Date: 15-17 May 2018
Venue: Jim Corbett
Anybody who has been to Jim Corbett would have faced the quintessential question – “Did you see tigers?” You can now ask them back – “Have you dined in water?” Well we have, at the Golden Tusk Resort, Jim Corbett National Park.
We wanted a break from summer and wanted a break from Himachal since we had just been there. Jim Corbett seemed fuss free and close to Delhi. But where could we find a calming break? In such circumstances we came across Golden Tusk. This is located at Dhela region of Ramnagar just outside the National Park and from the photographs, seemed serenity married with comfort. We decided to stay at Golden Tusk this time.
A jeep from Golden Tusk picked us promptly from Ramnagar railway station when we reached at about 9 at night. The half hour ride in the open jeep through the sleepy Ramnagar town and then the breezy jungle rejuvenated us.
We reached Golden Tusk, checked in and were ushered to our rooms. We were in the Tiger Suites. Beautifully done up with poster bed, study table and a grand washroom replete with a big bath tub – this was sheer luxury. The understated opulence in the décor, the beautifully crafted lights and the soft colour scheme stole our heart.
By this time, we were hungry and although we could have ordered food in our room, we decided to try the buffet at the dining hall. They have lavish buffets for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Lunch and dinner started with soup, salad and moved on to vegetarian and non-vegetarian main course and cakes, soufflé, jelly or custard for dessert. Every item was well made, simple and the wide choice guaranteed there was something for everybody. The breakfast buffet started with fresh juice and fruits and had sabzis, parathas , upmas and dosas in the Indian section as well as bread, boiled eggs, omelets, milk and cereals and tea cakes in the continental section. The friendly staff were always on their toes and were a yes to every request we had – a fulka instead of paratha or plain curd instead of raita.
Next morning we went for a walk around the property. It was sprawling with ponds, water bodies, local and exotic trees with hammocks hanging from them. They have a host or rooms of various categories. But they also had lavish tents. Spacious and sturdy, the tents have a rustic charm combined with luxury.
We were expecting swimming pool in the property – but they did not have 1, but 3. There is a main pool with 2 smaller pools for children. In the next two days we took many a dip in the big swimming pool.
Golden Tusk had a surprise for us that evening. The manager asked us to come to the poolside, and not dining hall, for dinner. We were pleasantly surprised with what we saw. A beautifully laid dinner table, decorated with candles and frangipani flowers, was awaiting us in one of the smaller pools. We tucked up our pants and waded into the water that also had frangipani floating in it. To complete the impact, a musician strum the guitar and sang old Hindi numbers. A waiter in suitable attire entered the water and served us again with a smile and a twinkle in his eye. We were dazed and touched and he was quite enjoying our awe. The pool dining experience was like a dream. We had a young friend with us – 7 year old Revant. He had joined us with his mother during the trip. Revant was most excited with the water dining and went splashing around happily. We are told water dining is unique to The Golden Tusk for guests who request this special service.
It is clear that the water dining experience touches young and old alike. One can go for it as a celebration – or a random act of adventure. The Golden Tusk is a great experience for many reasons but we will remember the unique water dining evening forever. You in turn can come to The Golden Tusk and have a pleasantly suitable answer to the question – “Have you dined in water?”