Big Ben’s bongs still chime for guests at Sri Lanka’s premiere Reef Villa & Spa

For those who haven’t been paying attention—or just plain don’t care—time has topped for lovers of London’s famed Big Ben bongs.

The iconic clock tower on Britain’s Houses of Parliament, a mere stone’s throw from the River Thames, is closed for refurbishment—and the famed bell has been silenced.

But here in Sri Lanka, all is not lost!

‘A nod to the heritage of our British and Irish owners’

Step in Reef Villa & Spa, nestled on the west coast south of the capital Colombo, and the clock tower attached to its gift and antique shop.

Says CEO Bernadette Barker: “For those who are already mourning the silencing of Big Ben’s bongs, Reefs clock tower continues to chime on the hour, every hour.

“On the façade of the three storey clock house building, which houses Reef’s gift and antique shop, Reef’s clock sounds out the Westminster chimes as a nod to the heritage of the British and Irish owners.”

Guests always ‘somewhat bemused to hear the Westminster chimes’

Brendan O’Donnell, managing director, says that “guests are always somewhat amused to hear the Westminster chimes on arrival. On the hour, half hour and quarter hours, without fail, the Westminster chimes punctuate the day”.

The website reports that “set in three acres of lush landscaped gardens with extensive lily ponds and beside a palm fringed beach, Reef Villa & Spa has an intimate ambiance with superb attention to detail and service”.

Exclusive palatial suites designed in line with Indo-Colonial décor

“With seven exclusive palatial suites, designed in line with Indo- Colonial décor, each features colourful antique en caustic floor tiles, 150 year old four poster beds and luxurious private verandas.

“For the energetic, Reef offers an all-weather tennis court, table tennis, an azure swimming pool and yoga on request, while cricket mad staff are always on hand to teach the uninitiated how to play the national sport.”

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