“One should not think of this property as a hotel, but as a 5* luxury ashram (if such a thing were to exist). Its focus is on wellbeing through yoga, Ayurvedic healing and Vedanta healing. The Garden Suites are located in a modern block overlooking the putting green. All have balconies, dressing rooms, huge baths and power showers. Our favourite room, The Viceregal Suite is located in the palace and decorated as it might have been during the days of the Raj. An imposing four poster bed in the centre of the room, with antique furniture making up a small sitting area as billowing curtains open out onto beautiful views of the hotel's grounds and undulating hills. All guests are provided with traditional "kurta" pyjamas and mala beads, should they wish to wear them, during their stay. Whilst alcohol is served, the focus is on healthy eating and drinking. There is an extensive vegetarian menu and an emphasis on sugar, wheat and dairy free meals. Share your breakfast with their resident (beautiful but greedy!) peacock as he awaits left over banana muffins. The spa is first class, providing Ayurvedic treatments and detox packages. All guests are welcome to complimentary yoga and fitness classes as well as two treatments. This is one for the serious spa goers, the yogis and spiritualists. ”
Written by Megan Lambert
Ananda is a short drive from Rishikesh, the birthplace of yoga and The Beatles' interest in transcendental meditation, in the far north of India. Its location, setting - in manicured grounds overlooking the powerfully snaking Ganges - and its unfailingly kind and gentle staff give it a special healing energy, and its programme of yoga, Ayurveda and Vedanta is as emotionally uplifting as it is physically effective.
Originally published by Condé Nast Traveller (view article)