The Bangala which originates from 1910, is a Chettiar family owned heritage stay located in the town of Karaikudi, in the heart of Chettinad. Originally this was the home of the MSMM Chettiar family, but after times became hard following WW2, the property became a club visited by many dignitaries. The family finally moved to Chennai in the 80’s and 90’s and the property consequently fell into disrepair. However in 1998 the visionary Meenakshi Meyappan saw the opportunity to offer the visitor the cultural experience of the area, and it was decided to restore and run the place as a heritage homestay. Today it is a charming, easy, homely and unique place to stop, and find respite from your travels.
The Bangala has 21 simple but clean, airconditioned and charming rooms spread around the property which comprises various wings and annexes, and the place is run more like a home than a formal hotel. The Chettinad cuisine is excellent, served in a relaxed open sided dining room overlooking the central garden. The lovely newly built swimming pool is a delight, with a couple of shady, quiet, beautifully designed verandahs on which to relax on your sunbeds. The modest but very welcome and charming spa is also a great addition to this unique location in the heart of Chettinad.
There is plenty to do exploring Chettinad – visiting the central market, jewellers and antique shops in Karaikudi, visiting the Athangudi tile factories, looking around the old Chettinad mansions, and even attending one of the many vibrant temple festivals in the countryside if you’re lucky.