The Garden Hideaway

Tucked away in the high ranges of Kerala, it could be your secret escape
Welcome to the Garden Hideaway!

Spending your holiday in privacy, the most illusive of luxuries in India, always had merit but was never really possible in Kerala, one of India's most densely populated states. Now it is! At the Garden Hideaway, a 3 acre property with only 1 guest cottage, located in a small valley in the high ranges between Kerala and Tamil Nadu, this is exactly what you get: an escape from the hecticism of India.

The Garden Hideaway is perfectly suited for a couple, Indian or non-Indian, who wants to get away from the crowds, who would like to enjoy their holiday in privacy, and for anyone wanting a stay that is low impact on the environment, fauna and flora. The unique guest accommodation is a Teak House, a 200 year old traditional Kerala backwater wood house with bedroom, living room, kitchen, sitout, and external bathroom, that was relocated and renovated in 2018.

The property around the buildings is as much for animals as it is for humans. Giant squirrels, Indian palm squirrels, slender lorises, civet cats, flying foxes and around 100 different bird species are found in the tree tops. In the undergrowth we have spotted wild boar, mouse deer, barking deer, mongoose, porcupine and the occasional leopard.

In the tourism sector there is an intense focus on categories, stars and labels. The Garden Hideway is deliberately different and difficult to pigeonhole. We do not fit the standard tourist accommodation categories, so if you are interested in any star ratings, and if you need a double deluxe room and conventional luxuries like swimming pool, flat screen television and room service, you have come to the wrong place. However, for people seeking the luxury of privacy, peace, nature, ecology, unique accommodation, helpfulness and comfortable living, the Garden Hideaway may be the perfect place. Please check through the website, and don't hesitate to contact us if you have any questions. The only way to book a stay is by contacting us directly because we exist happily without third party booking websites and travel agents.

Covid-19 safe

With 2 acres of property, plus plenty of free space around the property, and only one guest cottage, total privacy and significant distancing are the rule, not the exception. We have 48 hour gaps between guests, and all areas are thoroughly cleaned between check-out and check-in. The property design and practices are the future of tourism where safety and almost no risk of spreading communicable diseases is a priority.

Should the unexpected happen where medical assistance is required, we have a 24/7 doctor on call arrangement with a local clinic. Our nearest hospital, Alphonsa Hospital in Anakkara, is located less than 5 kilometres from the property.

Kerala is the land of frequent powercuts. Sometimes for 1 minute, sometimes for 1 day, and at least 3000 times a year. Rest assured! At The Garden Hideaway we have a 24/7 power backup system.

If you worry about where your money is going by staying at The Garden Hideaway, we can assure you that nobody is getting rich from this business, and that any money generated, including any profit, stays in India. For the forseeable future (decades), any profit will be used to maintain and add to the property.

We do our best to maintain a natural habitat for animals by having a continous canopy on most of the property, we use rainwater only, and we minimise the use of unnatural products and harmful chemicals. In short, staying at The Garden Hideaway is an entirely pain and cruelty free experience for all fauna and flora.

The Garden Hideaway is a property of undulation: some places are level whereas others are a little up and down. Consequently, we are, regrettably, not that well suited for people who have walking difficulties, and completely unsuitable for people who are dependent on wheelchairs.

All stays in the Teak House are on European Plan, i.e. without any meals included in the tariff. The kitchen in the Teak House is fully functional, so cooking your own meals will be a breeze. However, there is a cook attached to the property who is happy to cook any/all meals for you. The style of the food is vegan/vegetarian South Indian. Breakfast is INR 150 per person. Lunch is INR 400 per person. Dinner is INR 500 per person.

We offer safe private parking on the property. We do not have accommodation for drivers, but can arrange this on a different property.

We can arrange pickups by taxi from your previous location and drops to your next destination, but we can also help create a mini travel itinerary for you based on public transport if you are of a more adventurous disposition.

There is free wifi Internet covering most of the property. It is in the form of mobile Internet from Airtel's 4G network. Speeds are between 2 and 5 Mbps depending on the amount of network congestion. Idea/Vodafone is okayish on the property, while Jio and BSNL coverage is very patchy.

The Teak House has 24/7 hot running water.

At the Garden Hideaway we will always attempt to limit our negative impact on local and global environments. One way of doing this is to avoid the risk of polluting groundwater reservoirs with sewage. Therefore, expect to meet some of the coolest composting toilets ever!

There is a modern front loading washing machine in the Teak House that you may use at your convenience.

The property is 90% supplied by rainwater with a storage capacity of 40k litres. 10% is supplied from a small natural well.

There are two very friendly local dogs living on the property: Ashna (11 years old) and Teddy (3 years old), who are both sterilised and have up-to-date vaccinations. However, as they are territorial in relation to other animals, we cannot accept bookings from people travelling with pets.

If you are looking to spend your holiday in the company of a television, you will have to carry one in your luggage, plus accessories like, for instance, a satellite dish.

The Teak House

The Teak House

With affluence comes abandonment of traditions and traditional housing. The Teak House became surplus to requirements in its location in the Backwaters of Kerala with the popularisation of concrete bricks as a building material. When we bought the Teak House it was partially covered in concrete plastering and was living a miserable life as a shed, but after careful relocation and renovation it is, once again, a showcase in traditional Kerala housing.

Upstairs, under the slanted roof, is a cosy low-ceilinged bedroom (20 m2) equipped with double/twin beds with extremely comfortable king sized duroflex spring mattresses. Downstairs is a dining/living room (15 m2) and a fully equipped kitchen (5 m2). The bathroom is in a separate stone building right next to the Teak House. And there is room to relax on the sitout (20 m2) in front of the Teak House.

The Teak House is very much for the independent traveller. As the Teak House is a fully functional house, you are expected to be able handle common aspects of living in a house. For instance, if you need to wash clothes, you will have to be able to operate the front loading washing machine.

The tariff for the Teak House is INR 3000 per night for 2 people. The Teak House is best suited for a maximum of 2 adults, and, unfortunately, children below the age of 8 should not be staying as the staircase in the Teak House requires a more developed sense of balance. The maximum number of people we can accommodate is 2, either 2 adults or 1 adult & 1 child.

If you are interested in booking a stay, or you have any questions, please use one of the contact methods listed at the end of the page. If you are 2 couples/families, there is forest dwelling on the neighbouring property: a cosy stone cottage at Indhrivanam, which can be included in the stay.

Adults Children October - March April - September
1 0 7000 5500
1 1 7500 6000
2 0 7500 6000
2 1 8000 6500

Activities in Thekkady


The Garden Hideaway is located only a few hundred metres from the perimeters of Periyar Tiger Reserve (PTR), the main attraction in the Thekkady area, and 9 kilometres, from the main town in the area, Kumily. From a nature preservation perspective, PTR is most definitely in the top five of the best run tiger reserves in India, and from a tourism perspective, PTR is probably unrivalled; there are a number of well-constructed walks and treks in PTR that suit any level of fitness with varying chances of spotting wildlife, including elephants. The tiger, however, remains illusive.

In addition to the activities in PTR, there are a number of activities of varying quality in the Thekkady area arranged by private service providers. Our activities page is maintained by our friends and neighbours at Indhrivanam. Please headover to their website for all relevant information about the recommended activities in Thekkady.

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