Tag Archives: Heritance Kandalama

Five Aitken Spence Hotels Enter TripAdvisor Hall of Fame

25 May

Five Aitken Spence properties from Sri Lanka and the Maldives have entered the prestigious TripAdvisor Hall of Fame having being recognized for its consistent high performance in customer reviews. The world’s largest travel site recognized Adaaran Prestige Vadoo, Adaaran Prestige Water Villas, Adaaran Select Meedhupparu, Heritance Kandalama and Heritance Tea Factory for obtaining the Certificate of Excellence for the fifth consecutive year.

Nine Aitken Spence Resorts received the Certificate of Excellence from TripAdvisor. The Certificate of Excellence is awarded to properties that consistently achieve outstanding traveler reviews on the travel review site. In addition to the hotels recognized in the Hall of Fame, Adaaran Select Hudhuranfushi, Adaaran Club Rannalhi, Heritance Ahungalla and Heritance Ayurveda Maha Gedara were awarded Certificates of Excellence for its ability to continuously deliver on a superior customer service experience.

“We have always strived for excellence and have nurtured a reputation of exceeding guest expectations. The recognition received by the resorts bear testimony to the exceptional service and memorable experiences that guests receive from our iconic properties. I would like to congratulate the resorts on their achievement and encourage them to maintain the standards set and continue to exceed expectations” said, Mr. Susith Jayawickrama, Managing Director of Aitken Spence Hotels.

TripAdvisor enables travelers to plan and book the perfect trip and offers advice from millions of travelers and a wide variety of travel choices. The site’s potential reach is 340 million unique monthly visitors and more than 225 million reviews and opinions covering more than 4.9 million accommodations, restaurants and attractions.

Aitken Spence Hotels manage a portfolio of hotels and resorts in Sri Lanka, Maldives, India and Oman. Its premier brand in Sri Lanka, Heritance Hotels & Resorts, operates a portfolio of five unique properties in scenic locations across the island while its award winning properties in the Maldives operate under the brand Adaaran Resorts.Adaaran Prestige Vadoo- Over water villa Heritance Tea Factory- Aerial


Heritance Kandalama celebrates 20 years of excellence

24 Jun

Heritance Kandalama emerged Champions at Bocuse D’Or Culinary Competition 2013

28 Aug

Sri Lanka’s most awarded hotel  Heritance Kandalama, emerged Champions at the Bocuse D’Or Culinary Competition,  competing against both international and domestic star-class city and resort hotels recently. Chef W.M Augustus Lowe, Chef De Cuisine at Heritance Kandalama with twenty two years of experience in the culinary field and his apprentice, B.A.L.H Thisera, Commis III with 3 years of experience in the field were the winning duo who bought glory to Heritance Kandalama.


The team together created the award winning menu: Gremolata rubbed   spring lamb rack, mushroom apple duxelle in, prosciutto wrapped braised lamb rump; grilled pepper millefuille .  glazed petite vegetables in a daikon boat , curried sweet potato mousse accompanied with three sauces and a warm punch of brilliant breakfast tea infused with roma tomato water.


The champion team from Heritance Kandalama will now represent Sri Lanka at the Asian Region Bocuse D’Or Culinary Champion which is scheduled to take place in Shanghai in 2014. The winners of the regional event will then participate in the World Bocuse D’Or competition in Lyon, France in 2015.


Chef Paul Bocuse , considered as the God father of the culinary world, is the founder of the Bocuse D’Or , a world chef championship recognized by Chefs globally. Renowned as one of the most prestigious competitions in the world,  Bocuse D’Or judges the skills of chefs evaluated over a period of two days; where only the best chefs with the most innovative dishes emerge winners.


“Our Chefs have been recognized at international events such as the Culinary Olympics and the Culinary World Cup. Winning this competition is yet again a stepping stone on to a world platform where our chefs have the opportunity to demonstrate their skills and be awarded for their talents. Our constant determination to be the best has bought us thus far. Being firm believers of sustainability we take measures to ensure that our future generation is provided with the knowledge required to take on the baton when required. Winning accolades such as this, year after year reaffirms our stance as the most awarded culinary brigade in Sri Lanka”, said Mr. Gemunu Goonewardene, Vice President, Food and Beverages, Aitken Spence Hotels.


Heritance Kandalama has been a trend setter in various aspects of hotel operations and has received many accolades for its cuisine, both in Sri Lankan and internationally.


“Aitken Spence Hotels over the years has been recognized for its exquisite food and culinary art which has placed us amongst the best in the region. Prestigious accolades such as this serve as motivation to the team to further excel in these competitive times. The relentless efforts put forth by our team have been recognised both locally and internationally and we are proud to note that our greatest asset is our dedicated and passionate team.” said Mr. Malin Hapugoda, Managing Director, Aitken Spence Hotels.


Aitken Spence Hotels is the largest resort operator in Sri Lanka and the largest international hotel operator in the Maldives with a portfolio of hotels in multiple locations in India and Oman.  Its range of international award-wining properties, management & culinary expertise and environmental commitment has set industry benchmarks both domestically and internationally.Image

Heritance Ahungalla Once Again Home to the Best Culinary Team in Sri Lanka

6 Aug

Sri Lanka’s premier beach resort Heritance Ahungalla, emerged as the Most Outstanding Culinary Team in Sri Lanka after competing against both international and domestic star-class city and resort hotels at the 15th Culinary Art Competition held from the 2nd to the 5th of August. Heritance Hotels dominated the competition with Heritance Kandalama being adjudged the first runner up in the overall competition. Organized by the Chefs Guild of Sri Lanka, the culinary competition is part of the industry’s largest food and trade exhibition.

Maintaining its reputation for offering the best cuisine in the country, Aitken Spence Hotels won an unprecedented 150 medals including the prestigious award for the Most Outstanding Culinary Team in Sri Lanka.

There were 25 categories for the medals and the Aitken Spence medal tally displayed the sheer dominance the resort chain’s chefs had over its competitors in the field. World acclaimed Chef Dimuthu Kumarasinghe – Group Skills Development Chef, Aitken Spence Hotels and Heritance Hotels who led the team along with Chef Lalith Gunesekera – Consultant Chef, Aitken Spence Hotel Managements and Chef Kasun Premachandra, Executive Chef, Heritance Ahungalla whose continuous training and motivation guided the participants, were jubilant along with the teams from Aitken Spence Hotels who collectively won 16 special awards out of a total of 29 special awards. The special awards included the following: Most Outstanding Chef – Chef Y.K.P De Silva, Heritance Ahungalla, Most Outstanding Pastry Chef – Chef W.M.J.A Bandara, Heritance Ahungalla, Most Outstanding Apprentice – Chef L.H.S.N.R De Silva, Heritance Ahungalla, Best Bartender Mixologist – H.D.S.N Jayasekera , Heritance Ahungalla, Best Beer Cocktail –H.D.S.N Jayasekera, Heritance Ahungalla, Nescafe Creative Coffee- S.P.S Fernando, Heritance Ahungalla, , Best Sunquick Mocktail- H.D.S.N Jayasekera, Heritance Ahungalla, Best Wedding Cake Structure – Chef S G Wijesundera – Heritance Ahungalla, Most Outstanding Apprentice Hot Cooking Live – Chef L.H.S.N.R De Silva, Heritance Ahungalla, Best Plated Appetizer – Chef T.M.P Peiris , Heritance Ahungalla, Best Sri Lankan Meal – Chef Krishna Kumar and Chef C J Kumarasinghe, Heritance Kandalama, Best Arrack Cocktail – N.H Jayasinghe, Hilltop Hotel, Best Regional Hotel- Heritance Ahungalla, Most Outstanding Hotel- Heritance Ahungalla, Most Outstanding Culinary Team 1st Runner – Heritance Kandalama and the prestigious Most Outstanding Culinary Team – Heritance Ahungalla.

“I am tremendously proud of the achievements of our team, walking away with 150 medals from a competition such as this is a tremendous achievement. We constantly strive to be the best and are firm believers of ensuring that our future generation is provided with the knowledge required to take on the baton when required. Winning accolades such as this, year after year reaffirms our stance on the sustainable development of our future generations”, said Mr. Gemunu Goonewardene, Vice President, Food and Beverage, Aitken Spence Hotels.

Chefs Guild of Sri Lanka from their modest beginnings in 1988 has emerged as the premier professional body of culinary professionals in the hospitality trade.
A platform for recognizing true culinary talents, the competition symbolizes the pinnacle of excellence as hundreds of practitioners in the food & beverage industry in the country gathers to prove their mettle.

“Aitken Spence Hotels cater to a diverse market segment and are famed for its exquisite food and culinary art. Over a period of time the reputation gained in this specialisation has helped to position the chain of hotels as among the best in the region.
We recognize that our greatest asset is our staff at all levels who are loyal, dedicated and committed and work together as one team assisting and encouraging each other to be the best.” said Mr. Malin Hapugoda, Managing Director, Aitken Spence Hotels.

Aitken Spence Hotels is the largest resort operator in Sri Lanka and the largest international hotel operator in the Maldives with a portfolio of hotels in multiple locations in India and Oman. Its range of international award-wining properties, management & culinary expertise and environmental commitment has set industry benchmarks both domestically and internationally.

Most Outstanding Culinary Team – Heritance Ahungalla

Exterior shot of Heritance Ahungalla

Heritance Sweeps Top Resort Awards

1 Jun

Heritance Hotels and Resorts were the dominant winners at the Sri Lanka Tourism Awards, held recently. Heritance Ahungalla, was awarded the Best 5-Star Resort in the island successfully taking over the baton from Heritance Kandalama who won the coveted award for the last three consecutive years, securing the resort a position in the prestigious Hall of Fame last year. Heritance Tea Factory emerged winners in the Best 4-Star Resort category for a second year, demonstrating the dominant position maintained by Heritance Hotels & Resorts in Sri Lanka, ,.  The Best Host Hotel for Eco Tourism was awarded to Heritance Kandalama, once again reaffirming the Heritance Hotels & Resorts’ fundamental commitment towards the environment wherever it operates.


The objective of this prestigious awards ceremony is to recognize and reward excellence among industry stakeholders of past and present and to encourage and ensure an even greater contribution in the future. The awards criteria is designed to motivate industry stakeholders to work towards the primary goal of sustainable development of the tourism industry.


“We are thrilled and honoured that our three Heritance properties have been recognized by the Sri Lanka Tourism Awards. This is a remarkable feat which we are very proud of, having all our properties being recognized as the country’s best will certainly invigorate our commitment of delivering exceptional experiences to our guests”, said Mr. B H R Sariffodeen, Assistant Vice President, Aitken Spence Hotels.


With its endless pristine white beaches and ultramarine expanse of the Indian Ocean, Heritance Ahungalla is a creation of the legendary architect Deshamanya Geoffrey Bawa. Heritance Tea Factory has been recognised by The Independent, UK as one of the ‘Top Five Factory Hotels in the World’ and as “one of the best 100 places to stay in the world” by the Sunday Times, UK. Heritance Kandalama has been routinesly recognized as one of the most eco-friendly hotels in the world, setting industry benchmarks recognised and applied globally.


“Our employees represent the Company’s most important asset and, as such, are vital to its success.  It is only thorough the strength of our team that we have been able to win accolades such as the awards won at this years Sri Lanka Tourism Awards. We also have the added advantage of capitalizing on our presence in the region by utilizing our team resources available in our hotels in India, Oman and the Maldives. We have definitely reaped benefits by working together as a team, cooperating and supporting each other at all times”, said Mr. Malin Hapugoda, Managing Director, Aitken Spence Hotels.


Aitken Spence Hotels’ premier resorts operate under the brand Heritance Hotels & Resorts. Famed for its distinctive properties, exquisite food, culinary art and exceptional service, Heritance Hotels & Resorts has over a period of time gained the reputation of being one of the best hospitality chains in the region.


With an unrivalled portfolio of international award-winning resorts Aitken Spence chain boasts of exotic properties located in some of the key tourist locations. Barefoot at Havelock, India located on the “The Best Beach in Asia” as rated by the Time Magazine; Heritance Kandalama, Sri Lanka’s most awarded hotel and “an icon of modern hotel design” as rated by the Observer UK; and Desert Nights Camp, Al Wasil, Oman, rated as one of the top ten desert retreats in the world are some of the properties operated by Aitken Spence Hotels.


7 Out of 10 Awards Won by Heritance Hotels & Resorts for Cleaner Production

5 Feb

The National Cleaner Production Awards 2010 took place on the 27th of January 2011. This event has been held for four consecutive years to recognize and appreciate environmentally friendly businesses in Sri Lanka. At this event Heritance Ahungalla and Heritance Tea Factory secured seven awards and a merit certificate out of ten recognitions for the service sector.

Gold and Silver Service Sector Awards were won by Heritance Ahungalla and Heritance Tea Factory respectively. Further to the main awards, Heritance Tea Factory received Excellence Awards for Energy, Water and Material utilization. Heritance Ahungalla received Excellence Awards for Water and Material Utilization and a Merit Certificate for Energy Utilization.

Heritance Ahungalla was represented by Mr. Refhan Razeen (General Manager ), Mr.Jayantha Madanayake (Chief Engineer) and Ravindra Kumara (Assistant Engineer / Environment Management Representative) . Heritance Tea Factory was represented by Roshanlal Perera (General Manager) and Amila Gamage, (Chief Engineer) and Environment Management Representative (EMR)

Heritance Hotels and Resorts is a premier brand of the Aitken Spence Hotels & Resorts in Sri Lanka . The best practices followed by the Group for conservation and protection of the environment, have been recognized as global case studies on sustainable tourism. In addition to the portfolio of hotels in Sri Lanka, the company is also a rapidly growing regional player with an increasing portfolio of hotels under the brands of Aitken Spence Hotels & Resorts, Heritance Hotels & Resorts and Adaaran Hotels & Resorts in India, Maldives and Oman.

To conclude, since Heritance Kandalama won the gold award in the service sector in the year 2009, Heritance Hotels & Resorts can now proudly state that all three Heritance Hotels have made their mark at this prestigious event. National Cleaner Production Awards is organized by the National Cleaner Production Centre (NCPC). All enterprises registered in Sri Lanka falling under the categories of large scale manufacturing organizations, medium & small scale manufacturing organizations, service organizations and public & other institutes are a part of this event. Awards are presented to progressive companies and service organizations that have voluntarily adopted cleaner production as a tool for increasing productivity while, minimizing waste and emissions at source rather than treating after it’s generated.

News Release 1-Feb-2011

Eleven year old Sandeepani steals the show at Aitken Spence Hotels school art competition

7 Dec

On the 26th of November 2010, Aitken Spence Hotels conducted a grand finale to award prizes and certificates to the overall winners of the Aitken Spence Hotels art competition.

The prize giving was held as the final event of the art competition commenced by Aitken Spence Hotels to commemorate “World Tourism Day”, which was held on the 27th of September 2010. The participants of the art competition were from the schools situated within close proximity to the Aitken Spence Hotels. The winners of the competition along with their parents and teachers were in attendance at the ceremony held at the Aitken Spence Head Office.


The objective of the competition was to raise awareness in regards to the close relationship that tourism shares with biodiversity and conservation. The Art Competition which was held in several stages not only coincided with the “World Tourism Day” but also with “Universal Children’s Day’ which was on the 20th of November 2010. Through this initiative one hopes that the moral guidelines for the responsible promotion of tourism will bond with the youngsters as they set foot on the path to taking our country forward.


The art competition was organized for the school children in two age categories, above 12 and below 12 years of age. All of the schools located near the Aitken Spence Hotels were heavily involved as participation was encouraged by General Managers and the staff of Heritance Kandalama, Heritance Tea Factory, Heritance Ahungalla, Earl’s Regency, Bandarawela Hotel,   Hotel Hill Top  and  Ramada Resort. The hotels conducted local competitions, with over 700 youngsters participating. Bandarawela Hotel submitted the largest number of entries.

The honour of judging the competition was bestowed upon Mrs. Sybil Wettasinghe who in her own right is a renowned artist and has illustrated several books for children. Mrs. Wettasinghe applauded the creativity of the paintings on display and the exceptional talents of the youngsters as well as their ability to connect with the theme of tourism.


Mr. Malin Hapugoda, Managing Director of Aitken Spence Hotels, stated “It was a very pleasant experience to meet the little children who emerged as the overall winners of the art competition and it is heartening to see their impressions of tourism’s positive contribution to bio diversity. The tourism industry can play a major role in raising awareness and promoting positive behaviour by tourists and the locals towards biodiversity conservation. Biodiversity is a key asset for tourism and most developing countries and in the case of Sri Lanka it plays a vital role”.

The winning paintings and their respective school children were awarded certificates and cash prizes. First place was awarded to eleven year old A.G. Sandeepani Tathsarani, year 6 student of Kaluthara Balika National School and the second and third places were awarded to H.M.D. Himali Jayaratne, year 7 student  from Mahawatte Maha Vidyalaya, Kundasale and M. Himasha Sandeepani Mendis, year 10 student from Tissa Central College, Mahawaskaduwa. The children received exciting cash prizes all in the aid of their future development. Twelve year old Sandeepani  who won the first place from Kaluthara  said that  she would be opening a savings account with her prize money of rupees 25,000.


In addition to recognizing the individual accomplishments with prizes and certificates to overall winners, at each Aitken Spence Hotel, six finalists were selected with awarding of certificates and prizes and the respective schools of the winners were also awarded with funds towards the supply of school equipment.


It is through the combination of sustainability and enhancement of tourism that Sri Lanka will move forward. It is hoped that the memories of this day will be imprinted in our youngsters mind, and they too will embrace the idea of biodiversity, and be apart of the evolution of our country as it moves into fifth gear in promoting tourism. Aitken Spence Hotels  is a rapidly growing regional player with a portfolio of hotels under the brands of ‘Heritance Hotels & Resorts’, ‘Aitken Spence Hotels & Resorts’  and ‘Adaaran Resorts’ in Sri Lanka , India, Maldives and Oman.

Media Release – 07 December 2010

Aitken Spence Recognised as the Best in Community Relations

6 Nov

Heritance Kandalama Produces Top Environmental Project

Recognizing the Group’s commitment to building sustainable livelihoods and developing local communities, the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce placed Aitken Spence Plc as the category winner for Community Relations at the recently concluded Best Corporate Citizens Awards 2010.

The company’s enduring best practices in community relations consist of local employment & purchasing, environmental impact mitigation, infrastructure & sustainable livelihoods development, welfare programmes and community engagement in decisions which impact them.

As a diversified conglomerate with operations in many localities across the island, the recognition is a reflection on the Aitken Spence’s commitment to engage local communities positively across a myriad of business sectors and among many communities.

Heritance Kandalama, a global benchmark in sustainable tourism, was recognized as the best special project under the environmental category, receiving a merit award for its groundbreaking biomass gasifier. The gasifier reduces 500tonnes of carbon emissions per year by replacing diesel with Grilicidia wood, which creates substantial employment opportunities for local farmers.

Heritance Kandalama won Asia’s Responsible Tourism Award for large hotel category at the ITB Asia tourism trade show held in Singapore in October.

Media Release – 06 November 2010

FuturArc features Heritance Kandalama

8 Oct

Heritance Kandalama appeared in FuturArc, a regional architecture publication. It is a quarterly journal that showcases new progressive architecture in Asia-Pacific region. Recognizing the significant impact the built form has on society and the environment, FuturArc advocates architecture that demonstrates creativity, social responsibility and sustainability. It encourages architects, engineers and developers to become innovators in design and early adopters of technologies.

Aitken Spence hotels partners with environmental leader EarthCheck

15 Sep

Aitken Spence Hotels is the latest leader in travel and tourism to partner with EarthCheck and certify the environmental practices employed at its chain of hotels and resorts in Sri Lanka, Maldives, India and Oman.

With more than three decades in hospitality and considerable expertise in hotel design, building and management, Aitken Spence Hotels decided to look to EarthCheck to confirm the company’s dedication and commitment to excellence in sustainable tourism.

EarthCheck is the world’s largest certifier of sustainable travel and tourism operators, and will work with the luxury brand portfolios of Heritance, Aitken Spence Hotels & Resorts and Adaaran.

“Environmental sustainability is part of our corporate commitment to responsible business,” said Mr. B H R Sariffo’deen, Assistant Vice President, Aitken Spence Hotels. “While nine of our hotels have already been benchmarked, and three have been certified on the EarthCheck Programme, plans are well underway to ensure that many more become certified in the coming year. Mr. Ravi De Silva, Consultant Social & Environmental Management at Aitken Spence Hotels explained that sustainability is a top corporate priority of the company. The environmental management systems introduced by the company are recognised through the EarthCheck Certifications.

Aitken Spence Hotels is focusing on issues such as reducing, recycling and reusing solid waste; reducing the use of harmful chemicals; conserving energy and water, and improving indoor air quality, all of which have an immediate impact on the environment and the communities where their hotels operate.

Commenting on the EarthCheck partnership, Mr. Malin Hapugoda, Managing Director Aitken Spence Hotels said “Aitken Spence Hotels over the years has invested substantial financial resources and hard work in achieving long term sustainability. Our hotels have been recognised as world class examples of sustainability and have won a number of international accolades. We have experienced that our business associates and our guests are keen to learn about the sustainability practices of the hotels than ever before. Our expertise gained in sustainability in Sri Lanka is now spreading across to our hotels in the Maldives, India & Oman. ”

EarthCheck is considered at the forefront of global sustainability management systems; using advanced science-based benchmarking and capacity building. The programme offers Aitken Spence Hotels a new level of accuracy and transparency that is certification verified by independent, third party auditors.

“Aitken Spence Hotels has long demonstrated their commitment to improving the social, environmental and economic welfare of host communities,” explained Stewart Moore, CEO of EC3 Global. “EarthCheck provides them with a framework for their properties to increase operational efficiencies, maximise the benefit of Corporate Social Responsibility initiatives, and minimise environmental impacts.” Properties currently participating in the EarthCheck Programme include: Bandarawela Hotel, Browns Beach Hotel, Earls Regency Hotel, Heritance Ahungalla, Heritance Kandalama, Heritance Tea Factory, Hotel Hill Top, Ramada Resort Kalutara and the former Neptune Hotel.

EarthCheck is the world’s largest certifier of sustainable travel and tourism operators with more than 1000 clients in over 70 countries, the company’s EarthCheck Programme responds directly to the major environmental problems facing the planet, including climate change, waste reduction and non-renewable resource management. It provides benchmarking, certification and performance improvement systems that result in average savings of 30 per cent for energy and waste stream, and 20 per cent savings for water consumption.

Media Release – 14 September 2010