Architecture of Geoffrey Bawa : Lighthouse Hotel (Galle, Sri Lanka)

It is said that the Lighthouse Hotel was the favorite work of Bawa in his later years.

When going the road for 2 kilometers from downtown Galle to the direction of Colombo, the hotel like a castle wall appears along a large curve.

There is only a small reception on the carriage facing the road and the spiral stair way leads to the lobby on the upper floor. The lobby is at the height of the reef just rising from the ocean, and a superb view of the ocean and the sound of waves are right in front of the terrace.

The two guest wings also line up along the ocean. The concept of this hotel is to bringthe architecture closer to the scenery of the ocean and to create the scenes.

In other words, the proximity of the ocean seems to be related to the narrow and slender site between the road and the ocean. Though the hotel has a large number of rooms, the area that a guest can walk around is limited, Therefore, I had an impression that the hotel was unexpectedly cramped. The evaluation might depend on whether a guest just wants to spend relaxing at the room, seeing the change of the sea, or wants to walk round aimlessly.

The architecture seems to be a colonial architecture that was modernized or created with contemporary architecture vocabulary. On that architecture, folkloric elements are sometimes added similarly to other Bawa architectures.

A little surprised thing was that an exterior wall, which looked like a wall of boarding in the distance, was a line painted on the wall when I approached. There would not be other ways except such a way ?

And there are rocks here too. Rocks are jutting out from the corridor floor. A running child seems to stumble over a rock. However, that fault must be the side of the child who has been taught manners to be allowed to run freely despite staying the upper ranked hotel.

To Japanese Version

Google Maps

10 minutes by car from downtown Galle.

Lighthouse Hotel

Lighthouse Hotel


2008.02 Photos in English version, and photos and text in Japanese version

2018.01 Change of photos and English text

← previous  next → 

Copyright (C) 2010 Future-scape Architects. All Rights Reserved.





← previous  next →

Lighthouse Hotel (1997)

Photo by Daigo Ishii