Love marriage of king visakham 1880-1885.In 1859 when he was only 22 years old he defied his uncle and married the

woman he loved,

Lekshmi Pilla of Arumana Amma Veedu. His uncle Uthram Tirunal wanted him to marry his daughter from Thiruvattar Ammaveedu. However, Visakam Thirunal refused and married Panapillai Lekshmi Pillai Kochamma of Arumana Ammaveedu on his own choice. She was also a very intelligent

she was the first lady to start English education in the royal house.

Arumana Amma Veedu of Vellalamcodu Desam, which came under the jurisdiction of the maharaja of Travancore,

plays an important role in the history of the state. The Thankachi’s of this family were the consort of many kings,

starting from Dharmaraja (ME 933-973), Balarama Varma (ME 973-986) and Visakam Tirunal Rama Varma (ME1055-1060).

There is an interesting story behind the shifting of the capital from Padmanabhapuram to Thiruvananthapuram,

during the time of Dharmaraja. Dharmaraja married four times, his first wife was a Thankachi named ‘Vadasseri Kali Amma Nagamani Amma’ of Vadasseri Amma Veedu. Later he also married from Arumana, Thiruvattar and Nagercoil Amma Veedu. The story goes that the king made four separate mansions for his ‘Ammachi’s’ in Thiruvananthapuram and shifted them to the new houses. According to historian Ellamkulam, the king frequently visited his wife’s and later for his convenience, shifted the capital to Thiruvananthapuram, all this happened during the time of third Mysore War (1789-1792). Thus these Amma Veedu has had played an important role in the shifting of capital from Padmanabhapuram to Thiruvananthapuram.

Later when Travancore revolted against the British rule, under the leadership of Velu Thampi, there was a noble lady from this house to help him. It is said that Velu Thampi, during his revolt when he was in hiding, secured Palace secrets and confidential information with the help of an Arumana Amma, a noblewoman of the Arumana Amma Veedu who was the wife of the then Maharaja Bala Rama Varma.

Arumana Amma Veedu has passed hands from the original owners and is now owned by the distant relatives of the former owners.

The old house, probably built during the reign of Visakam Tirunal has large rooms with high ceiling, a courtyard and separate kitchen connected to the house by a corridor. However, Kizhakkemadhom Pratap, who is a descendant of Visakam Tirunal,

original tharavad of the family was a great ‘Ettu Kettu’, built in pure traditional style.

This picture of the Velliara Parayil 'ettukettu' was taken
by Ebbey Tharakan during the years the house was unoccupied. 

Later it was demolished and the present building was built during Visakam Tirunal. It is said that as a prince, Visakam Tirunal spend most of his time in Arumana.

Nearby there are the remains of a very old nalukettu, which unlike the new house, which had many evident European features, were made in pure traditional style using timbre. This old house was the Madhom used by the ‘potty’ of the family. There is a story that Marthanda Varma murdered the last potty brothers who lived there for their involvement in the conspiracy against him, later their mortal remains were found inside

History of Nalukettu
The Nalukettu is the traditional style of architecture of Kerala, wherein a house has a quadrangle in the centre. Originally the abode of the wealthy Brahmin and Nair families, this style of architecture has today become a status symbol among the well to do in Kerala. Nalukettu is evident in the traditional homes of the upper class homestead where customs and rituals were a part of life. The mansion is created using wood and tiles, central open courtyard and wondrous architecture. The interiors of the house are tastefully decorated with a wealth of antiques made from teak, sandalwood, mahogany etc.