When it comes to luxury and high living, Indian hotels don’t disappoint. Choose from our selection of the best addresses in the country for a blissful holiday. By Adila Matra, Rashima Nagpal & Sushmita Srivastav
1. THE LEELA PALACE UDAIPUR
Set on the banks of Lake Pichola, The Leela Palace Udaipur lets you enjoy the City of Lakes with oodles of royalty and luxury. Stay in either the Lake Wing or the Palace Wing, and marvel at the elegant, contemporary interiors adorned with traditional Rajasthani art and craftwork by local artisans. All the four opulent suites here sport art and artefacts that weave a spell of luxury. Spread over two levels, the Duplex Suite has a living room leading to an open-air plunge pool and jacuzzi, a master bedroom that offers a view of the City Palace, and a bathtub that looks out at the calm waters of Lake Pichola. When it comes to wining and dining, the hotel promises a walk-in wine cellar and an unending array of international cuisines for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
The Leela Palace Udaipur offers The Destination Dining experience that can be arranged at various venues, such as the Spa Alcove, Guava Garden Patio bordering the Lake Pichola, the Sheesh Mahal Terrace or the Haveli Roof Top.
2. PARK HYATT HYDERABAD
Stay in one of the 185 stylishly designed rooms and 24 spacious suites at Park Hyatt Hyderabad, and experience opulent architecture and unparalleled service in the business and entertainment centre of Banjara Hills. With a collection of signature restaurants, handcrafted menus, and interactive kitchens, Park Hyatt Hyderabad promises the best of fine dining. While The Dining Room is an all-day-dining restaurant, a meal at Tre Forni Restaurant and Bar promises an authentic Italian experience. The Business Centre with its state-of- the-art facilities, such as fully equipped workstations is sought-after by business travellers.
Park Hyatt curates city tours on request. Enjoy the heritage and culture of Hyderabad on a customised tour.
3. ITC Grand Goa
Swaying coconut palms and shimmering lagoons welcome you at ITC Grand Goa, a property set in South Goa, amidst landscaped gardens. The fact that it provides direct access to the Arossim Beach is an added advantage, and just what you need to unwind and relax. The village-styled resort draws inspiration from Indo-Portuguese architecture. The theme of regional coastal allure runs throughout the property, in its service and cuisine. Choose from the 74 Garden View Rooms, 126 Lagoon View Rooms, 16 Pool View Rooms, and 21 Sea View Rooms, all of which feature personal outdoor spaces in the form of a balcony or patio. Relax in the open-plan marble baths with spa-inspired sunken tubs. Some rooms offer outdoor rain showers and secret gardens too. There are six signature food and beverage outlets to take care of your gastronomy desires, and the multiple outdoor and indoor venues are ideal for bespoke banqueting, special events, and weddings.
Kaya Kalp-The Royal Spa at ITC Grand Goa weaves its own brand of magic on mind, body, and soul. The 16 exquisitely designed treatment suites are arranged around an expansive space that oozes tranquillity, and the spa menu comprises signature treatments that promote holistic well-being.
4. THE IMPERIAL NEW DELHI
Undisputedly regal, The Imperial New Delhi is one of the most impeccable hotels in India. Charming travellers since 1936, the hotel’s vintage vibe underlines almost every experience here. Be it the 235 rooms and suites that impress with their classic white and wooden furnishings, a meal at any of its nine prestigious dining venues, or a larger-than-life celebration in its Royal Ballroom—the hotel promises hospitality with a dose of nostalgia. Its enviable location on Janpath Road adds to the colonial-era experience. From a luncheon at Daniell’s Tavern to a therapeutic session at the Imperial Spa or Salon, there
is no dearth of indulgences at The Imperial New Delhi.
You must try the Imperial Culinary Club, an interactive cookery show that lets you in on the hotel’s sought-after recipes.
The second property from the house of Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts has arrived in style in May this year. Located in the landmark region of Embassy One, Bengaluru, this smart, sleek, and sophisticated property is well in sync with the city’s cosmopolitan spirit. The credit for its look and feel goes to the international design firm Yabu Pushelberg, which has dressed the hotel in a versatile contemporary vibe. From its aesthetically pleasing rooms and lounges to tranquil gardens, the Four Seasons Hotel Bengaluru is as fit for a business visit as it is for a family staycation. More than anything else, the culinary expertise of Executive Chef Stephane Calvet—whose tryst with cooking goes back to the vegetable markets of his French village, followed by his career in Sweden, Vietnam, Japan, Thailand, and China—shines through the dining experience.
Featuring two stunning F&B venues, the 21st floor at the Four Seasons Hotel Bengaluru has become the talk of the town. Think innovative Asian dishes and artisanal cocktails served with incomparable views of the Bengaluru skyline.
6. The Lodhi
Imagine an urban oasis, replete with water bodies and manicured green lawns, in the centre of the capital city of Delhi. The Lodhi, an iconic landmark of Lutyens’ Delhi, offers luxury in a setting that is contemporary yet rooted in Indian tradition. Work meets relaxation at The Silver Lounge, where comfortable armchairs and a tranquil, elegant ambience set the tone for business meetings. Dine at Elan—with an eclectic range of seasonal menu options—against the backdrop of a scenic courtyard and a bar area. To satiate your sweet tooth, drop by The Lodhi Bakery that offers some of the city’s most artisanal desserts and savouries. For your dose of wellness, head to The Lodhi Spa—an oasis of tranquillity offering traditional Indian therapies as well as contemporary international treatments. Guests can choose from a range of body treatments including Ayurveda, and the spa also houses an exquisite Turkish hammam.
The Lodhi has partnered with the Apparao galleries of Chennai, which means there’s a lot of contemporary Indian art around the hotel.
7. INTERCONTINENTAL CHENNAI MAHABALIPURAM RESORT
A pleasing blend of modern luxuries and the renascent Coromandel style, InterContinental Chennai Mahabalipuram Resort is a sprawling five-star property overlooking the Bay of Bengal. Chic, bright, and minimal, the rooms here come in three varieties, replete with walk-in closets and rain showers. Dining at the resort is a serious affair. Melting Pot:The Market Café offers an interesting range of European, South Asian, and Peninsular Indian cuisines. The Chinese speciality restaurant and the winner for Best Chinese Cuisine at our Delicious Food Awards 2019, Tao of Peng, serves exemplary recipes in a world-class setting.
Book Club InterContinental to experience unparalleled personalised hospitality—thoughtful welcome touches, culinary delights, exclusive Club Lounge access, and more.
8. ANDAZ DELHI
Merely 2.6 kilometres away from the international airport, Andaz Delhi stands a class apart from the rest of the hospitality addresses in Aerocity. With vibrant colours and characters, kitschy artworks, and soaring glass walls that draw in ample natural light, this luxury lifestyle hotel by Hyatt sure knows how to lure one in. Treat yourself to an opulent stay in any of the 401 resident-style guestrooms including 45 suites. In addition to these, the hotel also offers 129 serviced apartments that are designed to offer a blend of style and comfort. Savour modern Cantonese cuisine and signature cocktails at The Hong Kong Club. The property also houses Andaz Ballroom, which is among the largest luxury wedding spaces in the capital.
Andaz Delhi is the only pet-friendly luxury hotel in Aerocity, and the staff is well-trained to handle your fur buddies.
9. Conrad Bengaluru
Dominating the skyline of Bengaluru’s Central Business District with its 24-storeyed stature, Conrad Bengaluru is a playful mélange of old-world charm and coming-of-age design. While each of its 284 rooms and suites offers unparalleled views of the Ulsoor Lake, its prime location and bespoke experiences make it the most sought-after address in the city. The hotel’s sensory indulgence is heightened by chefs who whip up a storm of local and global cuisines at its five restaurants. If international cuisine is the forte of Caraway Kitchen, Indian Durbar brings traditional Indian recipes to your table. The Lobby Brew serves all your favourite drinks—from the morning shot of espresso to your choice of nightcap. Their rooftop bistro Tiamo has been winning hearts with its Mediterranean classics served in an al fresco setting. Set some time aside to check out the dedicated lifestyle floor with the signature Conrad Spa, a salon, and a round- the-clock fitness centre.
One of the largest event spaces in the city, the pillarless Grand Ballroom is ideal for your dream wedding.
10. THE SERAI CHIKMAGALUR
Perched atop a lush hillock, in the middle of a heritage coffee plantation, The Serai Chikmagalur boasts sweeping views of the forested Western Ghats. A 250-kilometre drive from Bengaluru, this coffee retreat is ideal for a ritzy vacation. Pick the Estate Villa that comes with a choice of a private pool or a jacuzzi, or the two-tiered Estate Terrace Villa. But if you wish to treat yourself to the swankiest stay here, The Residence should be your choice. It comes with a waterside walkway that leads you to an expansive haven of designer rooms and a private pool. While the range of cuisines at Odyssey restaurant whet your appetite, crafted drinks at The Blue Sky lounge bar are not to be missed.
‘A Journey From Bean To Cup’—a three-hour-long curated tour that takes you through the entire process of coffee-making, right from the picking of fresh coffee berries to roasting units followed by a coffee sipping session at the lounge bar.
11. The St Regis Mumbai
Situated in Lower Parel, in Mumbai’s tallest building, The St Regis Mumbai offers stunning vistas of the sea. Make yourself at home in the spacious, thoughtfully designed accommodation, where floor-to-ceiling windows ensure you don’t fall short of great views, be it day or night. Indulge in luxuries such as on-call butler service, traditional English teas, champagne sabering ceremonies, and exquisite spa therapies. Let your hair down in the nightclub, XXO, and taste cuisines from around the world in international dining destinations such as the Japanese restaurant Yuuka, The Sahib Room & Kipling Bar that serves recipes from colonial India, and more. While the expansive ballrooms, banquet halls, and outdoor venues here offer the perfect setting for any gathering, the 119-square-metre Iridium Spa captivates guests with its individual and couples’ treatment rooms.
By The Mekong, the Asian restaurant that won The Best Thai Cuisine award at our Delicious Food Awards 2019, offers a unique blend of Chinese, Thai, and Vietnamese flavours.
12. SHANGRI-LA’S – EROS HOTEL, NEW DELHI
Towering high over the evergreen Lutyens’ Delhi, Shangri-La’s – Eros Hotel, New Delhi doesn’t need an introduction. The luxurious hotel has, over the years, established itself as a celebrated contemporary retreat. Each of the 320 rooms and suites offers modern luxurious amenities and panoramic views of the Delhi skyline. The hotel is, however, best known for spoiling you for choice with its award-winning F&B outlets. There is Tamra that whips up European, Japanese, Indian, and Southeast Asian fare in its live kitchens; Sorrento plates traditional Italian food with a contemporary twist; and Shang Palace offers delightful flavours of Sichuan, Cantonese, and Yunnan cuisines.
Book a stay at the Presidential Suite with its two plush bedrooms, a separate sitting room, a modern kitchenette, dining area, and en suite bathrooms fitted with jacuzzis.
Originally built in 1841 as the Auckland Hotel, The LaLiT Great Eastern Kolkata is touted as the longest continuously operating luxury hotel in Asia, according to a CRISIL Report. A medley of Victorian, Edwardian, and contemporary styles of architecture, the present building has retained some of the 165-year-old features while also adapting to modern needs. Its history and the quintessential LaLiT hospitality lend it a legendary status in the industry. While rooms in both its Heritage Blocks reflect the history of the hotel through features such as restored furniture, bay windows, and vintage iron pillars, ultra-modern furnishing, parquet flooring, and premium amenities set apart the accommodation options in the New Block.
Have a taste of the hotel’s culturally rich essence at Rejuve-The Spa, which boasts Kolkata’s first aqua bed apart from traditional spa therapies
14. Novotel Hyderabad Convention Centre
Once you step inside Novotel Hyderabad Convention Centre, you are teleported from the bustling IT hub to a tranquil oasis with 15 acres of sprawling manicured lawns. Be it an evening with family and friends or a corporate rendezvous, the hotel delivers exactly what you seek. With 288 rooms and suites tailor-made for comfort, it is an ideal escape for both leisure and business travellers. The hotel’s large garden and poolside lawns with dreamy settings play the perfect host to lavish ceremonies. Settle down in the plush Premier Lounge reserved for business guests, celebrate at The Bar with colleagues, or unwind at the pool after a day of meetings.
Connected to the luxury hotel is the Hyderabad International Convention Centre (HICC)—an extraordinary venue that turns the entire space into a dual complex, which is equipped with flexible halls, meeting rooms, business centres, modern amenities, and premium catering services.
Close to Jim Corbett National Park and overlooking Kosi River, Namah makes for a refreshing escape. With no more than 50 rooms spread over a verdant expanse of 8.75 acres, it allows guests to be one with nature. From the premier rooms that open to blooming gardens or the majestic Sitabani mountains, to the suites that feature private balconies, every accommodation option here is tranquil and spacious. Overlooking the river is Pratha, the all-day dining restaurant that serves Continental and Asian dishes. Boond, the bar at the hotel, is another sweet spot to enjoy the rhythm of the river with a drink in your hand.
Pair your stay at Namah with a jeep safari through Jim Corbett National Park, which is home to a diverse range of flora and fauna.
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