weekend amidst rocky mountains and wildflowers at colorful jungle retreat
November 23, 2017
Having lived in the city all my life has kind of made me appreciate the small details of life, like stars glimmering in the sky, chirping of birds, drops of morning dew on grass and that simpler life without internet or Instagram. The details we tend to forget in the monotony of our city life but our subconscious never forgets to remind us the perpetual need for it...
" Tout Commence Par un Rêve "
E V E R T H I N G S T A R T S W I T H A D R E A M
One such experience recently took me to Designer Anupamaa Dayal's boutique property in a mystical village near Gurgaon Faridabad Highway called 'Mangar'.
Mangar is a small village but immensely significant because even in today's time of urbanization the villagers here uphold the sanctity of a forest which is not just for natural conservation but also for their faith.
And perhaps this was the very reason for Designer Anupamaa Dayal decided to build a house middle of nowhere. And "Anupamaa Mangar" is not just another house its the essence of what Anupamaa herself is all about.
As you drive through the village as per the directions you will find yourself of off the beaten path on a dirt road seemingly leading nowhere but as you drive ahead you are greeted with a white house covered in vines and flowers painted with brightest of hues which is unmistakably Anupamaa.
The personality of the designer and her inspiration rest like a soul in the house, each room is inspired from her previous collections, the main hall is a huge open space painted with the motifs of mor-pankh and vines of wild flowers. The most prominent however is the image of Durga on one of the walls.
All this creates a stark contrast with the checkered floors but I believe that's the beauty of this space, its like a work of art and unlike popular belief you feel at peace among all this color. I believe I have done some of my best work over there may be that's because of the beautiful dresses by Anupama but Im sure the interiors had an equal part to play.
Each room of the house has huge windows making it one with the outside, views of vast sky and forest are visible from every where, it is rightfully known as a "Anupamaa Mangar- The Jungle Retreat" because the jungle begins right as the courtyard ends without any wall separating the two.
The nights become pleasantly quite and peaceful and in the morning you are greeted with chirping birds, dancing peacocks and warm sunlight streaming through the trees it was an ideal "good morning".
Mangar forest is famous for Bird Watching, you can also see civets, deers and some times leopards as well, Anupamaa herself is an enthusiast and took us for an evening walk into the jungle, we wanted to go for bird watching early in the morning but due to cold weather and lack of visibility we could not but nonetheless Im glad I got to see some part of the forest.
The food at Mangar is exceptionally good after all the designer is known to be a spice collector, so I believe for her food is an experience in itself. Food is all local sourced from Mangar or in some cases grown at the property, the courtyard has a lot of vegetable and fruit trees. But Anupamaa also has very skilled and passionate staff in the kitchen, we had the yummiest Bharva Baigan (eggplant) ever. The meals are carefully prepared and served in the most rustic way, we had our lunch in the courtyard and our dinner under the stars on the terrace. There is veg as well as non vegetarian options according to the preference of the guests. In the cold morning we were greeted with hot ginger tea which with a doubt completed my rustic village experience.
The best part is that meals and guided Jungle walks are all inclusive in the cost of stay because Anupama Dayal wants you to enjoy the entire experience.
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