The Telegraph
Sunday , October 28 , 2012
Since 1st March, 1999
CIMA Gallary

Idli-yoga diet draws duchess
- Charles’s wife in Bangalore to rejuvenate

Bangalore, Oct. 27: Buttermilk, rasam and a spot of yoga will be the fare the next few days for Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, who is back at a “holistic health centre” near Bangalore after two years.

Prince Charles’s wife will be undergoing “rejuvenation therapy” at Soukya in Whitefield, 22km from the city centre, sources at the spa said.

She checked in around 4.30am today, accompanied by about 10 members of her personal staff. This is her second visit to the centre whose guest list includes Archbishop Desmond Tutu, actors Deepika Padukone and Rajinikanth, Maharaja Gaj Singh II of Jodhpur and his wife, and several West Asia royals.

Camilla first stayed here over a weekend in the run-up to the 2010 Commonwealth Games before joining her husband in New Delhi for the event’s inauguration. She was the second British royal to visit Soukya after Duchess of York Sarah Ferguson in 1997.

Soukya declined to be too specific about Camilla’s therapy. A senior official merely said she was here for a routine session that could last three to four days.

However, some general information about her possible treatment and diet emerged. A Soukya source said “rejuvenation” involves ayurvedic massages, yoga sessions and a controlled low-fat diet. The regimen for the 65-year-old Camilla may include mud baths as an anti-ageing therapy.

Run by Dr Isaac Mathai, a homoeopath from Kottayam in Kerala, the centre follows medicinal systems such as ayurveda, homoeopathy, Unani and Siddha.

As during her 2010 trip, Camilla will have a low-fat Kerala sadya (meal on banana leaves) this time too. Breakfast is likely to include puttu (a Kerala dish of steamed rice cakes), idlis and dosas.

Like the previous time, Camilla is staying in the 2,500sqft presidential suite at the centre, known for its ashram-like ambience. The three-bedroom suite has an open-air shower and a pond, but is located safely away from prying eyes and the paparazzi.

BJP leader Venkaiah Naidu, who spent eight days at Soukya in 2009, was “very impressed”.

“I just loved the place, its cleanliness, location and the staff,” he told The Telegraph.

“The day started around 5.30am and we did yoga. Breakfast was served between 8.30 and 9, lunch between 12.30pm and 1, and dinner between 7.30pm and 8. The time in between was spent on therapies and whatever else, like walking and exercising.”

Padukone, who did her stint in September 2011, wrote in the guest book: “Though here just for the weekend, I feel completely relaxed and rejuvenated! Thank you for the amazing hospitality, great food and wonderful memories.”

“I came here with discomfort in the mind,” wrote Rajinikanth. “Today I am leaving this place with peaceful mind and healthy body. Thank you Dr Mathai. Wonderful job. I will visit again.”

A police team has been posted at the wellness centre for Camilla’s security, an officer said. Scotland Yard had earlier done a recce.