“Stylish beachside villa (sleeping 4-10) on Sri Lanka's pristine northwest coast, with a private cook and dolphin-watching nearby”
This is a gorgeous pad. Expect graceful indoor-outdoor living, with "rooms" that flow wall-lessly into each other and out to the leafy garden. Ceilings are high, with overhanging eaves framing ocean views, and the expansive smooth screed floors are peppered with starfish pebble mosaics.
There are 2 beautiful, cool and airy bedrooms with large four-poster beds; both have sea views and huge open-air ensuite shower bathrooms. Adjoining the larger of the bedrooms is a separate sitting room with cushion-strewn daybeds that can sleep another 3 people if required.
At the heart of the villa is a vast and airy living space with blue chaise-longues, planter-style chairs and a huge wooden dining table seating 10. One side opens out on to a wide, west-facing veranda that stretches along the entire length of the building, with low tables and loungers that are perfectly placed for spectacular sunset views.
The villa also has a fully equipped kitchen, though you’ll barely set foot in it as private cook Indrani is on-hand to rustle up Sri Lankan feasts. Outside are 6 acres of grounds, with coconut groves, hammocks and a large pond stretching down to a private swathe of pristine white sand.
Khomba House may be a villa rather than a hotel, but this is no self-catering holiday. The private cook, Indrani, is on hand to whip up meals, and housekeeper Sisera (Indrani’s husband) will sit down with you every morning to plan the day’s dishes.
Indrani's Sri Lankan fare is top-notch and she’ll happily cater to dietary requirements or adjust spice levels to suit your tastes. Her emphasis is on the freshest of local ingredients, so menus are based on what's in season and the fisherman's haul. That said, you are always offered a choice and there’s never any shortage of delicious vegetables from the villa’s gardens. Juicy coconuts plucked from the surrounding groves often make an appearance, too.
Our meals were a real treat - devilled king prawns, grilled fish and chicken curries served with a dazzling display of vegetable dishes, sambals, salad, chutneys and crispy poppadums. At breakfast we had plates groaning with fresh fruit, plus eggs, toast and an assortment of jams accompanied by refreshing juices.
Beer and soft drinks are available, but if you’d like wine and spirits it’s worth bringing them with you as they're hard to come by on the peninsula.
If you fancy a change of scene you can wander over to the laid-back Bar Reef restaurant, where guests tend to mingle in the thatched pavilion overlooking the beach.
This is a child-friendly beach hideaway, with plenty of space for families. Older kids are more likely to enjoy the watersports, watching dolphins and turtles, and taking safari trips to Wilpattu, though the pool at Bar Reef Resort has a separate shallow area where children of all ages can splash around.
Children (4-12 years), Teens (over 12)
One of the 2 bedrooms can be set up as a twin and there are extra beds for 6 people, meaning the house can sleep up to 10 in total. A baby cot is also available.
A baby cot is available on request.
Remember baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking
Indrani generally cooks Sri Lankan food, but she can prepare child-sized portions and milder versions of her meals on request.
The sea here is normally safe, with no strong currents, but be aware that there are no lifeguards on the beach or by the pool at Bar Reef Resort.