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Our Native Village for Gourmet magazine

 

11.16.07

Our Native Village

To bed at the village

This 20-room rustic hideaway bills itself as India’s “only 100 percent eco-friendly back-to-basics lifestyle resort.” In plain English, that means solar power, windmills, composting, bio-gas plant (no, it doesn’t smell), organic gardens, and a “zero-waste” policy that recycles everything including water from washbasins and toilets to irrigate the garden. A couple of hours from Bangalore, where I live, it attracts young techies who seek its peace and solitude before they go back to being “Sam” or “Carla” at their tech-support call centers.

WHAT’S THE BIG WOW?
The beds are supremely comfortable for rooms so Spartan. The massive Indian folk art paintings that adorn the walls of every room are wonderful. The all-natural swimming pool uses no chemicals for its maintenance and is kept clean through aquatic plants that oxygenate and regenerate the water.

LIKED BEST:
The fresh mango juice made from organic local mangoes—the best I’ve had, and that’s saying a lot for someone who lives in India. The cheery staff who, thankfully, don’t sport that earnest holier-than-thou air that seems to permeate every eco-resort.

LIKED LEAST:
The earnest holie-than-thou signs that explain everything from how the bio-gas plant breaks down “slurry” to how the windmill works. The simplicity of the decor was refreshing, but the place could use some style.

WHO SHOULD STAY THERE?
Earth mothers, do-gooders, tree-huggers, and anyone who wants to save anything will be perfectly at home here.

WOULD YOU GO BACK?
Not until I feel the need to buy more carbon points.

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