I lost my heart to Udaipur a couple of years ago, when I landed at the city of lakes during the pink of winters. Since then, a desire to re-visit and do Udaipur the offbeat way burned bright and I finally got a chance to do that last month, all thanks to TatSaraasa Resort & Spa. Located on the outskirts of Udaipur, TatSaraasa Resort & Spa is a perfect hideout from the maddening tourist filled streets of Udaipur. The property lies just about 16km from the city, tucked in the Aravalli hills, overlooking a lake and makes for a picture perfect getaway in the lap of nature. One can easily reach here by getting down at Udaipur Train/Bus Station and calling an Ola/Uber.
While planning this trip, Haldighati and Kumbalgarh Fort were on my mind as I hadn’t been able to visit these places during my first visit. TatSaraasa Resort & Spa proved to be a great decision, given that the property is located outside Udaipur and relatively closer to these places which were of interest to me. Also, it gave me an experience of village life which would not have been possible had I stayed in the heart of the city.
First look at the property and my heart was already set on coming back here again. While this was a solo trip, I knew I would love to be back here again with my family. With lovely lush green grounds touching the Aravalis in distance, a pool overlooking the mountains, a lobby which is as old-school as the palaces of Udaipur, luxurious rooms with large French windows opening up to nature’s bliss, TatSaraasa Resort & Spa seemed to be exactly what the heart desired after a few hectic months at work.
Frangipani trees by the pool add to the ambience and I just wanted to sit and stare at this pristine view forever. I’ve been told that the browns of the hills turn to lush green in the monsoons and I am sure it gets even prettier than it is at the moment. Peacocks are a regular here, with lake Lakhawali being a source of water during the harsh summer of Rajasthan.
My room at TatSaraasa Resort & Spa was a blend of tradition and modernity, keeping the Rajasthani art and culture alive in the decor while concentrating on modern day amenities. A spacious room that opened up to a huge balcony, overlooking the Aravali hills – I couldn’t have asked for anything more.
It was almost time for lunch when I woke up after a relaxing nap. I was informed by the staff about the in-house restaurant which offers a vast variety of options from traditional Rajasthani Cuisine to North Indian and Continental. As always, I was a little apprehensive of eating alone in a restaurant. But when hunger strikes, apprehensions melt and that’s exactly what happened.
A comforting Rajasthani meal later, I decided to hang around in the lobby for sometime. And that’s when I happened to meet some staff members who were happy to share the stories of the conceptualisation of the property and the goal they have in mind for future. I had noticed placards about responsible luxury in the room, and the talks steered in that direction. It was heartwarming to know that TatSaraasa employs a lot of local villagers and provides them a stable source of income. Most people used to work for daily-wages before the resort came up, and now they are all happy being a part of it. TatSaraasa takes responsibility of grooming them and making them understand the hospitality sector. They are also actively involved in showcasing the local culture and provide customized village walks to guests who are interested.
I was happy to visit the village with TatSaraasa Staff members. Luckily, I got an invitation to visit one of the homes in the village and it turned out to be an experience which is very hard to put in words. I was welcomed with shy smiles and open hearts into the home of Deva who is a driver with TatSaraasa Resort & Spa. A kachcha home that was, but filled with laughter and smiles. They treated me like a superstar, they brought out their fancy glasses to serve me kadak chai. The kids and women were shy at first but opened up as we started talking about their village, the nearby school and Udaipur. To a gypsy soul like me, it was shocking to know that these women have never been outside of their village. The kids were too cute, and soon their shyness changed into playfulness when I showed them that we can take pictures using a mobile phone.
Soon, we were discussing future and the young lady in the picture below told me she wants to be a teacher. She asked how many years of schooling does it require to become one. Intrigued by my answers, she wanted to know if I attended college too! I think she had her doubts about the answers I gave her because what she asked me later left me stumped! She wanted to know if I passed or failed college! 😀
I can’t thank TatSaraasa Resort & Spa enough for this heartwarming and humbling experience. One can go to places far and wide, but being welcomed into a home is always so so special. <3
A beautiful sunset marked the end of this day which remains special to me for reasons more than I can write down. I’ll need a couple of posts to come to them I think.
To know more about TatSaraasa Resort & Spa, click here.