Hotel Harsh Ananda as it is called today began its operations in the year 1890 under the name Hotel Barnett’s.
It was the very first hotel and remained the only hotel for a good 30 years , in the city of Allahabad (then Prayag).
The operations were being run by an English couple Mr. & Mrs. G.H. Barnett, who had taken the property on rent from the Indian landlords. Barnett’s as it was popularly known, was a gem in the heart of the city – palatial building , sprawling lawns, huge beautiful rooms , great restaurant and an amazing bakery.
Soon it became very popular among the aristocratic Indians and the British alike. It was a melting pot of all high society social gatherings in the city.
Marked by excellence in every aspect it was a landmark and a symbol of pride for the people of the city.
Barnett’s in History
18th Feb 1911 – History was being made – The world’s first airmail service took off between Allahabad and Naini on February 18, 1911, with 6500 letters and 40 autograph picture postcards in Humber Sommer biplane. French aviator Henry Pequet was the pilot.It was a time for celebration and Hotel Barnett’s (now Hotel Harsh Ananda) could not be left out – it supplied with all the great food and hosted a party to mark the historic occasion.
15th Aug 1947 -Come eve of India’s independence – 14th August 1947 and Barnett’s under the control of Indian management now was in full swing to welcome the great day. Barnett’s organized a ball-room night. It wanted the British to also participate in the Independence Day festivities. The celebration was held on Aug 14 and was to conclude at mid-night to herald the Independence Day. An English band was invited to play that evening but they did not know the tune of ‘Jan Gan Man’ which was decided to be played at 12 midnight so a record was purchased & the gramophone was readied. At 12 midnight the band stopped. ‘Jan gan mana’ was played for full three minutes. The crowd of Englishmen and women, Anglo-Indians and others stood respectfully and silent for the duration of the song. Once that was over, there were loud bursts of jubilation. Sound of crackers could be heard from so many sides in the city. The British rule had ended. India had become free.
Between the period 1995-2008 – did business under the name Hotel Harsh , but then it reopened with complete renovation and a new lease of life in Nov 2011. It was now called Hotel Harsh Ananda with the motto & belief to let its guests Re-live the Heritage as it once was and the experience the luxury and hospitality feeling still at home.
Our Esteemed Guest List
1. Rabindra Nath Tagore (the kavi guru) had come to the city, along with his nephew in November 1900 ,and stayed at the Barnett Hotel (now Hotel Harsh Ananda) on the M G Marg, Civil Lines, for three days.
2. Raj Kapoor happened to reside in Barnett’s on a visit to Allahabad when he came for shooting some scenes for his later to be blockbuster “Jis Desh Main Ganga Behti Hai” .Raj Kapoor addressed his fans standing in lawns from the roof of the hotel
3. Prithviraj Kapoor in 1950s for his plays. He addressed at Barnetts a gathering of displaced persons from the Frontier Province from where the Kapoor family came to Mumbai several decades before partition.
4. In 1954 world famous actress Vivien Leigh’s mother Gertrude stayed at Barnetts Hotel (now Hotel Harsh Ananda)
5. Shammi Kapoor stayed at Barnetts when he came to the city for his plays.
6. Uttam Kumar, the bengali screen idol in those days stayed at Barnetts Hotel (now Hotel Harsh Ananda)
7. Talat Mehmood visied Allahabad in the winter of 1957. He was then at the peak of his popularity and had come here to sing in the Allahabad University India Swadeshi Exhibition. He stayed at Barnetts which was flooded with Talat fans
8.President Radhakrishnan also stayed once in Room No 8 , when he came here as BHU/s VC to attend a conference
9. Pran along with Manoj Kumar came to Allahabad in 1970 for shooting some scenes of ‘Poorab aur Paschim’ and was staying in Barnetts in Room No 8 and 9
10. Many others including film stars, poets and writers, music directors, members of sports teams , various artists, Viceroys , etc. enjoyed the Barnetts hospitality.
- Air Conditioned Rooms with separate climate control
- In room Tea/Coffee Maker
- In room mini refrigerator
- 24 hrs Room Service
- 24 hr hot/cold water supply
- Daily Housekeeping
- High Speed Wireless Internet Access
- In room Direct dial telephones
- LCD Television with live satellite news / entertainment transmission
- In Room Electronic Safe
- Daily News Paper
- Car Rental Service on demand
- Laundry Service
- Wake up call
- Emergency Medical Services
- Air Conditioned Conference / Banquet Facilities – Capacity up to 1200 people
- 24 Hrs Front Desk
- Concierge facilities
- Private car parking zone
- Lush Green Lawns to relax and host the most lavish of Parties/Weddings of up to 3500 people
- Non Smoking Rooms
Some of the services and facilities may or may be not be available on a 24 hr basis or without advance request. Fees on certain facilities and services may apply. All facilities may not be available in all room categories.