about our property
Auraliya is situated in an acre of tropical garden adorned by frangipani trees and coconut palms with breathtaking views over the property. The villa is located in the middle of the idyllic Palatugaha beach enhanced by a stunning, unspoilt coral lagoon – one of only four villas with direct access to the beach on this exceptional reef-protected stretch of coastline.
Auraliya was conceived as a family retreat and we have taken great care to incorporate our own personal style from the layout of the property with its open air cloistered walkways, to the indigenous artwork. The speaker system provides for iPod piped music through the walkways and pavilions and the fiber optic stars in the pool add to the special ambiance of Auraliya.
Since it offers some of the safest year-round swimming and snorkeling on the South coast, Auraliya is also an especially good choice for families with children.
Auraliya is situated in Talpe on the Galle to Matara road approximately 15 minutes south of Galle. The 127km post is a great landmark opposite the Auraliya entrance and it takes just over two hours to drive the 127 kilometeres from Colombo on the freeway.
Most International flights arrive at night which speeds up the journey. We are happy to suggest and arrange transport options to Auraliya, which are charged at cost. Contact us with questions about directions to Auraliya
history of Auraliya
When we acquired the land on which Auraliya sits, there was a very different house called Oro meaning ‘Gold’ in Norwegian. Palatugaha Beach was what sold the place to us. We began converting the existing property into the family holiday home to which we hoped to return year after year.
We recruited the eminent Australian architect Bruce Fell-Smith. Through our collaboration with Bruce we were able to include many of our own details such as the cruciform pool designed for all ages and the inclusion of window seats in all the bedrooms. We designed our own beds, and all the furniture in the sitting pavilion was made locally in Talpe.
At the rear of the garden we included an elephant bath to accommodate visiting pachyderms who we had staying prior to the Tsunami of December 26, 2004.
We had spent less than a week in our dream home when the Tsunami struck. We remain enormously appreciative of the combination of good fortune and loyalty enabling our family, and all our guests, to survive that extraordinary event.
As we rebuilt our dream home we decided to rename the house; Auraliya was born.
The name evokes the aura of aliya (Sinhalese for elephant) and araliya which means temple flower locally – or frangipani as some of you will know it. Three of our existing team of staff were among us the day of the Tsunami and were responsible for protecting the lives of our family and friends; making our bond with them very special.
The welcoming Ganesh in the front courtyard, the Buddha looking down on him, the dancing ladies by the gate to the garden and the elephant head spout in the beachside pond all reflect our family’s long association with India from where those pieces come. The other artworks were sourced locally. There are also two whale bones lying like tree trunks in the garden. They were recovered from a whale which washed up on the beach in 2004.