Halala Kanda is an inspiring art deco style villa located a few kilometres inland from Weligama’s surfing beaches. Built in 1912 by Simonmeru Gunathilaka, the son of a wealthy plantation owner, the villa later fell into disrepair and lay in ruin until it was rediscovered in 2010 and lovingly bought back to life. Its vintage styling, art deco features and Tropical Modernist aesthetic makes this private villa in Weligama a favourite with families and groups. The villa’s decorated entrance façade, hallway with 20-metre pitched roof, wonderfully-named Room of Curiosities and poolside nook The Folly, all give Halala Kanda an enigmatic character of its own.
The heart of the villa is its breezy courtyard and dining area with long stone table for up to 20 guests. Of the five bedrooms, four are generously sized double suites which open onto private gardens, the main garden or onto the front terrace. There is also a twin bedroom while the Room of Curiosities can be made up as a sixth bedroom if required (these two rooms would share a bathroom). The villa has a fully-equipped kitchen and a private chef.
The main feature of the two-acre garden is the long swimming pool which stretches for 23 metres down to The Folly, an art deco-styled pavilion with sunken lounge for enjoying conversation and sundowners. Surrounding it are fruit trees, coconut palms, cashew nut trees, tea and coffee rows, cinnamon bushes and pepper vines.
The villa is a scenic 15-minute’ drive from surfing hotspot Weligama, and around 30-minutes from Galle along the Southern Expressway. Other local beaches include Mirissa, Kabalana and Ahangama, while visits to tea and cinnamon estates, and cruises to to go whale and dolphin-watching, are easy to arrange.’s surf