Colours and Conviviality

Apart from the full round of activities outside the property (see The Legacy of Chettinad), you can spend a few fascinating hours right at home. Life at Visalam marches to its own drummer, a sedate pace that's a delight to observe and immerse yourself into.






Mornings are the time for ‘kolam’ or ‘rangoli’, a traditional art form. Feel free to join in as the smiling staff girls deftly sprinkle rice powder 
and color onto the floor, creating a kaleidoscope of geometric patterns. Or try making ‘Poomalai’ or flower garlands, or ask us to show you the delicate art of saree wearing. You could even try a traditional Tamil board game, "Pallanguli". Evenings are for  the stick dance, 'Kolattam’. Just grab a pair of sticks and join in, whether you are rhythmically inclined or not!


A Fascinating Number Game

It may look a bit like a wooden ice-tray, but Pallanguli is an absorbing game that can keep you engaged for hours. This traditional board game is a favourite of young women throughout Tamil Nadu (and may explain the fine mathematical ability - think software - that people from here often have). Boards are usually wood, sometimes plain, but often carved with beautiful patterns. Ask a staff member to show you the rules and get started!


Clip-clopping Through Time

Our trusty bullock cart takes you on a fascinating ride, through a world of forgotten grace and a unique architectural legacy

Being in Visalam and seated in the verandah with the rain splashing down around you into the central open courtyard is a blissful experience far removed from the humdrum of everyday life in the metros.” – Visalakshi Ramaswamy

Walls that Glow

If you listen closely, the walls of Visalam have their own story to tell. The pearly lustre of the plastering is unique to this region, made from an exotic recipe of egg shells, lime, palm jaggery and sea shells, ground together by hand. The final polishing is done with egg white and the end result is astonishing, a glossy finish that begs to be touched and stroked. Extremely labour intensive, time consuming and difficult to replicate today, these walls reflect an attitude to craftsmanship now rare in the world.

Ecological Living

As is common at all CGH Earth hotels, we are dedicated to environmentally friendly practices at Visalam. A solar water heating system gives us an ample, friendly supply of warm water. In this dry region, rainwater harvesting helps us cope, being filtered and collected in six underground tanks. A sewage treatment plant recycles waste water for the gardens. Even the pool uses non- chlorinated, oxygenated water treated using a natural eco-friendly method.