Mumbai is one of those cities that has quite a few options for those looking to getaway for the weekend. But the flip-side to this is most places get packed and roads are trafficked on Saturday mornings. And even if you do manage to getaway, where would you stay? All the hotels are bound to be booked.
Here is one place that we stayed at which I would highly recommend for anyone doing a weekend getaway. The place is located in Nasik and is called Parekh Farms. During my recent visit to Mumbai, we decided to do a short holiday and a road trip at that. Except this time we were leaving Friday morning , so hopefully the traffic scene would be better.
Situated 11 kms from Nashik city on the Trimbakeshwar Road is where you would find the property am referring to. It is tucked away off the main road, but is quite accessible and not remote. As you drive in, you are welcomed by nothing but silence, which is just wow, especially for someone like me who loves it!
We were greeted by Sumeet Parekh [who manages the property along with his parents, they also happen to live in the house near the entrance with his wife & two kids] and Cocoa, their friendly Lab. The main property has 5 rooms, each of which has been done up aesthetically in different colours, with plenty of natural light flowing in.
The first space you see is the kitchen and dining area - food is served in buffet style near the kitchen and there are few tables chairs/benches to sit on. Alongside is a shelve with random set of books, games and toys for the kids.
As you walk down the passage towards the rooms, in the middle are small tanks of sorts that house Lily pods, few other water plants along with toads and guppies. These were the major attraction with the kids, who wouldn't let go till the time we actually bid adieu to the property.
On the left side is a large room with a Table tennis , carrom board and other sports related stuff. Beyond this is a small basket ball court of sorts. Every other open space is filled with beautiful plants, flowers and their garden.
We had taken 3 rooms, and each one was quite comfortable. Our room had one single bed, a big king size bed, cupboard, a shelf containing water bottle with glasses and a bathroom that also had an outdoor shower area. The bed opened to huge french windows that had simple curtains on them. The rooms have only fans, and so it would get quite hot if you were visit during summer months, so plan accordingly. The rooms had two fans and plenty of lights, with beautiful raw brick walls that added to the cool factor. The decor is something I gotta mention as it was well thought out [ Sumeet's wife is an architect who has designed the place], the plants, the colours, the furnishings and just about everything else is very pleasing to the eye and works well.
We were there with no set agenda and all set to chill, we were happy to go about doing things on our own, plus we had two cars with drivers to take us around. Otherwise you might be a little lost not sure about the public transport system here.
One of the kids had his birthday few days earlier and so my friend who had discovered this property spoke to Sumeet, got reference of a cake shop and managed to order a cake. Must say it was quite a yumm cake as well.. :)
Since it is a home stay, dont expect room service or swanky elements. If you need water, or coffee or tea you need to do a quick hop over to the kitchen area. They are quite open, and give you a free run of the place, so feel free to get what you need or ask the help if you need something specific.
We paid about Rs4000 per day per room, had to pay an advance and remaining at the time of check out by cash [not sure if they accept credit cards/netbanking]. The closest ATM was about 2kms away, a SBI one [I know this cos we went in search of one] :D
Breakfast is included in the package, and was ready by around 9am. It would either be poha, saboodana upma, bread/toast with jam, omlettes, fresh cut fruits, coffee, tea, herbal drink[ Sumeet's dad's speciality]. The days we were there, we did have lunch and while it was a simple menu, it was quite good [ some local dishes were also part of the buffet and again if you want something specific, you can request them or teach the girls who would make it for you, same holds for food for those picky kids] They do serve meat at lunch, one dish [if i remember right]
What made the place and stay special for us was that we all got to chill out, it was away from the city yet close enough and there was plenty of open space to just walk in. You get to enjoy the hosts' company through the day.
Places you can visit around here
1. Sula Vineyard
2. Vellone Vineyard
3. Sarda Farms
4. Triambakeswar Temple
[will write more about these in subsequent posts]
If you are the kind who is a no frills fancy, happy go lucky person who wouldn't mind sitting in the garden reading a book while sipping tea this is the ideal place for you.