• Explore the Kandaangi sarees of Chettinad

    The Kandaangi saree or the Chettinad saree is renowned for its extensive use of colours, contrasting tints, stripes and bold check patterns. These sarees have long proved to be a prized possession of every south Indian woman. The charm of the Kandaangi saree is its ethnic look and versatility, making it a favourite for any occasion. The saree’s design has evolved over the years, just like how the lifestyle evolved over time, here in south India. What makes it distinct? The most distinguishable features of the saree are its striking colours which are brought out by the combination of st...

  • An award of excellence

    Congratulations to us! Chidambara Vilas has been honoured with the Award of Excellence from Booking.com for providing the best possible accommodation experience to our guests. The award was based on the reviews provided by our more than just happy customers in 2014 (a rating of 9.2/10) and this will be a fine feather to add to our cap; a ratification of our consistently outstanding commitment to delivering amazing experiences to our guests while staying with us. We express our most sincere gratitude to Booking.com for this prestigious accreditation.

  • Discover the soul of Tamil Nadu

    It would be very safe to say that the very soul of a place can be discovered only by experiencing it hands on. There are of course, innumerable ways to experience this, depending from person to person, for it could be just taking a local bus ride, visiting a traditional home or by taking part in a festival or anything that would actively involve the local participation and tradition. While you are staying with us at Chidambara Vilas, there are activities that you could involve in which would be great ways of experiencing the soul of Tamil Nadu. To begin with, you could take a guided tour o...

  • Top 3 dishes you can have only when in Chettinad!

    The Chettinad cuisine is world renowned for its unique tastes and blends and there are indeed many dishes that you could have, only while you are in Chettinad! Here are some described, so that you’d know what to look out for when you are in the region next time. Kavuni Arusi Back in the day, this was brought in from Burma, the present Myanmar and is still popular over there. This is a true Chettinad speciality and takes prominence in the traditional Chettinad functions, especially the wedding. Though the recipe is fairly easy, it takes precise cooking to get it’s soft and smooth ...

  • Pepper: A spice that changed the history of South India

    Pepper is now just one of those spices used to pep up your salad or curry. Not so long ago though, the humble peppercorns were bought by their weight in gold! The story of pepper is intrinsically connected to the history and economy of the ancient Tamil country (Sangam era: 200 BCE – 200 CE) or Tamilakkam that used to cover most of the present-day states of Tamil Nadu and Kerala. The agrarian societies were masters at cultivating, weaving, manufacturing and construction. Paddy was the most important crop; it was the staple cereal after all. The next most important crop was pepper. Karaik...

  • Chettinad Weddings: An Affair Of Good Food And Community Living

    Every Chettiar household would be planning at least one of their child’s wedding to be held in the family house; registered at a village temple. And marriage is the grandest celebration in a Chettiar family. The least period of the celebration is three days, otherwise it can well extend into a full-fledged six-day affair of great food and community living. As a community, the Chettiars are conservative and believe in going through the custom of gift giving for the well-being of the newly married. The bride’s trousseau would be famous for the sheer number of items in all forms of ...

  • Weddings Chettinad style

    Chettiyar weddings are a grand and elaborate affair and can span for up to three days or more, punctuated with various interesting rituals. Every Nagarathar marriage has to be approved and registered in the respective groom’s temple. Once approved,a garland is delivered to the bride’s home on behalf of the temple authorities on the wedding day. This marks the beginning of all festivities. The Chettinad people are generous when it comes gifting and the bride’s trousseau is legendary and famous for the sheer number of items in all forms of gold, diamonds, silver and steel. Even the k...

  • The Architectural grandeur of Chettinad homes

    The magnificent mansions in Chettinad reflect a confluence of vernacular architecture & a blend of South East & European architectural styles. This region comprises a great number of striking “Art Deco” style houses built in the 1940 or 50’s (also called “French Art Deco”). Karaikkudi has an important Art-Deco quarter, which includes the Thousand Windows House. The floor plan and structure of a typical Nagarthar are in accordance with all the aspects of the home dweller’s daily and various ceremonial rituals. Most Chettiyar houses will have a reception area edging onto ...

  • Get The Basics Of Chettinad Cuisine With ‘Chettinad Paste’

    Chettinad cuisine is as rich and colourful as its cultural legacy. The mélange of flavours prepared by the people of Chettinad, carries the tales of enterprising Chettiars who have travelled across Sri Lanka, South East Asia and Europe for trade and commerce. Perhaps the spiciest of all South Indian recipes, Chettinad cuisine has some exotic ingredients like ‘marathi morulu’ (a dried flower pod) and black stone flower (‘dagad phool’ or Kalpasi). They are creatively combined with other popular Indian aromatics, generating flavours and aromas that are known world-over to be unique. Mos...

  • Important People from Chettinad Who Have Shaped History

    How many of us know that Chettinad is more than just tasty cuisines and bright colours of art? Can you name some of the famous Chettinad people who contributed greatly to our country? If your answer is no, then this article will prove as a good introduction for you to famous Chettinad personalities. Chettinad is a region named after the Nattukottai Chettiars, who originally came and settled from Cauvery Poompattinam in the 13th century after their homeland was destroyed in a massive flood. Their migration also brought with them a unique culture of hard work which proved useful in the unforgi...