Wednesday, January 17, 2018

20 Deodar House at Solan - a superb getaway

20 Deodar House

It was Christmas. Delhi was foggy and by the time we started early at 6.30 am, there was condensation all over the car. The kids got in and lied down as they were sleepy. Moving out of Delhi at this time was a wise move as traffic was less. We were soon on the highway but very quickly, a blanket of fog set down on us making visibility less than 10 feet. Everyone was hungry and a search on the GPS showed that we were very near the famed Sukhdev Dhaba at Murthal. The map pin showed that we had arrived but we could see nothing. On a whim, I gently turned the car off the road and in a few seconds, could see the parking lot of Sukhdev. Being Christmas, it was near empty. We had a slow breakfast, enjoyed the cold and the fog and carried on towards Solan. 

The drive was uneventful. Turning right at Zirakpur, we soon began seeing the mountains of Himachal. Everyone was excited about the stay at 20 Deodar House, a place we had identified on Airbnb. But soon, we found that pretty much half of NCR had the same idea of going to Shimla. The roads were jam packed. The road quality itself was very bad in many places. The climb to Solan became painful. After a while, we had to turn on the aircon as well as it was sunny outside and stifling in the car. Thankfully, after an hour and a half, we had to turn off the highway but the approach looked even worse. We made it to the end of Lower Powerhouse Road and found a tiny garage and entrance with a small board saying 20 Deodar House. This didn’t feel grand in any way. My wife was giving me that look of horror when one does something blind. Nevertheless, Rakesh, the caretaker of the property, came down and directed me to park inside the garage. We grabbed our bags glad to be out of the car after 8 hours and went up the stairs to see a wonderful house with a lawn. This felt more like it. This property is secluded to one end of the road and it suddenly opens up into a nice open area. Visitors should note that Solan is a fairly commercial town with buildings all along the hillside. 20 Deodar House offers a lovely getaway so close to all the bustle of the town. 

At the entrance

Sunny, Cold and Perfect

Coming back to the property itself, Rakesh, the caretaker, ensures that everyone is kept happy with his rustic warmth. He keeps the place absolutely spic and span. Everything in the property was maintained with military grade cleanliness and positioning. There was not a speck of dust anywhere from the bottom to the top of shelves. In fact, the place was so clean that we found it hard to actually use anything in fear of soiling them. Food was served outside or inside as per our wish. We decided to enjoy the food outside.

Great home cooked meals

The facilities offered are everything. 2 large beds upstairs with a large attached bathroom, a futon for sitting down, access to the balcony and terraces on the top floor. The room is fully equipped with room heaters, a TV with satellite connection, loads of books and a large dining table. Everything is kept pristine.

The Braun shaver shown is not part of the offer. It is mine and just looked good sitting there
All yours. The moisturizer is very helpful in the cold

Paradise for the Bookworm and Paradise for the TV viewers

The ground floor has another bedroom with a single queen sized bed right next to the kitchen. This bedroom has an attached bathroom as well with a hot water geyser. the room has a TV with a satellite connection. 

The cozy bedroom downstairs

TV and room heater for the perfect cozy huddle

Magnifying mirror for the shaving connoisseur 

The main door opens into a verandah and a huge living room with an attached dining room on one side and another sofa bed on the other side. The furniture is Victorian and once again, spic and span. We never sat on any of them during all the 3 days. All of us decided to leave everything alone other than the beds. 

From the Entrance

Another Queen sized bed

We enjoyed being outdoor playing badminton and running around with the kids. The night bonfire gave us a time to reflect on all that is life. Rakesh ensured that everything else was taken care of and we had all the time in the world to just relax.

Glowing at Night

So what's so great about this property? Nothing much except that it offers you the perfect getaway from home that still feels like home but lets you pamper yourself, recharge, reflect, wonder and get back to life later. Great upkeep, great food, quiet environment, loving treatment and all the place in the world. 

Other notable points:

We celebrated our daughter's birthday here. We were allowed full use of the kitchen to bake a cake for her. It was a memorable evening .

Cake baked right in the kitchen

There is a Dominos outlet that delivers and a Supermarket just a kilometer away. The building has an SBI ATM as well and there are shops, pharmacies and a post office nearby as well

We had such a good time that the kids wanted to extend the stay by another 2 days. But as it was booked out solid, we decided to give it a shot later in the year. Great place for couples, families, large get togethers alike. There is something for everyone at 20 Deodar House, Solan

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