Tag:Luxury Boutique Hotels
Galle Fort Hotel reviewed by THE TELEGRAPHAugust 4, 2017
“In the centre of Galle Old Town the hotel is ringed by colonial buildings, restaurants, well-preserved ramparts and a crescent of coastline, combining the sophistication of a boutique hotel with the easygoing atmosphere of a private retreat. Not the cheapest option in town, but laden with charm.”
Here in spades. A former gem merchant’s mansion, the hotel’s small number of rooms overlook a central, colonnaded courtyard with a pool and garden flush with blossom. Immaculately restored, the property feels more like a private residence than a standard hotel – its owners have done well to create a space that’s welcoming, soothing and special.
Read the full review on The Telegraph
Galle Fort Hotel featured on Condé Nast TravellerAugust 4, 2017
Part Ian Schrager, part Somerset Maugham, this 12-room hotel is in a seventeenth-century Dutch merchant’s house in the heart of Sri Lanka’s historic, now-hip Galle Fort. Owners Karl Steinberg and Christopher Ong, exacting guests themselves, have trained the young staff to abandon Oriental bows in favor of genuinely great service—plumbing problems were resolved on the spot, and meals were served in record time. Ong oversees a daily menu of Asian favorites that draws deserved raves from across the island, particularly a kung pao chicken that elevates the take-out classic to haute cuisine. Dutch antiques fill the rooms, no two of which are alike. A spa suite provides Thai massages that match Bangkok’s finest, but guests must come prepared for occasional power failures (although the hotel’s generator kicks in quickly).
Travel in 2017: Top 5 Places to Visit this YearFebruary 9, 2017
Galle Fort hotel one of the unique hotels in Galle was mentioned in the latest article by sassyhongkong.com where they have mentioned Sri Lanka as one of the five places to visit in 2017.
If golden beaches, magical mountain vistas, rich wildlife, and exotic cuisine sound like paradise, Sri Lanka might just be the place to steal your heart! Nature lovers will delight in the lush landscapes of tea plantations, nature trails, caves, and lakes, while history buffs can explore a myriad of age-old cultural heritage sites, including 300 year old Galle Fort, one of Sri Lanka’s seven UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Bring your camera because there’s plenty to ‘gram from wild elephants and ancient temples to whale watching to vibrant tropical fruit.
Read the full article on www.sassyhongkong.com
Sri Lanka Is Ready for Its Close-Up by Conde Nast TravellerDecember 14, 2016
Andrew Solomon from Conde Nast Traveler writes,
Just a few short years after the end of its brutal civil war, Sri Lanka—with its rambling temple ruins, leafy tea plantations, and wide golden beaches—is bursting with optimism (but not the crowds).
The shift from peace to war can be famously abrupt, with neighbors turning on one another with little apparent provocation. Placid communities can become bloodbaths in the blink of an eye (Kosovo, Syria). Rebuilding in the wake of a terrible war, by contrast, usually takes decades. But Sri Lanka has managed a rapid shift from some of the most horrific carnage in recent history—a civil war that raged for more than 25 years and produced 100,000 casualties—to a peace that not only unites the country’s previously divided ethnicities but inflects the experience of any visitor to the island.
Out of hotels in Galle, Galle Fort Hotel was a recommended stay from the author.
Read the full Article on the cntraveler.com
On the Lankan Heritage TrailNovember 2, 2016
As a centre piece among Galle boutique hotels Galle Fort Hotel was revieweed on Villa 88 magazine, Autumn 2016 issue
In the morning sun, colorful little birds gather for a quick dip in the small, tiled fountain which forms the center of the open courtyard, inside what was formerly an 18th century Dutch mansion. Gigantic pillars create tall shadows in the corridors of the refurbished mansion, while the pale walls and high ceilings offer a sepia-toned throwback to Dutch-era Sri Lanka.
As sunbeams illuminate the ancient doors and windows on the façade of the iconic Galle Fort Hotel, stories from the pages of Sri Lanka’s history come to life. The estate has seen times of strife and turmoil as well as that of prosperity, as it morphed from a princely Dutch mansion to barracks for the Royal Air Force (RAF) during World War II, a post o ce, a bakery, and most recently, a pitch for Galle’s adolescent cricketers, before it was finally refurbished to become The Galle Fort Hotel in 2003.
The boutique hotel offers some unique insights into Sri Lanka’s journey through the ages. For instance, a suite named after a seven-foot tall eunuch, the Chinese Admiral Cheng Ho, commemorates his visit to Galle in 1406. The admiral had halted at Galle en route to an expedition to explore the Indian Ocean and Western Pacific with seven voyages, long before Cristopher Columbus set his anchor down on the sandy shores of Ceylon.
Recipient of the UNESCO Asia Pacific Heritage Award of Distinction, The Galle Fort Hotel is a treasure trove of such stories unearthed from history, culture and folklore. The architecture of the renovated estate also reflects more than one style and school of design. While a majority of the boutique hotel retains its Dutch charm, parts of it pay tribute to Sri Lanka’s British heritage as well as its ethnic Sinhalese flavor.
Read the full article on priyankapradhan.com
A walk around Sri Lanka’s Galle FortOctober 16, 2016
They don’t call us for having one or more of the best restaurants in Galle for nothing.
Where to eat and drink on your day in Galle
The superb Galle Fort Hotel’s memorable courtyard provides a suitably stylish home for Sri Lanka’s best fusion cuisine, full of bright, strong flavours. There’s also a snack menu at lunchtime, homemade cakes in the afternoon and fine coffee.
For the full article read Insight Guides
Herschel Supply features Galle Fort HotelJune 10, 2016
Extracted from Herschel Supply Co. Stories
At the heart of the Fort, the magnificent Galle Fort Hotel a luxury boutique hotel holds centuries of history between its walls. Originally a Dutch mansion, it was taken over by gem merchants during the British reign, then restored and renovated into a luxury boutique hotel in 2003. Awarded the Asia Pacific Heritage Award of Distinction by the UNESCO, the hotel remains a model of preservation for all the other businesses in the city.
Galle Fort Hotel: A darling of architectural magazines & a beacon of inspiration for historical properties across the worldJanuary 21, 2016
Not only one of the luxury hotels in Galle but a heritage hotel Galle fort hotel was reviewed on CEO magazine.
Galle Fort today is one of Sri Lanka’s most evocative tourist attractions. A UNESCO World Heritage site, the sturdy ramparts survive to this day, making Galle Fort the most well preserved European fort in Asia.
Within the walls is a microcosm of European architecture transported to the edge of the Indian Ocean. The Dutch were prolific in their construction, and it is their style of building that remains the most prevalent within the fort.
The largest private mansion of the Dutch era was transformed from ruins into a superb hotel by Australian Karl Steinberg, whose Galle Fort Hotel opened in 2004 as one of the first hotels to be located within the fort, which at the time was in a derelict condition. No longer. A decade of renovation and rejuvenation, along with helpful funding from UNESCO, has turned Galle Fort into a time capsule where travellers can enjoy themselves in numerous bars, restaurants, and shops that cater to their modern needs, while operating in a manner that preserves the integrity of the fort and its unique history.
Galle Fort Hotel became the darling of architectural magazines across the world and remains a beacon of inspiration in the restoration of historical properties in Sri Lanka and beyond. The atmospheric rooms of Galle Fort Hotel vary in size and style, but all of them present guests with memorable accommodation whether in the Porcelain Suite, the Chinese-influenced Admiral Cheng Ho Suite, or the traditional Grand Apartment where antique Dutch furniture recreates a sense of a bygone era in a spacious twobedroom suite. Although Steinberg has moved on to other projects, Galle Fort Hotel remains in the capable hands of another Australian, General Manager David Elgar.
Extracted from The CEO Magazine
Galle Fort Hotel: Sri Lankan HistoryJanuary 21, 2016
Reviewed on australia.etbtravelnews.com
It is largely thanks to an Australian businessman that Sri Lanka’s once decrepit Galle Fort is now one of the country’s most important tourist attractions. Just over ten years ago, Karl Steinberg left Sydney’s film industry to undertake a completely new challenge. With partner Christopher Ong, Steinberg acquired the largest Dutch-era mansion within the walls of Galle Fort and set out to bring it back to its former magnificence. Galle Fort Hotel opened in 2004 and was an immediate success with Sri Lankan and international travellers clamouring for rooms in this elegant property where history and contemporary design coexist in splendid harmony.
An atmospheric lobby sets the tone for the entire property Thanks to the valuable spices sought after by Arab, Chinese, and European merchants, Sri Lanka saw all of these cultures establish trading posts and forts to protect them along the coast. Galle Fort, originally built by the Portuguese and subsequently enhanced by the Dutch and British who followed, is the best-preserved European fort in Asia. Now it is a tourist magnet that attracts an interesting mélange of visitors. The culture buff revels in the juxtaposition of one culture upon another in a faraway land; admirers of architecture enjoy seeing the fort’s ramparts and fortifications as well as the old buildings coming back to life after decades of neglect, now operating as hotels, shops, restaurants, and art galleries to keep the less specialised visitor equally entertained. For many decades, Galle Fort was forgotten and run down, but all it took was the foresight of a canny visionary to see the possibilities for one of the most historically significant locations in Asia.
Studiously restored and renovated to accommodate modern-day travellers, rooms and suites at Galle Fort Hotel envelop the guest in a sumptuous surroundings. The hotel became the darling of architectural magazines across the world and remains a beacon of inspiration in restoration of historical properties in Sri Lanka and beyond; people come from far and wide to witness what can be done with a big, old house and some imagination. The atmospheric rooms of Galle Fort Hotel vary in size and style, but all of them present guests with memorable accommodation whether in the Porcelain Suite, the Chinese-influenced Admiral Cheng Ho Suite, or the traditional Grand Apartment where antique Dutch furniture recreates a sense of a bygone era in a spacious two-bedroom suite. The hotel’s dining room provides an ideal venue to enjoy the excellent food of Sri Lanka, where the various cultural influences have left their marks on the local cuisine. Although Steinberg has moved on to other projects, Galle Fort Hotel remains in the capable hands of another Australian, General Manager David Elgar, who oversees operations with refined expertise.
Though most closely and most obviously associated with its home country of Malaysia, Air Asia X offers Flatbed Class service to several destinations in Asia beyond Kuala Lumpur, Sri Lanka’s capital Colombo being one of them.
The Galle Fort Hotel: a truly historical cultural boutique experienceSeptember 15, 2015
Extracted from: http://newsfirst.lk/
Galle Fort Hotel offers and contributes to a truly historical cultural boutique experience. Its 12 individually designed suites open out to the centrally located inner courtyard and the 10m swimming pools offer’s a tranquil exclusive area for guests. Galle Fort hotel rooms are luxuriously and individually furnished with king-sized beds dressed with canopied mosquito netting, crisp white linen and comfortable pillows.
The ‘Admiral Cheng Ho suite’ is a large two-storey suite that commemorates the visit of Admiral Cheng Ho to Galle in 1406. The upper floor bedroom has a carved Chinese opium bed and work desk. A screen made from rare antique columns provides privacy from the living area below furnished with intricate pieces of oriental furniture and a day bed. The attached open-air bathroom has six-metre columns with a large elevated outdoor ‘waterfall’ shower.
The Grand Apartment is a grand suite and its 2,500 square feet occupies the entire top floor of the old wing. The room is divided into two king-sized bedrooms with ensuite bathrooms and a private verandah. The apartment features original 17th century artworks, antique chests and cabinets, an eight seater antique dining table and two large Dutch period four-poster beds.
The bar-cum-cafe is a great meeting point and has huge potential to attract greater market share. David the General manager plans to make it the hot spot of the area by making it more open and friendly to outsiders and passers by.
Open to non-guests the restaurant is very much in tune with the Fort prices and receives much positive feedback for its Sri Lankan style and western dishes and promotes freshly and locally bought produce.
David Elgar the General Manager has worked across multiple hospitality business sectors including hotel management, resort project management, high end luxury resorts, medi-spa health and wellness retreats, with over 30 years hands on hospitality experience. He has international experience working in ‘developing countries’ such as Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Fiji, Seychelles and now Sri Lanka.
He believes there is an art to managing people. The leadership style he adopts emphasizes and recognizes the importance of engaging with individuals in an approachable, constructive manner in order to achieve business success. As a Manager, he applies critical attention to the continued alignment of training staff, spelling out their expected roles and matching it by performance.
“I believe that while I am working and living in Sri Lanka I will not only be able to make a contribution to tourism in the country but also pass on my knowledge and skills to the staff at the Galle Fort Hotel and make them feel proud about who they are. Encouraging self-confidence and empowering people to think on their feet will improve self-worth and a hotel that promotes good energy is a hotel that will travel to great heights. This is my aim.”
The landscape of Galle Fort continually changes. Today a Museum occupies the stables; jewelry shops abound; cafes emerge from behind restored columns; interior design shops mingle with bookstores and fashion outlets and the supply of new hotels continue to grow. The number of hostels, hotels, boutiques, restaurants and shops are are too numerous to mention so we instead invite you to visit the Galle Fort and walk these beautiful old colonial cobbled streets and discover the treasures of the Fort for your self.