Maison Perumal, Pondicherry

The Concept

A half-century ago, to be an honoured guest in a gracious Tamil home was something you'd never forget. In those traditional times, a guest was seen as a member of the household, and treated as such. It is this special experience that has been recreated at MaisonPerumal. Explore a simpler, more relaxed way of life that echoes the traditions of noble Tamil Nadu - with a French accent providing the finishing touches to your experience.

MaisonPerumal is a tasteful blend of old-world Tamil and French architectural styles. Verandahs and sit out areas speak of the Tamil heritage while the arched windows and stylized colonnades reflect their French colonial ancestry. The materials are typically local, with cool Cuduppah stone underfoot and teak furniture lending its special richness. The only sign of modernity is the air-conditioner humming unobtrusively in the background.

French architectural influences are marked by the tall arched windows and door along with high ceilings. The French houses were generally built with street frontage. The window shades were generally made of wood or light metals.

Accommodation details

The 10 rooms all in various sizes, with interiors made fromlocal materials for accents, such as cool cotton sheets and curtains, the colourful natural dyes the region is famed for Original bedsteads and scattered antiques add to the sense of being transported into an older, more gracious time.

Six rooms are on the first floor and 4 are on the second; there are 2 twin rooms and 8 doubles.

Activities

Take a heritage walk around the city. The local tourist authority has several walking routes to follow around the Ashram area, the Tamil quarter and French quarter

Go shopping. Pondy has particularly good textiles, leather and pottery goods. MG Street, JN Street, Misson Street and Romain Rolland Street are the places to look

Hire a moped or borrow a bike to get out of town. Serenity beach, within cycling range, is a quieter, cleaner beach than the main stretch

Take an early morning boat trip to see dolphins off shore Visit the ashram of Sri Aurobindo, one of India's most famous ashrams, for yogic contemplation and meditation, or just sightseeing

Take a trip to the utopian society of Auroville. Established in 1968 to bring people together in peaceful and progressive harmony, it's 8km from Pondy and still doing well Go horse riding. The Red Earth Riding School at Auroville, just outside Pondicherry, offers lessons and guided walks

Picture Gallery


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