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Friday, 29 July 2011






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Cinnamon Lodge – a luxurious indulgence

 Dine anywhere

What would you expect from a 5 star resort? Is it breathtaking beautiful architectural creations, a dazzling spectacular landscape, its scrumptious food, warm hospitality or a relaxing atmosphere?

Well, you would not have to compromise on any of these when you spend time at Cinnamon Lodge Habarana which was elevated to the prestigious 5 star status recently.

Exotic rooms

The Lodge consists of 68 superior rooms, 63 deluxe rooms, 2 superior suites and 4 deluxe suites. I had the privilege of staying in a newly built Superior Suite - the Tamarind - thanks to the hospitable hotel staff led by General Manager Ghazall Mohideen and Assistant Manager Chaminda Samaranayake. There are only two superior suites at the Lodge namely ‘The Tamarind’ and ‘The Banyan’.

Chef Mendis, Chef Nimal and the Thai Chef

The Tamarind which is an epitome of luxury, comfort and satisfaction, is furnished with rare local crafts, elegant wooden floors and custom-made furniture and is luxuriously spacious, consisting of one bedroom equipped with all amenities of the most luxurious room, the Deluxe Suite.

However, the bathroom adjoining the bedroom is a king size one and is even bigger than the deluxe suite’s bathroom. It features a Jacuzzi, two separate shower areas, double sinks and spacious dressing and storage areas for that extra touch of luxury plus an LCD TV and a DVD player.

The four Deluxe Suites - Ebony, Ivy, Cedar and Satin - offer stunning views of the gardens and the Habarana Lake. The Deluxe Suites are complete self-contained units which take up the ground and first floor levels of a cottage, with an exquisite master bedroom upstairs and a second bedroom downstairs, as well as a lounge and dining area.

The deluxe suite is perfect for a family of four or for even two couples with its separate dining area, three bathrooms and TV area. A private butler is also available round the clock and in-room spa treatments and in-villa dining can be arranged on request for deluxe suite guests. According to Chaminda over 90 percent occupancy rate was achieved at the Lodge and the weekends are generally very busy with full house.

Mouthwatering delicacies

A 5 star hotel without 5 star cuisines is like a cow without any milk. The Cinnamon Lodge is fortunately blessed with wonderfully talented and very creative chefs led by Regional Chef Jeevendra Wijesinghe. The gala buffet at the ‘Ehela restaurant’ which is the main restaurant at Lodge never ceased to amaze me with the range of delicacies offered for every meal.

Ehela restaurant

“We always give prominence and serve true authentic Sri Lankan cuisine at the Lodge,” Assistant Manager Chaminda Samaranayake. That was evident with the presence of traditional cuisine like Lotus leafs, Aguna kola mallum, Lavulu curry, Sour sop curry and Pavatta kola mallum made by the friendly and expert Sous Chef Indika Mendis. The international buffet has an Italian, Chinese and Indian corner and Thai food is prepared in an action station by the experienced lady Thai Chef.

According to the Assistant Restaurant and Bar Manager K Pushpabandu, the buffet changes according to guest preferences and their nationality but the chefs are always willing to adhere to custom made requests. You can even opt to dine anywhere you want at anytime with fantastic options such as a romantic dinner BBQ along with a boat ride on the small lake which goes around Cinnamon Lodge.

The desserts for me was a winner. Pastry Chef Nimal Rajapaksha, a creative genius is the man behind these sinful mouth watering cheese cakes, paralines, mousses and cakes making you eat more and more.

His hand made special signature chocolates made out to his own secret recipe were as good as any Belgian and Swiss chocolate that I have savored.

Junior Suite - The Tamarind

Chef Jeeva, the Regional chef, is hoping to make history by converting ‘Lotus’, the hotel’s elegant dining restaurant to Sri Lanka’s first fully organic themed restaurant. The organic farm which is a part of the hotel producing 100 percent chemical free organic vegetables and fruits would provide the required vegetables, fruits and meat for Lotus. The ‘Verandah’ which is the hotel’s 18 hour open pub style coffee shop has an innovative ‘newspaper style menu’ and it serves snacks while you can have a drink and relax at the ‘Tuskers’ bar.

Wonderful landscape and facilities

The 27 acre hotel is a separate world of its own with lush green outfields, over 1,700 ancient trees and surrounded by thousands of birds, monkeys and squirrels. There is a separate butterfly farm in the organic garden where flowers are grown to attract butterflies as well as bees that are used for pure bee honey production for in house guests. Its unique architecture is so pleasing to the eye and in the evenings you could just relax watching the glorious sun set by the Habarana Lake.

The guests can also experience a range of 5 star facilities including laundry, world famous ‘Azmaara spa treatments’, sports such as cricket, volleyball, football and rugby or you could just relax on a lazy afternoon swimming in the sky blue hotel pool or engaging in an intense Monopoly game. You could wake up in the morning and also have a small jog around the hotel which is quite long. They also hope to start off a hot air balloon project which would be novelty for all guests and a first in Sri Lanka.



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