DERBY GREEN

UDHAGAMANDALAM

USP: Perfect family retreat

Derby Green offers a panoramic view of the race course. Come here between April and July to watch the races, reclining on the lawns of this heritage resort.

Started this April, Derby Green, the erstwhile Hotel Dasaprakash which was given a new lease of life by Club Mahindra, is already seeing a steady flow of the family crowd, corporate honchos and the nouveau riche.

The superior suite comes with a living room and a kitchenette, for those who want to cook during their break in the hills. The rooms are comfortable, pristine and inviting. There are 89 in all, with pretty patches of primroses and crotons outside. The rooms open out to little porches, facing the town and the race course.

The food at the restaurant is tasty. The à la carte menu is comprehensive and the buffet lavish. The highlight of the menu is salads — with potatoes and sprouted beans, beetroot, oranges and all that's nice. There's also a kids' buffet. Complete with colourful chairs and crockery to go with it, the buffet offers pastas, milk shakes and pizzas.

Parents can spend time together over a candlelit dinner, while the kids enjoy themselves under the supervision of the resort staff. There's a room full of art and crafts, games, and a Nintendo games arcade. Pony rides are popular too.

Bonfires are lit in the evenings with local music and dance by the resorts troupe. They even have tambola and housie nights. If you wake up early, hop on for a horse ride. They take you down the narrow winding roads, bobbing along past the race course.

So come to Ooty and taste the good life, watching the stallions race. There’s something here for everyone.

Things to do

-Take in the view and watch the kids play in the mist

- Unwind with indoor games. They have everything- chess, table tennis, scrabble

- Walk. That’s the best way to discover town. There’s a lot to see

- Bet on the races. Watch your money run

Tariff

Superior room- Rs. 3000, Junior suite- Rs. 5000, Superior suite- Rs. 7500. Add 12.5 per cent on all rates, as tax. An extra bed can be added to the latter two for Rs. 1500. Rates include breakfast. Children below 12 years of age can accompany for free.

For details call toll free at 1800 425 2737 or email crs@mahindraholidays.com

How to get there

Udhagamandalam is 89 km from Coimbatore, 290 km from Bengaluru and 535 km from Chennai. Coimbatore is the nearest airport and railway junction. Trains, buses and taxis ply from Coimbatore.