Two nights in a room in a palace? Yes please!
The was called Chittaranjan Palace when it was built by the Maharaja (Great King) of Mysore for his sister in 1916. They don’t call Mysore royal for no reason; there are 8 palaces here. This hotel was sold off by the family post independence to a film company and they created a film studio called “Premier Studios”.
In the 50’s so you’ll see this place as the backdrop in lots of Indian movies. Later a fire broke out and the place was basically abandoned until a woman called Hilary Blume decided to turn it into a hotel that gave all the profits to charity.
They give money to a variety of charity’s like the Rural Health and Literacy Program. They consciously don’t use machinery like washers so that they can hire more people. The cleaners are all widows and the cafe is run by women who needed help that a French baker from Pondicherry taught to bake- and the bakery is so famous even Lonely Planet recommends coming to taste the cakes.
The Green Hotel Mysore
With only 31 rooms this hotel is the most famous and sought after place to stay in Mysore. It has received countless awards for it’s charity programs as well.
There is a library filled with books, multiple dining areas, friendly staff, and optional palace rooms or the newer rooms to the side. Not just a hotel, this is a place that local people come to hang out in the stunning gardens. I watched in the dining room at breakfast as the manager went around asking the guests by name how their day yesterday- it’s a place that makes you feel right at home.
Having two nights here in the “writer’s room” was just what I needed after exploring so much of Coorg without WiFi and 3G. I caught up on work (and the Real Housewives of NJ, sorry) while chowing down on scrumptious western food.
The “Princess” Rooms
I’m sure I was supposed to leave my “writer’s room” and the grounds to explore Mysore, but as I have like 10 days in Mysore I found it quite hard to leave. The room was cozy and had a little den with a desk looking out onto the grounds. Everything looked antique (cause it was!) from the dark wooden doors to the stained glass windows.
I always appreciate the small touches- that is the most famous soap in Mysore and maybe in India!
In the palace you have a variety of rooms like mine spread out that are all different, then you have rooms like the Rose and Marigold that are where the princesses slept and their mother when she visited them. Along the gardens there is another building that has more rooms called “traveler’s rooms” that are more basic, then get better from there in the suites and deluxe ones with bathtubs and little living room spaces.
even the paintings done it here are special, the men who did these usually don’t find much work anymore
The hotel is “green” as is solar power, no tv, no A/C, etc but water was still hot and my laptop stayed charged. Artwork adorned the walls with old school illustrations of the palace and most importantly the bed and towels were soft! I was happy to try to famous Mysore sandalwood soap in the bathrooms.
Breakfast is complimentary in the morning and WiFi is free. It was raining during my stay, but on sunny days the lawn has shares to lay out in the sun and read. There were nooks and crannies everywhere in the palace side where you can go find a secret spot to take a little nap or work.
The stunning princess style rooms in the main palace are around 5,000 – 7,000 rs, traveler’s rooms at 3,700, deluxe rooms at 4,200, and suites at 4,700 rs.
The Royal Food
The Malgudi coffee shop as I mentioned is run by women that were trained by the French pastry chef. It’s a great little garden space to hang out and I saw lots of yogi girls having lunch with their friends here.
The restaurants is kind of spread out and you can sit in the palace, in the gardens, or the restaurant area and be served. You can also order anything from the coffee shop in the restaurant as well.
Food was delicious and I stuck to western options as I’ve been eating enough rice in Karnataka to last me a lifetime. The apple and walnut salad was tasty along with a chicken steak and veggies. I also highly recommend the Lemon drizzle cake and chocolate brownie from the cafe. This is one of the best places to eat in Mysore.
Practical Information for Green Hotel
Location: This is near to just about everything and they’ll set up a driver (taxi or auto) for you. Address: Chittaranjan Palace, Shop No.2270,, Vinoba Road, Jayalakshmipuram, Mysore, Karnataka 570012, India
Pricing: as listed above.
Safety: this place had great security and as a solo female traveler I felt safe staying here for two days. This is a good place to come stay in Mysore until you get your toes wet and can look for a less expensive place if your a budget backpacker. I spent 3 hours one day wandering around lost with no cell signal- so I remember very clearly how hard it can be and scary. I was so happy to get back to this place and relax (sometimes I wonder how I use to travel solo for such a long time without cracking! The older I get the less stress I can handle it seems).
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