The name Silverstone Mansions Cottages was inspired by the enormous mica-rich boulders discovered buried under the topsoil. They were extracted, then split, and the resulting flagstones used in the pathways and parking compound. Look out for their namesake glitter which is most impactive on calm moonlit nights.


The construction of Silverstone Mansions by my wife Christine and I was inspired by the magnificent location of Manali, at the foot of the Rohtang Pass, and a profound appreciation of traditional craftsmanship. Our vision was to combine the enduring stone and wood components of local building techniques with the luxury and comfort of a modern “home from home” in order to share this unique part of Himachal Pradesh with our guests.

Quality cannot be rushed. Every stage in its building has been painstakingly and minutely personally supervised. From sourcing and transporting the local mica-rich stone from a neighbouring hillside, bringing the finest deodar and walnut timbers from the local Kullu Manali Valley and selecting the superb granite and marble for which India is famous, behind each architectural element lies a story. We sought out the most highly skilled craftsmen – temple wood-carvers for the main entrance doors, highly specialised stone masons to do justice to the granite work surfaces and traditional marble flooring designs and the most skilled carpenter family for the ceiling and wall wood-panelling, parquet flooring and hand-made furniture. All this is complemented by the finest traditional Indian embroideries, fabrics and furnishings.


Owner-manager Navrang Thakur was born and brought up in the remote Miyar Valley in Lahoul on the far side of the Rohtang Pass. He was the oldest son of poor but enlightened parents who encouraged his interest in education and enrolled him in the first primary school that opened in the valley. As there was no secondary school education at that time …and no roads….the journey to secondary school in Chamba involved a two day walk on ravine-hugging goat tracks and passes plus a cave stop overnight. There followed a career of 28 years in the Himachal Forestry Department during which time he met and married his wife Christine. He finally retired as a Gazetted Officer so they could concentrate on building Silverstone Mansions Cottages together.

Christine Thakur was born and raised in Wales, U.K. She trained as a health professional and specialised in supporting people with learning disabilities. She and Navrang met when she was trekking in the Indian Himalayas.

Navrang and Christine love meeting new people and discovering India’s rich and varied archaeological and architectural heritage. They are looking forward to continuing such explorations. Over the past 30 years, when the craftsmen and workmen took family leave, they have seized the opportunity to visit many countries in Europe and South-East Asia as well as Australia and Canada.

Soni Devi is Navrang’s younger sister and the third member of our household.

The 4th “family member” is Diya the dog,- a vocal but friendly husky mix.