The Home Stay
Set in the idyllic Himalayan countryside, Santila is an intimate and cosy homestay for a solo guest, a couple or a family of 4 (or less), who yearn for a vacation in a quiet, homely and joy-filled hillside cottage, tucked away amongst the pine-filled forests of Kasauli. Positioned along a village road traversed by vehicles with only ‘good wheels,’ the cottage is blessed with a natural tranquility that is peaceful and revitalizing. We are located accessibly close to, yet satisfyingly away from the main town and bazaar, so that our guests can enjoy a “do nothing and get lost in nature” sort of holiday, in the immersive lower Himalayas.
Once a Colonial Hill town, Kasauli was a quintessential retreat for the British, as well as the prosperous locals, and royal families of British India. Kasauli today is cantonment town, and plays host to travellers (of every disposition, and budget) from India and across the world.
Our cottage is a simple home, and 'not a hotel'. Santila is for the wanderers whose souls ache for peace and solitude. It is for those who have lost themselves in the inflexibilities of daily life. Most importantly it is for those who wish to reclaim, reframe and reinvent themselves, amongst the aromatic, cool and pine scented breeze that forever surrounds the cottage. Santila is for those who covet the reinvention and rejuvenation of their body, mind and soul.
Expect a no-fuss service, no polished brass fittings, no Michelin star chefs, and definitely no Jacuzzis’. Ours is an eco-conscious and happy home with a simple yet contemporary Anglo-Himachali design.
Santila - literally translates into 'the saga of being satisfied with what one has'
Our home suite is available to only one couple/family of four, at a time. This is so as to ensure an authentic, private and exclusive experience; thereby removing potentially nasty, noisy or inquisitive neighbours from the equation.
We are a home in the truest of senses. You will feel the comfort of home, in the care of our family, our consummate cook and our ever-helpful housekeeper.
By personally taking care of each reservation, we ensure that your experience is inimitable, and your stay is spot-on, simple, safe and secluded.
On the inside
A cheerful living room with a day bed, a curate collection of books and magazines, select board games and satellite television, in case the nights get a little too peaceful for you. The day room also has an attached powder room. The day bed doubles up as an extra bedroom for kids or a single extra adult.
The kitchen is self sufficient and equipped. Guests cook their own meals.
The master bedroom includes an ensuite cloakroom and bathroom
The homestay is easily accessible and is located at ground level
On the outside
The entry to the homestay is surrounded by pine trees and the bedroom opens onto a small sun-kissed lawn. The oxygen rich, pine scented fresh air will repair, heal and refresh you. The perfect setting for some morning callisthenics or yoga. Explore the area around on foot; it is peaceful, safe and there’s adventure to be had, around every corner. The spots around the countryside, is an ideal setting for some reading, although the surroundings can be satisfyingly distracting. Enjoy the chilled (figuratively and literally) evenings with your favourite tipple. Don’t be too surprised if the countryside lulls you to sleep.
Simplicity in Life
We remember a Kasauli, with its sleepy bazaar, empty roads, three tea shops, a few buses and the consistent familiar faces every day. Once people realised that Kasauli was a better place to visit than Shimla (due to its tranquil nature and colonial atmosphere), things started to change. We started seeing traffic jams, commercial establishments replacing age-old establishments and the development of multi-level parking, and the hordes of visitors (and
the accompanying trash and noise), we knew Kasauli would never be the same again. It is the Indian Army along with some responsible citizenry of Kasauli who came forward and started regulating and addressing these newfound issues, in order to make the town a better place for both locals and visitors alike.
However, despite the town’s recent popularity, we always found solace in Kasauli’s villages. We were assured a whiff of the enchanted old Kasauli every time we set out into the villages for a walk or our Sunday picnic lunches. The village people were, are and continue to be the most pleasant, simple and content people you will ever find. We could stay there for hours at a time and would never want to get up and return to the town.
It was about then that we decided that Santila must come about - for us and for those who hanker for and wish to live in the uncomplicatedness, harmony and wellness of Kasauli & its villages. Yes, the drive to reach us is exciting and challenging, as it involves navigating the village dirt road but it is this kuccha road that keeps the rest of the tourists off our track. We look forward to guests relishing in and benefiting from this homely, pleasant and welcoming experience. We believe staying in a big hotel is possible in the city that you already live in, or in any other location you may consider. But we want to exist for the few
who only travel (or dream of travelling) to those places that offer a local stay experience with local food, local talk, local environs and locals around. We are a simple, local home experience with no frills, so do come and enjoy the virtuosity of Santila, with us.