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“What a place!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Sunnymead Rentals

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Sunnymead Rentals
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Shimla Hwy | Below the Cart Rd, Near the Old MLA Headquarters, Shimla 171004, India   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #2 of 90 Specialty Lodging in Shimla
New Delhi, Delhi, India
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“What a place!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 7, 2013

I've now gone up to Sunnymead twice, and will happily return year after year. As others have mentioned, the food is simply outstanding! Madhavi and her dogs (and cat) are great company; there's wonderful birding to be done sitting on the verandah, there's endless books on offer, and you're a good 3 km short of town, so you really do escape the madness of Shimla. There are a bunch of nice walks -- although some require a short drive. And the cottage has been wonderfully, lovingly renovated. Just a great place to catch your breath!

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service

Review collected in partnership with this hotel

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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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28 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (7)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 12, 2013

A quick look at the Bed & Breakfast options on TripAdvisor had me fixated on the quaint and beautiful Sunnymead. After reading every single review (and then once more), I knew this was the place I wanted to stay at while in Shimla. While making my booking for the first week of September I exchanged several emails with the owner of Sunnymead - Madhavi Bhatia, who patiently answered all of my queries, recommended a cab driver and inquired about our food preferences. (Naturally, I had a good feeling about this.)

I wasn't disappointed. It was evening when we arrived and though it wasn't as bright outside, I noticed the place was every bit like the pictures or better. Inside the house, our bedroom complete with a four poster bed, heavily-laden book rack, a vintage desk n' chair and a chest of drawers decked with the cutest electric kettle, cups and tea supplies.

The view from the room (and all the other rooms as well) is fabulous: mountains and mist! The garden below is unlike your typical manicured ones, with numerous varieties of flowers, herbs and fruit and all :)

The rest of the house has this European-style decor that makes you never want to leave. While there isn't room service, your beds are made and rooms cleaned everyday, sometimes twice.

The crockery from the early 1900s (I'm guessing) adds more charm to every meal; which brings me to the highlight of our trip: the food at Sunnymead. We found ourselves looking forward to the yummy delicacies from Madhavi's kitchen (read shepherd's pie, meatloaf, pumpkin and sage soup, salads and whatnot)! The breakfasts included eggs, freshly baked bread, a selection of jams and preserves, bacon/ sausages, mushrooms, grilled tomato and tea and coffee and smoothies (occasionally) to wash it all down. There was also something special included everyday like pancakes with strawberries, crepes or muffins... yumm!

Lastly, the owner is so fun and sweet, you'll find yourself at the dining table, chatting long after your meal is done.

Just a few pointers:
1) If you are the kind who needs to be surrounded by activity or if you're the noisy kind, Sunnymead may not be your perfect pick. It's quietly nestled in the hills below Cart Rd and makes for the perfect getaway from city life.
2) It's quite a walk to Mall Rd from here so you'd better be fit and carry your walking shoes, or you can always hire a car for Rs.200 per way (like we did a few times :P). P.S. If you choose to walk, Madhavi draws a mean map to show you how to get there by the scenic route :)
3) You might return a few pounds heavier, thanks to Madhavi's food. But it's all worth it :)

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cardiff
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 22, 2013

We had the most fantastic stay in Sunnymead - Madhavi is a perfect host but also we think we left after our three night visit here as friends and who can ask for more than that ! The house is beautifully restored, packed with antiques and books - a real joy - with all that you need and a very comfortable bed as well. Madhu cooked awesome meals - we chose to eat our evening meal here as well because the food was simply delicious and the atmosphere so welcoming - each night we sampled divine puri,s roti,s dals, biryanis fabulous home made chutneys and for breakfast - well we just couldn't eat it all....This was our first trip to India and staying with Madhavi helped to orient us to the culture, the psyche and the politics in a way that you would never have if you stayed in a hotel. We laughed and chatted and then dragged ourselves away from the beautiful garden and house to go and do a bit of sightseeing in Shimla which we alsoloved. All in all a pretty perfect, relaxing start to our India trip and the one we talk about the most now we are home.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mumbai (Bombay), India
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 21, 2013

PROS and CONS

PROs
1. BEAUTIFUL place; heritage is something to be experienced.
2. INSANE food; Madhavi could easily be a chef at a leading restaurant. Trust me;
3. FRESH food; all organic- everything grows there. She also has the best of stuff to serve from the choicest locations;
4. The place has character and history- it will talk to you if you allow it to.
5. Attention to detail is excellent
6. The Dogs are the cutest- if you dont like dogs- i wouldn't advise staying here.
7. No Alcohol so you need to carry your own

CONs

1. NONE
My review is more meant for fellow travelers than for the outstanding owner; this is just to be fair to them
2. Hmm. Well- if you're very loud, butter chicken, daru sharu and loud music types- please avoid Sunnymead. Itll honestly not suit you well.
3. No Room Service- we had a 3 year old and we didn't feel the need for it honestly. If you need something-just ask Madhavi.
4. Since i don't have a yardstick for fellow travelers- in terms of price- i felt it could have been about 10-15% lesser; its a very individualistic opinion- you cant put a price on heritage and service of the kind you'll get at Sunnymead. However a slight drop in price can make it affordable in terms of not having to compare it to a starred hotels rates, which can in some cases, be lesser than Sunny Mead, including lodging and meals. Then again; its not a place i wont be returning to. I think that's the only 'opinion' that could help retain and attract more people of the profile they'd like at the place. Mind it- its an opinion and not a criticism.
5. Please dont come here if -
a. you have very frilly and irritable kids who love breaking things. The cost of the cutlery Madhavi uses would be roughly equal to twice your daily room charges.
b. prefer louder places with TVs and room service (neither of those 2 in the 4 rooms)
c. have a problem with dogs- (I Loved the dogs there- theyre my favs now)
6. No Pool- just adding this but have rated it 5 ; shouldn't affect the rating. But who goes to Shimla to swim anyway?

All in all- its a wonderful place with a wonderful host. Its a new concept; homestays. Rooms are all great. The mall is a short walk away though itll be a bit tough if you have a problem with the knees. The food is madness; honestly- madhavi is one of the best chefs i have come across in a long time. Clean air, heritage Shimla and if you come here when flowers are in bloom- you may not want to leave this place..And thats for real.

Room Tip: 4 rooms on the first floor. The room in the center has a double bed. Rest are twin beds. Very comfor...
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New Delhi, India
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 15, 2013

This is a genuine home stay - Madhavi is an utterly warm host, fussing over her guests with an excellent staff.
Her food is phenomenal and tailor-made if required. The home retains its old world charm and is utterly comfortable. Things to do - a great collection of books, a beautiful garden, several DVDs, badminton, and best of all three lovely dogs.
Even if you aren't a fan of Simla, this place is worth a visit and re-visits. It's easily accessible - just as you enter Simla proper and frankly don't need to venture out apart from walks, like beyond the near-by Viceregal Lodge.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kolkata (Calcutta), India
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 24, 2013

Visited on on 20th June with my wife.
Spent few hours and enjoyed the excellent hospitality of Madhvi.
Had excellent muffins - freshly baked, sandwich and tea served in old crockery!!

First, I was reluctant to go down the several steps, especially for my wife - who has joint problems, but later I would have regretted if I did not heed Madhvi Sanghamitra's insistence.

It is an excellent place to stay, very close to Shimla Railway Station. Beautiful ambiance and very helpful staff. I did not stay, but enjoyed the visit - not to miss out the beautiful trained dogs.

Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BC, Canada
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 17, 2013

Thank you Madhavi and Rita (Mummy) for your wonderful hospitality, delicious gourmet food, interesting stories and dinner conversation, and welcoming us so warmly into your beautiful, relaxing and cozy home and garden. We felt so at home and comfortable. Even though it is about a 15 minute walk away from Shimla town centre, it is worth the peace and tranquility, friendship and TLC so generously offered at Sunnymead. All the rooms are lovely, quiet and cozy with comfortable beds and linens, seating areas, plenty of hot water and great views. Meals were fresh, with home grown, healthy ingredients and always an incredible gourmet experience presented with beautiful table settings. Madhavi is also wonderful about helping with travel arrangements and advice on local attractions. It truly was the perfect end to our India adventure, we feel we arrived as guests and left as friends. There is nothing further to say other than don't hesitate, just go, the rewards are numerous!

Room Tip: All the rooms are cozy, immaculately clean and well appointed with beautiful antique furnishings. T...
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service

Review collected in partnership with this hotel

Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Sunnymead Rentals

Address: Shimla Hwy | Below the Cart Rd, Near the Old MLA Headquarters, Shimla 171004, India
Location: India > Himachal Pradesh > Shimla
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly )
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 90 Specialty Lodging in Shimla
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Sunnymead, Shimla is an exquisitely restored home with a spectacular garden. Located on the edge of the Reserve Forest. It is conveniently situated both to explore Shimla and its surrounds, as well as just relax and do nothing...Located just off the Cart Road, Sunnymead is the first private house as you drive up from the plains. Parking is available at the level of the road, either in our private parking bay or else in one of our garages.A short walk down a mountain path leads to the house. The road is not motorable till the front door. We are not a hotel, but offer short term rentals for like-minded people who would like to live in an old family home. Short stays may be customised on request.The food offered is both Indian and European, served in exquisite collectible china with old, beautifully maintained silverware.Distances from Sunnymead:Sunnymead to Railway Station- 1.2 kmSunnymead to Victory Tunnel- 1.8 kmSunnymead to Local Bus Stand on Cart Road- 2.2 kmSunnymead to Lift (for the Mall) - 3.1 kmSunnymead to Boileauganj (local market)- 1.2 km ... more   less 

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