Mar 6, 2018

Posted by in Travel Reviews | 0 Comments

Earthy Luxury

Earthy Luxury

They say, “Offline is the new luxury”. We all appreciate nature, a green earth, forests, lakes, wildlife. But how many of us even realize that we, the human race, are the biggest threat to their existence? It was reassuring to discover on my recent trip to Delhi that there are properties after all that still wish to preserve the beauty and mystery of nature/earth; and the hotel, amidst 677 acre forest grove with six lakh trees to welcome us, was living testimony to this fact. Nestled in the Mangar Bani valley, the Lalit Mangar is strategically located about an hour away from Delhi and just short of an hour from Gurgaon. One look at the hotel and you can’t miss how the owners have taken every effort to create a place where one can appreciate life. Right from the raw materials like earth chalk and gravel used to build the hotel to the rustic, rammed earth pathways and extensive use of jute products, The Lalit Mangar is all about eco friendly yet comfortable luxury.

Entrance to The Lalit Mangar

Entrance to The Lalit Mangar

After a tiring day in the city, we managed to reach the hotel only at 9 in the night but the warm, smiling faces of the staff and a buggy ready to take us to our suite was more than enough to lighten us up. The Lalit Mangar is an all suite hotel and houses a total of 35 of them. And even though it was pitch dark by the time we got to our room, we could not miss how the rammed earth architecture, a first in India, blends with the surrounding range of the Aravallis. We were told that rammed earth is non-toxic, non-polluting and energy efficient. All walls are 15 inches thick for insulation that keeps the place cool during summer and warm in winter.

The suite

Our suite at The Lalit

Our room overlooked the Mangar Bani valley, the only place in India that has remained shielded over the years, even from colonial rule. We learned that the valley is one of the last patches of Aravalli forests with native tree and plant species. With so much beauty around us, we couldn’t wait to explore what the next couple of days had in store for us.

View from our suite, overlooking the Aravallis

View from our suite, overlooking the Aravallis

Although I traded this one for a couple more hours of curling in bed, one can start their day with a Yoga workout under the guidance of a Yoga guru. If that works up an appetite, the hotel offers a variety of food, flavoured with spices and herbs and seasoning, all freshly grown in its own farmland. For a big salad eater like me, it was heartening to see herbs like basil, coriander, grass, cherry, mint growing in the hotel’s organic garden.

The scrumptious food at the hotel

The scrumptious food at the hotel

We spent the next few hours indulging in the numerous activities the hotel has to offer. The property offers everything right from outdoor sports like cycling to bringing local experiences to the hotel like pottery, dancing to folk music, puppet shows and star gazing where you can spot the rings of Saturn and moons of Jupiter. Later in the night, one can spot Venus and the moon. Coming back to the experiences created within the hotel premises, it will be criminal for a teaholic like me to not mention the colourful chai tapri with charpoys setup specially designed so guests can savour chai and pakoras in rustic luxury, right outside their room. At the end of all the activities, if you are left wanting for some relaxation, then without further ado, just head to the Time Reversal Spa. This spa is created by London based Dr Mosaraf Ali, the pioneer of Integrated Healthcare. For someone who has been a royal physician and family doctor of influential public figures like Kate Moss, Samuel L Jackson, Sylvester Stallone and Morgan Freeman, Dr Ali’s uniquely designed treatments are partly based on the ancient art of Kaya Kalpa for rejuvenation and cellular regeneration. The fatigue and massage therapies at the spa leave your mind and body completely relaxed. Ask someone who went there with a neck pain and came out ready for another round of activities. The Time Reversal Spa

Time Reversal Spa

Time Reversal Spa

Chai tapri

Chai tapri

Star gazing at the hotel

Star gazing at the hotel

We spent the night overlooking the peaceful Aravallis with a scrumptious dinner laid out in our suite balcony. Afterall, isn’t this what luxury is all about? This view reminded me of one of my favourite Coco Chanel quotes, “Luxury must be comfortable otherwise it is not luxury”. And the hotel has created just that- luxury that’s naturally necessary. To me, the Lalit Mangar is a beautiful and sensuous experience wrapped in comfort and reassurance.

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