Resplendent Ceylon | Owner, Malik Fernando
Our guest today is Malik Fernando, Founder and Managing Director of Resplendent Ceylon, a collection of luxury boutique hotels in Sri Lanka.
It’s hard to even call Malik’s properties hotels. They’re more like beautiful places to rest your head wrapped into a full on experience of living life and diving into Sri Lankan culture. From the palm fringed shores of Cape Weligama, to relaxing on a working tea plantation in the mountains, to being on safari at Wild Coast Tented Lodge – you can’t get more immersed than this.
Malik’s father is a famous figure in Sri Lanka, having founded Dilmah Tea which is exported to over 100 countries around the world. When Sri Lanka opened up to tourism, Malik noticed an increasing number of tea drinkers reaching out to ask to come visit… so he renovated some bungalows and invited them to come along.
Today his three, and soon to be four hotels are the top luxury options in the country.
Malik and I discuss why Sri Lanka is such an underrated destination. He also tells insider stories about the building of the lodges, their passion for community development, and why true luxury is about feeling pampered AND being immersed in the local culture.
Listen to hear:
- 02:21 – About Malik’s favorite scene from the Tea Trails
- 05:57 – What makes Sri Lanka an exceptional destination
- 08:19 – About the misconceptions the world holds about Sri Lanka
- 12:04 – How Malik’s path took a turn from tea planting to hospitality brands
- 16:39 – Why the safari lodge is an amazing community project
- 21:22 – What connects the three different properties together
- 23:11 – About the exciting details of a new and upcoming property
- 26:04 – How the connections with guests continue even after the stay
- 31:01 – What you will learn about the world after visiting Sri Lanka
Listener Exclusive Amenities
Upgrade on arrival, subject to availability
Complimentary Full Breakfast in the main restaurant for two per bedroom daily
$100 USD equivalent Food & Beverage or Spa credit to be utilized during stay (not applicable towards experiences or adventure center, not combinable, no cash value if not redeemed in full)
Early check-in/late check-out, subject to availability
А hands on individual Sri Lankan cooking master class approx. 75 minutes at Tea Trails
Five course beach dinner at Wild Coast
Meet up with Malik at one of the Dilmah tea lounges in Colombo for a chat over a cuppa