What’s better than a staycation? A group staycation. Staycations offer refreshing breaks from monotony without straying far from home. If you have been swamped with work for the last few months, this is the perfect time to travel with your work pals, friends, and family. Whether it’s a corporate outing or an old boy’s school reunion, these hotels and resorts make for great large group stay options. By Karan Kaushik
Feeling cooped up, but not ready or able to take a full-on vacation? Enter staycations, which offer refreshing breaks from the everyday grind. If you haven’t had the time to press the unplug and reboot buttons, planning a group staycation with your loved ones comes highly recommended. Sit down with your besties and chalk out a nice family outing. Hear out how their partners and kids would want their staycation to be.
If you are looking forward to some team building and unwinding with your colleagues, corporate outings could turn out to be great fun. A staycation with your team members could strengthen ties and offer a fresh perspective going forward.
When was the last time you met your best friends from school? Meeting school friends and remembering the same old anecdotes and laughing about them is therapeutic. It’s time those dormant WhatsApp school groups be put to some good use. Connect with your batchmates and plan a class reunion.
The properties featured below are also perfect for planning those big birthday and anniversary bashes, or your dream bachelor’s/bachelorette. These hotels and resorts are snuggled amidst stunning vistas and offer a great blend of luxury and nature. Also on offer are delightful dining experiences, adventure activities, heritage walks, trekking trails, birding trips, bonfires, and much more.
Here are some of the best high-end hotels and resorts in India that promise fun-filled large group stay options.
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Sprawled across 22-acres, JW Marriott Bengaluru Prestige Golfshire Resort & Spa is nestled in the majestic Nandi Hills. When here, unwind at the garden terrace or chase whitey at the golf course. Challenge your pals for a game of billiards or bowling alley, take a dip in the outdoor swimming pool, or burn some cals at the fitness centre.
The spa at the property offers a salon, sauna, spa, mani/pedi stations, and unique treatment rooms with water-immersion therapies. There’s a kid’s club too. Their restaurant Aaleeshan dishes out sumptuous kebabs, curries, bespoke biryanis, and regionally inspired drinks.
Image courtesy: JW Marriott Bengaluru Prestige Golfshire Resort & Spa
Located on the serene Bolgatty Island, Grand Hyatt Kochi overlooks the tranquil backwaters of Lake Vembanad. What makes this 26-acre resort ideal for large groups are its two swimming pools and business centre. The air-conditioned rooms and suites at the property feature private bathrooms with a hot tub, workstations, flat screen TV, and essential mod-cons.
The property promises a superlative gastronomical experience at the Colony Clubhouse & Grill, their rooftop restaurant, and the all-day Malabar Cafe. Take your mains to a pampering sesh at the Sananta Spa. On offer here are seven treatment rooms, an indoor swimming pool, relaxation lounges, and a hydrotherapy area.
Image courtesy: Grand Hyatt Kochi
Up for a wildlife sojourn with your entire office team? Try Aahana – The Corbett Wilderness. Spread across 13.5 acres, the resort is snuggled amidst dense forests at Corbett Tiger Reserve’s southern edge. The luxury resort is focussed on sustainability and has spearheaded several eco-initiatives.
Overlooking the Bijrani forest, the property is great for planning a birding trip, thanks to the verdant plantations that surround it. Indulge in a delightful gourmet experience at Dhikala, their multi-cuisine restaurant. They serve an impressive array of dishes prepared from fresh produce from Aahana’s organic kitchen gardens.
Image courtesy: Aahana Resort/Instagram
If you are looking for a corporate outing from Bengaluru, head to Evolve Back in Hampi. Designed as an ode to the glorious Vijayanagara Empire, Evolve Back stands against quintessentially-Hampi boulders and jagged forests. Allow its fort-like entrances, stone-paved boulevards, royal chambers, and arched hallways to take you back in time.
The suites here offer a wonderful blend of luxury and heritage. For instance, the luxurious suite Zenana is modelled around the Queen’s quarters. Some of their high-end suites offer separate living, dining and sleeping areas. The property has two restaurants that serve continental and Indian cuisine.
Image courtesy: Evolve Back, Hampi
Nestled amidst 25 acres of coconut groves and numerous pristine canals, over 22 heritage cottages offer a luxurious stay by the Vembanad lake. A few kilometres from the Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary, you could spend an afternoon discovering the region’s most popular bird species or head to the lake for a sunset cruise, water sports, banana boat rides, and more. Kumarakom Lake Resort has an inventory of 65 rooms/villas.
The property’s infinity pool overlooks the lake as well, and if you’d like to get up close and personal with its waters, you could book a houseboat stay. The lakeside resort features rooms, villas, and suites that are fine specimens of the traditional architecture of Kerala. Devour lip-smacking food at the 115-seat restaurant Ettukettu. Their elaborate menu features Continental, Chinese, Mughlai, North Indian, and traditional Kerala culinary delicacies.
Image courtesy: Kumarakom Lake Resort
Luxury nestled amid undulating green landscapes best describes The Tamara Coorg. Spread over 180 acres, this rejuvenating retreat offers majestic views of the distant forests. The Eden Lotus Cottage here has a private sundeck with an outdoor private jacuzzi discreetly hidden from outsiders.
Rooms aside, the swanky bar here—The Deck—is ideal for a leisurely evening, while The Elevation Spa doubles as an oasis of tranquillity. Rediscover paradise by stepping away from the rusticity of the hill town and look at Coorg in a renewed, opulent light.
Image courtesy: The Tamara Coorg
Located on the edge of Van Vihar National Park, the Jehan Numa Retreat, low-slung and earthy, snuggles in a lush forest glade. Some 2,500 plants and trees grow with fecund energy on this 12-acre, eco-friendly property, fringed by fuzzy purple fountain grass. The faux rustic retreat comprises 28 rooms in sloping-roof cottages, which shield understated luxury within, while your private sit-out gives you a ringside view of the forest.
Bird song greets you in the morning and a civet cat may pad past at dusk, prompting lovers to huddle into the warmth of a blanket. Press the pause button with a massage at the wood-panelled leafy spa. Their open-sided restaurant Under the Jamun Tree oozes charm and feral magic as you savour royal Bhopali cuisine.
Image courtesy: Jehan Numa Retreat
Tune out worldly noises and experience the quieter side of the otherwise bustling Lonavala at The Machan. Catering to childhood fantasies, the property gives its guests the experience of living in a treehouse. The eco-resort has treehouses, or machans, up to 40 feet high, each offering sweeping forest views.
Designed in a sustainable manner ensuring minimal ecological damage, a stay here is a guaranteed blissful experience. While the accommodation’s aesthetic brings nature indoors, modern-day luxuries accompany alongside as well. When here, simply soak yourself in the bathtub while enjoying a book, or you can even trek to nearby historical sites.
Image courtesy: The Machan