Srinagar: A few years ago Muzammil Hussain and his brother Tafazzul Hussain were featured among the ‘50 people to know in the Himalayas’ by the Condé Nast Traveller. And now the Hussain brothers have impressed the new-age travelers in the Ladakh region yet again with a first-of-its-kind boutique resort ‘Black Sheep’.
A blend of Central Asian and Islamic architecture with a ‘young vibe’, the boutique resort in Kargil has a semi-indoor bouldering wall, dormitory, suites, and a workplace for new age travelers on a ‘workation’ – all in one place.
Talking to the Kashmir Monitor, Muzammil said they wanted to appeal to the new age travelers with a wide range of facilities that are not usually available under one roof.
“Post Covid, we have a new type of travelers, who come for a workation – where they combine work with vacation. Like working from home, they like to work while on a vacation in the mountains. That is why we have a designated workstation with a projector and other facilities. We also have a semi-indoor bouldering wall as the young travelers like rock climbing. We conduct outdoor trips to nearby villages and treks besides activities like apricot harvesting as the new age travelers do not just come for sightseeing,” he said.
He said another unique feature was that they catered to both budget and high-end travelers.
“We have suites and standard rooms out of which seven have a river view. For budget travelers, we have two dormitories – females and mixed. We serve North Indian, Continental, Ladakhi, Tibetan, and Kashmiri (à la carte). So far, the response has been overwhelming for both domestic and foreign markets,” he said.
In 2017, the Hussain brothers were featured among the ‘50 people to know in the Himalayas’ by the Conde Nast Traveller after they had adopted the border village of Hunderman in Ladakh.
The Hussain brothers would conduct art residencies, heritage walks, and cultural documentation projects in the area that led to the setting up of ‘Unlock Hunderman – Museum of Memories’.
The ‘Black Sheep’ is now getting rave reviews from travelers to Ladakh.
“What a pretty place to work!” wrote unicorn_stealer on Instagram while another traveler commented: “A wise monk told me- He visited so many places but today at his age he has turned his attention inward. Isn’t that where real peace is.. if you can be still inside then no matter what happens around you, you are peaceful..(sic).”
Talking to The Kashmir Monitor, Wiqar Bashir, a recent traveler to the boutique resort, said: “Black Sheep gives a feel of a unique mix of hippie, traditional and modern. It has a beautiful open river-facing restaurant that gives a panoramic view of old Kargil and its bazaar. Evening tea there is a sheer pleasure, with the town lighted and the view of north mountain ranges changing colors at the sundown.”