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Exploring Forte Kochi: A Walk Through What Was, Is, and Yet to Become

Embrace the charm of Forte Kochi, a tasteful amalgamation of history and luxury that encapsulates the true crumbling colonial essence of the Portuguese, Dutch, and British Raj.

Exploring Forte Kochi: A Walk Through What Was, Is, and Yet to Become

Huddled together in the bitesize port city of Old Cochin is an authentic palette of history and culture that stands unparalleled. Brimming with diversity, nowhere else across the vast subcontinent can one encounter such an enchanting fusion: sprawling spider-like webbed Chinese fishing nets, ancient synagogues, and mosques, colorful colonial-era houses from the Portuguese and Dutch imperialist endeavors, and the withering remnants of the East India Company’s colonial rule. This creates a strikingly saucy cookpot of medieval Portugal and Holland, with elements of an English village seamlessly integrated into the coconut-fringed tropical soil of the Malabar Coast.

Fort Kochi derives its name from Fort Manuel of Cochin, the inaugural European fort established on Indian land, administered by the Portuguese East Indies. It constitutes one of several water-locked islands and islets clustered towards the southwest corner of mainland Kochi, collectively recognized as Old or West Cochin. Its diversity has been drawing globetrotters and explores over six hundred years, and has topped the list of the most sought-after tourist hubbubs in recent years.

Whispering Walls of Forte Kochi

Real history is not the tales told in the pages of a book, but those that linger unheard amongst the ancient walls of a bygone era. They have been witness to both the mundane and the unnatural and presided over fact-altering endeavors in abundance. The silent preservers of secrets, always imbibing but never reciting. Ancient structures with their somber walls sullen with secrets are among the most enchanting places to explore.

Exploring Forte Kochi: A Walk Through What Was, Is, and Yet to Become

Forte Kochi, the latest addition to the Paul John Heritage Hotels and Resorts arsenal, is a slice of luxurious paradise tucked back in time. Nestled amid tree-lined streets and bathed in the gentle caress of sunlight on its shores, it stands tall as a testament to bygone eras. Originally crafted by the Portuguese, this grand mansion embodies a captivating fusion of Portuguese, Dutch, and British architectural influences. In the late 1800s, it underwent a transformative phase that appropriated it into a residential splendor, inhibited by a prosperous Jewish family. Today, meticulously restored to its former grandeur, this boutique hotel beckons travelers into a mesmerizing journey through a distant age that was lived centuries ago.

Colonial Coves at Forte Kochi

At Forte Kochi, each of its 26 heritage abodes embodies the opulent splendor that adorned colonial India. This architectural brilliance boasts a harmonious fusion of imperialist influences. Meticulous restoration work has been employed to faithfully preserve the true colonial essence while appropriating it to suit luxurious sensibilities.

Exploring Forte Kochi: A Walk Through What Was, Is, and Yet to Become

Vibrant, intricately tiled floors harmonize with the occasional wooden accents, while generously proportioned robust wooden doors double as shutters adorn each gracefully arched, and stained window. The furniture, which includes ancestral four-poster beds and sumptuous cushioned and wickered sofas, further enriches the rich colonial ambiance.

Hailed as one of India's finest Heritage Hotels, Forte Kochi has curated numerous off-property activities to guide the guests on a luxurious journey laden with history and cultural significance into a world that feels a realm apart.

Guided Heritage Walks By the Day

The resort offers explorative off-property endeavors in the form of guided heritage walks during the morning. It offers a captivating glimpse into Cochin's abundant history and heritage, unveiling the diverse tapestry of Dutch, Portuguese, British, and Jewish influences that define the city's uniqueness.

Exploring Forte Kochi: A Walk Through What Was, Is, and Yet to Become

Guests, accompanied by an experienced local guide, can explore the historic district of Fort Kochi, delving into its vibrant cultural heritage. The journey includes a stroll along the picturesque Fort Kochi seaside promenade, offering a glimpse into the local activities that constitute daily life in Kochi. This relaxed walking tour lasts up to ninety minutes and welcomes participants of all ages and fitness levels.

Timing – 07:00 am to 08:30 am

Areas Covered – Princess Street, Connecting bridge between FK & Koder House, Burger Street, Chinese fishing nets, Vasco Square, Bastian Bungalow, St. Francis Church, Dutch Cemetery, Parade Ground, Queiros Street, Old Fort Gunny Boiler, Vasco House, Loafers Corner.

Kindly note that all the aforementioned monuments are to be witnessed from the outside from the outside since all the monuments are open to the public post 9:00 a.m.

A Bite to Remember

The diversity finds its way into the culinary variety of Forte Kochin with on-site restaurants whipping up the best of local, fusion, and international cuisines. While you enjoy the grand heritage and abundant luxury in and around Forte Kochi, don't forget to treat your taste buds to the delectable array of multi-cuisine offerings available at the hotel's many restaurants.

Exploring Forte Kochi: A Walk Through What Was, Is, and Yet to Become

The jetty, the primary family restaurant, boasts a delectable spread featuring the best of traditional and international classics, including the highly recommended Squid Ularthiyadhu (sliced squid cooked with Kerala spices and tomato gravy), Kariveppila Meen (fresh fish strips coated in a crispy blend of roasted curry leaves), Seafood platter (a delightful assortment of scampi, tiger prawns, seer fish steak, sea brawl fillet, and squid), and Malabari Prawn Biriyani (a flavorful northern Kerala dish of dum-cooked Kaima rice with tiger prawns or fish cubes, accompanied by Kachumber, coconut chutney, and dates pickle).

The Catch of Kochi specializes in organically sourced seafood preparations including succulent lobsters and delicate shrimp. Guests can also choose to indulge in a delightful evening at the property’s sprawling courtyard and savor piping hot local tea or coffee paired with authentic local snacks by the pool at the traditional tea stall, Thattukada. A warm element reminiscent of yet another equally enchanting luxury property, Kumarakom Lake Resort. Tucked away from the hum-drum of city life, perched by the palm-shaded backwaters of the largest lake of the south, Vembanad, this solitary slice of paradise is solace to the seeking soul.