Hidden away in the Kandyan hills, encased in lush greenery, is The Grand Kandyan Hotel. Just like the name suggests, the property certainly is grand – so grand in fact, that looking up at the top of the building is almost impossible, given how tall it is. With a walkway through a flourishing garden, the entrance to the property gives one a glimpse of what to expect from the interior. Tucked away from the busy hustle and bustle of Kandy town, The Grand Kandyan is indeed a hidden gem.
Brunch had the pleasure of experiencing an overnight stay at the hotel, and as we entered, we were stunned by the luxurious interior. Almost every square inch of the property is adorned in gold or gold accents; when inquired, we found out that the owner was heavily inspired by Thai architecture and interior decoration, which becomes evident once you take a walk around the place. As you enter, you’re bound to be dazzled by the loud shades of gold, glittering away, on every chair, table and ornament.
The hotel features over 100 rooms, as well as three restaurants – giving customers not only the option of an international buffet, but specialty cuisine to satisfy the day’s cravings with their in-house Thai and Indian chefs. The property also boasts of a multi-purpose conference hall, equipped to cater to all its guests’ requests – which they pride themselves on being fully booked almost every weekend, as the hotel has become a hotspot for events.
The Tamarind Restaurant is where the hotel’s buffet takes place; at the moment, they only offer buffet-style dining on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays for breakfast and dinner, and full-board guests can indulge in a five-course à la carte menu featuring a selection of Western, Indian, and Thai fusion cuisine. Blending a fusion of Thai spices and herbs with a local twist is their in-house Thai chef.
During our stay, we got to taste a bit of everything they had to offer, and while we must note we found the Thai dishes to be far from authentic, the Indian dishes were quite the hit. The biryani they had available especially was a delight, with the fragrance of the spices washing over the restaurant even before the dish hit the table. The Western dishes too were well done and are perfect for anyone looking for a familiar food option; we do recommend their selection of pastas as a tasty and filling choice.
We found lunch to be the most relaxing experience as the restaurant overlooks lush greenery and majestic hills. Despite the dishes taking a bit longer than at a typical restaurant, one can find themselves lost in the peaceful and serene nature of the hotel, creating a relaxing ambience as one waits for their meal to be prepared.
We must also highly commend their breakfast buffet, as we found it to be the star of our stay. While it lacks the typical cheese, bacon, and sausage options, they have an array of delicious local options and baskets of freshly baked pastries. The Grand Kandyan does an impressive Sri Lankan spread, complete with spicy curries, leaving little to be desired. We indulged in a hearty breakfast that gave us all the energy we needed to go about the rest of the day.
If you’re in need of a quick bite and drinks before dinner, take your taste buds on an adventure at the stunning rooftop pool bar – Sky Bay – while sipping your favourite drinks, where you can immerse yourself in the breathtaking beauty that surrounds you. Should your preference be relaxing by the poolside, soaking up the Kandy sunshine, the pool bar features a special menu for indulgence when you recline and dine at your leisure under the sky.
This spot is perfect for a romantic affair, as at night, once the sun sets, the surroundings are beautifully lit up, with Kandy City’s skyline glittering with lights, and the evening air nipping gently at your skin. It’s an absolutely breathtaking view and ambience, if we do say so ourselves.
The rooms too, are the embodiment of luxury, featuring all amenities of a five-star hotel. Every room comes with an inviting bed, a bathroom equipped with a tub, hair dryer, and other amenities, a massive TV, and a gorgeous balcony overlooking the hotel’s garden as well as the hills. The hotel also features a complete hot water system that is run by solar power, which they are hoping to expand in the near future into other areas, as this way, they would not run out of hot water, even during power cuts.
You might choose to enjoy a relaxing stay, tucked away in a cosy bed, or take a stroll through the iconic city of Kandy, after which the hotel will be waiting for your return, ready to offer you comfort amidst the calming scenery. The Grand Kandyan stays true to its motto “A New Dimension of Luxury”, offering its guests only the best, and catering to their every whim. For foriegn guests, the staff ensure that they leave with an understanding of why Kandy is known for its warm hospitality, and locals are gently reminded of the same – leaving both relaxed, calm, and at peace by the end of their stay.