Demonstrating its respect to the nature, the resounding sounds of birds, a rich cover of lush green trees, a perfect blend of nature and luxury, Aahana the Corbett wilderness resort has its own reasons to be loved and respected. The resort is situated in Sawaldesh, a 20 minutes drive to a beautiful town of Ramnagar. Offering a serene and peaceful environment and the luxury equivalent to any 5 star hotels. Aahana is a highly recommended luxury resort for families and peace lovers.
During our recent trip to Ramnagar we had a day to spend and leisure after completing the Jungle safari and that is when we thought of staying at Aahana. We had heard a lot about the resort from locals. The resort is very well crafted, curated, maintained and executed. We reached the resort around evening after completing our safari, the reception area followed by the reading lounge gives a very professional look and the staff is very courteous. As a gesture of welcome we were offered juices and hot towel. We had a short conversation with the reception staff and were answered well.
After completing the formalities we were shifted to our room, they call it Corbett club. It is more of a suite rather than an ordinary room. Consisting of multiple wardrobes, dressing table, mini bar, AC, television, a spacious balcony with sitting, a fire place for winters, a sofa set and a beautifully planned washroom with toiletries. The suite is located at 1 end of the resort where at the entrance one can view the village and from the balcony you get a beautiful view of the resort, the jungle in the backdrop and a beautiful sunrise in the mornings.
The resort also offers other rooms such as the Den, Jim’s retreat, Jungle lore suite, Ranger suite, family suite and the villas. For more details about the rooms and tariff please refer to the resort website.
After settling down, we walked down towards the restaurant for the dinner. The restaurant is spacious and professionally maintained. The restaurant offers a lavish buffet for all the meals along with a live counter. The restaurant is segregated into multiple areas such as the dining hall where the main buffet or ala-carte is served, an outdoor seating for people to enjoy the nature and enjoy the meals, an elegantly built bar that offers a variety of options for drinks and live music during dinner time. The resort has an upper hand in terms of food quality as compared to other resorts as they have their own bakery unit, dairy farm and organic farms thus maintaining quality.
After the luxuriant dinner, we took a short walk around the resort, the pathways which are dimly lit to maintain harmony with the resident birds and humans give a mesmerising view and force you to stay there for a while and feel the serene calm of the night gazing at the starts. It reminds me of the days we used to be curious children and use the roof tops as our own observatory.
The next day was at leisure and looking at the exorbitant heat during the day we thought to roam around the resort in the morning and evening. So we started the day earlier than usual but not as early as seven. We freshened up and had a quick breakfast, the staff was there at the restaurant ready to greet us with smile no matter how early they would have woke up to prepare the food and the place to make our experience as good as possible.
After the breakfast we took a walk around the resort and also a drive in the battery operated vehicles when our kid refused to walk anymore. The resort has some real good things to admire a well maintained kids play area which normally is the least looked after in other resorts, the play area has some good swings, a trampoline and cycling. Adjacent to the kids play area are the badminton and basketball court, within the resort premises there is a mini football and a mini golf course for people to rejuvenate. There is a separate place next to the reception for indoor games, pool table. The resort also holds a meditation/yoga room with daily yoga sessions provided to the guests. The resort holds a huge area under organic farming. The resort also holds a naturopathy centre offering various services to the guests. One of the major attractions apart from these is a buggy ride which is pulled by horses giving you a feel of the British era when effluent class people used to commute in those buggys. The ride would take you on a short village tour. However, due to some technical reasons we could not take the ride.
Post lunch, as the temperature soared above 40 degrees we went back to our room to rest and then in the evening we moved out for some more fun, after a quick high tea which is served in the lawn adjacent to the pool. It was play time with the kid.
After spending some time at the ground we went to visit another speciality of the resort and that is the Sewage treatment plant, one of the reasons why the resort is most eco-friendly resort. Unique and acclaimed to be one of the biggest in Asia, it runs on the principle of gravity. The sewage water using the force of gravity enters into two large chambers (15 feet deep and the dimension of 12.3 X 17 ft) where the sewage is segregated in to solid and liquid waste. The Wastewater from wash basins, bathrooms and kitchen goes into the Four Baffled Chambers filled with 40-60 mm gravel. These Baffled Chambers are 10 ft deep and are of 11.1 ft x 9.10 ft dimension each. This is also carried out through gravity.
Then from these Chambers the wastewater goes into the CANNA PLANTED FILTER ROOT ZONE Chambers which are Five in numbers and they are filled with 10-20 mm gravel having a depth of one metre. Cannae plants are planted in these chambers over the gravel. Their size is 49 ft x 19.9 ft each. The filtered water transparent in colour and having no odor goes in the Storage Tank having a capacity of 1,50,000 litres. We pump treated water through 2 HP Hydromatic Pumps to the Sprinklers which are located at different points throughout the garden area. The entire process takes about seven days.
This was something interesting to us and we spent some time there understanding the process. It was good to see this as the resort abides by its motto of Eco-friendly tourism.
Later in the evening had a detailed discussion with one of the directors of the resort Ms. Ayu, who told us about the inception of the idea of building this beautiful eco-friendly resort. There are lot of CSR activities that the resort as an organization takes up and ensures to keep to the values.
We were impressed to hear the initiatives that are taken up by the management such as employing local people and grooming them. They also support education initiatives for the children in the village, on a regular basis a village cleanliness drive is organized in support by the local population and sometimes the guests. Doing this they are not only connected to the local people they also earn a lot of respect and support from them in return. With all these discussions and finger licking food it was a lesson revised give respect, get respect. Not many profit making organizations take care of environment or the employees and the people around.
Next day we rose early to witness a lovely sunrise from the balcony though the most of it was in the backdrop of the trees but it was soothing to the eyes. We got ready, had the breakfast for one last time there and with a heavy heart bid adieu thinking to return again soon.