Great Mount Resort (GMR) is the sort of place that will make you fall in love with trees. Situated 11 km from Pollachi, along Meenkarai Road arched by branches of ancient trees, it is a weekend getaway hidden within coconut plantations. The driveway leads into seven acres offering cottages of varying luxury, two restaurants, an amphitheatre, recreational facilities and a wellness centre (in the making). I’m welcomed with pineapple juice and a rather sparse breakfast. But the view from The Palm Restaurant makes up for it. It overlooks a large pool that brims over into a pond, its calm waters rippled by a tall fountain.

Everything at GMR revolves around this pond. The spa opens into it, all cemented pathways lead to it, and all cottages, including my royal suite, have French windows with balconies leaning toward it. Each cottage, with its thatched roof and textured walls, stands on small landscaped mounds marked by two sets of stone steps. The higher one takes you to rooms with overhead views, and the lower one to rooms that open into tidy gardens with chairs carved from tree trunks.

There’s careful thought behind the interiors. In whites, creams and browns, the decor is gentle on the eye yet practical. Electronic safes, study tables, lounge sofas and mini bars are part of all rooms; switchboards are within stretching length, and beds are made to bounce on. And oh, check out the expansive oil painting above the bedpost.

For all its finery, GMR is still a resort in its teething phase. Open for guests from this January, its chief managers recently fell in place. Except during breakfast, orders arrive tailor-made, and room service is prompt, polite and helpful. The general ambience aids happy aimlessness. “Since the area is an industrial belt, it’s a good stopover for businessmen on tours. Its proximity to cities such as Pollachi, Coimbatore, Tirupur and Palakkad also makes it a quick holiday spot for city dwellers,” says Senthil Kumar S., resort manager.

For the adventurous, there are trips to Anamalai Tiger Reserve, Parambikulam Wildlife Sanctuary and the Grass Hills near Valparai. For the quieter sorts, there’s silence and a good view.

Name: Great Mount Resort Coco Lagoon

Address: Meenkarai Road, Vazhaikombu Nagoor Village, Pollachi. Phone: 04259-253405/505; website: www.greatmountresort.com

Tariff: Rates begin at Rs. 5,000 for a deluxe suite

We like:

The quiet, peaceful ambience

Efficient room service

We diss:

The incomplete spa and recreational area

Construction work on at the resort

(The writer was at the resort on invitation)