“Luxe eco retreat on the banks of Koggala Lake, with inventive cuisine and inspirational yoga classes”
Tri’s rooms spiral around the curve of a lush lakeside promontory. Hidden amidst landscaped gardens, they feature living roofs and floor-to-ceiling windows, which maximise light and the panoramic lake views.
All are decorated identically; the difference is in size and setting. Some perch higher on the bank than others, some have long balconies or private gardens. The cheapest rooms occupy 3 floors of the cinnamon-clad Water Tower (amazing architecture) but are considerably smaller in size than the suites and villas.
We stayed in a Lake Villa, which came with more living space than a Lake Suite, and a slightly more defined bathroom. Ideal for honeymooners, ours was the only Lake Villa to have a plunge pool, although all have nice long lake-view balconies for relaxing and dining. The Tri Villa is the most spectacular, with 2 balconies, gorgeous views, a big bathroom and a plunge pool.
Tri’s menu is one of the most inventive we’ve seen in Sri Lanka. The hotel prizes itself on high-quality local produce and the nutritious menus are based on deconstructed traditional dishes, revamped into modern presentations.
The 6-course gourmet dinner is a journey of flavours. Ours included a kurrakan, cocoa and cinnamon ‘risotto’ starter; manta wing with pomelo, hathawariya leaf, drumstick and sticky rice for a main; and a dessert of white tea pannacotta with jaggery ice cream and coconut crumb.
Their all-day menu lists more familiar dishes with a twist - burgers (we tried a novel cauliflower burger) with thrice-cooked chips, salads dotted with ‘secret’ dressings, sushi rolls flavoured with village vegetables and mini versions of Sri Lanka’s famed hoppers for breakfast. Standouts included their roasted cashew, jackseed and buffalo butter inventions, as well as sublime curd ice cream.
Children over 12 are welcome, but there are no facilities for them, and the hotel’s relaxed atmosphere is more conducive to couples than to families. Independent teens interested in nature will feel most at home here. Note that all beds are kingsize (no twins) though the daybeds in all rooms (except the Water Tower rooms) can be made up as a single bed.
Teens (over 12)
Extra Beds Available, Family Rooms
The lake is unfenced. The hotel is set on a verdant rise, and hazards include drop-offs, steps and banks.