fare as well as dishes from across the world. The hotel’s a la carte restaurant, named ‘Au Terrace’, has a menu full of Eastern and Western dishes. The open air ‘Café Plage’ on the beach proffers delicious seafood, tasty pizzas, sandwiches and burgers. After laps in the pool, be snug in a warm towel and indulge in some piping hot delicacies.
For those who want to discover the ocean, jet skiing and water polo can be fascinating pastimes. Darts, table tennis and beach volleyball kick up a rumbustious time and will surely help you break the ice brilliantly with fellow guests. The spa, fitted snugly by the pool, has a south sea charm born of polished wooden floors and simple décor. It offers the expert care of Balinese therapists.
The classic hotel banquet hall in the second floor provides an opulent setting for a wedding or even for more informal socializing. While wandering through the hotel, do not hesitate to push the kitchen doors and walk in: Coco Royal believes guests have an unquestioned right to witness their meal in the making.
In the evenings, when the soft breeze wafts in from the sunset-speckled ocean, live music rolls out in the lobby. There is an extensive line-up: DJ, calypso, oriental, or strains of organ, piano and even saxophone. Weekly BBQ dinners happen on the lawn by the sea.
Honeymooners will find Coco Royal a romantic haven. The staff are ready to make it an unforgettable stay, with candlelight dinners and lavish floral arrangements and fruit baskets in the room. Guests can pick up exotic mementoes, jewellery or Sri Lankan attire from the boutique.
Just a short drive away are three of the country’s most beautiful architectural as well as landscape wonders: Richmond Castle and the two famous gardens created by the Bawa brothers – Geoffrey Bawa’s Lunuganga and Bevis Bawa’s Brief.
[ngg_images source=”galleries” container_ids=”1384″ display_type=”photocrati-nextgen_basic_thumbnails” override_thumbnail_settings=”0″ thumbnail_width=”100″ thumbnail_height=”80″ thumbnail_crop=”1″ images_per_page=”20″ number_of_columns=”0″ ajax_pagination=”0″ show_all_in_lightbox=”0″ use_imagebrowser_effect=”0″ show_slideshow_link=”0″ slideshow_link_text=”[Show as slideshow]” order_by=”sortorder” order_direction=”ASC” returns=”included” maximum_entity_count=”500″]