Gilgit Serena’s facade is unassuming. The driveway is paved with uneven pieces of slate. There are two security barriers and a guard posted at each. The lobby is standard plush red carpet with a hand woven pattern, the staff welcoming with open and generous smiles. In the lobby I spy an HBL ATM and four small handicraft stores tucked away in the corner.
When you head towards the main entrance, you have no idea that rooms and views on the other side are going to be a little different from what you are used to on your travels. You are focused on getting your luggage inside, checking in and collecting your room keys. Tired after a two day road trip, the first thing on your mind is a long hot shower followed by an extended hot meal. You are thinking about how to make space for a care free nap in between where you can give your bones a rest from the jolts received on the ride to Chilas.
All of that is before you pull the curtains on the side, as you set aside your luggage and take a peak outside…