Kurulu Bay, Sri Lanka
Kurulu Bay (Sinhalese for “bird island”) is a private sanctuary built around the existing. Overlooking Sri Lanka’s largest, and one of its most scenic lakes, Koggala Lake, and surrounded by lush greenery, every element has been carefully considered to offer space, privacy and tranquility, with an emphasis on health and wellbeing.
T Magazine says it best:
“Sri Lanka’s tourism industry has had a rough go these past few years: The pandemic brought international travel to a standstill just as the country rebounded from the 2019 Easter bombings. Travel restrictions were lifted in March, right as antigovernment protests gained momentum — a reaction to devastating fuel shortages and the island nation’s near economic collapse. Despite the upheaval, the south-coast village of Ahangama has emerged as a magnetic surfer hide-out. New arrivals such as the Palm Hotel, a clutch of steel A-frame cabanas pitched between inland groves, welcomed their first guests just before the pandemic, while the tropical modernist Harding Boutique Hotel opened along the village’s honey-hued beach last November. This month, Kurulu Bay joined the pack. Spearheaded by the Pakistan-born, Turkey- and Sri Lanka-based former banker Shahzad Malik, who in 2006 opened boutique hotel the Fort Printers in Colombo’s UNESCO-listed Galle Fort, 30 minutes northwest of Ahangama, this estate is located on the jungled shore of Koggala Lake, a lagoon scattered with islets that are home to Buddhist temples and spice gardens. It centers around the pre-existing Kurulu House, a high-ceilinged mix of 1960s Florida modernism and Geoffrey Bawa-inspired architecture designed by his protégé Channa Daswatte, as exemplified by the estate’s yoga center. Newer constructions, all straight-lined from concrete and wood, include the Ayurvedic spa, the tree house-like suites and lakefront cottages — one of which has a private pool. “Everything was built to blend in with the surrounding landscape and offers space, privacy and tranquillity,” says Malik. “It’s aimed at those who seek to unwind and reconnect with themselves.”