Rooms with a view: Boutique hotel ‘Dar-Es-Salam’ is a feast of Kashmiri art decor

Dar-Es-Salam Hotel Srinagar

Built as a family home at the banks of Nigeen Lake in the early 1940s by a resident of Srinagar, ‘Dar-Es-Salam’ is an aesthetic retreat exuding the unmistakable charm of fine workmanship by  Kashmiri artists.

Perched amidst the majestic grove of chinar tree with the placid lake to surfeit one’s eye, the boutique hotel  Dar-Es-Salam’ stands in the glory of heavenly beauty of the  valley. The Art decor facade with heritage interiors of Lobbies and rooms are decorated with Kashmiri artefacts and antiques. Most of the rooms are overlooking the lake and the lotus pond nearby. Lone Cedar tree adorns the garden overlooking the lake.

The establishment carries a legacy of resident Maqsud Ali who wanted to build a fishing house near Nigeen Lake. Archtecuture of old houses in Kashmir has had Persian, Mughal and British influences. It was the desire of the grandfather  of the current owner of hotel to imbue the interiors with Kashmiri arts and crafts.

Dar-Es-Salam Hotel Srinagar

The interiors manifest an umimpeachable Kashmiri workmanship with Khatamband ceilings carved in deodar—a technique of geometric wood blocks, fitted together like a jigsaw puzzle. Persian rugs, ornate walnut-wood bars and consoles, carved detailing on furniture, brass, copper and silverware, and papier mâché assortments which cast a magnetic effect to the patrons. The antique mahogany cupboard displays pieces from the family’s collection of Chinese porcelain vases and tiles of European origin.

As per the current owner, being a connoisseur of art his grandfather handpicked the finest artisans in order to  create the interiors and chose all the upholstery and other fabrics used in  the artwork under his supervision.
However vulnerable the valley may be but it has a new address, a stunning art decor hotel whose charms can diffuse all the chaos thanks to the masters who immortalized the valleys arts in the  interiors.

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