Former Sir Lanka Tourism UK director Jean-Marc Flambert is to promote luxury villas on the island to the trade.

He has taken on the role of ‘UK ambassador’ for Taru Villas, comprising of 14 boutique properties across Sri Lanka.

The UK is the largest source market for the properties, created by interior design expert Nayantara Fonseka.

She said: “The decision to engage a UK ambassador stems from our belief in the power of human connection.

“We need to build on our partnerships with tour operators, agents and influencers.

“Our success has not been based solely on employing the best equipment and technology, but through our attention to details when it comes to our human touch.

“The decision to engage Jean-Marc is based on our belief that his network, his relationships and his passion for Sri Lanka can add value to what we do.”

Flambert added: “I am honoured to start working with what I consider one of the best luxury brands not only in Sri Lanka, but in the Indian Ocean.

“I have visited all 14 properties, and have a thorough understanding of each.

“I can’t wait to start meeting with the UK luxury industry. I plan to hand pick a few partners, making sure we carefully curate the right experiences to the needs of their client.”

Flambert was vocal in urging UK operators and agents to continue to support Sri Lanka in the wake of the Easter Sunday terrorist attacks which killed more than 250 people.