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Visalam
Chettinad

Visalam is an elegant 70 year old Chettiar Mansion which has been carefully converted into a boutique hotel in the heart of this fascinating region. It really captures the soul of Chettinad, a region renowned for its palatial homes, fiery cuisine and colourful culture.

This heritage Art Deco family home of rare distinction is bursting with typical CGH Earth charm. The staff are fantastic and attentive, and around every corner you will see the understated yet authentic design - carved ceilings, original tiled floors and old framed photographs of the ancestral owners. All the light and airy rooms are generously sized and furnished with period antiques. There are beautifully tended gardens, and a games terrace which is perfect for afternoon drinks and backgammon.

In the evenings, the courtyard at the heart of hotel comes to life with a charming performance of music and dance by the hotel staff. A fresh water swimming pool accompanied by a quaint pool house can be found at the back of the house, and it’s probably the finest in Tamil Nadu and perfect for a refreshing dip after a day's sightseeing. Breakfast is served by the swimming pool, and at other mealtimes, guests are welcome in the open kitchen which has lovely old crockery and home grown spices, and they may participate in preparing some of the famous Chettinad cuisine.

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When preparing to travel, lay out all your clothes and all your money. Then take half the clothes and twice the money.

Susan Heller