This is a guest post by travel blogger, Himanshu from Pearls India Tour.
When you visit a place like India, rich in diverse cultures, traditions and heritage. The last thing you are looking for is spending half of your trip in a hotel, which has nothing to do with the experiences you were looking for. Then again, for the sake of your comfort, you have to. But with a little research before your trip, you will come across some hotels which claim to be Village Boutique Hotels, which are customised to offer a stay filled with authentic experiences.
Developed in the latter half of the twentieth century, village boutique hotels are themed, more personalised, and are up-to-date with all the comforts you are looking for, at the same time.
Boutique hotels are of different kinds. There are the modern ones with exceptional advancement in their accommodation, there are the ones that are designed to give the historical feel, there are the super luxurious ones and then there are the village-based hotels, that offer simplicity with elegance, a heady combination.
In this article, we are going to focus on village boutique hotels which are just THE place you want to be at to forget the eccentricity of your urban lifestyle. So, let’s have a look!
1. Palm Grove Beach Resort, Goa
How would it feel to embrace the ‘nature’ in front of an open mass of water seeming endless and ethereal in itself? Well, this place offers you exactly that in a more elegant way. Even with an almost 24*7 restaurant and bar, this resort is one of the calmest places in an electric Goan environment. With only about 14 stand-alone blocks (designed like typical huts), it gives you all the private time you need. Yes, it is located on a beach and it is pretty close to some popular spots in Goa, whether you want to eat, drink, party or set out for a shopping-spree! The resort provides Wi-fi, all day laundry, regular cleaning, yoga classes and spa care!
P.S.: If you want more info, the official site is a very well designed one!
2. Doma’s Inn, Mussoorie
Well, if you are the kind of traveller that needs a home away from home, then this has got to be the place for you! With a very traditional décor and an ethnic feel to it, Doma’s inn sure seems like a child of passion, instead of a vague effort for capital growth. The place feels cosy and offers a private housing of only 6 rooms, and though not exactly the ‘hotel type’, the rooms still are warm and comforting. Though homely and simple in design, the hotel does not fail to provide amenities like Wi-fi, TV, café, computer etc.
P.S.: Ever desired to meet Ruskin Bond? Well, Doma’s Inn is adjacent to his house, and on a good day, you might turn out lucky enough to cross paths with the legendary author!
3. Alsisar Haveli, Jaipur
Out of all palaces, converted into hotels, you will find Alsisar Haveli to be the cosiest. This beauty is more than a hundred years old! With beautiful, well-arranged rooms to an oh-so-inviting pool, the excellent strolling and seating places within the campus, you wouldn’t want to step out of it. Then again, you should explore the Pink City, Jaipur for sure. And after a bustling, tiring and dusty day roaming the busy and bright streets of Jaipur, nothing would be better than returning to your room and letting go off all the fatigue with the exquisite spa, steam-room, poolside bar, or a regular bar, whichever suites you the best.
4. Ladakh Sarai, Saboo Village, Leh
Well, Kashmir was referred to as A Heaven on Earth and one chunk of this heaven lies in Leh, and in this extremely beautiful resort! What seems very ordinary on the outside, a fine example of Tibetan architecture, the stand-alone tents-of-sorts known as Yurts are unreal when you enter. A very warm and inviting bed, very minimal, yet elegant décor and just the right amount of lighting are a few traits of these rooms. You will have no regrets spending your entire holiday, mesmerised by the view from this hotel. The next best thing is the food here, which is simply exquisite. With a traditionally designed dining area and a meal plan that serves at least 4 different authentic cuisines, the experience of dining here is one of a kind. All basic services as per location are available here with an ever-ready staff force.
5. Itmenaan Lodge, Uttarakhand
Ah! The dreamy one. With a stone architecture giving a genuine feel of living in the pristine mountains of Uttarakhand, this place is nothing short of a small little wonder. The view fells like a dream in which you wake up with the kiss of the sunlight and behold heavens from the balcony of The Cloud Palace. Except, this isn’t a dream! The view is surreally beautiful with the chill of mountains and warmth of valleys expanding in front of your eyes. The dining is very unique and the food here is as inviting as ever. A stay at Itmenaan Lodge will indeed be the most indescribable experience of yours!
6. Seetalvan Orchard, Himachal Pradesh
Another gem of and in the mountains. Seetalvan Orchard is more than unreal, it is unbelievable. The rooms are more elegant than loud with simple wood flooring and almost floor to ceiling windows overlooking the beautiful mountains. The furniture is very complimenting, showing some degree of effort in designing the room. The staff is local and interactive, so a lot can be learnt about the attractions in Himachal Pradesh from them. Special food can be provided on request and a separate help can be provided at an additional cost. All in all, this is one place, you would want to snuggle up at.
7. Sukoon Houseboat, Kashmir
A spectacular thought and beautiful execution give you this blessed child as a gift and that too at the place which is THE leader when it comes to surreal beauties. Sitting in a corner on the Dal lake, giving life to Srinagar, this houseboat is surprisingly modern and well-built, with modern washrooms in very traditional and charming rooms. The dining area is an open deck, one with a view that has the capacity to make you forget everything else but food. The service is good and staff, welcoming. Also, given the absence of the outside world, this is the place to remunerate for the lost time, with yourself and your loved one(s).
P.S.: This is the place to be, instead of the whole world, if you are on your honeymoon.
Summing up, the list you just went through, consists of place that they refer to when talking about hitting the brake on the velocity of living and taking a detour. Now that you know these places, figure out some weird ways to save money on a trip abroad and hit the road less travelled?
A traveller, Himanshu is an occasional reader and writer. He visits the places he reads about, to gain a first-hand experience and then shares his understanding of a destination on PearlsIndiaTour.