A FIVE - STAR SANCTUM A TOP DHARAMSHALA
National Geographic Traveller India|October 2020
Surrounded by swaying deodars, Hyatt Regency’s resort promises all the splurge of an expensive stay with the serenity of mountains
JULIAN MANNING
There’s fresh air, an then there’s the pristine whiff of the Dhauladhar mountain range overlooking Dharamshala: so crisp and cool that each breath feels more rejuvenating than the last. It might seem peculiar to think of fresh air as an amenity, but if these pandemic times have taught us anything, it might be the most desirable detail for those considering vacations—and the 5-star Hyatt Regency Dharamshala is in no short supply. The resort is perched on a steep knoll that is spread across 6.5 acres: look up and you see imposing vistas of snow-capped peaks, look down, and you see the idyllic bustle of Mcleodganj.

The atmosphere is not one of smothering luxury; sure, the hotel is intent on pampering its guests, but the real charm is when the well-pressed doormen open up the grand double doors, unwrapping a landscape traversed by the likes of the Dalai Lama, whose letter to the hotel is proudly framed in the lobby. As you go exploring under the deodars, you’ll hear the babble of a Himalayan-fed stream playing melody against the chants of the hotel’s resident monks; the property melds itself to its environs, not the other way around, a comfort that is almost as refreshing as the air.

SPOILT FOR CHOICE

No matter which tier of lodging you choose—the hotel has about 80 rooms of varying comforts—each offers nods to elegant Himachali motifs: be they carved in the woodwork or weaved in the curtains. In the lobby, over complimentary high tea at McLeod & Co. Bakery—best taken in the library nook full of Kipling and atlases—you’ll see honeymooners, family vacationers, solo explorers, and students of Buddhism, all eager for recommendations from the staff. Just as the hotel bends to meet its environment, the staff, from the waiters to the managers, are remarkably well-versed in all there is to do inside and outside of the resort, a trait that guests openly recognise and appreciate.

ROAD TO RELAXATION

Continue reading your story on the app

Continue reading your story in the magazine

MORE STORIES FROM NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC TRAVELLER INDIAView All

Where To Find Some of the World's Best Chocolate

ECUADOR’S SUSTAINABLE, LOCAL PRACTICES HAVE HELPED THE COUNTRY MAKE A CACAO COMEBACK—AND CHOCOLATE LOVERS CAN SHARE IN THE SWEET REWARDS

5 mins read
National Geographic Traveller India
December 2020

UNDER THE MOUNTAIN SHADOW

A remote and modern Georgian hotel goes out of its way to show off the spectacular hinterland that encompasses the property

5 mins read
National Geographic Traveller India
December 2020

MODERN LITERATURE & GRAND HOTELS

The Plaza Hotel might have been Fitzgerald’s true love, while Ritz Paris had Hemingway’s heart. Why did glamorous hotels evoke such passion in the greatest writers of a generation? We run through years of colourful history

10+ mins read
National Geographic Traveller India
December 2020

TRAVEL TO REVIVE SMALL BUSINESSES

“PLUNGED INTO ECONOMIC DISTRESS IN 2020, CHARIDA’S CHHAU-MASK-ORIENTED ECONOMY AWAITS A NEW LEASE OF LIFE. SO SNAG SOME PAINTED VISAGES, JUST THE DRAMA FOR STAID URBAN SPACES.”

6 mins read
National Geographic Traveller India
December 2020

TRAVEL TO RESTORE AND RECONNECT

“WE JUMPED OUT OF THE CAR TO SPOT BLUSHING PINK AND MILK-WHITE LOTUSES, RISING FROM MURKY WATER AND BRINGING TO MIND: ‘FROM DARKNESS STEMS LIGHT’.”

5 mins read
National Geographic Traveller India
December 2020

Priya Krishna: Cheering on Indian-ish food

THE INDIAN-AMERICAN CULINARY WRITER DISCUSSES ALL THINGS CULTURE, CUISINES AND BEING THE PERSPECTIVE SHE WANTED TO READ

10+ mins read
National Geographic Traveller India
December 2020

Of Sun, Sand and the Sea

ARCHITECTURAL MARVELS, CHARMING TRADITIONAL VILLAGES AND VARIED, NATURAL LANDSCAPES PERVADE OMAN’S TOPOGRAPHY LIKE THE FRANKINCENSE-INFUSED SMOKE THAT RISES FROM THE REGION’S HOUSEHOLDS. THE MIDDLE EASTERN COUNTRY EMBRACES ARABIA’S ANCIENT SOUL, WHILE LOOKING AHEAD AT A FUTURE, IN WHICH IT EMERGES AS A RISING HOLIDAY DESTINATION

1 min read
National Geographic Traveller India
December 2020

MINIMAL FOOTPRINT

“IN 2021, LET THE HIMALAYAS BREATHE AND PLAN SOME LOW CARBON FOOTPRINT ADVENTURES IN THE SAHYADRIS OF MAHARASHTRA.”

10+ mins read
National Geographic Traveller India
December 2020

A Traveller's Eyes in the Skies

DRONES GAVE US SOME OF THE MOST STIRRING IMAGES OF A PANDEMIC YEAR, WATCHING OVER OUR BEREFT PUBLIC SPACES AND PLACING THE EVERYDAY IN A STARK, NEW LIGHT

6 mins read
National Geographic Traveller India
December 2020

Conscious Wildlife Travel

“As with any interaction with nature, the only way to do it is to be mindful of not taking up more space than absolutely required.”

4 mins read
National Geographic Traveller India
December 2020