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Mahua Kothi in Bandhavgarh National Park

 

The name Mahua Kothi draws its inspiration from one of Indias most beautiful trees, the Madhuca Indica, or as it is commonly known, the Mahua or butter tree. Pronounced ma-hoo-a, this tree with its fleshy offwhite flowers plays a central role in festivals and rituals. The Lodge sprawls over the 40 acre grounds, just 20 minutes from the park entrance. The original kothi (homestead) comprises the guest areas and has been beautifully renovated, and the guest accommodation is all brand new.

Each of the twelve charming guest suites or kutiyas (jungle village huts) are built in the vernacular style of Central India, affectionately known as MP Chic (MP being the state of Madhya Pradesh). Each is accessed through private courtyards with shaded seating and traditional mud floors. Interiors include wooden shutters, tapered mud coloured walls in lime and earth washes (finished by hand), open rafters with roughly hewn wooden beams, and handmade pottery roof tiles. Floors are dressed in katni stone strips set in lime mortar. Each ensuite bathroom features twin hand basins, indoor shower, bath and separate w.c. Richly coloured local textiles, used throughout, are in shades of rust and burnt orange. Each kutiya features roll-down mats to keep out the early morning sun, as well as overhead fans and air conditioning.

Guests delight in the yoga amenities provided in a basket (complete with instructions), as well as traditional Indian games of marbles and Chaupad. Kettles of boiling water on chulhas (charcoal burners) are brought out with early morning tea to the kutiyas. Bicycles, parked in the kutiya courtyards, are an invitation to explore.
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