The Scenic Splendour from Lipton’s Seat
Now a tourist attraction, Lipton’s Seat was the vantage point from which the renowned Scottish tea tycoon Sir Thomas Lipton would oversee his flourishing empire. Lipton’s Seat offers a sweeping panorama that encompasses various remarkable locations in Sri Lanka. One can behold the scenic splendor of Handapanagala Lake, Chandrika Lake, and Udawalawa Lake, as well as the majestic peaks of Wedi Hiti Kanda mountains. In addition, the view extends to encompass the bustling Hambantota Harbor and the prominent Mattala International Airport situated along the southern coast. From this elevated position, one can marvel at the expansive vista that showcases the beauty of five provinces in Sri Lanka.
The History of Dambatenne Estate
Situated within the Haputale Agro Climatic Sub Region of the Uva Planting District, the Dambatenne Estate holds a significant place in history. Haputale itself has long been renowned as a Health Resort, known for the pristine and unpolluted air that permeates the region. It is said that the air here holds a purity that invigorates the senses.
Dambatenne Tea Garden, nestled in the heart of Haputale, was a cherished possession of Sir Thomas J. Lipton for over four decades, spanning from the late 1800s to the 1930s. Lipton held a deep affection for this place, finding solace and inspiration within its embrace.
Legend has it that Sir Thomas found great joy in entertaining his guests at picnics within the garden’s confines, as well as reflecting upon nature’s abundance and contemplating the future from the summit of his plantation, known as ‘Lipton’s Seat.’ This precarious perch, situated at a dizzying height of nearly 1900m (6200 feet), offers a panoramic 360-degree view that is truly one of the world’s most breathtaking sights.
Beyond the captivating vistas, Sir Thomas was equally enamored by the rich aroma and flavor of the Uva Tea produced at the Dambatenne Factory. With pride and fulfillment, he served this tea to his esteemed guests, including royalty, at his grand estate bungalow. The factory itself, constructed in 1890 by Messrs Lipton Ceylon Limited, stands at an elevation of 1566 meters above sea level. Here, the production of Rotorvane and Orthodox type Black Tea takes place, benefiting from the unique air circulation and occasional mist that graces the lofts and rolling rooms, making it unparalleled among plantations in Sri Lanka.
The tea that is produced at the Dambatenne Factory bears the esteemed Garden Mark of ‘Bandara Eliya.’ Renowned for its delightful bright red liquor, captivating aroma, and distinct taste, this tea maintains its exceptional qualities throughout the year. During the dry period from June to August, the liquor develops a distinctive pungency associated with the renowned Uva Flavoury Season. These teas are highly sought after by tea connoisseurs around the globe, adding to the legacy of Dambatenne and its remarkable offerings.