One of the few places in India which is still both quiet and quaint, Fort Kochi undoubtedly is one of the all-time favourites amongst the tourists and is on the must visit list of most inbound tourists. One can enjoy the leisurely walks on the streets under giant rain trees, explore the city’s rich history & old architecture and relish upon the excellent cuisine of the town. One of the oldest ports on the western cost of India, Fort Kochi has been welcoming traders and explorers to its shores for over 600 years.
Fort Kochi is a melting pot; it is a charming testament to the dynamism of the age of exploration when Chinese, Arab, and European traders flocked to its famous spice markets.
The Dutch, Portuguese, and British influences stand out in particular, fused into everything from the Indo-European architecture to the rich cuisine. The Dutch Mattancherry Palace which features Kerala murals depicting portraits and exhibits of the Rajas of Kochi, St. Francis, the oldest European church in India, and the Vasco House, believed to have been home to Vasco de Gama are all examples of this—and are worth a visit.
With great connectivity, by flight through (Cochin International Airport), by rail (Ernakulum Station), and even cruise ships, Fort Kochi today is a part of almost all the itineraries for South India. The dominance of Fort Kochi on the tourist map has resulted in emergence of some amazing luxury boutique hotels in Fort Kochi. Most of the Fort Kochi Hotels used to be colonial buildings which are now converted to boutique hotels.
One of such hotels in Fort Kochi is the recently opened Ayana Fort Kochi which effortlessly blends history with sophistication. Step into the past as you enter the 200-year-old courthouse in the heart of Fort Kochi and find a modern sanctuary in Ayana’s striking art deco renovation.
Situated on Bazaar Road, the oldest international trading market in India, Ayana Fort Kochi was constructed as a Portuguese court house and has been witness to many a court proceedings over the last two centuries. Later, the historical structure took on a new avatar as the first banking office of ANZ Grindlays, post which it has duly served as a warehouse for traders dealing in Kerala spices and teas. Ayana inherited this structure only recently post which it was restored and renovated into a luxury boutique hotel.
Ayana offers 12 deluxe rooms and 4 luxury suites for accommodation which are tastefully decorated. With its roof top swimming pool, terrace café, gym, wonderfully restored courthouse which can be converted into a state of art meeting room, a multi cuisine restaurant which is fast getting renowned as the best place to try Prawn and green mango curry and one of the largest collections of contemporary art, Ayana is for sure one of the best hotels to stay in Fort Kochi.