Words Udeshi Amarasinghe. | Photographs Menaka Aravinda.
As you drive along Lewis Place in Negombo,a quaint promenade centered around a banyan tree catches your attention. It is a magical atmosphere of glittering lights in the night sky. Providing a street-food experience together with a delectable assortment of dishes, the Banyan of Heritance Negombo encompasses three diverse spaces, Mad Dogs and Bodega, Rouge Bar and Lounge, and Swiss Bakery and Café.
Beautifully lit up with a laid- back ambiance, the Banyan provides the ideal space to chill out and relax. With the option of indoor or outdoor seating guests can enjoy the vibes of Negombo in a leisurely setting.
Mad Dogs serves fusion cuisine with a special emphasis on pizza, tapas and seafood. The dishes are specially curated with delicious flavors and exquisite tastes. Guests can select from a range of salads, tapas, pastas, pizzas, rice, seafood and snacks catering to a diverse palate. With an extensive beverage list, guests can have a wonderful evening with friends and family.
The interior of Mad Dogs is chic and rustic with an open kitchen, where the food preparation action can be witnessed as ingredients are tossed and stirred. The restaurant can accommodate a maximum of 136 pax with both ground floor and upper level seating. Bodega is the private dining area with the wine cellar providing the exquisite backdrop to the space.
The Rouge Bar and Lounge has distinctively different atmosphere with plush red furnishing and an exuberant lighting feature that catches your attention as you step inside. As its name reflects this space is primarily a bar serving a wide selection of beverages together with snacks.
However, if anyone would like to have dinner at the Rouge Bar and Lounge, they can simply order from the Mad Dogs menu, which would be served to the guests at the bar. With a festive atmosphere, and a seating capacity of 120 pax, it is an upbeat space to unwind and enjoy.
Quaint in appearance with a distinc- tively European interior highlighting pastel yellow and blue furnishing, the Swiss Bakery and Café serves French- style confectionary as well as a wide range of baked goods and sandwiches. It is the ideal setting to enjoy an after- noon tea or coffee inside the café or outside watching the day pass-by.
The outdoor sitting area provides a relaxing space with the ancient banyan tree providing the shade. Sculptures of children playing in its vicinity provides a beautiful atmosphere for comradery and friendship. The architecture of the promenade is unique and sets it apart with beautiful scallop like features on the roof and four bell towers enhancing its appearance.
The Banyan follows all procedures to ensure the safety of its guests during this COVID-19 pandemic period. Guests can also opt to have take away or have their food delivered to their door steps. While it is still the initial days of reopening after the lockdown period, the Banyan hopes to gradu- ally re-introduce many of its activities such as musical bands with time.
Negombo is gradually coming alive again and the Banyan is definitely the place to enjoy a wonderful evening under the beautiful banyan tree.
175 Lewis Place
(+94) 317 431 431
Deliveries: (+94) 768 776 438 Heritancehotels.com/negombo Opening hours:
Mad Dogs and Bodega: 11am to midnight Rouge Bar and Lounge: 4pm to midnight
Swiss Bakery and Café: 7am to 7pm