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All You Need To Know About Onam

Onam celebrates the homecoming of demon king Mahabali who once ruled Kerala. It is said that under his judicious rule, Kerala witnessed a golden era.
Celebrated for a glorious 10 days in the Malayalam calendar month of Chingam, with street parades, pookalam, pulikali dance, snake boat race, and much more, Onam transforms God’s Own Country into a festive riot of colours.

The Myth of Mahabali

Bali, in South Indian languages, is sacrifice or giving. Maha bali translates to ‘great sacrifice’.
The story goes that, like his grandfather Prahlada, Mahabali was a seeker of the benevolent grace of Lord Vishnu. Although he had conquered all of the vast lands and heavens, he was dissatisfied with his earthly life. He, therefore, decided to sacrifice all his possessions for the greater good and well-being of his people. It is at this fateful time that a brahmana called Vamana (dwarf) arrives holding an umbrella made of palm leaves over his head.
The kind and generous Mahabali welcomes Vamana, offering the Brahmin anything he wants. Vamana asks the king for all the land that he can cover in three strides. The wish is granted. But, at this instant, Vamana grows taller and bigger, covering the entire universe with his two feet. Seeing as there is nowhere to place his third feet, he asks the king’s head as the third feet, to which the king obliges willfully.
Mahabali makes the master sacrifice, surrendering his own sense of self beyond everything he owns. The great sacrifice happens on the day of Tiruvonam. Onam is therefore a festival of giving, offering, and listening, to the other.
Although he has transcended the realm of earth, Mahabali is granted his wish of returning once each year to meet his people.

The Onam Affair

Onam marks the yearly visit of king Mahabali to his beloved kingdom. There are folktales - Maaveli Naadu Vannidum Kaalam (When Maveli, our King, ruled the land) - that testify to the popularity of the demon king, even today.
Day one marks the preparation for King Bali’s visit. On this day, people decorate the entrances of their homes with colourful floral carpets or Pookalam, with as many as 10 concentric rings of flowers arranged in beautiful patterns and colours. Fascinatingly, more layers and rings are added on consecutive days. Day five unravels in an uproar of sport, with the famed and spectacular snake boat race. Up to 100 oarsmen row the long and elegantly carved snake boats in Aranmula and other regions of Kerala.
It is believed that Mahabali, having arrived in Kerala, visits the homes of his people, on Thiruvonam. Edging closer to Thiruvonam, people prepare and place clay pyramids that represent Mahabali and Vamana, in the center of the Pookalam. Homes are decorated and the grand Onam feast, Onam Sadya, is prepared to treat the visiting king.
Traditionally the sadhya is a delicious spread of a variety of dishes including upperi (banana chips), maranga curry and naranga curry (sour lemon pickles), erissery (a sweet-spicy vegetable preparation) , parripu curry (thick lentil gravy), inji curry (ginger pickle), sambhar (savoury lentil soup), moru kachiyathu (seasoned buttermilk), chenna mezhkkupuratti (fried yam), avial (mixed vegetable with coconut gravy), payasam (sweet rice pudding). Onam is a feast for both the senses and spirit!

Kozhukattai Recipe

Kozhukattai is a South Indian dumpling made from rice flour, coconut and Indian spices. Though normally made sweet, it can also be prepared for savoury palates. While the dish is prepared during the Indian festival of Vinayaka Chaturthi (celebrating the birth of Lord Vinayaka), it is also a favourite during Janmashtami which marks the birth of Lord Krishna.

Ingredients

For the rice dough

● 1 cup powdered raw rice flour
● 2 cups of water
● A pinch of salt
● One spoon of oil

For the sweet stuffing

● 1½ cups of coconut
● ½ cup of jaggery
● ½ teaspoon cardamom powder

How to Make

The stuffing:

1. Add 1 portion of jaggery for every 3 portions of coconut.
2. Mix the coconut and grated jaggery in medium flame.
3. Continue to stir the mixture. You will see the jaggery begin to melt.
4. Cook the mixture until the moisture from the jaggery dries up.
5. Add crushed cardamom and set the mixture aside.

The rice dough:

1. Add 2 cups of water to a cup of raw rice flour in a bowl.
2. Add a pinch of salt and a tablespoon of vegetable oil to the mix.
3. Stir the mixture on a medium flame for up to 15- 20 mins, until it forms a soft dough.
4. Close the pan with a lid after removing from the stove, and let it sit for about 5 mins.
5. Knead the dough to make soft and smooth balls without any cracks. Rub your palm with water to get them smooth and round.

Putting it All Together

1. Flatten the dough balls and fold inwards with your fingers to form a cup. Start from the circumference and keep the center thick.
2. Fill the flattened dough with the coconut and jaggery stuffing.
3. Bring the sides together to form a tomb in the center, and close the dough around the stuffing.

Set the dumplings in a pan greased with ghee or oil. Steam the dumplings for about 10 mins, and serve warm.

The Birth of a Star

Krishna is the most endearing of Gods. His life, as told in the songs, ballads, and epics of India, speaks of the life-affirming thought that defines Indian spirituality. Is there any other God that embodies the joys of life as gracefully, playfully, and as captivatingly, as Krishna? It must come as no surprise then, that he continues to command the love and imagination of so many people.
Janmashtami, Krishna’s day of birth, is the first of many stories that define his time amongst the mortals. The torrential rains that herald his coming into this world, are reflective of the turmoil the people live with, and the ensuing calm, a reflection of the new dawn soon to follow. Through the course of his childhood, he vanquishes many a demon, ultimately slaying the demon king, Kamsa.
Of Krishna, there are as many stories as there are stars in the sky. What makes them so enchanting and captivating is that we learn the simple lessons of life in these stories. His playful nature tells us to not take life too seriously, even if there are much larger things at play.

To celebrate Krishna is to celebrate love.

From the divine love of his consort Radha, to the spiritual longing of Mirabai (the Rajput queen who renounced royal life for the Lord), Krishna has won many hearts, both within and without his leela (act or play). Mirabai’s poems are a testament to Krishna’s emphasis on bhakti (devotion) as a way to salvation.

Come to my Pavillion

  • Come to my pavilion, O my King. I have spread a bed made of delicately selected buds and blossoms, And have arrayed myself in bridal garb From head to toe. I have been Thy slave during many births, Thou art the be-all of my existence. Mira's Lord is Hari, the Indestructible. Come, grant me Thy sight at once.

    Mirabai

Utterly, Butterly, Simple.

It is no secret that butter was Krishna’s mainstay in Gokul. That is why, on Janmashtami, the special offerings (prasadam) include a sumptuous serving of butter with flattened rice and jaggery.
And as we savour the concoction, we reminisce about the story of butter tax which was levied by Krishna. Krishna made sure to collect his dues from the Gopis (cow herds) of the quaint village by any means necessary - persuasion or coercion. Yet he remained dearly loved by all. If that isn’t evidence of how good intentions outweigh actions, what is?
Today, in parts of India, particularly in Gujarat and Maharashtra, the Dahi Handi (Pot of Curd) is yet another imitation of Krishna’s never-ending antics to have butter. Just as Krishna relied on the support and strength of his brother and friends, during the game of Dahi Handi, boys and men find new brethren among strangers, as they give each other a hand or leg up in pursuit of a common goal.
From the confines of high art, to calendar portraits, and Gokul Sandal tins, Krishna truly permeated modern life in all its nooks in the subcontinent. His stories are so popular that the one about butter tax is captured in a beautiful painting titled “Daan- Lila” in the Harvard Art Museum.
This Janmashtami, we urge you to revel in the simplicity of the Lord’s ways and persevere on this journey that is life, as you celebrate both the little things, and the big things.

Best Hotels Near US Consulate Chennai

Endorsed by the Lonely Planet is the Hanu Reddy Residency, pinned on the map alongside the busy road of Anna Salai  in Teynampet, Chennai. This property is nature lovers’ paradise with 5-decade old trees scattered every side you turn. Providing a cool and laid-back cottage vibe in the metropolitan city of Chennai, this service apartment is in a place one would least expect to witness such greenery.

At just 500 meters from the Anna Salai and the US Consulate. This property boasts authentic style rooms and an ambience so cosy you would want to live here!

The rooms are built in ultra-modern style whereas the outlook of the property emanates an authentic vibration. The amenities at the residency include bed and breakfast, wake up calls and an in-house restaurant. The rooms and bungalows on this property are wheelchair accessible and house colourful flowering plants and trees, adding the much-needed green vibe to the cityscape.

Hotels near US Consultant

Guest services include luggage storage, locker storage, porter/bell service, laundry and dry cleaning service. The residency acts as a great hotel to host your business meetings, conferences and is flexible enough to extend its welcome to your guests to give them a great stay at fair and affordable prices.

The property is extremely mindful about those who might be sensitive to smoking and pets is thus, a no-smoking and a no-pet zone.
For a home away from home experience, this is the one location that all travellers, especially older travellers, find to be their ideal location to unwind in a city. This hotel/apartment provides complimentary breakfast and the terrace gardens are one of the visibly striking features that add allure to the entire vibe of this green location in the middle of the bustling city.

With big rooms to cozy ones, from valued complimentary services to paid services, this serviced apartment stands a class apart with its enduring legacy of holding on to providing it’s family’s warmth and comfort to all the guests, unconditionally. Giving off a rustic vibe to the guests, this site is positioned right within one of the quietest neighbourhoods of Chennai.

Just 3 km away from the Marina Beach, at a walking distance to the Music Academy and the Naradha Ghana Sabha, this hotel is one option that previous guests come back to, time and again. The friendly staff, the refreshing environment, the delectable buffet and the home-made food catered with love and dedication by the kitchen staff, the availability of a kitchenette if you would prefer to make your own food, and the lovely ambiance that the property offers are all that make this residency a great place to make your next visit to Chennai a unique experience.

Hotels Near Gemini Flyover Chennai

The word vacation, in the context of our current lifestyles, evokes an image of a place that is far away from a city. A place that is filled with trees and waterfalls, animals and birds that are blissfully unaware of the sound of a horn. Not everyone can take a vacation of this sort. Work takes you to cities and the most populated locations of the cities at that (Hotels Near Gemini Flyover). Finding a place to stay here might seem like a humdrum task that you don’t give so much thought to. But, stop. What if I were to tell you that you could get a taste of a vacation this work trip? What if you could stay cocooned away from the pollution inside a lush and green home-like space. Because when work takes you all over the world, home is a vacation!

Staying at a Hotels Near Gemini Flyover or a service apartment can be boring and dull, especially after a hard day of work. With the Hanu Reddy Residences, at Poes Garden and Wallace Garden in Chennai, you can come back to a home-like boutique stay. You can now unwind from technology and connect with nature, right in the middle of a bustling city like Chennai, at the Hanu Reddy Residence. At the Hanu Reddy Residences, you can have the best of both worlds indeed.

If you’re still wondering why you should explore a boutique home-stay that you think is not as safe a bet as that Hotels Near Gemini Flyover that you always crash at, be prepared to be convinced of why a service apartment is a better suit for someone like you.

Hotels near gemini flyover
Point number one. Lighting. When the room is not well-lit, when the bedside lamp is dull, there is very less you can do. Especially if you’re looking to cut down on some screen time and do some reading. At the Hanu Reddy Residences, the lighting in the room is not only aesthetically pleasing but is also practically beneficial. These rooms were decorated and designed keeping in mind the wants and needs of someone like you.

Secondly, S P A C E. Hotel rooms are cramped with a huge bed and a desk that can barely be used. You pay for a room and get only a bed to live on. At this boutique home-stay, the inside of the rooms is not only fitted with beautiful furniture, but they are put together in such a way so as to deliver to you that perfect breathing space you need for some energizing start of the day workout or some rejuvenating yoga before a peaceful night’s sleep.
Speaking of peace, one of the greatest benefits of any service apartment is that you no longer have to tolerate noisy corridors. At Hanu Reddy residences especially, peace is embedded within the very walls. The calming colours, tranquil furniture and soothing artwork at this unique residence work together to give you the peace that you crave and deserve!

At hotels, asking for something you need is not only a task, what with all the floors between you and the reception, but is also subject to a time-constraint. One of the most important things that the staff and employees at the Hanu Reddy Residences keep in mind is the particular demands and wants of the guests. Whatever you need will be given to you, just the way you want it. At Hanu Reddy Residences, the staff and employees are devoted to the idea of hospitality. They aim to make meaningful connections with the guests to make them feel received as if they were at their own home. So when you arrive at the Hanu Reddy Residences and are asked to make yourself at home, know that it is more than just a welcome phrase.

Hotels Near Anna Salai US Consulate Chennai

Tucked away in the quiet corner of Poes Garden, Chennai is one of Hanu Reddy Residencies’ properties which extends warm hospitality and welcomes guests who seek authentic comfort at affordable prices. The Hanu Reddy Residency  acts as a fair choice for service apartments providing more than what an actual apartment would provide their guests (Hotels Near Anna Salai US Consulate Chennai). The property is situated in the heart of the city and is close to major supermarkets, parks, cinema, and famous landmarks, with Poes Garden being a very famous landmark all by itself.

Few of the major hotspots nearby include the US embassy (Hotels Near Anna Salai US Consulate Chennai), Spencer Plaza, Apollo Hospital, the Chennai Central Train Station and the Marina Beach. Service apartments Located on the ever-busy Anna Salai (Hotels Near Anna Salai US Consulate Chennai), this hotel hosts 30 rooms, 3 bungalows, a banquet hall, 2 terrace gardens and a large courtyard. Besides being family-friendly, this residency is also one of the most famous go-to sites to host parties and high-profile events in its banquet hall. Plan your dream wedding, opulent parties, business meetings and host a myriad of events int his well-established residency which caters to all your out-of-station needs! Welcome your friends and family into the bungalows here for your special celebrations. The authentic, embracing-nature theme of the residency perfectly complements the surrounding neighbourhood and not to mention, adds a bit of a party-in-the tropics vibe during the nights thanks to the numerous trees towering every corner of the property. The fully serviced apartment is nestled inside an ideal green setting, adorned with huge trees and colourful flowering plants inside the property. The rich foliage boasts the heritage that the family owning the property adopts and proves to embrace the ideology of living amidst lush greenery. Bringing value to your money are the facilities at this serviced apartment like laundry, ironing, daily housekeeping and room services, air conditioning, special diet meals which are available on request, a fitness center, free wifi, airport shuttle and car rental and secure, private parking. The property is smoke-free, embracing ardently the eco-friendly values of the Hanu Reddy Residency. The multilingual team who speak English, Hindi and other local languages are committed to providing the guests with utmost attention and services that are worth the guests’ money and time. The peace and calm within and around the property would come as a surprise to the guests who except the residency to embody the busy stereotyped version of Chennai. Get in touch with the 24-hour front desk to start your trip in and around Chennai with expert opinion and to match your personalized tastes when it comes to food, travel and other in-house requirements. Get the best that the city of Chennai can offer you from the dedicated team at the Hanu Reddy Residences.

Service Apartments in Teynampet Chennai

In a city with a chock- full apartments and paying guest hostels, Hanu Reddy residency, located in Poes Garden, Teynampet is for the ones who like to hit the right Service Apartments in Teynampet Chennai which offer comfort in an authentic style.

One of the few striking features of Service Apartments in Teynampet Chennai is that it is situated on the Anna Salai, the longest stretch of roads with traffic in Chennai. Tucked away from the roaring traffic of Chennai are Hanu Reddy Residency’s two main bungalows – one in Poes Garden and the other in Wallace Garden. This Service Apartments in Teynampet Chennai is situated at close affinity to the Teynampet metro, the Consulate General of Malaysia, Apollo Spectra Hospital and is a 5-minute drive to the American Consulate. Smack dab in the hub of this bustling metropolitan city, all the prime shopping spots in T.Nagar are only an Ola or an Uber cab away from this serviced apartment. Located 3.8 km from Marina Beach and the Lighthouse, this service apartment is set in the right location for the beach lovers. Hanu reddy residences Extending their family comfort to the rest of the world, this serviced apartment offers their guests with home-cooked meals and warm hospitality. While you explore the city during the day, make sure to unwind on the terrace garden with your cup of tea. The serviced apartment promotes green living and adopts terrace gardens, acting as great relaxation spots. This service apartment provides home-like comfort with services that are as good as they can get. Anyone with green fingers would appreciate the mission of this residency, which is to be one with nature, especially in Chennai where greenery is sparse, and the visiting parks are the only real way of getting a glimpse of trees and breath in some fresh air. Come here on a family trip? Here to experience the hustle and bustle of city life? Or do you happen to swing by Chennai for a business meeting? No matter the purpose of your visit, the rooms provided are according to your taste and surprise you with much more warmth and a sense of home than what you would have had in mind. A banquet hall attracts all the high-profile events and celebrations from in and around the posh locality of Poes Garden. With over 3 bungalow and 30 rooms with a beautiful courtyard this residency suits any kind of traveler. The complimentary services at this service apartment are endless and include gym and buffet breakfast alongside catering to the needs of each guest, designed to provide the best of amenities and experiences. With charming rooms, authentic food served, unbelievable affinity to nature and a pleasing environment, the staff and the people who make up the team of this service apartment are committed to making your stay and visits in Chennai something to remember

Service Apartment in Greams Road Chennai

If a peaceful and hassle-free stay on your trip to Chennai is something you want, then the Service Apartments in Greams Road Chennai, to look into is Hanu Reddy Residences. Service apartments are better suited for you if you’re visiting Chennai for reasons ranging from a medical trip to a business trip.

The flexibility that a service apartment offers will ensure that your schedule is prioritized over anything else. The peace and quiet that is offered in a Service Apartment in Greams Road Chennai, especially the Hanu Reddy Residences, will be of great value to you if a medical trip for you or your loved one brings you to the city of Chennai. In a service apartment, you can bring your work along, in the full sense of the word. Need to host a dinner for you clients? This service apartment will not only give you the space to do this but also make sure that it is done in exactly the way that you want it. Greams road is a chief location in Chennai. This road is named after a colonialist named Graeme’s. It has been renamed Greams road over the years. It is in the center of the city, well connected to all the important and fun places. Loaded with malls and theatres, it houses the popular and iconic Sathyam cinemas and the fairly recently built Express Avenue Mall. So, if you want to catch a new movie and have the best popcorn ever (not an exaggeration), this service apartment is the closest place to stay. budget service apartments In terms of art and culture, Greams road is replete with art galleries like the Artsphere Contemporary, Art Mart, Ayya Art Gallery and many temples including the Kapaleeshwaran Temple which is well-known both within and beyond Chennai. If you’re in the city to have some fun, get a taste of Chennai’s fun nightlife at the club the Pasha that is very close to this Service Apartment in Greams Road Chennai. Not just this, there are also a variety of spas very close to Hanu Reddy Residences on Wallace Garden, Greams road that will complement the theme of your stay at this service apartment very well. Greams Road is also popular for having some of the best restaurants and cafes in Chennai. It is also very close to the iconic Semmozhi Poonga park of Chennai. So, in addition to the connection that you can make with nature on this stay at the Hanu Reddy Residences, you can also spend some quality time at the parks and gardens of the city that are very close to this service apartment on Wallace Gardens, Greams road.

Budget Service Apartments in Nungambakkam

Nungambakkam is an upscale area in Chennai that attracts people from the city for its cafes, boutiques, designer showrooms, multinational companies as well as colleges. If you’re visiting Chennai, this is a location you don’t want to miss out on. If you want to get a taste of the city, then Nungambakkam should be on your itinerary. Another great thing about this locality is how convenient it is to stay in. Not only does it have everything you might be looking for in a vacation but it is also well connected with all parts of the city which makes it a great place to stay in. Especially when you find a budget stay at a Budget Service Apartments in Nungambakkam like the Hanu Reddy Residences.

With this serviced apartment, you get convenience not only in terms of a great location like Nungambakkam, but you also receive the best treatment that you deserve, and right within your budget. The Hanu Reddy Residences is rightly called a residence because it is a home away from home. At this Budget Service Apartments in Nungambakkam, flexibility is guaranteed as the staff and also the chef is there for you and work to fit your requirements and schedule. Once you stay at the Hanu Reddy Residences, it is not likely that you would prefer any other service apartment.

Budget Service Apartments in Nungambakkam

Budget Service Apartments in Nungambakkam

If you are in town for business, then the Hanu Reddy Residence is a great fit for you. Hosting dinner parties for your clients can be a hassle. At hotels and other service apartments, you will be faced with the difficulty of looking for a venue specifically for your event. At the Hanu Reddy Residences, you get to invite guests over and host dinners and whatnot at the convenience and comfort of your own apartment. Not only does this save you the trouble of looking for another venue, but also saves you the time and money of paying for a party hall. This service apartment is perfect for your budget. Moreover, the pretty ambience of the apartments at the Hanu Reddy Residence is sure to make your guests feel warm and comforted.

One of the charms of this service apartment is the fact that it retains its old-worldly charm but with modern facilities that will fit well into your budget. This service apartment is an aesthetic treat, having walls painted in happy colours embellished with pleasant artwork and wooden traditional sculptures and entrances lined by trees. In addition to the connection that you can make with nature on this stay at the Hanu Reddy Residences, you can also spend some quality time at the parks and gardens of the city that are very close to this service apartment. The rooms and verandas at this apartment are super comfortable as well as aesthetically pleasing. They’re furnished with culturally relevant sculptures and columns, art that is a treat for the eyes and the soul, bamboo chairs and tea tables to lounge in for tea time, although the filter coffee in Chennai is a must-try especially as served at this service apartment. The cushions and curtains, in combination with well-lit and nicely ventilated rooms, that match the aesthetic theme of the apartment are sure to leave you content and comforted.

Service Apartments Near Apollo Hospital Chennai

Service Apartments Near Apollo Hospital Chennai

Visiting another city for medical purposes, be it for yourself or for a loved one, can be quite taxing and stressful on the mind and the body. Wouldn’t it be nice to come back after a stressful day in a hospital to a cozy home-like setup and wind down?

Service Apartments Near Apollo Hospital Chennai are then a better fit for you. Increasingly, people all over the world have begun to opt for service apartments over hotels because not only are they cheaper, but they also come with a complete home-like set up that guarantees more convenience and flexibility.

If you’re visiting Chennai, one of the best service apartments to go to for a comfortable and soothing experience that is perfect to counter the hustle of a day in a hospital, is the Hanu Reddy Residence in Wallace Garden. It is 4 minutes away from the Apollo hospital on Greams Road. Do you think this sounds convenient? Wait till you hear about the facilities and luxuries that are offered at this Service apartment Near Apollo Hospital.

Stocked with coconut trees and plants, this service apartment is sure to fill you with a sense of joy just as you enter it. Moreover, it is painted with pleasant and soothing colors. If you love yellows, whites and blues, this service apartment will prove to be a treat for sure! The rooms and verandas at this apartment are super comfortable as well as aesthetically pleasing. They’re furnished with culturally relevant sculptures and columns, art that is a treat for the eyes and the soul, bamboo chairs and tea tables to lounge in for tea time, although the filter coffee in Chennai is a must-try especially as served at this service apartment. The cushions and curtains, in combination with well-lit and nicely ventilated rooms, that match the aesthetic theme of the apartment are sure to leave you content and comforted. This service apartment brings together tradition and heritage of the city and modern amenities.

Service Apartments Near Apollo Hospital Chennai

This chain of service apartments, located in 2 very convenient locations in Chennai, is owned and managed by the family of Mr. Hanu Reddy. Their vision is to make everyone who visits the apartment feel at home and at peace. Healing medically can now be accompanied by more soulful and spiritual healing at the Hanu Reddy Residency Service Apartments Near Apollo Hospital. They go one step further and ensure that you are treated with special care. The staff and employees at this service apartment are dedicated to serving you in the best way they can. Be prepared to forge a true and authentic connection.

In addition to the trees and plants that surround you during your stay at this service apartment, there is a terrace garden that is filled with beautiful flowers and plants. This is the only service apartment that allows you to connect with nature in the middle of an urban city like Chennai. Nothing enables healing better than an open, spacious green area that is not short of fresh and healthy, unpolluted air. The Hanu Reddy Residences are definitely a first of its kind service apartment.

Another important factor that cannot be emphasized enough during a stay at a Service Apartments Near Apollo Hospital Chennai, especially while visiting a hospital, is the quality of food that you are served.
At the Hanu Reddy Residence, in both locations in Chennai, you have the unique ability to avail home-cooked food of your choice. Your health and well-being come first on the priorities of this service apartment.

So, if you’re looking to heal, enjoy the stay and comfort that is home-like, at the Hanu Reddy Residences that is so close to not only Apollo hospital but also other interesting spots in Chennai. Wallace Gardens is located right down the Kadar Nawazkhan Road. Engage in some quality retail therapy! Take back a souvenir of your memorable stay at the Hanu Reddy Residency service apartments in Chennai.