In 1934, Gurudev Swami Sivananda left Swargashram and came to this side of the Ganga along with four disciples, and occupied the eastern side room of Ramashram Dharmashala. They found a dilapidated, disused, old abandoned cowshed. It was cleaned thoroughly, improved a bit by fixing doors and windows, and occupied on 28th March. The Maharaja of Tehri gave to Gurudev this vast land for establishing an Ashram. Some rooms were made at the present Hospital site. But Gurudev gave it the name Ananda Kutir.
He had a strong spirit of renunciation and detachment. As the land was given to him, he preferred to live outside that premise. He occupied a dilapidated kutir on the banks of the Ganga on rent of rupee one per year. At that time, it was the dark room with inadequate ventilation, where his bed is kept these days and the adjacent front where his Puja with Lord Krishna's picture is kept. The roof was of dry grass only. After some years, the adjacent portion, where his wiring table and chair are kept were built and proper masonry root was also made. There were no steps lading to the Ganga. There was sand all around.
By staying in this kutir, Gurudev could maintain in his seclusion and purse intense sadhana and his prolific writings. He stayed here for more than twenty-five years - and these were the years after his highest spiritual Experience - till his Maha-samadhi. The Divine Life Society, the disciples and the visiting devotees were given guidance and inspiration from here. In short, this is the most important landmark in the history of the Divine Life Society. The important articles that Gurudev used are put here, as if he is still present here and is using them. Other articles that he used but are not of daily use are carefully preserved in trunks. To preserve its spiritual vibrations and sanctity, daily Puja, bhajan-kirtan and Ganga-Arati are done here. Devotees come here and sit for meditation. The ambience of the place and the articles used by Gurudev make his subtle so alive that it is experienced by devotees. This is the place where you must spend some time in prayer and meditation in the lively presence of this ever-present saint.