The Brunton Boatyard possesses a remarkable sense of scale, evident the moment you turn into the tiled forecourt. The lobby is a vault of sunlight and air, framed by arches and overhung with punkahs - enormous, old-fashioned fans of Indo-Portuguese origin. Most rooms have a balcony. The corner suites are large with a separate sitting / dining and a private pantry for the Butler. All bathrooms too enjoy a great view and there is no better way to enjoy a luxurious bath than to lie in the long tub and keep the window shutters open to watch a fascinating scene below. The hotel has its own private jetty, which doubles up as a ‘café’, overlooking the pool garden and the sea.
All of the Brunton Boatyard Hotel's 22 rooms overlook the sea, and so, by happy circumstance, do the en-suite bathrooms. Few pleasures rival a long hot soak in your tub of an evening, watching the dolphins play tag with the trading ships of the globe.Your super-rested muscles should then have just enough energy to carry you to the quaint four poster bed that dominates your room. (A little footstool has been thoughtfully provided to assist the process). You can choose from regular rooms, or the stately Harbour suites, where the appointments feature original colonial era artifacts.
History restaurant. The warm woods and massive teak crossbeams provides an ideal setting for a dinner that travels through time.
The Terrace Grill which opens for dinner offers the " Day's Catch" fresh from the Chinese fishing nets and will be grilled to perfection, just the way you like. Overlooking the busy ferry terminal and the bazaar down below, the hotel is best to watch the life of a city while enjoying a delicious sea food dinner.
The Armoury Bar is much more than a place to drink. The harbour views are intoxicating, and for those who prefer milder refreshment, there's even a selection of fine teas.
The hotel's nautical past seems to follow you around. On one wall, old Dutch maps, on another, a small navigation device, in the courtyard lawns, an ancient anchor. Walk further, turn a corner, and you find yourself outside the Armory Bar. Perhaps later, you could enjoy a sun downer here, with old Portuguese breastplates and musketry for company.
A short saunter down the corridor brings you to a little doorway. Pass through and suddenly, the whole vista of Cochin harbor opens up beyond the pool's inviting waters. This is the spot to read a boring historical novel, work on your tan and watch the ships sail by, so close you can almost reach out and touch them. Crane your neck a bit and you can spot a serried rank of Cochin's famed fishing nets. They first made their appearance in 1350 a.d. and their much-photographed preying-mantis shapes form one of the city's most enduring images.
(Delhi, Varanasi, Khajuraho, Agra, Jaipur, Udaipur, Mumbai, Goa, Cochin, Kumarakom, Thekkady, Madurai, Chennai)
As dawn breaks over the mighty Ganges and you watch the faithful absolve their sins in her restorative waters, you’ll discover that India’s powerful spirituality is as tangible as the bank-side temples that are illuminated in the early-morning light.
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