Celebrating the 400-year-old Dutch Hospital Colombo’s seventh anniversary, merchants of the shopping precinct, officials from the Urban Development Authority (UDA), and officials of Nations Trust Bank came together for the ceremonial lighting of the Christmas Tree on 3rd of December 2018.
Once again, Nations Trust Bank American Express partnered with the Dutch Hospital Shopping Precinct for the 6th consecutive year in celebration of its anniversary.
The historic Dutch Hospital, following its transformation to a famed shopping complex is renowned as an iconic tourist hotspot in Colombo. Since its opening in 2011 the Dutch Hospital Shopping Precinct has housed some of Colombo’s most famous restaurants, spas and shopping experiences. Backed by a rich history, the centrally located Dutch Hospital is a mark of Colombo’s transformation post-war and adds itself as a must-visit location in one’s journey to Sri Lanka.
The anniversary celebrations marked the lighting up of the glorious75 feet tall Christmas tree at the entrance to the Old Dutch Hospital by Eng. Sumedha Ratnayake (Director General of UDA), Mr. H. G. Sarathchandra (Deputy Director – Project Management Division of UDA), Chef Dharshan Munidasa (Co-owner of Ministry of Crab), Harpo Gooneratne (CEO/Founder of Harpo’s Hotels, Cafés & Restaurants), Mr. AkramCassim (Managing Director of Colombo Jewellery Stores), Mr. Shalin Balasuriya (Director/Co-Founder of Spa Ceylon), Ms. Ranganiy Hettiarachchi (Co-owner of Taphouse by RnR)and Kapila Mohotti (Food & Beverage Manager of Hilton Colombo & Ikoi Tei). Courtyards one and two also feature a tree each at a height of 35 feet. The main tree at the entrance is surrounded by 36 smaller trees of varying heights ranging from 4 to 10 feet. The Christmas decorations at the Dutch Hospital are deemed a popular attraction and a unique seasonal experience, drawing both local and foreign tourists annually.
The project to renovate and restore of this historically important colonial hospice took place in 2011. It was carried out under the purview of the Urban Development Authority, in collaboration with the Tourism Development Authority, as part of the Colombo Development Program. Much care was taken to preserve the original architectural features while adding modern amenities. Over the past seven years all tenants have provided their continued support to the UDA in maintaining the authenticity of this location.