I've just spent 7 nights in the Khyber resort, with a group of friends celebrating a 40th.
Without doubt, the Khyber is a gem in Gulmarg. A member of the Small Luxury Hotels group, it offers 5 star facilities and accommodation in the magnificent setting of the Gulmarg ski area.
The rooms are lovely - comfortable, well appointed and impeccably clean. After a day on the slopes it was a joy to get home and snooze, before heading out to dinner. The food is wonderful, both Indian and continental dishes available either a la carte or buffet style. Most of the time we were served in the Cloves restaurant (lovely). When the hotel was fuller, we were relocated downstairs to the banqueting hall, which was by a margin less pleasant and felt more like a large school dining hall! However, a minor gripe.
The L'Occitane spa was an unexpected treat. Lovely setting, good massage, good value. Much appreciated after a hard couple of days on the slopes! I didn't get to try the pool and jacuzzi, but the gym was well appointed and barely used (the three of us working out there were the only people to have been in for a while I think.....)
The hotel is located directly above the gondola with the hotel offering free drops from the door to the gondola every morning, plus a pick up in the evening. Not exactly ski in, ski out, but I think the best you're going to get! Be warned though, the weather here is extreme, and if you're not lucky then you might end up walking in and out (but then again you do get to enjoy the powder when this happens...).
A couple of minor gripes - the pre-arrival service and comms could have been smoother, with the person in charge having some difficulties in getting replies from the hotel. Service sometimes is a bit slow (if you're ordering a coffee in the morning then be prepared for a 15 minute wait). For some reason there are no racks on the jeeps for skis? Finally they need more boot and ski racks in the ski room.
However, all in all, a truly memorable stay and an amazing holiday. Would go back in an instant.
(BTW bring your own booze! The Khyber is dry but they have no problem if you bring your own. And if you do fancy a night out, the Highlands Hotel has a v nice bar and restaurant!)
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- 8,825 feet above sea level in the Pir Panjal range of the Himalayas lies a higher order of luxury. The Khyber Himalayan Resort & Spa is spread over seven unspoilt, fir-laden acres, with majestic views of the Affarwat Peaks. This 85-room resort is framed at every vantage point by nature at its most spectacular. The world’s highest ski lift, the Gulmarg Gondola – which takes you to Kongdoori Mountain, is only a short walk away. Meadows and forests that have enchanted travellers for centuries wait to be explored by trekking enthusiasts and undying romantics. Clad in locally sourced pine and slate, the resort is built in a style true to the architectural heritage of Kashmir. In every way the indoors mirror the beauty of the outdoors. Specialty restaurants, a cigar lounge are amongst the necessary luxuries in place. Add to these other thoughtful additions like our children’s club, a mini theatre and a dedicated Activities Concierge and you will find The Khyber is a resort at par with the best in the world. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- The Khyber Himalayan Resort & Spa Gulmarg, Kashmir