Imagine waking up to a view of the sun playing peek-a-boo in between the coconut tree trunks as it rises across the shimmering waters of the Vembanad Lake. Well at the Amal Tamara, you will definitely not be lolling around in your your bed even at this early hour but you will be up and about and racing the sun in order to get to your Yoga class which will help you get a great start to your day. No, do not groan for you will be doing it willingly once you see how refreshing the experience is and how much enthusiasm it will infuse in your hitherto lax schedule.
So come jump out of bed and with a sprightly step, let us go through a typical day at the Amal Tamara luxury ayurvedic hospital 😊
Life at the Amal Tamara –
6 am – 8 pm. Early to bed and early to rise is not a mere cliché here at the Amal Tamara but is a way of life … life that will be all the more enriched for following this discipline. Sleep is given the least priority in our lives and we do not realize the impact that it has on our health. Here at Amal, the lifestyle correction techniques include a regulated sleep regimen, which will definitely play an important role in the healing process. So Roll no more but leave that bed behind and hop into the action for the day.
In-house activities –
Apart from the main ayurvedic medical treatment, there are also a number of different sessions that have been carefully curated with a wholistic wellness treatment in mind.
Some of the Interactive sessions are – Agnihotram, Yoga, Dhyanam (guided meditation), Nakshatravanam, Kashayapura, Raga therapy, Singing bowl meditation, Pradakshinam, Kashayapura tour, Deepam, Culinary sessions.
Agnihotram is a short ritual performed at 6.30 am daily, where a lamp is lit to reverently usher in the new day.
Yoga sessions are gentle and take into consideration the abilities of the guests. They are usually an hour long.
Dhyanam is a 30 minute guided mediation where the yoga doctor conducts the session with chants or by playing pre-recorded music or by playing Singing bowls.
Pradakshinam is a 30 minute walk through the Dhanavatari spiral garden where the guests listen to a narration of the history and other details about yoga.
Kashayapura tour – Kashayapura is the name of their in-house ayurvedic medicine production facility. Guests are given a tour of this unit and also participate in preparing their own concoctions.
Deepam is a 5 minute lamp lighting ceremony every evening at 6.30 pm.
Culinary classes are conducted to teach the guests how to create some of the healthy dishes that they are served and which they should continue consuming even when they are back home.
Cultural entertainment – The healing nature of the performing arts is taken into consideration and the guests are treated musical performances, local dances like Kathakali etc, Kalaripayatu, instrumental music etc a couple of times a week, either before or during dinner.
Village tours –
Long stay guests are offered an occasional change of scene with trips to the Dhanvatari temple in nearby Cherthala, a cruise on the Vembanad lake, a village visit to view and participate in local crafts like coir making and other similar tours.
Consultation and Treatments –
As I mentioned in the earlier blog post, Ayurveda treats every patient individually and unlike modern medicine, there is no set method which applies to everyone in general. Hence each patient is treated uniquely as per their body type and constitution.
Every patient undergoes a pre hospitalization online consultation and on arrival, the doctors also have detailed consultations, following which each person is given a tailor made and personalized treatment program which best fits their condition.
Every patient has a different situation and the outcome will depend on their set of factors. So it is best that one gathers the necessary information during the online pre-consultation and then makes an informed decision to go ahead or not, based on how convinced they are.
The treatments include external therapies and internal medications, combined with other wellness activities like yoga, meditation and suchlike.
At the Amal Tamara, a schedule of upcoming therapies and activities is meticulously Whatsapp’ed to the guest everyday, which makes it convenient for each one to to plan ahead optimally and punctually. The main treatment is around 90 minutes everyday and the ‘assistive therapy’ is of 30 minutes. Other activities are incorporated in the other free slots of the day.
My experiences –
Before I elaborate on my time at the Amal Tamara, I will take a few minutes to acknowledge and thank all those who made my stay so memorable.
My gratitude to –
Dr Reji Raj, GM and Senior Ayurveda physician and a good friend of mine for the past few years,
Ayurvedic doctors Dr Haripriya and Dr Ajitha who were so patient and kind and the Yoga and Naturopathy doctor Dr Deepesh, from whom I learnt so much,
Tony the F & B manager who was helpful, friendly and accompanied me at mealtimes so that I was not alone,
Abhijit and Parvathi, the duty manager and social media person respectively, who spent time with me taking me around and giving me loads of information,
Chef Sanu who created beautiful meals for me and his team members Deepu and Vipin who served me with so much love and care and also clicked pictures of me 😀
Sonia and team from housekeeping who did a great job of maintaining my room
and last but not the least, the massage therapists Aditya and her companions, who put me at ease during the massages, something I was never comfortable with in the past.
Day 1 –
I had 2.5 days at the Amal Tamara, during which Day 1 began after my arrival and first afternoon went by in detailed consultations with the doctors. I am already under ayurvedic treatment for an existing condition, so I was advised to continue with my current doctor in Bangalore. However, I was recommended Oil massages and Milk decoction wash to complement the existing treatment. This was then administered by the massage staff. The therapists are excellent and do their job with dedication and devotion. They are well sensitized to the psychology of the patient and they make sure that everyone is physically and mentally at ease during therapy.
Day 2 –
The night after my first massage, I slept better than I had for months. In fact I had such a deep and restful sleep that I actually bunked my Day two’s Yoga session. I was not spared however and that therapy was rescheduled for the noon 😉 Well that turned out to be another rewarding session where I learnt many useful concepts from the yoga doctor who was as gentle and humble as the rest of the staff.
After breakfast I had my Singing bowl meditation at the Dhyanam hall at 9.30 am.
My oil massage followed and then it was time for a cooking class that was specially curated for me where the chef Sanu and team very efficiently demonstrated a few dishes for me in record time. This was followed by lunch and then a little me time before my afternoon’s assistive therapy of yoga.
An instrumental music performance was organized at 6.45 pm followed by dinner and by 8 pm it was time to fall into the discipline of falling into bed early.
Day 3 –
On the third morning I got up in time for the Agnihotram and Yoga session at the Yogapeedam. It is a surreal experience to perform the various asanas in the presence of the gently rising sun. The backdrop is simultaneously stunning and soothing and there is not the usual ennui that I feel while performing a workout. In fact, the hour passes much too quickly and before we know it, it is time for breakfast.
At 9.30 am, the doctor gave me a glimpse of the Kashayapura medicine production unit and I witnessed how my personal medicated massage ‘potli’ (pouch) was prepared by heating the herbs in a large brass pan and compacted into a muslin cloth.
Then it was time for that very same potli to be put in action, so I had my relaxing oil massage. After lunch I had some time to go around and click pictures of the premises.
3 pm was my assistive therapy which was a thoroughly pleasant leg massage performed deftly as usual by the therapist team.
5 pm was my Raga therapy where Raag Neelambari was played to induce relaxation after which I held onto the feeling by swaying in a hammock 😀
The evening was spent chasing birds of which there are several species at the Amal Tamara. My stay being brief and also filled with other activities, my camera could not do full justice to my winged friends and I managed to capture only a few of them including the ever present cormorants and egrets which obligingly hold their pose long enough, unlike the hyperactive sunbirds and other tiny avians. A couple of Green bee eaters, red vented bulbuls, Ashy prinias and flame backed woodpeckers, made up my tiny collection. Of course I ignored the numerous crows, pigeons and mynahs of which I have an overdose in Bangalore 😏
Dinner was at 7 pm and the staff went all out to make it memorable with a candlelight setting outdoor by the poolside. Painstakingly carved vegetables adorned the table and the impeccable service, magical ambience and elegant presentation, took ‘wellness food’ to a remarkable and memorable level.
Day 4 – was departure day and I said goodbye to the team as I left for the airport at 8 am after breakfast, to in time to report for my 12.30 pm flight to Bangalore. Of course the hospitality continued with a thoughtfully packed meal of healthy vegetable rolls which I ate at the airport while reminiscing over my delightful stay at the Amal Tamara.
Please Note – This is a collaboration, based on the invitation of Amal Tamara and I thank them for hosting me with their warm hospitality. The narrative is based on the inputs that I received from various sources as well as my own experiences.
This itinerary was specially curated, hence some of the features might have been personalized accordingly. Before booking, please check the facilities offered in your package.
Nov 15th-18th, 2022