A Tribute to Our Founder
A Tribute to Our Founder
27th July 2023
A Tribute to Our Founder
While Mr Fernando’s contribution and devotion to building a global tea brand has been highlighted by a multitude of tributes, his contribution to hospitality has been remarkable in so many ways. Along with his family, Dilmah created Ceylon Tea Trails, and 18 years later, the resort reached a pinnacle of being listed on the Condé Nast Traveller Gold List. Similarly, his faith in Cape Weligama and Wild Coast Tented Lodge have demonstrated his confidence in the growth of the tourism industry. We are all incredibly proud to have been part of that journey.
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A Tribute to Our Founder
3rd July 2023
Trail Blazing with Lost Ingredients
It is the ultimate test of innovative efforts and labours – will those giving eye and ear to their offerings, embrace them for further development so that the world would be Sri Lanka’s oyster for the humble jackfruit and gotukola (pennywort) and the hardly-noticed seaweed?
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A Tribute to Our Founder
1st June 2023
Changing the Tide | World Oceans Day
This World Oceans Day, Resplendent Ceylon has chosen to shine the light on the depleting health of our oceans as a result of overconsumption and destructive fishing practices. This year, our resorts are highlighting plant-based culinary fare using hyperlocal and homegrown ingredients that promise to blur the lines of what constitutes as seafood.
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A Tribute to Our Founder
22nd March 2023
Restoring Ecosystems | Dunkeld Model Montane Forest
Forests act as a nature-based solution for climate change which can contribute over one third of the climate change mitigation needed by 2030. Conserving and restoring forest landscapes is not only a cost-effective way to mitigate climate change, but it also means that many other benefits are provided to local communities and wider society.
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A Tribute to Our Founder
20th February 2022
Hyperlocal Cocktails
Discover the Ten Tuskers Bar at Wild Coast Tented Lodge, that features handcrafted cocktails with hyperlocal ingredients. Sit alongside the pool, overlooking the deep blue Indian Ocean and allow yourself to journey across a tasting of...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
13th September 2021
Journey Towards Zero Waste
Our ambition towards zero waste across our properties extends to our communities as well. We believe collaboration and partnerships are the way forward to achieving our goals. As such, Resplendent Ceylon’s Cape Weligama partnered...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
6th July 2017
Leopard and Biodiversity Research and Conservation in Norwood area
Leopard and Biodiversity Research and Conservation in the Norwood, Castlereigh and Bogawanthalawa Valley areas bordering Peak Wilderness Sanctuary Dunkeld Conservation Station, June 2017. Continued research being carried out by The...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
23rd July 2020
Leopard Research Centre, Yala
Dilmah Conservation and Wild Coast Tented Lodge have finalised plans for a Leopard Research Centre of a global standard, with eminent trustees including Dr. Sumith Pilapitiya and Eric Wickremanayake, working with the likes of Wilderness...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
5th October 2021
Mindfulness in the Breathtaking Heartland of Ceylon Tea
It’s a couple of minutes past 6am. A glass of water, a splash of the same on my face and I quietly creep out my room towards the front terrace of Dunkeld Bungalow. There’s no one in sight as I pick my spot for the morning and spread ...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
8th May 2019
MJF Centre for Dignified Empowerment and Sustainable Development inaugurated in Kalkudah
Sept 2018 Dilmah Founder Merrill J. Fernando was joined by Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and his sons Dilhan and Malik in inaugurating the MJF Centre for empowerment, inspiration, community development and climate change in...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
25th October 2021
Our Food Philosophy
Experiencing local cuisine is an integral part of visiting Wild Coast Tented Lodge. We’d like to think of each plate, every dish, the ingredients used as an expression, an indication of its connection to nature, our island home and the...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
11th October 2021
Regeneration: Beyond Sustainable Tourism
It’s tough to talk about the future of tourism and hospitality without taking into consideration the unprecedented times we live in. One of the hardest hit industries, the world’s lull in travel has given the opportunity for the...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
24th August 2021
Renew, Realign and Rediscover
Close your eyes. Take a deep breath. Count to four. Release. Whilst the challenging events of the past year have left us feeling untethered from our everyday routines, it is more apparent than ever that we as travellers, travel...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
8th November 2021
Resplendent Ceylon Declares a Climate Emergency
Sri Lanka is one of the most at-risk nations in terms of climate change. Our coastlines are at risk of inundation, our forests are at risk of climate-induced die-back, our endemic species are nearing extinction while global business...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
7th May 2020
Resplendent Ceylon launches SafeStay Initiative
RResplendent Ceylon has launched “SafeStay” a dedicated Health & Safety Guide for hotels, to monitor and manage stringent health and safety measures.Despite comprising low density resorts in isolated locations, Resplendent Ceylon...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
8th June 2022
Revitalising Our Oceans
The ocean and our livelihoods are inextricably linked; more so in our beautiful island home of Sri Lanka.While the impacts of climate change and unsustainable seafood harvesting threaten the livelihoods of local fisherman,Dilmah...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
10th July 2023
Southern Soul | Ancient Earthenware
Sri Lanka’s pottery industry has survived for centuries; the first identified pot dating as far back to the year 900 BC and 1120 BC. Communities and villages of these times originated this craft by preparing earthenware which were then used for their day-to-day purposes including domestic utensils, religious activities and other household chores. 
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A Tribute to Our Founder
1st October 2016
Tea Trails launches pioneering leopard conservation centre
Sri Lanka’s first tea resort partners with The Wilderness and Wildlife Conservation Trust to introduce first-of-its kind conservation research and Tea Trails nature tours Oct 2016 – Budding naturalists and wildlife enthusiasts can...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
7th March 2022
The Art of Forest Bathing
Immersing yourself in nature can surprisingly be far more beneficial than we think. From the sounds to the sights, being outdoors and deepening our connection with the natural world can yield a wide variety of mental, physical as well...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
13th September 2022
The Essential Grain
The skies awaken as darkness turns to light. The morning rays of sun touch the tops and peek through the coconut trees, creating shadows of play. Across the paddy fields, the atmosphere shines golden and bright. The day has begun.
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A Tribute to Our Founder
22nd November 2022
The History of Ceylon Tea
The story of tea in Sri Lanka began over two hundred years ago. British rule was very much under way and in the year 1824, the first tea plant was brought to Ceylon. It came from China and was planted in the Royal Botanical Gardens in Peradeniya for non-commercial purposes.
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A Tribute to Our Founder
14th May 2021
The Migration from Wildlife Tourism to Impactful Nature Tourism
Wild Coast Tented Lodge’s location on the border of Yala National Park affords guests a unique and rich wildlife experience. Yala, a national park of immense ecological and biodiversity that is highlighted by an abundance of endemic...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
1st December 2022
The MJF Centre in Weligama
Our social impact is driven largely through the Merrill J. Fernando Charitable Foundation and our employee-led Good Works committees. As with conservation activities, 15% of pre-tax profit is contributed to the initiatives of the MJF Charitable Foundation.
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A Tribute to Our Founder
27th August 2020
The Resplendent Safari
Wild Coast Lodge redefines “safari” as a holistic wilderness experience. We are blessed with diverse habitat, ecology and scenery across the five sectors of the Yala National Park Complex and Bundala National Park, which is a Ramsar...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
3rd February 2021
The Story of Sound
Resplendent Ceylon presents The Stories of Resplendent, a sensory chronicle of who we are, what drives us and our sources of inspiration. At the beating heart of the series is the island of Sri Lanka; it’s history, culture, people and...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
24th November 2020
Warleigh Church
Driving through the winding roads in Dickoya, you can easily miss the Warleigh Church. Located at a bend in the road, the Warleigh Church is an Anglican church built in 1878 by an Englishman called William Scot and overlooks the...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
4th May 2020
Wild Coast Lodge named in Escape.com’s list of “Six stunning resorts helping the Earth”
To mark the 50th anniversary of Earth Day this year, Escape.com put together a list of resorts around the globe who are pioneers in implementing sustainability practices that help protect our planet. Only six resorts made the list and...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
29th December 2021
#BeginAgain
Ground. Find your center. Breathe. Breathe again. And again. As yet another year comes to an end, it is apparent we’ve plenty of challenges that continue to compromise our ideal sense of living. A global pandemic. Climate change...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
20th October 2021
#FoodforChange
Relais & Châteaux and Slow Food, the global movement working to ensure that everyone has access to good, clean and fair food, came together once again to celebrate “Food for Change” in October. Nearly 200 Relais & Châteaux...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
6th May 2021
A life devoted to tea and kindness : Merrill J. Fernando
The unmistakable face of the Dilmah brand is Merrill J. Fernando, with his signature catchphrase, “do try it!”. He is the first tea grower to offer his tea to the world, picked, perfected, packed at source, and kindness was his cup of...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
2nd October 2022
Amidst the Tea Where the Leopards Still Roam
A stay at Ceylon Tea Trails would not be complete without a walk along our nature trails encompassing lush tea landscapes, local settlements and rich cultural heritage. Along these trails lie the hidden gems of flora and fauna, and if you’re lucky enough, a leopard pugmark or some fresh scat – the best indicator that we share these paths with the resident leopards of the Peak Ridge.
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A Tribute to Our Founder
2nd October 2019
Baby Dilmah’s Birthday!
Dilmah Wildlife Conservation has supported the Elephant Transit Home (ETH) in Udawalawe National Park since 2007 through many initiatives. Most recently, they sponsor ‘Baby Dilmah’, a calf found orphaned in Mattala by the Department of...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
26th June 2019
Bundala School Partnership Project – led by Wild Coast Lodge. Supported by MJF Kids.
Resplendent Ceylon has pledged to foster a rural school located close to Wild Coast Lodge as part of our community outreach projects by providing continued support on a long-term basis in terms of infrastructure, specialist training and...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
12th May 2022
Celebrating the 68th Anniversary of Relais & Châteaux
Their story began 68 years ago. Today, Relais & Châteaux is a name synonymous with impeccable standards of luxury, service and commitment towards creating authentic, enriching and novel experiences.Present across five continents and 64...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
22nd March 2021
Conserving the Peak Ridge Forest Corridor
Resplendent Ceylon, the Wilderness and Wildlife Conservation Trust (WWCT), Dilmah Tea and several other tea estates have embarked on a ground-breaking private sector collaboration to protect Leopards in the Sri Lankan tea highlands. The...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
4th August 2022
Crafting Hands of the South
Deeply connected to Sri Lanka’s ancient history and folklore tales, the art of wooden mask making is a craft that has been passed down generation by generation. Masks are also a distinct element in traditional processions and festivals...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
18th October 2022
Creating an Ethical Wildlife Experience
Spending time in a national park is a privilege. There’s something extraordinary and thrilling about spotting and being so close to wildlife. The animals roam free. They do not show up ‘on demand’. Nature moves at its own pace.
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A Tribute to Our Founder
9th January 2023
Creativity, Collaboration and Community Through Cuisine
If you’ve ever been inside a conventional kitchen of a hotel or resort, you’d understand the dynamics between the ingredients at hand and the chefs who exuberate control and creativity. 
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A Tribute to Our Founder
1st December 2019
Dilmah Tea Founder Merrill J. Fernando has been capped as a Doctor of Science by Massey
In recognition of his strong leadership in ethical business within the food and beverage industry, our chairman and founder of globally renowned Dilmah Tea was capped as Doctor of Science by Massey University in New Zealand. “This...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
17th August 2021
Elephants, the Architects of the Wild
Sri Lankan elephants (Elephas maximus maximus), the largest of the Asian elephant sub-species are true ‘ecosystem engineers’ or keystone species, although comparatively smaller than their African counterparts. Keystone species like...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
28th June 2017
Empower Culinary & Hospitality School’s inaugural graduates felicitated in international event
The Empower Culinary & Hospitality School, Sri Lanka’s premier culinary and hospitality facility with World Association of Chefs’ Societies (WACS) recognition, is an outcome of the philosophy of MJF Foundation Settlor Merrill...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
16th September 2021
Faunal Diversity at Ceylon Tea Trails
A keen naturalist hailing from the hill country, Rohan Gunasekara began his nature work at the Hill Country Youth Exploration Society. He was later the Secretary of the Nature Exploration & Protection Society of Nuwara Eliya due to...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
13th November 2021
Find Your Centre Amongst The Wilderness of Yala
Breathe. Seek. Inhale. Release. If the past 18 months have taught us anything about resilience in the time of a worldwide pandemic, it is that we should always take the time to tend to ourselves. While our sense of balance or peace of...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
11th July 2022
Five Reasons to Visit Sri Lanka in 2022
Sri Lanka is experiencing a sea change. It is at times like this we believe our strengths and a sense of renewal comes to the fore.Here are five reasons why a traveller should visit our island home now...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
6th September 2022
Five Things the Wilderness Has Taught Us
We strive to imitate the magnificent tranquility that exists in the wilderness every day. As each day goes by, we begin to understand how dependent we are on the environment and space that surrounds us. The wilderness as we see it...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
15th February 2022
Five Things to Know About Yala’s Geology
Ruhuna, the home of Yala, was home to a community pulsating with life and a landscape teeming with lush flora and fauna. At present, not much has changed. The community still thrives as does the wondrous nature around it, from the ...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
12th June 2023
Five Ways to Shop for Meaningful Souvenirs
It takes some patience to find the right meaningful souvenir so yes, take your time. There’s no rushing in finding what you need, unless of course you’re short on time itself during your travels. When browsing, keep an eye out for quirky patterns, textures, shapes and hues - this is more than often what will draw your attention and also be adopted as something unique to you.
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A Tribute to Our Founder
10th April 2020
Giving Through Travel – Mankada Pottery Centre
Mankada, the Dilmah MJF Centre for Empowerment through Arts and Crafts in Uda Walawe, is an artisanal pottery centre that seeks to provide employment to women living in the area. Mankada was set up to support the local community with a...
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A Tribute to Our Founder
9th May 2022
Growing Our Own Produce
Whilst the disruptions and restrictions to the global supply chain and local import regulations challenge the structure of the food chain for the hotel and tourism industry,we’d like to believe it has also encouraged us,or rather coaxed..
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