Architecture intersecting with cultural conservation–that is a topic that will always get my attention. When I read this article it reminded me a bit of the early days of scouting out the location that would become Xandari Harbour’s restaurant, 51. Hard to resist reading, based on the title, and the article does not disappoint:
Architectural Digest is not the reason we do what we do. But when they take note, in any manner, we feel the love. Xandari Harbour soft-opened, and within a very short time got an inordinate amount of good press even before the formal opening. Yet the AD mention, which was neither a cover story nor even a particularly huge feature, had a different level of impact on those of us on the team that developed it.
George M George, the visionary who saw the potential in the run down property and particularly the crumbling godown (waterfront warehouse) featured on the left above post-restoration, was that team’s source of energy, inspiration, encouragement–this would not have happened without his excellent leadership. Continue reading
The October-November, 2014 issue of Conde Nast Traveler’s India edition came with a special supplement. This low resolution image of that feature includes the cover and the page inside that featured our newly opened property (click the image to be taken to a more recent honor from the same magazine; when you get to the December recommendation be sure to scroll down to see our mention last month on that publication’s website).
The timeline may have looked choppy in the first love letter, but that is how it goes with reminiscences, even when the archival material is immaculate. To give an overview of the Xandari story in a manner that conveys my deep debt of gratitude, but also keep it reasonably short (two decades condensed to 12 posts), I am going to jump around starting with the image above.
* blurry text on the right of the image is reprinted at the end below
On the left of that image is the cover of a special edition–India’s Stunning Boutique Hotels–published by Conde Nast Traveller in October 2014; to the right of the cover was the story about the property we had just opened for our client MLHS, led by George M George. This publication arrived at exactly the moment we were opening the hotel, then named Spice Harbour, soon to be rechristened Xandari Harbour. And Raxa Collective, the code name for our assignment with MLHS, would eventually (July 1, 2016, thus these dozen love letters starting yesterday) revert to our company’s proper name, La Paz Group. Continue reading
You Are Here.
Three small words found on map boards from metros to malls around the world, usually accompanied by a red dot. Existential words to be sure. Words whose underlying message begs us to live with intention.
The RAXA Collective team crafted the Xandari Harbour walking map with the same deliberateness.
Come explore with us!
Step out from Xandari Harbour’s red door. Go right. Go left. You can’t go wrong!
click below to view the map!
Malabar Soul Food – embodies the spices of the land blended with the memories of distant homelands, taking people back to the time when people who loved them cooked for them in a way that was meaningful and satisfying.
Food is about sense memories: it embodies our personal and social history, giving us a sense of place, of home…
Water and light… History and tradition… The patina of layered paint on classic four-part doors, and sun-faded signs help inspire the Xandari Harbour color palette.
The design brief was simple: honor history, but be not a slave to it. Embrace the fresh language of Indian aesthetics while celebrating the materials of the past.
Two entrances are here to welcome you. Choose classic – Choose modern. They both lead inside.
There’s something beautifully timeless about Bazar Road in Mattanchery. The classic counting methods and long-standing relationships between the stevadores and shop keepers. The ebb and flow of commerce as merchandise moves through the streets. The noble patterns of fishermen setting their nets or going out to sea.
Experience a portal into those journeys here…
What is it about the sea? The fact that it changes, and the light changes, and the ships change. The feel of being entwined with the ocean? That when we go back to it – whether it is to sail or to watch it – we are going back from whence we came.
– Rosanna Abrachan
The teamwork involved in crafting the videos that help define the guest experience at Xandari Harbour was as satisfying as creating the property itself. Thank you Anoodha and the RAXA Collective – Xandari Harbour teams!
Stay tuned for more!
A mural painted as part of the Kochi Muziris Biennale 2014. PHOTO: Rosanna
Cardamom, star anise, pepper, cinnamon.. name the spice! PHOTO: Rosanna
A sculpture atone of the stores selling antiques in Jew Town. PHOTO: Rosanna
The bell tower of the ancient Malabar Yehudan Synagogue. PHOTO: Rosanna
Street art on a street in Fort Kochi. PHOTO: Rosanna
Colored walls like these add extra charm to these colonial towns. PHOTO: Rosanna
Anoodha soaks in the art aura at Gallery OED. PHOTO: Rosanna
On location of the shoot. PHOTO: Rosanna
A chance encounter with a sculptor. PHOTO: Rosanna
I recently had the opportunity to participate in the planning and execution of a video project as part of my internship. We worked with creative director Anoodha Kunnath, who has already produced many videos about different topics.
The first step was of course a discussion between Anoodha and Raxa Collective to understand what they both expected from the video. This took place about one month ago – at the beginning of my training – so it was really interesting for me to be aware, in a different way, of the company and its philosophy. The main goal of Anoodha’s work will be to communicate all the characteristics of Xandari Harbour (one of the hotels developed and managed by Raxa Collective) and of course its fascinating location.
View from Xandari Harbour; Photo credit: Derek Spier
This weekend I arrived in India for the first time. My name is Lucie and I’m currently studying business at Audencia School of Management in Nantes, France. I’ll spend four months here in an internship with Raxa Collective.
My first “home” with Raxa Collective is Xandari Harbour, in Fort Kochi. When I arrived the first thing that astonished me was the warm welcome from the team of co-workers, also named the “Raxa Collective Family”. To be honest, as a French girl I am not used to this kind of welcome. Right away they gave me everything I would need to be comfortable with them and my new surroundings. They definitely know how to welcome a foreigner! From the moment I arrived the team helped me forget my 31 hours of travel, replacing it with the knowledge of how lucky I am to be here.
If you have already read some articles on this blog, you probably will agree with my assessment regarding the link between nature and the company. Now that I know a little more about Raxa Collective it’s clear to me that we can’t talk about it without talking about nature, too. So, as much as the warm welcome, I was also really impressed by the place and the amazing landscape.
The sunset was for me the best moment. Continue reading