Discover Old World Charm At These 7 Artsy Boutique Hotels In Kochi

by Tejashee Kashyap
Discover Old World Charm At These 7 Artsy Boutique Hotels In Kochi

When it comes to Kochi, the city’s languid state, natural beauty and eclectic arts and history still intrigue many. Held around the lanes of Fort Kochi and the Muziris region, it is also home to Kochi-Muziris Biennale, the largest art festival in India.  The place still boasts a multitude of cultures — Portuguese, Dutch and British among others.  When you walk past these rustic old buildings, you will find grand structures now turned into boutique hotels in Kochi that stand out.

This 5th edition of Kochi-Muziris Biennale is on its last days until 10th April 2023 and being springtime, it’s the best time to head over to Kochi before the sweltering summers. And if you are wondering where to stay, then head to these heritage homes to relive the charm of bygone arts and history:

1. Old Harbour Hotel


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The Old Harbour Hotel was the first hotel in the town until it was converted into housing for staff members of a British tea-broking company. As it was abandoned later, it went into disrepair until it was acquired by its present owner and art enthusiast Edgar Pinto. Done in Dutch Portuguese style, it houses thirteen bedrooms overlooking a peaceful garden with lily ponds. Each room is furnished with terracotta tiles and antiques – Casablanca fans, working analogue phones and artefacts with modern facilities.

Where: 1/328, Tower Rd, Fort Nagar, Fort, Kochi
Cost: ₹26,263 per night (approx.) onwards

2. Le Colonial 1506

The oldest colonial home in Asia is said to be Le Colonial, located amid the Chinese fishing nets of Fort Kochi. Once a home of Vasco da Gama, it was one of the few residences that survived when the Dutch gained control of Fort and devastated the town. It was rebuilt in 1506 as the residence of the Portuguese Governor. Now, Le Colonial is a living museum for travellers.

Where: 1/315 Vasco da Gama Square, Church Rd, Kochi, Kerala
Cost:  ₹20,886 per night (approx.) onwards

3. Fragrant Nature Kochi


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The original structure was a 200-year-old godown belonging to the British East India Company.  Although the hotel has been rebuilt, the old architecture is still part of the design. Inspired by the colonial ideas of grandeur coupled with the quaintness of the Fort Kochi neighbourhood, you welcome yourself to a bygone era here. With antique yellow arched double doors, an open-air courtyard, polished chessboard-style marble floors, chintz-style furniture and an ornate marble water fountain, this is a place worth staying!

Where: Calvathy Bazaar Road, Calvathy Rd, near State Bank of India, Kochi, Kerala
Cost: ₹18,000 per night (approx.) onwards

4. Brunton Boatyard Hotel

No place unravels the unique story of Fort Kochi better than Brunton Boatyard. Conveniently located at the famed Fort Kochi harbour, the historic hotel is inspired by the harbour’s story. Be it the colonial architecture and local aesthetics, or the heady blend of many cuisines that is a cultural narrative in itself. With elegant and sea-facing rooms and suites,  you can indulge here in an adventurous time-travel Kochi episode.

Where: 1/498, Calvetty Road, Fort Kochi, Kochi, Kerala
Cost: ₹ 14,000 per night (approx.) onwards

5. The Malabar House

Located in the centre of Fort Kochi, The Malabar House is a wonderful example of colonial Kerala architecture. Going by the records, it is said to be constructed before 1755. It has been owned over the years by bankers, tea dealers, and spice traders until it became Fort Kochi’s first boutique hotel in 1997. Now renovated, it houses 17 attractively decorated rooms and suites, all of which are generously sized and have distinctive layouts-stone flooring, boldly coloured accent walls, and colonial-style furniture combined to create cosy yet opulent spaces.

Where: 1/268, 269, Parade Road, Fort Kochi, Kochi, Kerala
Cost: ₹ 16,000 per night (approx.) onwards

Also Read: Ayana Fort Kochi: Experience Luxury Blended With History

6. Forte Kochi Hotel


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This was originally built by the Portuguese and then owned by a prominent Jewish family. It now displays a fusion of Portuguese, Dutch, and British elements. There are 27 luxuriously-designed rooms having a vintage charm. Guests are transported to a time of vibrant colonial India with the use of cushioned wicker sofas, a kaleidoscope of coloured tiles and hardwood flooring in the rooms’ designs.

Where: 1/373, Princess St, Fort Nagar, Fort Kochi, Kochi, Kerala
Cost: ₹ 14,000 per night (approx.) onwards

7. 976 Panangad


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976 Pananagad is a former local village leader’s home. The visitors are encouraged to read, observe birds, go kayaking, swim, or basically just ‘be’. In short, a digital detox is guaranteed here. You’ll find the bedrooms featuring a sizable glass wall that opens to the backwaters in front of the building. Here, the harbour’s view of Chinese fishing nets even lets the guests enjoy a variety of fresh seafood dishes prepared with delectable Keralan flavours.

Where: Janatha Road, Panangad, Ernakulam, Kerala
Cost: ₹ 31,000 per night (approx.) onwards

Which of these boutique hotels in Kochi has caught your attention the most?

Cover image credits: Website/Brunton Boatyard Hotel