The Sailing Club House, Kochi
An Exclusive and Intimately Private Backwater Retreat!
By - Lt Col (Retd) D Purushothaman Pillay
We were most pleasantly surprised on discovering this peaceful hideout on the banks of the calm waters of the Vembanad Lake, on the hitherto under-explored island of Panangad, very close to the Lakeshore Hospital, just off NH 47, around nine odd kilometers from Vytilla. It just took us all of 40 minutes, in the peak weekday evening traffic, that too after stopping twice for the odd pointer in the right direction, to get there from Kakkanad, where we had started from.
This wonderful place is a pristine villa, nestling two spacious bedrooms, exotically christened as Tamara & Ambal. These air-conditioned bedchambers with attached bathrooms, have commodious, warm and welcoming bedsteads, and the room space has been charmingly embellished and tastefully spruced up. But for me, the one thing that just took my breath away, was that both these rooms had their own, discreet, high-walled, mood-lit, open sit outs with, ornate wrought-iron intimate seating for two, set on an amorous floor of scattered shells, which mutedly crackles underfoot, however gingerly one tries trampling on them, in the exciting excursion into that, 'oh so romantic' private space.
These bedrooms then open into a copious, airy and elegant central living room, well stocked with great leisure reading material. There is an attached dining alcove, serviced by a mini-pantry which should take care of all manner of beverage demands of the guests. On walking further out of this cozy sanctuary, one finds oneself out on a secluded patio, which bears witness to one of the most bewildering sights to behold.
Opening out in front of our eyes, is this sprawling, green, expanse of verdant, well manicured lawns; which we will soon discover, is but the teaser, for what lay beyond it, can scarcely be put into words. We survey one of the most picturesque vistas that one can be privileged to see in Kochi, by this lakeside. The placid waters of the Vembanad Lake carpet the horizon like one shimmering expanse of beauty and tranquility. The fact that we were there at sunset, made me realize that I personally haven't witnessed anything so naturally beautiful, anywhere else in Kochi. At that precise instant, one will instantaneously fall in love with everything about that moment, from the skies which changed color every passing breath, to the twinkling dazzle of the glistening waves and of course, with this marvelous place, for having offered you one of the most memorable spectacles, you will never ever forget.
Owned by the professional Avenue Hotels chain, this is an exceptionally well run establishment. It has an adjoining outdoor dining hut, which serves some chosen delectable local delicacies, prepared by an expert in Nadan cuisine. Furthermore, the mono or multi-hull sail boats of the club, that seem to carelessly quiver to the rhythm of the undulating waves that ripple the lakeside, are also available to be pressed into service, for a relaxing cruise on Poseidon’s little realm that stretches out into the horizon, in an expansive watery wilderness, which always looks to beckon you into its warm embrace with open arms.
The resident staff posted to assist guests, were found to be very efficient, helpful, knowledgeable and courteous. As I see it, this property could also ideally serve as a secluded venue to host, some of the most exclusive private events, parties and scenic intimate weddings.
The Sailing Club House, for me has been a great personal discovery. It must rank as the most perfect romantic destination to serenade one's beloved in Kochi. Go there and feel it for yourself!
Sailing Club House
Kochi – 682506
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