In 1979, a few hoteliers stumbled upon a chena land, barren and left untouched. Fallen for its charm, they acquired the property, a vast 53 acres. The land was located in Habarana, a quaint village in the North Central province of Sri Lanka. The surroundings were rich in foliage, wildlife and calm depths of water bodies, the land seemed to encapsulate the best of Sri Lanka. Mark Bostock, the then chairperson of the group was struck by awe and set forth a plan to build an all-inclusive resort in the name of Habarana Village by Cinnamon, with the hopes of sharing the pinnacle of beauty found in the depths of an island which was then, just opening up to the travellers of the world.
Spread across the 53-acre state, the resort has it all; exceptionally rich biodiversity, lakes, ponds and other bodies of water nourishing grasslands that add the fresh hue of green to the land. As legend has it, Hanuman dropped a part of the Himalayan Mountain as he flew across the skies to aid his wounded brother, Rama. The chunk of land he dropped was rich in strange flora and fauna, not to be found easily anywhere else in the world. This chunk of land is known to be the plateau of Ritigala and its biodiversity has spread across the village of Habarana, making it a true haven for those who find peace amongst untouched nature.
The resort was built taking inspiration from the rustic charm and the meditative calm of the Ritigala Monastery, a lasting artefact of ancient Buddhism dating back to the 1st century BC. The remarkable architecture of the monastery has been imprinted in the resort to add to its rustic charm. With its chalets designed after the village houses found in old Anuradhapura, the resort creates a unique curation of simplicity, peace and luxury of rural life, lived alongside nature. The many treehouses become prime spots for sightseeing and enjoying the quiet of a radiant sunset as the skies are painted in vibrant hues of pink, purple and golden. Dining under clear star-lit skies is utterly romantic in its simple nature. The cooling breeze that rustles the leaves soothes the senses while it refreshes and heals.
The village itself is an eco-system of many micro-habitats formed by a myriad of various species, animals and foliage. Within the limits of the resort, you are bound to spot the occasional elephant or two grassing along the banks of lakes and rare species of birds in their natural habitat, lazying about or in a rush to their nests before the sunsets over the lakes of Habarana!
The resort detoxes you from the hustle of the city, yet gives its visitors the choice of adventure. Whether it is climbing the infamous rock fortress, a two-hour hike up the Ritigala Mountains, a serene boat ride along the water bodies or sightseeing the ruins of the ancient kingdom of Anuradhapura, Cinnamon Lodge Habarana and Habarana Village by Cinnamon are located in close proximity for all.
With the many chalets built for the best of privacy and the vast land perfect for a cycling trip, or an evening stroll and adventure to fill in the day or even reading a book on a hammock swaying in the winds, enjoying the little time left to do nothing, the resorts are a perfect culmination of nature. Their ties to the roots of ancient culture resonated in its architecture and build, emanates the peacefulness and ritualistic simplicity of the lives of our ancestors.
Visit the resorts for your next getaway and indulge in the unfiltered, untouched beauty of nature and lose yourself in it, as the hoteliers who walked this land first did. As Shakespeare said, heaven is the everlasting treasury of life and the quiet village of Habarana seems to be a perfect example of it.