India Travel Guide

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Would You Book This Security-Conscious Package For Solo Women Travelers?

Where: New Delhi, India
September 16, 2014 at 9:23 AM | by | Comment (1)

What women want from hotels is a subject that’s been on our minds recently. We’re pretty sure the answer isn’t cooking lessons and a candle. And we gave a few of our own suggestions here.

Now a hotel in New Delhi has come up with another idea: a pretty extreme, security first, female-only package, to combat the appalling crimes against women that have been engulfing India in recent months (one rape every 30 minutes, if you’ve missed it).

The Kamal Single Lady Traveller program (“kamal” is Hindi for lotus flower) at the Leela Palace includes:
· Airport transfers with a trusted driver;
· Female staff for all interaction (check-in, concierge, butler, housekeeping);
· Room on a female-only floor (with restricted elevator access);
· Improved security cameras in all public areas;
· Security screening of people entering the hotel;
· Access to the spa on a private or female only basis;
· Option of booking female guides for city tours.

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In India, Fall Means Luxury Camping With Leopards And Tigers

Where: Rajasthan, India
September 12, 2014 at 9:01 AM | by | Comments (0)

The bad news, guys, is summer is ending.

The good news is, winter means opportunities to do things you couldn’t face in summer – like sleeping outdoors in India. Especially when it’s tiger season.

This month sees the (re)opening of three tented camps from Sujan in Rajasthan: Sher Bagh, in Ranthambhore, the Serai in Jaisalmer, and Jawai Leopard Camp.

Sher Bagh (top pic) isn’t new, but it’s been completely renovated for the 2014 season, with all tents getting their ensuite bathrooms refurbished and enlarged (yes, ensuite bathrooms being enlarged - as you can imagine, these aren’t your ordinary tents). Two new suites have also been created – one with a walled garden, one with a private pool (and both with butlers). The location, meanwhile, is tiger central – 81% of visitors last year saw at least two per day.

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The Pool At Oberoi Udaivilas Is Calling Your Name

Go To The Hotel's Web 
  Site Where: Lake Pichola, Udaipur, Rajasthan, India
August 21, 2014 at 8:34 AM | by | Comments (0)

And it’s saying: take a dip! Or at least it does to us, which we’d gladly do if we could find ourselves in Udaipur, Rajasthan by snapping our finger. Alas, we’ll lust after it from afar, its sparkling blue contrasting against the pale walls and turrets of a traditional palace Udaivilās is modeled after.

Part of Oberoi Hotels, the hotel sits on the banks of Lake Picola, with third-level up Premier Rooms allowing you to step straight off your terrace into the water. A second pool is set within a large courtyard.

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Ritz-Carlton Gets Big Name Designers For Its Mumbai Hotel, Opening in 2016

Where: Mumbai, India
June 10, 2014 at 5:02 PM | by | Comments (0)

Ritz-Carlton Hotels have nabbed a stellar design team for its second hotel in the region, The Ritz-Carlton Mumbai, opening in 2016. While most of the luxury brands have already laid bricks in the Asia Pacific, Mumbai, as a growing center for finance, entertainment, and design—yes, design—seems to be the “it” destination and so the race is on.

According to HotelManagment, the 238-room Ritz Carlton is being developed by Oasis Realty in a joint venture of Oberoi Realty and Sahana Group. The hotel will occupy one of two new towers which will include Ritz-Carlton managed residences. The hotel will have an ocean-view bar (Arabian Sea,) two restaurants, spa, and enough event space for the average over-the-top Indian wedding.

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Funky Friday: Party Like Grace Jones at The Park Hyderabad

Go To The Hotel's Web 
  Site Where: 22 Raj Bhawan Road, Raj Bhavan Quarters Colony, Somajiguda, Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh, India, 500 082
May 2, 2014 at 4:19 PM | by | Comments (0)

Welcome to Funky Friday, a new segment we’re trying out which features one photo that we think singularly expresses a hotel’s inner psyche. We look for, and often find, a lot of wacky, wild and wondrous designs that seem to have one thing in common: a Type A personality. So why not have a bit of fun as we all wrap up our week by taking a quick look at some hotels that quite frankly, want our attention.

“Anything but Ordinary” is the trademark of The Park Hotels brand of luxury boutique hotels in India. We would only have to look at its flagship hotel, The Park Hyderabad, to say we would agree. The 270-room Park Hyderabad is a design extravaganza that is all about the bling, and makes for a great Funky Friday segment.

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Saving Rupees is Now a Reality with Tune Ahmedabad

Go To The Hotel's Web 
  Site Where: 4 D Square, Ahmedabad, India, 382424
May 23, 2013 at 8:45 AM | by | Comments (0)

Let's all say "namaste" to Tune Ahmedabad, the first-ever Tune Hotel for India. Located in the "Science City", the hotel officially welcomed its first guests but not before hosting a colorful ceremony blessing the new building with flowers and other offerings.

Keeping with the Tune model of pay-for-what-you-use, a Comfort Package is available now for about an extra $9, which gives a full 24-hours of wifi, TV, and air conditioning access. If you're looking to dive into some vindaloo to start your day, for just over $3 you can tuck into breakfast in the lobby's XO Cafe.

The hotel is perfect for travelers looking to save a few rupees and still get a full Indian experience with some shopping and sport. Along with being annexed to the city's newly developed 4D Square Shopping Mall, Tune is also a short walk to the local cricket stadium, after all this is 'cricket country'. (the sport, not the insect)

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Edition Boutique Hotel to Open in India

Go To The Hotel's Web 
  Site Where: New Delhi , India
April 9, 2013 at 10:03 AM | by | Comment (1)

Just a week after we reported that the New York Edition would open a year early in 2014, we have more good news: Marriott has announced that it will introduce its Ian Schrager designed Edition in New Delhi within "the next few years."

Despite the Istanbul Edition being the brand's only open hotel (remember, the Waikiki Edition became the Modern Honolulu), you wouldn't know it from all the press and activity of late thanks to its eight properties in the pipeline: London (2013), Miami (2014), New York (2014), Bangkok (2015), Abu Dhabi, Gurgaon, Sanya, and New Delhi.

Back in October, we gave you the scoop on the London Edition, which is supposed to be the brand's big relaunch this year. The Miami Edition, unfortunately, just had its opening date pushed back by a year.

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Kempinski Ambience Delhi Opens With The Dalai Lama’s Blessing

Go To The Hotel's Web 
  Site Where: 1 Central Business District, Delhi, India, 110032
February 26, 2013 at 4:41 PM | by | Comment (1)

We’re used to seeing fab hotels open the world over (and don’t get us wrong –- there’s still a thrill with every one) but not many can boast being blessed during their opening by the Buddhist spiritual leader and Nobel Peace Prize recipient, His Holiness the Dalai Lama. Well, the Kempinski Ambience Hotel Delhi can make that claim for their newly-opened modern property in east Delhi's Shahdara district.

Literally meaning “door of kings” in Urdu, Shahdara is on the banks of the Yamuna River and was established in the 16th century. It’s the second oldest locality of Delhi after Chandni Chowk and is home to the popular Chhota Bazaar, the second oldest and one of the busiest markets in the city known for its spicy street food, if you dare to try it. Many attractions are found nearby including the Akshardham Temple, the Buddh International Circuit F1 Grand Prix Track, and the National Gallery of Modern Art.

The hotel has a substantial 480 rooms and suites in two towers that are connected by a sky bridge. Each tower has a dedicated entrance, pre-lobby, main lobby ('cause you can never have too many lobbies), concierge and fitness center. Décor is a calming up-to-the minute palette of greys, browns and whites with shocks of color thrown in for good measure.

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Josh Flagg Gives The Taj Mahal Palace Two Manicured Thumbs-Up

Go To The Hotel's Web 
  Site Where: Apollo Bunder, Mumbai, India, 400 001
February 18, 2013 at 4:46 PM | by | Comments (0)

Our resident celebrity hotel hopper, Josh Flagg, star of Bravo's Million Dollar Listing recently completed a trip to India. One of the stops on his luxury hotel itinerary? The Taj Mahal Palace in Mumbai which has rebounded incredibly well after 2010's terrorist attack. Here's his elevator review of the place:

If the English dictionary had one picture to describe the word sophistication, The Taj Mahal Palace Mumbai would be upfront and center. Few hotels in the world really hit that nail on the head. The George V in Paris, The St. Regis in New York, The Peninsula Hong Kong all have it down, and now that I have stayed in the Taj Mumbai, I realize why it has stood the test of time.

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Josh Flagg's Killer View of The Taj Mahal

Go To The Hotel's Web 
  Site Where: Taj East Gate Rd, Uttar Pradesh, India, 282201
February 7, 2013 at 6:25 PM | by | Comment (1)

Our resident celebrity hotel hopper, Josh Flagg, star of Bravo's Million Dollar Listing recently completed a trip to India. And of course, there were amazing views from his hotel rooms. Here's one of them:

By far, one of the most beautiful pools I have been to was found at The Oberoi Amarvilas, Agra. The hotel also boasts one of the best views I have ever seen... That of the Taj Mahal. Every room looks out onto the pool, grounds and the magnificent Taj Mahal. Watching the sun rise and set from your room is one of those moments you have to experience in your life. Eat in the Indian restaurant for a wonderful experience.

Rates at the Oberoi start at 34,000 Indian rupees a night or about $640 USD. If you want to travel like Josh, you better get to selling some luxury real estate in Beverly Hills then!

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Swissotel Surprises With A Goa Resort This Spring

Go To The Hotel's Web 
  Site Where: Goa, India
January 10, 2013 at 9:05 AM | by | Comments (0)

We thought we'd covered it all when it came to the Swissôtels brand. Apparently not. Somehow the snuck in and added another hotel to their ever increasing portfolio and will be opening a resort hotel in the popular Indian coastal state of Goa this spring.

Unlike the business-centric aura that the brand is known for, The Swissôtel Goa is definitely aimed at the leisure set, with its location and layout. The town of Calangute is a popular year-round vacation spot in North Goa, just a one hour flight away from Mumbai and Bangalore and two hours from Delhi.

Instead of a regular tower, the 135 guestrooms and suites will be spread out among eight three-level buildings which will be set in a tropical garden filled with lily ponds and a courtyard pool. The lobby and rooms will also be designed using colorful works by the Indian artist Krishna Mehta. This reminds us of the lively patterns seen in the Swissotel Dresden property, which also broke away from the mold (just a bit) and gave some pizzaz to the Swissôtel name.

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Aman Exits New Delhi, But Coming To Venice And China

Go To The Hotel's Web 
  Site Where: Lodhi Road, New Delhi, India
January 3, 2013 at 9:50 AM | by | Comments (0)

Aman New Delhi

Following the news last summer that Aman Resorts opened a property in Greece, we have another quick update on this ultra-high end (and celebrity-friendly) group today.

As of February 1, Aman New Delhi will be rebranded as The Lodhi, leaving the Aman brand behind. You wouldn't expect it perhaps based on the hotel’s exterior, but the nine-story building contains just 31 rooms and eight suites, all in a very contemporary and subdued style. Each room comes with its own private terrace, while suites sprawl out over 1,800 square-feet. A lower structure contains an additional 14 Lodhi suites, and Lodhi Pool suites, with up to three bedrooms, have access to their own private pool (prices for these come with the label "on request").

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