Kalutara, Sri Lanka
Anantara Kalutara Resort
Modernism Meets Paradise
What it is
A lagoon- and sea-front resort beloved for its restaurants.
What it isn't
Ho-hum. Yes, it's a lush, private hideaway, but there’s almost too much to do—from a yoga pavilion to Sri Lankan cooking classes.
What we think
Call it a peace dividend: Tropical modernist and Sri Lankan starchitect Geoffrey Bawa originally designed this property, but it was put on hold due to the island's long civil war. Now that order is restored, the project was revived, opening in 2017, Bawa's vision—and countless coconut palms—intact. All 141 rooms are clean-lined yet ultra luxe, with private terraces, billowing sheer curtains flanking the floor-to-ceiling windows. The bath, complete with rain shower, is separated from the main room by an intricately carved wood screen. Along with stellar service, food is a major focus here; you’ll want to have at least one dinner at Acquolina, the Italian restaurant facing an infinity pool. Order the chargrilled prawns with lemon chilli compote, and bring your swimsuit to take a dip in the candlelit pool after dark.
You're here because
You have a hard time deciding between ocean and river views, and this has both: the property overlooks the Indian Ocean and Kalu Ganga River, plus a private lagoon.
Sure, you’ve had massages before. Or have you? Within the first few seconds of your 90-minute Ayurvedic Four Hand Massage—in which herbal oils are rubbed into your travel-fatigued body by two expert masseurs in a lotus scented room—you start to wonder.
Restaurants & Bars
Olu - International Cuisine - Olu’s lofty ceiling, casual seating and eclectic, contemporary batik motifs offer a sense of space and artistic creativity.
Acquolina - Italian Cuisine - Indulge in authentic cuisine from the Italian coastline. Choose from a menu crafted with passion and expert flair.
Spice Traders - Asian Cuisine - Taste your way across some of Asia’s most riveting culinary cultures. Authentic recipes showcase the best of Thai, Indian and Chinese cuisines.
Upper Desk - Cocktails - Enjoy evening bar pleasures that feel relaxed and convivial. The natural elegance of timber tables and leather chairs is set against a refreshing lagoon backdrop.
A 90-minute drive from Bandaranaike International Airport, though plenty of guests opt to arrive by train; the Kalutara South Railway Station is just 10 minutes from the resort.