Long time ago I had visited the New Oriental Hotel, that is how the AMANGALLA was named before it was sold by the late owner Nesta Ephramus Brohier, the grande dame of Galle.
The hotel was and still is a jewel of grand splendour and historic evidence of a time when only a few could travel for business or leisure and wanted to find European elegance in their Asian destination.
In 2004 this jewel in the middle of the historic town of Galle in the South of Sri Lanka reopened as an Aman Hotel, the Amangalla. Due to the old Forts big wall built by the Dutch in 1726 not much was touched by the devastating Tsunami in 2004 and the white Grand Hotel still stands in full beauty right on Church street.
The moment you walk up the stairs to the veranda of the hotel you feel the atmosphere of a leisured time when Europeans celebrated their life abroad in an exotic surrounding far away from obligations and families.
The Bar still forms the centre of this hotel but today there is more to it.
The newly built pool in a lush garden comes close garden Eden and coming homeafter strolling around the Fort you will be grateful for an ice-tea by your pool cabana.
In the evening I suggest a massage in their perfect Spa. Take a Hamam before you have the Aman signature massage or the ayurvedic treatment which can be booked in packages, in those rooms that let enough space for a relaxed spirit.
Throughout the hotel there are many hidden places that let you escape in another time. May it be the library which is filled with English literature, old guest books and almost museum like relicts of the former days, the roof top floor with the best view for sundowners or the hidden Yoga room in the garden.
We suggest to visit the Amangalla for three days and dip into historic storytelling, walk around this UNESCO heritage which is getting restored more and more .
The beaches nearby are nothing to write home about, but only a two hour drive further South you’ll find the Amanwella, which offers you a paradise coconut grove and white sandy beach. Read our article about it.
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