Visiting Manali, Re-visiting Gothic

Manali, perched on the banks of the River Beas in Himachal Pradesh, has never felt the need to nurse a colonial hangover to draw visitors to its naturally bestowed verdant bounty. So when I suddenly hear a lot of chatter about a certain Gothic castle near the Hadimba Temple, curiosity bites me hard.

Replete with chimneys, a Juliet’s balcony, and a turret crowned with a crow’s nest, turns out this property is of a recent vintage, and many years in the making, because the owners are simply living their dream: flagstone by paved flagstone, arch by medieval arch.

Evidenced, in the stoney facade offset by gracious interiors, is that The Himalayan Resort & Spa is a labour of love of luxurious details. Dark wood floors, leather furniture, hand-crafted chimney pieces and cast iron fireplaces are de rigeur.

The entry hallway, its marble floor inspired by ones in Pompeii, opens onto yet another remarkable feature: a swimming pool sunk into an informal garden, with stone pathways leading off to well-appointed guest cottages,  snuggling amidst apple and cherry orchards. And the views? Matchless! For one who is always itching to explore, I must confess I spent much of my time here soaking in the surrounding verdure.





Truth be had, I wouldn’t be entirely surprised if guests choose not to leave the premises at all. Would you, if your complete wellness was in the capable hands of the in-house Tattva Spa? I didn’t think so either. Combine that with leisurely constitutionals through the family-owned orchards, and this place has the makings of a destination resort par excellence.






In-step with their obvious stance on quality of experience, the friendly owners are always at hand to trouble-shoot, as also to lend your stay a more personal touch. In deed, one of them found time to keep us company whenever possible. Chatty and knowledgeable, he also kept us informed, in style and in splits!


  • Looks like the castle of a friendly Count Dracula…great photos and a wonderful write-up…….a strong enough reason to plan a trip to Manali…thanks

  • Wow. Sounds great. Is the weather ever swim friendly in Manali?

  • Mmmmmm… sounds wonderful. Love the interiors and the views. Got to put it on my “to do” list.

    Great write up and photos.

  • Dear Puneet,

    Your excellent write up and amazing photographs has woken my desire to visit Manali to check out this property. Somehow Manali has just become a prime example of tourism going bad and i have stopped visiting it for the past few years restricting myself to other valleys of Kullu especially Tirthan . Its too much damage control thats happening and i am glad properties like the HImalayan will be restore a bit of comfort and elegance in this land of the Manu Rishi.



    • Hi Ankit,

      The Himalayan may be just the reason for re-visiting Manali. I, too, keep going back for the saving graces which, sadly, are increasingly few and far between. But this one was particularly refreshing, in both outlook and look-outs 🙂

      Cheers, Puneet

  • Rajnish Sapra

    Haven’t been to Manali since 12 years. This is reason enough to undertake that long pending trip. Thanks!

  • It is a well written post with captivating pictures. It seems that Gothic castle offers brilliant and unmatched view of the spectacular Manali area. I have visited Manali twice but never heard or seen that castle. I am very impressed with what you have written about it and have gone through its website as well. Now I have decided that when next time I go to Manali, I will definitely stay at The Himalayan Resort & Spa.

  • Pingback: Jogini Falls | Cutting Loose

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.