Tucked away on a hill in the jungle with incredible views on a green valley, Aarunya Nature Resort and Spa is a collection of eleven modern luxury villas. Overlooking Knuckles mountain range, this sustainable luxury boutique hotel is a true gem for nature lovers. Facing East, you are greeted by a magical sunrise every morning and the sound of birds and crickets. “Aarunya” is an appropriate name for the nature resort because it means “first rays of the sun” in Sanskrit. Read in this honest hotel review about our experience during our stay at Aarunya Nature Resort and Spa in Kandy, Sri Lanka.
About Aarunya Nature Resort and Spa
Can you imagine… Waking up to the first golden rays of light peeking into your villa with panoramic floor-to-ceiling windows. The sound of chirping birds and nature waking up. An incredible view on the lush green valley with fog floating on top of the mountains? Well, at Aarunya Nature Resort and Spa this imagination becomes reality! They opened their doors in July 2018 with seven villa’s. But in 2019 they’ve already expanded their property with four new Sky Suites!
Aarunya Nature Resort and Spa won the 2019 World Luxury Hotel Awards, and we completely understand why! Read further to find out how incredible this resort is.
Watch the Aarunya Nature Resort video we made
During our stay at Aarunya we have created this video to show the resort via our experience. By watching this video, you can even get a better feeling with the atmosphere of the resort.
Facilities of Aarunya Resort and Spa
The seven private villas vary from five Superior Villas with jacuzzi, one Premium Villa on a private and elevated location with jacuzzi and one Deluxe Suite. Also known as the Rock Room, which comes without a jacuzzi.
Then there are the four new Sky Suites, opened in December 2019. These villa’s are a mix of luxury glamping with a minimalistic style. They’re built in nature and come with a private infinity pool overlooking the lush valley.
Aarunya boasts a common infinity pool at the Central Bungalow where also “The Verandah” restaurant is facilitated. Complete with a relaxed lounge and pool table, this is the place where you want to unwind in the afternoon. Furthermore, Aarunya has a gym with incredible views on the lush green valley and mountain bikes to explore the area around Aarunya. Are you more into relaxing activities? Then you might want to book a Spa treatment or Yoga class at the resort.
Unique dining experience at Aahaara restaurant
In addition to The Verandah restaurant, Aarunya also offers another very unique dining experience in their other restaurant “Aahaara”. This restaurant has a special setting, with the goal to replicate the rural village life in Sri Lanka. It offers a 9 course traditional and contemporary Sri Lankan cuisine which is freshly prepared in front of your eyes!
Guests can book this experience one day in advance for $50 per person. Aarunya surprised us with this incredible dining experience. The combination with live music, traditional Sri Lankan attire and the unique setting of the restaurant made it an evening to remember. We’ve tasted dishes that we’ve never had before. Highly recommended to book this unforgettable (private) dining experience!
All the villas are 60sqm except for the Deluxe Suite which is 42sqm. All villas are complete with cosy verandas and comfy four poster beds. The panoramic floor-to-ceiling windows provide plenty of natural light which gives you that extra ‘one with nature’ feeling. The design, created by architect & founder of Aarunya, Nath Rankothge, is a blend of contemporary and local with antique furniture pieces. You can truly see he’d put a lot of effort and love into the design as thought about every detail.
All day in room dining is available with on call butler service. Other amenities are air conditioning, a bluetooth speaker, electronic safe, LED TV and fast WiFi. The beverages like Pure Ceylon Tea with kettle, Franco Italian Espresso Machine with capsules and daily natural mineral water in sterilised glass bottles are complementary. We love that they don’t use plastic water bottles because of their Green Policy!!
Our experience at Aarunya Nature Resort
Our stay at Aarunya for 3 nights was incredible! We were sad to leave, but thankful for the amazing time! Because the environment is so relaxing, you will feel one with nature, yourself and your partner. The hospitality of the staff is incredible! They are extremely service minded, friendly and want their guests to have the best time at Aarunya.
We really loved the spacious Premium villa with the stylish interior. In combination with the private jacuzzi, the incredible view and in room service we almost didn’t had, or want, to leave our villa! This truly is a place to unwind and enjoy nature with the best food and service.
In our opinion, this is the perfect place for couples to have quality time together or to celebrate honeymoon. Therefore we recommend to stay at least 2-3 nights to fully enjoy and experience this magical place.
Sustainability program Aarunya
We love hotels and resorts who are conscious about the environment and have their own sustainability program. Aarunya does an amazing job by eliminating plastic bottles by using sterilised glass bottles to provide guests with natural mineral water. Another part of their dedication to sustainability are the plantation gardens. Vegetables, fruits and spices are grown throughout the resort which currently provide 20% of the kitchen produce. Van Cuylenburg’s ambition for the resort’s future is to self-supply 70% of its produce. With this, they reduce their carbon footprint and are always sure of fresh and organic ingredients.
Expanding of Aarunya’s villa collection
The four new modern villa’s which opened in December 2019 are called the “Sky Suites”. They have a different design than the current villas and all have their own private infinity pool. Have a look on the website and social media of Aarunya to check the availability. However you can also make a reservation by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Things to do around Aarunya Nature Resort and Spa
It’s almost impossible to leave your amazing villa at Aarunya. Although there are enough things to do in the area. Because Aarunya is located 20 km north of Kandy and close to Knuckles forest, you can decide if you want to explore nature, or city.
An option is to go for a day trip to Kandy and visit the Temple of Tooth, Kandy Lake or Botanical Garden.
If you’re more into hiking, then head over to Knuckles Forest to explore the incredible hikes to viewpoints and waterfalls! Another option is to book a tea factory excursion so you’ll learn more about tea production in Sri Lanka. Lastly, you can go on a safari tour to Kaudulla or Minneriya National Park to spot wild elephants!
A stay at Aarunya Nature Resort and Spa is an unforgettable experience. You’ll feel completely zen from the meditative nature sounds and your body is nourished with healthy organic food. Warning, it will be very, very hard to leave this incredible place!
More Sri Lanka travel inspiration
For more information about Sri Lanka, head over to these blog posts!