The alarm beeped ….Boudhaayan (Boudh) looked at his phone with half closed eyes and could make out it was 6 AM……he was feeling like sleeping off again…….but ….he could make out through his half closed eyes, the snow clad peaks were beckoning him outside……only thing he had to do was drag himself outside…….the sun was about to rise…..Manali was about to wake up……!!
The drive to Manali yesterday, had been a long one….around sixteen hours….due to the landslides and four laning of the highway…..they were completely exhausted by the time they reached the place – The Baragarh Villa.
He and his long time college buddy had planned this Manali trip impromptu. They spoke on a Thursday morning and he was at the Delhi airport from hyderabad the next night, waiting for his friend to pick him up……and voila! They had started off from delhi at around 3.30am……
Boudh somehow dragged himself out of bed and moved towards the balcony. As he opened the door to balcony, he froze instantly….it was cold….around 1 degrees….he rushed back and grabbed his coat….
The view from the balcony was beyond what he could express in his words. The balcony was spacious and had almost 360 degree view. He could see the apple trees all around and realised he was in the midst of an orchard.
Thr sun was coming up slowly…..and the view was getting clearer and better….Birds of different kinds were chirping around …..he could hear the Beas flowing somewhere down there……
The snow clad peaks ahead were beckoning him…..He got hold of his DSLR and started clicking……the 70-300 zoom was called for….he was madly shuffling between all modes……he couldn’t afford to miss capturing the view….
He came back to his senses only when his friend – ( let’s name him Papai ) called out….it was time for breakfast …..
And what a breakfast it was….Abhishek, Om and another guy were amazing at service. The food was homely and delicious. The gobi parathas were simply out of the world……even the Masala omelette and the toasted breads were perfect….
They had taken up the other balcony outside their room overlooking the front side of the orchard….
In between the breakfast…..Boudh switched on a song that they used to listen together during their college days…..
Both were basking in the sun and grooving to the music.
Boudh looked ahead and could see that there was a sitting arrangement even at the orchard…..
Post the breakfast they wanted to have a walk down the 100 bigha property.
The owner…Mr. Nakul Khullar has been amazing right from his call the previous evening to seeing them in the night post check in, to inviting them for a tour round the property, to hosting them at his farmhouse, also in the same property….
Just as they came down, they noticed frost all over their car….it looked like snow…..but the guys at the orchard said it was frost….not snow….nevertheless, they could touch and feel it…..to them it was snow ! and they were super happy ….
The walk down the orchard was scenic and beautiful…..
On one side was the entrance gate……..
This was the Baragarh Villa….on which they had put up….
The owner, Mr. Khullar has taken them round the property. There was a five star resort coming up within the property, mostly targeted at the film community. Yes, a lot of films were shot here…
Krish, Fanaa, Jab we Met……and a lot of other films…..
The view from the owner’s verandah was amazing…..
This was the bungalow used in the movie – Krish….
The who s who of the film industry had visited here and the place was truly worth a stay….
The owner – Mr. Khullar and his wife, the service guys at the Villa…..all had one thing in common…..their attitude….!
Boudh had not seen such warm welcome in a long time. Mr. Khullar was a master in striking relationships with unknown strangers and his way of hugging everyone, spoke about this….he had an innate ability to connect instantly with the other person….a rare gift….
They had to leave…because they had booked this for only a night….
Papai said – “Can we stay back here? ”
Boudh said – “Let’s plan for a trip to this place again….we have to come back here! ”
Tip : Baragarh Villa is a highly recommended property situated midst an apple orchard. This is approachable from Kulu side, and comes on the left, right before Naggar….The property has been a hot location for film fraternity and a lot of films had been shot here…..The five star resort would be operational from March 2019 and boasts of a spa, swimming pool, bookshop, rooms with view.
Above all else, the warmth received here, from the people around, will stay in your heart for a long time ! Do visit…..!