Sometimes, while travelling, you find a hotel that sounds good and book it without a second thought. Then, you keep wondering whether that hotel will really be as good as it sounded on the website – till you reach there, and see how gorgeous it really is. Then, you are thrilled to bits at your serendipitous discovery. You are charmed by the place instantly, and decide that you will be staying in the hotel more than once. Has this ever happened to you? This is what happened when the OH discovered Kerala Tourism Development Corporation‘s (KTDC) Waterscapes in Kumarakom a couple of years back. It was love at first sight for the both of us, and we decided to book a place in the same resort, again, when we visited Kumarakom recently.
KTDC has established several budget hotels, luxury resorts as well as mid-range accomodations across Kerala, for the purpose of promoting tourism to the state. Our lucky find, Waterscapes, is one of its premium properties, in Kumarakom.
Waterscapes has the tagline ‘As green as it gets’, and if you visit the property, you will find that it is truly ‘as green as it gets’. There is absolutely no dearth of greenery here. Whichever way you see, it is greenery that will meet your eye, soothing your soul.
One of the best parts of Waterscapes is that its wooden rooms (cottages, rather) are built on stilts, below which there are canals flowing. There are separate bridges built for each cottage to take them to the dining room, swimming pool, conference room, or anywhere else in the resort. Each cottage here has a different kind of view – it either overlooks a huge expanse of Lake Vembanad, a canal within the resort, or the swimming pool. The view from every cottage is gorgeous, as we have discovered.
There are long, winding stone pathways built across the resort, enabling guests to stroll through the HUGE property, taking in all that green. For a stressed-out and city-jaded couple like us, this was heaven.
The Lake Vembanad passes alongside the resort, giving the guests access to views as wonderful as these…
The lake-side was my most favourite place in the resort, where I could just sit and relax, or watch the birds and boathouses come and go. In fact, this is where I did most of the bird-spotting that I told you about in a previous post.
It is a very, very quiet spot, a place you can escape to when the soothing lap of nature is all you seek.
The last time we visited, the resort had a lake-side reception desk, and we had to take a boat to reach it and check in! I mean, how exotic is that?!
This time, however, the old reception area was boarded up (thanks to the monsoon, I guess), and this lovely cottage was acting as the reception area….
Even the dining room here is built on stilts, with a view of a water hydrangea-filled canal on one side and Lake Vembanad on the other. Cross a bridge to get to the dining room, and you can watch boats and boathouses and birds as you sip your tea or coffee and have your lunch or dinner.
There is also a bird sanctuary within the resort!! You have to walk through a mini-forest (in the picture below) to reach it. However, thanks to the monsoon again, we were told that it was not safe to go inside. We behaved like good kids and did not dare to explore the sanctuary. We did get to hear birdsong to our heart’s content, though. Music for the jaded ear, truly!
The cottages are equipped with most everything you might need – aircon, television, 24/7 hot water, an electric kettle and provisions to make tea or coffee. Oh, and the windows here are to die for – big, big windows with wide sills, complete with a seat. You get to see lovely views and hear only the sounds of nature as you occupy the window seat and sip a cup of chai or delve into a book.
Heck, even the bathrooms in this resort have a lovely view!
The more we stay in Waterscapes, the more we find to love. We find everything about this place lovely, and we always come back craving for a couple more days of stay. Except for saying that the food here is not bad (not great, not bad either), I don’t have any grouse with this hotel. Oh, and did I tell you that the resort even boasts of a Santhigiri Ayurvedic centre, where the OH and I have had the best of oil massages ever?
I had half a mind not to tell anyone about this place, but I squelched the demon inside me and decided to write about it, because this is a place that needs to be told about. Everyone needs to get a chance at luxuriating in all that gorgeous green.
I sound like a gushing, love-sick teenager, no? Well, yes, I am absolutely in love with this place. And, no, this is not a paid review.