Exquisite India

Three luxurious escapes…

Looking for a taste of luxury India? Come indulge in the delights of these three luxurious resorts located in Goa, Rajasthan, and Jammu and Kashmir…

Alila Diwa Goa: “Luxury by the beach”

Majorda, Goa (www.alilahotels.com)

From gorgeous, golden sand beaches next to sparkling Arabian Sea waters, to lush emerald green rice fields, to ancient forts and traditions rooted in its colonial past, Goa offers a wondrous mix of nature, culture and lifestyle to explore. Set among all of this is the exquisite Alila Diwa Goa hotel – located in South Goa in the picturesque Village of Majorda. It blends effortlessly into its natural surroundings and mixes contemporary Goan architecture with the magic of Goa’s cultural richness. “High pitched roofs and wide verandahs combine with the subtle shades of teak, local stone and terrazzo flooring, and beautiful brass lanterns, which bestow guests with a soft magical glow during the Goan nights,” the hotel lovingly explains. At the heart of the resort is a 35 metre-long infinity pool that extends out into the paddy terraces. But you can also look forward to fine dining options, complimentary yoga classes, daily film screenings, a Kid’s Club and Teen Zone, rejuvenating treatments available at the Spa Alila, and complimentary shuttle services to the gorgeous Gonsua beach. Among many awards, Alila Diwa Goa was voted 6th in the “Top Resorts in Asia” category at the prestigious Condé Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice Awards in 2018.

Amanbagh Resort: “Marvel at Mughal tradition”

Alwar District, Rajasthan (www.aman.com)

The magnificent Amanbagh Resort in rural Rajasthan is where you come to marvel at India’s historic Mughal culture and tradition. The story goes that the region’s Mughal princes once used Amanbagh’s compound as a base for hunting parties, and vestiges of this decadent past are visible today in the design detail of the resort’s regal pink marble and sandstone exterior, as well as its 37 Suites and Pavilions – which all have a private courtyard or terrace and a deep soaking bathtub carved from green marble. During their stay, guests can indulge in personalised Ayurvedic wellness immersions, connect with body and mind during daily yoga classes, rejuvenate with a range of spa treatments, or simply cool off in the resort’s 33 metre-long central swimming pool. For cuisine, traditional Rajasthani dishes mix with the chefs’ favourites from across India – which can be enjoyed with a backdrop of local musicians performing Indian folk and popular songs. Much of the food served is sourced from the resort’s 8,000-square-metre on-site organic gardens.

The Khyber Himalayan Resort & Spa: “Mountain splendour”

Gulmarg, Jammu and Kashmir (www.khyberhotels.com)

Nestled among the Indian Himalayas amidst the beauty of Gulmarg and all its greenery, Khyber Himalayan Resort and Spa resembles something from a fairytale. “Clad in locally sourced pine and slate, the resort is built in a style true to the architectural heritage of Kashmir. In every way the indoors mirror the beauty of the outdoors,” says the resort’s team. Meadows and forests that have enchanted travellers for centuries await your exploration, and the nearby Gulmarg Gondola – one of the world’s highest ski lifts – can whisk you up Kongdoori Mountain. There are room and cottage options, a heated swimming pool and spa, children’s club, mini theatre, and fine food at the Cloves and Nouf restaurants, which serve up international cuisine with panoramic views of the surrounding mountains and forests. Another delicious touch is the Chaikash lounge, which does traditional-style Kashmir tea, and for something different, there’s the very cosy Calabash sheesha lounge.

Fly Oman Air! Oman Air flies direct to eleven destinations throughout India, from Muscat: Bangalore, Chennai, Goa, Hyderabad, Jaipur, Kochi, Kozhikode, Lucknow, Mumbai, New Delhi and Thiruvananthapuram. For more info, visit www.omanair.com

Online Info! Travelling to India? Visit www.incredibleindia.org for more on what to see and do.

Images: © Alila Diwa Goa (www.alilahotels.com); Amanbagh Resort (www.aman.com)