While immediate year-end plans might have faced a dampener thanks to Omicron, 2022 is a great year for long weekends. Fantasy travel to these new resorts that have opened in 2021, and earmark them according to the best time to visit them in the new year. Whether you prefer a holiday amidst the hills or a getaway by the pool, there is plenty to choose from.
Fairfield by Marriott Goa Benaulim
Fairfield by Marriot’s latest property is minutes away from the sandy beaches of Benaulim. The South Goa hotel is 30 km from Panjim, and features 144 well-equipped rooms. The all-day dining restaurant Kava serves up local Goan delicacies like Balchao Rawa Fried King Fish, Chicken Cafreal and Vegetable Xacuti with Poi.
Best time to visit: February to May/November
What we love: The proximity of the hotel to the serene beach of Benaulim, where one can participate in various water sports like jet skiing, parasailing, or even just relax with a picnic and watch the sunset.
This is great for those planning a family getaway with the kids. Walking distance from Ozran Beach in Goa, The Westin in Anjuna is a 171-key property. Set in the bustling heart of Goa, the hotel houses four luxurious dining destinations, The Market, an all-day eatery, Drift, a poolside bar and restaurant, Haven, the lobby bar, and Anjuna Coffee and Co., a deli and patisserie. Facilities like a kids play area, gym, spa, game room and of course, a pool make it a family-friendly option for travellers.
Best time to visit: February to May/November
What we love: The location of the hotel is ideal, it is set amidst a sanctuary of greenery, in addition to being close to the beach. Guests are also near tourist attractions like Anjuna Flea Market and St. Michael’s Church.
Hidden amidst the hills of Goa is this postcard-worthy retreat. Twenty luxurious rooms offer privacy and views of the surrounding Western Ghats. The hotel’s other residents, black panthers, giant squirrels, and great pied hornbills may also make a grand appearance. Walk around the property to discover secret waterfalls and untouched corners, where one can settle with a book in hand.
Best time to visit: September
What we love: The wellness-focus of this hideaway offers personalised Ayurveda treatments, the opportunity to relax in an open-air jacuzzi and participate in yoga sessions.
If you’re looking at romantic getaways in the new year, keep your eyes out for this one. Located 3km from Shimla’s Mall Road, WelcomHeritage Elysium Resort & Spa is not your average tourist resort. Isolated from the crowd, the hotel is inspired by classic colonial influences but has a modern touch. Rich wood furnishings and guestrooms decorated in three separate colour themes, including blue and orange, and also offer stunning views.
Best time to visit: April-June
What we love: The restaurant Prince’s Perch has a breath-taking view of the valley. The greenhouse-style rooftop dining area offers a 360° panoramic view of Shimla the lush green valley, and one can enjoy the sight while sipping on a warm beverage.
The now famous location of Vicky Kaushal and Katrina Kaif’s wedding is actually a 14th century fort in the heart of Rajasthan. Located in the Chauth ka Barwara town of Sawai Madhopur district, the hotel is a three-hour drive from Jaipur and a half hour away from Ranthambore National Park. The first Six Senses property to launch in India, it opened its doors to the public in October 2021. The 700-year-old fort took about ten years to be restored into a luxury 5-star hotel. The property includes two palaces, two original temples, and 48 suites.
Best time to visit: August/September
What we love: The luxurious Raja Man Singh suite, where Vicky Kaushal reportedly stayed during his wedding. The 3,003 square feet room, is appointed with a pool, dining room, living room, bedroom, outdoor shower, and private garden.
The European style villa of the erstwhile rulers of Kashmir overlooks a 60-acre private orchard, the Dal Lake and majestic mountains. Four rooms and three lavish suites make this property perfect for a private stay in Kashmir. The renovation of this royal residence took a decade and many heritage elements have been retained including handcrafted wooden ceilings, called Khatamband, which cover every room in the property. Handwoven vintage Kashmiri carpets, Lalique crystal chandeliers, art deco furniture, was all restored to its former glory.
Best time to visit: February-June, October/November
What we love: The culinary delights at the hotel are prepared using age-old royal recipes that have passed hands over generations. Traditional Dogra, Nepalese, Kashmiri cuisine is made and dishes like lamb yakhni, gucchi pulao, khatta meat, Nepali aloo, and bhunwa meat are on the menu.
Paying tribute to its name, which means peaceful village, the Aramness Gir is a luxury safari lodge located in the heart of lush teak forests. The owner’s passion for wilderness and outskirts gave rise to the 18 private kothi-style villas. The décor of the hotel incorporates local design elements, and every product has been sourced from in and around the state of Gujarat. Its proximity to the Sasan Gir National Park makes it the perfect option for wildlife lovers.
Best time to visit: February-March, October-November
What we love: The design of hotel was inspired by the charm of Gujarati villages, including large sandstone and steel Jali screens resembling the leaf of a sal tree, while the pool is created with characteristics of Indian step wells in mind.
Deep inside Tadoba’s tiger territory lies Waghoba Eco Lodge by Pugdundee Safaris. The 12-acre land, with 14 individual cottages, has been built on in a sustainable fashion with Adobe (a heavy clay soil) bricks, vaulted ceilings made from handmade conical tiles, sustainable lighting fixtures, and a rainwater harvesting system. Guests on the property can indulge in bird photography, nature walks, boat rides, cycling tours, and of course, tiger safaris.
Best time to visit: March-May
What we love: The sustainability measures at the hotel such as a ban on single use plastic, refillable toiletries, furniture of reclaimed wood, clay lamps, filtered water in stainless steel flasks, in addition to eco-friendly architecture.
The Leela Group’s second hotel in the city of Bengaluru opened to public in July 2021. It is in the lifestyle enclave of Bharatiya City, a 125-acre integrated township, located in a Special Economic Zone. It is the ideal business hotel with 281 luxurious rooms and suites, conference and banquet areas, a world-class spa, gym as well as five restaurants.
Best time to visit: March-May
What we love: The apartment-sized Presidential Suite has a separate study, dining room, walk-in wardrobe and a plush bathroom with a jacuzzi. A private butler service is also offered to guests in the room.
Enjoy the city of Jaipur at the newly refurbished 19th century haveli nestled in the heart of the city’s jewellers’ bazaar. Five suites of the hotel overlook a traditional courtyard, which houses a season-focused vegetarian restaurant. The lounge area is painted with jungle murals and serves The Johri’s signature chai service.
Best time to visit: October-March
What we love: Each suite is uniquely designed with its own colour palette, including pastel hues of mint, pink and blue. The powder blue Neelam suite features a pair of tiger-shaped chairs and an upholstered swing.