Wednesday, August 29, 2012


At this place of love it's always a threesome. You, your loved one and the hills.  While eating, bathing, making love...the breathtaking view of the hills is always there. Awesome threesome!

Author Anthony Robbins said Passion is the genesis of genius. Passion also separates ordinary from the rare. Sumant Batra, corporate lawyer by profession, has built his first hotel property with passion. And that's what makes stay at Te Aroha, a 10-room boutique hotel tucked in the virgin hills of Dhanachuli, a rare experience. For the record, Te Aroha in Maori means 'place of love'.

Batra is a storyteller, every wall in the property has a story to tell. From Te Aroha's story to India's colonial history, from interesting coffee table books to intriguing artifacts...there is never a dull moment cause there are so many engaging stories. When was the last time you saw your grandma's vintage wooden trunk or slept like a baby on a four poster bed or played a game of 'Ludo' to test whether you are still good at it! Te Aroha gifts you ample of such moments besides splendid mountain views.

 All rooms are themed at this hotel and house antique furniture sourced from different parts of India. Te Aroha is a collectors dream...Victorian piano, larger-than-life mirrors in rooms and lobby area, CDs of Hindi classics and marble chess board in the TV lounge-cum-library. For the more contemporary ones there are lots of travel and news magazines strewn all over the property. And then there's Cafe Flashback, Batra's little museum that doubles up as your adda for chai and pakoras. While posters of old Hindi movies and ads from the golden era dominate the place, there are tit-bits that will surprise you --- matchboxes from various hotels, old sewing machines, typewriter. Take a walk down the memory lane. Located on a hilltop, the view too from the cafe is mesmerizing.

The property also scores very high on hospitality--- the staff is very friendly and gives you almost a personalised experience, service is good and food is excellent. With no eating options outside the property as it is located in  a rather small, pristine village, you are left with no option but to eat at the hotel itself. Trust me you won't regret that. The Kumaouni meal that the property hosts, has sumptuous bhat ki daal, besan bhindi and pahari lamb curry. Surprisingly the chef here can present a delectable continental meal too.

When you have soaked enough of the indoors and views from the hotel, there are enchanting jungle and village walks to capture your soul. Te Aroha is a dream with even more dreamy outdoors. That the hotel organises guided village and forest walks is the icing on the cake. No wonder this place is fast emerging as a perfect weekend getaway for those who want a break from the everyday mundane life and even the run-of-the-mill holiday destinations.

Things To Know About Te Aroha

--Dhanachuli, village where Te Aroha is located, is a two hour uphill drive from Kathgodam Railway Station. Hotel provides cab service from Kathgodam/Haldwani at a price.

--The room rate depending on which room you choose, ranges from Rs 6,000 to Rs 10,000 approx. There are packages available inclusive of meals.

---The hotel has a spa, poker room, library and a TV lounge.

--- It offers guided village and jungle walks.

--There is an in-house restaurant, cafe and room service option too is available.


  1. Well said Vishakha. Endorse your views 100%. Amazing property...heaven in yellow:) Meenu

  2. wow this place seems far better than I thought it to be! seems quite cool.