Five perfect winter getaways
Lose the bustle of the city and spend a winter vacation in these cosy boutique hotels where peace and quiet reign supreme
A roaring fireplace, warm quilts, and perhaps a sprinkling of snow—if this is your idea of a magical winter getaway, we have you covered. Lose the bustle of the city in these boutique hotels where peace and quiet reign supreme.
Soulitude, Gagar, Uttarakhand
Balanced on a hillside in the Lower Himalayas in Uttarakhand’s scenic Kumaon region, Soulitude is located in Gagar, near Nainital. It offers seven rooms and suites in the main house and four independent cottages, all with spectacular views of the snow-capped Himalayas or the surrounding forest. The rooms are delightfully named—Nirvana, Bliss, Joy, The Secret Garden, etc.—and each one is individually designed, whether it’s in style of an English manor house, a Zen retreat, a rustic cottage and more. Soulitude is surrounded by bountiful orchards of peaches, pears, apricots, plums, and apples—perfect for long walks and fruit-picking expeditions.
Prices start from Rs7,000. For more details, visit Soulitude.in
The Khyber Himalayan Resort & Spa, Gulmarg, Jammu and Kashmir
Spread over seven acres of pristine pine forests, The Khyber Himalayan Resort & Spa boasts of magnificent views of the Affarwat Peaks in the Pir Panjal range of the Himalayas. Its 85 rooms have traditional Kashmiri architecture and ambience. We recommend the private cottages with huge picture windows, private balcony, and a sunken bathtub. The world’s highest ski lift, Gulmarg Gondola is a short walk from the resort and it whisks you off to Kongdoori Mountain, the highest ski point in the Himalayas. After all that physical exertion, relax and rejuvenate at The Khyber Spa where you can indulge in luxurious treatments by L’Occitane.
Prices start from Rs18,560. For more details, visit Khyberhotels.com
Pepper Trail, Wayanad, Kerala
The snow might be missing but the misty quiet of Wayanad’s tropical rainforest has its own charm. Nestled within the rainforest, the Pepper Trail is surrounded by spice and coffee plantations with a 140-year-old heritage colonial bungalow in the centre. The bungalow houses two independent suites furnished with antique four-poster beds and family heirloom artefacts. But the pièce de resistance of Pepper Trail are its two fairy tale-perfect tree houses—Hornbill and Woodpecker. Perched on huge jackfruit trees, some 40 feet above the ground, these rustic-chic tree houses have spacious living areas, stunning views, and absolute privacy.
Prices start from Rs10,200. For more details, visit Peppertrail.in
Ri Kynjai, Shillong, Meghalaya
In Khasi, Ri Kynjai means ‘serenity by the lake’. And this boutique resort just outside Shillong certainly lives up to its name. Ri Kynjai is spread over 45 acres in the Khasi hills, overlooking the man-made Umiam Lake. The cottages are inspired by Khasi thatch huts with an upturned boat roof and red pine panelled rooms. The Sao Aiom restaurant serves up traditional northeast cuisine like smoked pork with bamboo shoots and Cherrapunji chicken.
Prices start from Rs9,500. For more details, visit Rikynjai.com
Windsong B&B, Amritsar, Punjab
If you have always wanted to run through sarson ke khet in classic Bollywood style, book a getaway to Windsong Boutique B&B. Located amidst bright yellow mustard field just outside Amritsar, Windsong is an upscale homestay. Its charming and spacious rooms and suites are named after the five rivers of Punjab. Lounge about the pool or in the cosy drawing room by the fireplace. Go on gastronomic trails into the city and even learn to whip up quintessentially Punjabi meals.
Prices start from Rs6,000. For more details, visit Windsongboutiquebnb.com