Year 1989.. 65 acres of Land at the foothills of Nilgiris Hill Range for INR 14 lacs.
Man who bought the above said land was there for a film shoot, he liked the place so much so that he wanted to buy a piece of land about 2 acre to build a farmhouse, a place to chill and relax , a place he could find solace and have a meaningful conversation with self. A place which could trigger his creative mind.. he place away from mad Bollywood,A Place AWAY FROM CITY !!
He and his team got in touch with a keral farmer, who was a potential seller at that time, but his only condition was that the buyer had to buy entire 65 acres of land in his possession, Seller was unaware of buyer being a Mumbai/Hindi/Bollywood Film icon, don’t be surprised, yes both buyer and seller were from India and it is quite okay here for a person from north, not to be aware of film stars of south or vice versa..
INDIA IS A HUGE COUNTRY , AND ONE FILM INDUSTRY LIKE HOLLYWOOD IS NOT ENOUGH 😀 , so moving on, unaware of buyer’s film stardom and potential , initially farmer quoted 10 lacs for entire piece of 65 acre land, but once aware about of his stature & bollywood stardom , he predictably hiked the price to 30 lacs , eventually after a lot of drama and negotiation, the entire 65 acres of land in heart Masinagudi was bought for 14 lacs by none other than .. OUR ALL TIME FAVORITE “MITHUN CHAKRABORTY” and he started “Monarch Safari Park” in 1991.
One must me thinking why such a build to a resort (no no they aren’t paying me ,sadly), let me clarify that, i am a huge bollywood fan and love my film industry and “JO FILMO SE KARE PYAR WOH MITHUN DA KA FAN NA HO AISA KAISE HO YAAR” .. I distinctly remember my parents once discussing about Mithun opening a hotel in ooty, i must be around 10-12 years old but blv you me.. it got stuck into my head so much so, that i always related ooty with Mithun da( In India “Da” ,is used in West Bengal Region to address elder brother )
Years gone by but the story of Mithun shooting his films in ooty and staying in a peaceful corner of jungle kept coming and i kept wondering and thinking “ek din .. ek din to jaonga ” I guess in all this the part attracted me the most was “how a man so busy and so successful in what he was doing could leave everything and to stay somewhere where he was not even recognized, or praised, no fan following nothing , a life which i always thought a film star would never opt for. So when he did and i heard those stories , i wanted to see that place where he goes and stays , which i was sure that if he had chosen a script , not many would dare do it must be a script worth a blockbuster.
And I was proven right.. this december when i finally made it to Monarch Safari Park… Masinagudi.. Wollah .. !! It is an awesome resort tucked in one corner of Madhumalai Forest periphery , with lush green lawns and accommodation for all needs. They have huge bungalows, cute tree houses, cottages and chalets. Food and service is delightfully surprising and great.
We were there on 30th December 2016, and that feeling of “year end hai liver ko pressure do” was dominant and also since we were a group of 4 adults and an 8 year old Mayhem(kid) we chose to stay in their Bungalow which had 2 plush rooms , 2 separate super clean bathrooms and huge lawn in front of the cottage. The scenery around the bungalow is worth a site .. have a look
Such an awesome location .. nahi ? So that evening we unscrewed a bottle of wine and old monk under billion stars, mild music and in midst of nowhere. IT WAS A MAGICAL EVENING !!
Now The Myth i would like to shatter here is, Mithun Hotels Pvt Ltd , opened its first resort not in ooty as projected but in Masinagudi and its called “Monarch safari Park” , the one in ooty is called “The Monarch” and is developed much later.
Now , reaching here from Bangalore would take about 6 hours , this place is after Bandipur, about 30 odd KMs . As mentioned we were in middle of a jungle so sighting animals like deer while driving on the highway is quite obvious but is quite an experience and thrill when you spot elephants, bear, peacocks, deers etc etc .. and all just being on this awesome highway.
Travel Tip : AVOID GOING FOR JUNGLE SAFARI PARK
Govt run jungle safari games are badly managed and it is nothing like you experience in ranthambore, corbett etc so one can easily avoid this and can opt for pvt jungle trips ( about 1200 a Jeep for 3 hours ) at periphery of forest , where surprisingly you witness maximum wildlife.. but having said that, each traveler is on his/her own and has his/her luck .. so don’t take it as gospel truth.. do what ever you feel like.
Some Animal sightings ; Enjoy
Share your experience and feedback in comment below .
Next Up is “How A Resort in Kerala almost ruined our new year’s eve” . .. Follow Follow
Cheers and Keep Breathing !!
Deal Detail Source : Staff’s Version/Story