The walawwa was constructed by Mudaliyar Don Bastian Gooneratne in 1742. The two-storey building is located within a 0.6 ha (1.5 acres) garden, approximately 0.5 km (0.31 mi) from the centre of Galle. The Walawwa has been the ancestral home of Gooneratne family, who were administrators of the Dutch and British colonial governments. Notable past residents of Atapattu Walawwa includes Mudaliyar Edmund Rowland Gooneratne and his son Mark Gooneratne. It is currently being used as a small seven-room boutique hotel.