Claughton House Reviews


Our Review

Overall Rating:
8.0
Reviewed:
09-May-2014
Without doubt, this is one of Sri Lanka’s most engaging villas and in one of the most breathtaking locations on the island – the views are nothing short of spectacular. Its links to Geoffrey Bawa and its interesting, yet short, history makes a stay here all the more engaging. The house itself is fairly modest – there are no fancy mod cons and the simple yet imaginative design evokes the past as much as the present – however the new owners are currently upgrading the house. The interiors have already been given a sensitive facelift, and look lovely, whilst two more bedrooms and a TV lounge are due to be completed by the end of 2014; they were renovating existing buildings for these behind the main house at the time of our visit (March 2014) but we were not disturbed by the work at all.

Our favourite place to pass the time was around the main swimming pool (there is a second pool to the side of the property, close to the driveway). This cliff-top pool complements the house – it’s been here for a few decades and we liked its old-school geometric design. The different shades of blue reflected the sea beyond and the terrace surrounding it was scattered with sun loungers and beanbags, one of which was placed on a protruding corner from where we could sit and watch surfers in the bay below. A little staircase leads down the hillside to the beach, and it’s a lovely spot for long strolls, swimming or body boarding (there’s a big collection of boards in the house) with care for much of the year – the sea is fairly shallow.

The staff really went out of their way to ensure that we had everything we needed, in particular the lovely chef who produced some heart-warming food. We recommend his rice and curry, which we enjoyed by candlelight down by the pool. Make sure you have a chat to the maintenance manager who’s worked at the house from the very beginning. He showed us some 25-year-old photos of the house.

Individual Scores:

Character/Charm:10 Location:9 Outside Area:9
Living Area:8 Bedrooms:8 Bathrooms:7
Kitchen:6 Facilities:6 Staff:9
Value:8
Highlights

Claughton House is full of character and surprises! We loved that each bedroom had a sea view and came with its own garden courtyard (with shower), and that there were chairs and beanbags carefully placed in scenic spots around the garden. The interiors’ sensitive upgrade has really enhanced the house in a way that complements its minimal design ethic. The palm-studded gardens were huge and the views across Kudawella Bay superb, especially from the upper swimming pool. The staff team were very attentive without being obtrusive, and we appreciated their smiles and enthusiasm in ensuring we had all we needed.

Surprises

The mattresses were a little on the hard side, although the pillows and linen were all of a beautiful quality. The sloping lawn to the front of the house was unlit at night, so take care wandering up and down from the pool area in the dark as it is a little bumpy. Small details, like the seen-better-days state of the lower beach fence are slowly being upgraded, and eventually a garden screen will be planted around the top ambalama to provide a little more privacy for those practising yoga. We suggested to the management team that it might be helpful to provide a mobile phone for use in the pool pavilion, as it is a steep walk back up to the house if you forget a towel or need to order a snack or a cool drink! The steep walk down to the pool and the steps within the property make it unsuitable for those less mobile.

Guest Reviews (1)

Vishal Marwaha, India checked out on 13-Jan-2015
Overall Rating:
9.5
Reviewed:
11-Mar-2015
Claughton House is truly outstanding, the location, design, decor, ambience are amazing and we had such an enjoyable relaxed holiday thanks to the staff and the chilled out atmosphere.

Individual Scores:

Character/Charm:10 Location:10 Outside Area:10
Living Area:10 Bedrooms:9 Bathrooms:10
Kitchen:8 Facilities:10 Staff:10
Value:8
Claughton House /villa/claughton-house.aspx Price starts at $1,500 - $2,500 per night
8.14 out of 10
based on 2 user reviews. Without doubt, this is one of Sri Lanka’s most engaging villas and in one of the most breathtaking locations on the island – the views are nothing short of spectacular. Its links to Geoffrey Bawa and its interesting, yet short, history makes a stay here all the more engaging. The house itself is fairly modest – there are no fancy mod cons and the simple yet imaginative design evokes the past as much as the present – however the new owners are currently upgrading the house. The interiors have already been given a sensitive facelift, and look lovely, whilst two more bedrooms and a TV lounge are due to be completed by the end of 2014; they were renovating existing buildings for these behind the main house at the time of our visit (March 2014) but we were not disturbed by the work at all.

Our favourite place to pass the time was around the main swimming pool (there is a second pool to the side of the property, close to the driveway). This cliff-top pool complements the house – it’s been here for a few decades and we liked its old-school geometric design. The different shades of blue reflected the sea beyond and the terrace surrounding it was scattered with sun loungers and beanbags, one of which was placed on a protruding corner from where we could sit and watch surfers in the bay below. A little staircase leads down the hillside to the beach, and it’s a lovely spot for long strolls, swimming or body boarding (there’s a big collection of boards in the house) with care for much of the year – the sea is fairly shallow.

The staff really went out of their way to ensure that we had everything we needed, in particular the lovely chef who produced some heart-warming food. We recommend his rice and curry, which we enjoyed by candlelight down by the pool. Make sure you have a chat to the maintenance manager who’s worked at the house from the very beginning. He showed us some 25-year-old photos of the house.
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