Saturday, December 13, 2014
Home, sweet home
In 1910, P.M.A. Muthiah Chettiar, a Nattukottai Chettiar became the first of his clan to decide to settle down in Madras. His choice of location was Purasaiwalkam and he picked up a bungalow called "Natana Vilas". PMA Muthiah Chettiar went on to become one of the Directors of Indian Bank, and on to other great things.
Muthiah Chettiar sold the house to Annamalai Chettiar and it was then bought by S.S. Rajan, whose descendants own the property now. A few years ago, the owners agreed to have the house re-purposed to accommodate a restaurant. The first one which came up there was called Rasam. While the idea was interesting, it didn't catch the fancy of too many people and was closed within a couple of years.
Rasam was replaced by "Gokulam Veg Restaurant". That is Sri Krishna Sweets' restaurant brand and for a while, it was doing well. But slowly, the mother brand took over; today 'Natana Vilas' is more a heritage outlet for Sri Krishna Sweets, with the restaurant, by all accounts, being little more than a sign outside. No wonder it is sweet home!