First row seats to Keralan culture

The Malabar House

The Malabar House

, Kerala
, India

The Malabar House boutique heritage hotel brings alive the different vignettes of Fort Kochi’s history with a distinct artistic flair. This is the ideal base for history buffs and those looking for historic style, peace and Keralan culture amidst the bustle of Fort Kochi. With superbly crafted rooms and corners, it is like walking into a carefully curated art gallery. Antique and contemporary art and décor sits with each other in harmony. The architectural style draws from modern solutions but is inherently embedded in the traditional Keralan style; wood and natural stone are dominant materials that make the ambience earthy. From the rooms, dining experiences, Ayurveda and exploration of Fort Kochi, The Malabar House is the perfect base for an immersive holiday.

The Malabar House is the flagship hotel of Malabar Escapes group, and Joerg and Txuku’s dream project. After a holiday in Kerala in the early nineties, they decided to make India their home, and The Malabar House is clearly the drawing board. Designed and detailed to the last order, continuously evolving, at once homelike, intimate, stylish, Malabar House creates stunning visuals around you. And no doubt an Instagrammer’s paradise! Every frame around the hotel including the way the food is curated is a perfect frame – colour, depth, detail and a tiny bit of the inexplicable that speaks to its audience individually. So while one may be taken in by the startling red of a wall, an arch and a weathered wooden door, someone else could be blown away by the installation at the entrance foyer – a globe (an installation by Joerg) that hangs suspended close to a granite spiral stairway.

Our Rating: Premium
Property Type: Boutique


Addressed by a glistening estuary, Fort Kochi has been drawing traders, explorers and travellers to its shores for over six centuries. The setting of the town includes giant Chinese fishing nets, a 450-year-old synagogue, ancient mosques, Portuguese and Dutch-era houses and even some remnants of the British Raj. The intriguing blend of Portuguese, Dutch and British heritage when added to the tropical Keralan backdrop, makes the town a slow-paced region explore. Laze in arty cafes and relax at some of India’s finest heritage hotels. It’s also an important centre for Keralan arts (traditional and contemporary) and a standout place to see Kathakali and Kalarippayattu.


The rooms and suites at Malabar House exhibit more art that interest and engage you, but without clutter. Handpicked furnishings and decor in each room makes it delightfully heterogenous and intriguing. Ensuite bathrooms, interestingly visualised and quiet, restful living spaces, verandahs to sit around in and suites that open to terraces, sit-outs that bring in the sunshine and bird song are signature elements of Malabar Escapes’ design principle. The double deluxe rooms and double deluxe twin-bedded rooms on the ground floor open up into sit outs and gardens. The roof gardensuites are on the first floor, and the Malabar Suite is on the highest floor with a private terrace.


The foodie in you won’t stop training your lens to frame every tapas plate served at Divine. The food not only looks great but is delicious. The in-house bakery, the spread of Indian, regional and Continental cuisines served as salads, grills, curries and consomme;s is faultless to every world traveller. Malabar Junction is an al fresco dining area ideal for evenings. Divine, the wine lounge is bursting with energy at the end of the day, when guests are back from sightseeing and full of stories. The patio under the copse of trees looks magical with candle-lit dinner setting and Carnatic music performances in the background.


The Spa, essential to the Kerala offering is another unique statement concentrating on massages and treatments from the local Kalari art form, that will calm and refreshe you. Malabar Escapes is truly about experiences – and each hotel of the bouquet thoroughly enlivens the destinations through a series of experiences that connect you with the land, people and traditions. Some signature experiences include the Kuttanad backwater village experience, market and coir factory visits in Purity and culinary experiences that can be organised. Discovery – the turquoise coloured remodelled environment-friendly houseboat offers a backwater experience with overnight cruising, or sunset and day cruises. Every hotel has a menu of activities to choose from such as daily yoga, culinary classes, Sadhya – a traditional festive lunch, masala making and sunset canoe rides in a fisherman’s canoe. Around are community experiences like the one to Kuttanad and Chertala, visits to churches, palaces and temples, craft and art experiences, toddy tapping, local market visits and more.

Perfect For
families, groups and solo travellers who are looking to stay in an atmospheric setting, with more than just functional amenities. The Malabar House is a destination in itself, and one can easily spend a day doing nothing within the property itself.

Why we love this place

Each room of the property is unique since this is a refurbished heritage mansion. The artistic corners of Malabar House is like a walk through an art gallery.

About your host

Sometimes the idea is way ahead of its time. And that is what has transpired with the four unique gems as unique hospitality statements that Joerg and Txuku created in Kerala 21 years ago. Look around Kerala now and you’ll find a lot of art around the bay area in Fort Cochin intrinsically linked to a hospitality experience. But for a unique mix of art, design, food concepts, colour, culture, experiences and people – there is still only The Malabar House in Fort Kochi.

Trinity, Purity, and Discovery are extensions of the same idea to create art and design spaces from where one can explore Kerala allowing you to imagine the uniqueness of Malabar Escapes and its offerings. In a world where luxury is defined by individual curation, personal attention and life-changing experiences while ‘feeling at home’ and the awe of novelty. Kerala with Malabar Escapes gives you everything and then some!

Responsible/Sustainable Tourism

Restoration of the heritage building and adding an artistic slant with vignettes of Kerala has kept the history of the place alive. The hospitality is gentle and unobtrusive, yet extremely attentive. The staff is hired from the local community. Majority of the raw materials, ingredients and spices are procured from the local markets within a five mile radius. Only locally grown indigenous products are used and local businesses are supported. Indigenous plant species are planted around the hotel.

The Malabar House works closely with NGO’s and supports initiatives such as the Raksha School – a school for specially-abled students. Paper bags, aprons and lime squeezers that are purchased by guests help support the efforts of the students to make the school sustainable. The hotel also participates in all charity events conducted by the local police department to support the community, especially for schools where awareness programs and say no to drugs and other social values are shared by the Police to the young generation.

All rooms are provided with glass water bottles which are refilled every day with safe filtered drinking water. As a result, the usage of plastic bottled water in rooms has stopped. Recycled paper straws and paper carry bags have replaced their plastic counterparts. Regular cleaning drives are conducted for cleaning the surrounding areas. Waste management is done in liaison with local governing bodies and in line with the industrial standards. Water is recycled through aerobic sewage treatment programme, thereby reusing the water for gardening. Sensor taps are used to reduce the wastage of water and a solar powered water heater reduces electricity consumption along with energy saving lighting.

Our Recommendation

Stay at Fort Kochi's first boutique heritage hotel, where historical stalwarts have walked since the 18th century. The property moved between hands of spice traders and bankers, giving it more historical slants with every different owner. What you experience now is the composite culture of East and West, with a delightful individualistic style.

Can’t find a suitable itinerary that features a destination, experience or accommodation you fancy? All our group tours and holiday ideas can be personalised, or we can create a tailor made itinerary for you.

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