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“Located near Dambatenne, one of the only estates in the world that Sir Thomas Lipton planted himself, the term 'Ceylon Tea' was coined here. This bungalow boasts an infinity pool that gives you - no exaggeration - one of the best views in the world, however if it’s views you’re after, wake up around 5am and head towards Lipton’s seat for sunrise. On a clear day, you may lucky to see Uda Walave National Park at a distance.”
High above the plains of southeast Sri Lanka, Thotalagala balances on the edge of an escarpment on the Dambatenne tea estate bought and planted by Sir Thomas Lipton, one of the towering figures in the history of Ceylon’s tea industry.
The house has seven suites, each dedicated to the memory of those who played an integral role in the development of the province - from James Taylor who is credited with introducing tea plantation to British Ceylon, to John Duncan, who played an important role in the extension of the railway. No matter which suite, each one is the epitome of colonial luxury featuring four-poster beds, rugs and dark wood furniture.
There is no menu, but the butler proposes dishes to suit guests’ tastes and you dine at a communal table.
Nearby you can tour the 1890’s tea factory, hike up to Lipton’s Seat, and take tea in the garden of Lipton’s unchanged bungalow.