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Spice Up Your Holiday Either By The Pool Or The Lake At This Western Ghats Homestay


    Looking for a homely stay in the countryside? A few nights at Cardamom House, on the banks Kamarajar Lake near Athoor, will spoil you silly. It’s quality service meets a slice of home. The perfect combination.

    Variety Is The Spice Of Life

    A family homestay, started by Chris Lucas, a retired doctor from Britain, Cardamon House is a hidden gem. A cute little milestone painted on the main road will lead to here, and you know from that warm welcome, that’s going to be fun.

    Nestled in the beautiful and soothing foothills of the Western Ghats, it’s also got the Kamarajar lake in it’s backyard, although the lake is very rain dependent. There are seven rooms you can check into. And since they’re all separate cottages, you have privacy. But they’re also just close enough to keep an eye out on the kids, should they be in another cottage. Four of the rooms are in the main space — Cardamom House. The others, also named after spices of course, are Saffron, Cinnamon, Coriander and Peppercorn, each perfect for two. Cosy, quaint and comfortable is what you’ll get here. And while the rooms are homely, the are so well kept, you’ll think you’re in a hotel.

    Room With A View

    My favourite aspect of the cottages are that they all have balconies which overlook the lake and the mountains beyond — perfect to spend monsoon evenings reading a book with a cup of tea. When it isn’t raining though, each cottage also has a terrace to enjoy the view but with nothing but skies above you. But oh… hold your breath for the Mountain House. Just a hop, skip and jump from the swimming pool {more on that later!}, the Nutmeg And Allspice is great during the monsoons, as they don’t have air-conditioning. But hey, you’re close to the pool, so no complaints there, right? Couples? Don’t look further than the Pondicherry Suite — old-school with a bedroom and lounge, plus furniture from the French-Colonial era.

    On Grounds

    As lovely as the property itself is {I can really spend my entire time between lounging on the terrace, al fresco dining area, and pool}, the staff here makes the place fabulous. So friendly and hospitable, they spoil you from the first cold juice they give you when you walk in, to the last packed meal {if needed} for your journey home. Speaking of meals, food is usually sourced from the resort’s gardens and has a local feel to it. Think rice {it’s Tamil Nadu after all} in different flavours from tomato to lemon, and complemented with Asian, Indian and European dishes.


    No trip here is complete with an evening or two spent chatting to Chris — humourous, intriguing and absolutely lovely, it’s really a massive part of the charm of staying at the Cardamon House.