The Colombo Racecourse has always been an icon of the City of Colombo. Dating back to the late 19th Century the Racecourse was built by the Ceylon Turf Club and was used primarily for horse racing during its heyday. However, over the years its function varied and finally the buildings were abandoned and fell into disrepair until recently.
The Colombo Racecourse was renovated under the direction of Gotabaya Rajapaksa, Secretary to the Ministry of Defence and Urban Development, the restoration work was conducted by the Sixth Engineer Services Regiment of the Sri Lanka Army, with architectural and engineering guidance given by the Urban Development Authority and the Central Engineering Consultancy Bureau respectively. The grounds have been converted into an international standard rugby ground, its pavilions have been conserved and converted to suit present day activities, with the Reid Avenue frontage being transformed into an up-market shopping complex of eight outlets that include two restaurants on the upper floor and shops on the ground floor.
The Colombo Racecourse Mini Pavilion was ceremonially opened by Basil Rajapaksa, Minister of Economic Development who was the Chief Guest.