Mountains. ART. Pottery. Life

The Mirage-Andretta

The Mirage-Andretta

, Himachal Pradesh
, India

Inspired by the mud brick construction of the Main House, Denis’s home at the time, he built two cottages out of mud in the garden and established a homestay in 2008. His background in art and love for Indian artefacts steered the interior decoration choices and the mood of the property and later, when he acquired the White House next door, he dedicated it’s interior decor to reflect art rooted in the Andretta Artist Colony. Having been a practitioner of yoga for many years, he expanded on the Homestay concept to include a Yoga Retreat, which itself has evolved into a retreat venue for many disciplines. The peace and quiet and views of the Himalayas are a constant inspiration !

Our Rating: Mid-Range
Property Type: Boutique


History of The Mirage: The Main House of The Mirage was built in 1948 by the drama teacher of Prithviraj Kapoor, Jaya Dyal, both of whom arrived in Andretta from Lahore at the time of Partition. Along with other members of Lahore’s cultural scene at that time, they joined Norah Richards, who had established an artist’s colony here in the 1920s. It passed through several hands before Denis Harrap acquired the house 16 years ago and established the Homestay. His neighbour Malti Chandihok eventually passed on and her house, the White House, became part of The Mirage, Andretta. The Yoga Shala and swimming pool followed. Today it’s a Homestay – Retreat, one of the best in the state.


Main House Dhauladhar View Suite: As the name suggests provides an breathtaking view of the Himalayan mountain range.

Main House Family Suite: The family suite is perfect for a family of 3. It comprises of a double bedroom attached with a single occupancy room. This suite provides a nice view of the hill forest behind the property, and has a small open sitting area next to the room.

Main House Double Occupancy Room; This is the third room in the Main House which has a comfortable king size bed and offers access to the Main house open sitting area.

The Garden Cottages: This is a set of two single room cottages nestled in a beautiful nook in our garden. These cottages provide private access to its occupants as they are not in a shared larger space like the rooms in the Main house or The White House.

The White House Rooms: Superior AC Suite is a beautiful colourful room, done up with exposed bricks finish and large french windows which expose the room to ample sunlight during the day. The room also provides guests with a sitting room.

The White House Ground Floor Double Occupancy Room: The second room on the ground floor is a double occupancy room with a king size bed and a walk in dressing room. This room is perfect for a family travelling with a child. The room has bright red and gold colors and it provides a very calming yet energising aura.

The White House First floor Double Occupancy Balcony Room is one of our smaller rooms but has access to a beautiful balcony and is large enough for a couple looking to enjoy the sunrise and some breathtaking views along with their morning coffee from their balcony.

The White House Family Suite is a large suite comrising of a two bedroom set which can easily accomodate 4 adults on beds and has place for a double mattress as well. Normally groups of 4 to 6 adults like to book this room.


Lunch and Dinner have fixed menus which are shared with guests one day prior. Meals are served family buffet style in our cozy dining room. This space and the adjoining verandah are the heart of the property, where many evenings are spent chatting, laughing and connecting with friends and other guests. We do have a snacks menu but inform guests that wait time for snack orders can only be placed between meal timings and minimum wait period is 30-45 mins for snacks ordered.


Pottery : The oldest Pottery studio in India, set up in 1961 by the renowned potter Gurcharan Singh. His son Mini and wife Mary still continue to call Andretta their home and watch over the pottery. Their student Shubham helps run and manage the pottery. They offer 30-40 minutes lessons fortourists and allow you to create magic on the potter’s wheel and offer to bake the product and ship it to you once its ready.
This studio is a special place for the arts in general and ceramics in particular. It is run b Elodie
Alexandre and Reyaz Badaruddin, a ceramic artist duo from France and India. You’ll find their
cheerful whimsical blue and white pieces pottery all across our property.

A recently set up studio by an astrophysicist who came to Andretta 2 years ago for a pottery
course and found his calling. He quit his job and now has made Andretta his home and become
a full time Potter.

Why we love this place

Why stay in regular places when you can be "rare", this holds very true to the synergy between Rare India and The Mirage. An endearing history recreated The Mirage offers guests a very unique experience of luxury with in a time capsule.

About your host

Meet Denis Harrap, a New Zealander who made India his home over 30 years ago. An art director by profession who worked on the iconic Michale Jackson Thriller album, Denis has lived in over five continents in his journey of life and he remains one of the highlights of the guests who get to spend time hearing his stories and laughing the night away. Denis also was amongst the first few people to have paraglided from Dharamshala to Manali. A jack of all trades and a master of all is Denis. He holds a pilots license, a sailing captains license and a pargliding license.

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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Our Accommodation Ratings

Opulent: Exceptional, unashamedly the best of sheer luxury. (£££££)

Luxury: Outstanding levels of 5* comfort, hospitality and facilities. (££££)

Premium: Excellent levels of comfort and hospitality and a wide range of facilities. (£££)

Mid-Range: Good levels of comfort and hospitality, with a reasonable range of facilities. (££)

Simple: Clean and simple, no frills. Often in areas of natural beauty or near wildlife reserves. (£)