At Suyati, we like to show off. Especially when we have visitors! So we have put our Suyatian spin on the “The Guest is God” theme and have exploited every opportunity to welcome our guests with traditional charm, while not forgetting to show off God’s Own Country and its culture.
So every time a visitor comes (which is pretty often!), we iron our Kerala sarees and mundus, hunt high and low for jasmine garlands, shine up the brass lamps, and start mixing the sandal paste with rose-scented water. But before you think we are going a bit over the top, let us explain the logic behind this madness.
There is always a practical and logical explanation behind most traditions. For instance, the fragrance of jasmine is believed to have stress relieving properties, and has also been used in aromatherapy for its anti-depressant properties. It helps the mind in relaxing, and freshens up the brain by helping in the release of happy hormones.
Just like jasmine, sandal also has a calming effect on the mind. It has cooling properties, which, when applied to the forehead, works wonders. This helps the mind in focusing better, and relieves stress too.
Oil lamps are a part of every major ceremony and celebration in India. Apart from the obvious benefit of dispelling darkness, it is believed that seeing a flame helps in better concentration and communication.
But all these cultural activities are not limited to our office foyer! Time and weather permitting, we also take them on day and weekend trips to Munnar, Alleppey, Vazhachal, Fort Kochi and Mattancherry and show them a bit of our beautiful state. So is the Kerala sadhya – we insist our visitors try this at least once during their visit.
During this process, we have learned a lot about our customers and visitors too. Little things make them happy – eating a sadhya with their hands, feeling the silk of the ‘ponnadas’ as we drape it over their shoulders, getting their hair messed up with the Marigold flowers we throw at them, dancing along with the chendamelam during our Onam celebrations. These little moments have turned our visitors into happy, delighted and satisfied ambassadors for Kerala and Suyati.