You might have noticed that last weekend my Instagram & Twitter was ALL about an epic staycation we took right here in Mumbai at the swanky Palladium Hotel in Lower Parel. In fact, Nowshad was SO inspired he’s finally started Instagramming regularly (and damn he’s good!) Anyway, you can get all the deets of our itinerary and stuff here, but read on for the things we LOVED (ALL 27 of them!) and do the right thing and book yourself a “pamper me” holiday right here in Bombay STAT! xoxo
GO ON A VIDEO TOUR OF OUR STAYCATION:
Our escort to and from the staycation happened to be a swanky Mercedes-Benz with a sun roof. The best part? It was Wi-Fi enabled! #geekchic
As Nowshad astutely observed, these were quite literally the most welcoming chocolates we’ve ever seen :)
Our suite upgrade (yes, sweet also works!) was wonderful because suddenly you had 2 rooms to play in (and I do like to set up all my gadgets to charge in one place with enough plug points around! #bloggerproblems)
Also, as I mentioned in my Insta travel tip, the secret to truly enjoying your hotel room is unpacking completely :)
PS. Loved the little dressing table set up for mirror selfie fun!
Um, when’s the last time you looked out a window and saw THIS #nofilter?
The Palladium Hotel has the most stunning views of the Race Course, just perfect for watching the world get drenched outside from the luxury of your rainy day coziness!
Psst! The view from the last stall in the ladies’ room at Li Bai is equally impressive. It’s like you’re outside!
Refreshing and delicious. But apparently my husband is a 12-year-old so…
Which reminds me, Deepika Padukone also likes lovely tender coconuts #justsaying
I am a firm believer that monsoons in Mumbai (or anywhere really) MUST be enjoyed plonked lazily on a sofa, by a window, with a cup of tea and a basket of warm pakodas. So picture this! The Chef (more on him later!) arrives as a surprise to our suite to deliver a delightful selection of fried treats and tea! #FTW
It had a pillow in it. ‘Nuff said.
My friend Saher Bhaloo (whose birthday weekend it was) is adorable and this was the moment she realized she was truly in a staycation state of mind. We had just descended for lunch onto the 9th floor when she glanced down and realized she had worn her comfy bedroom slippers right out of her hotel room. So cute!
How clever that lunch at Seven Kitchens comes equipped to handle even your most unexpected fashion needs! When we arrived the waiter appeared with a foldable table handbag hanger to prop Saher’s bag on. Trés chic!
Is there really ANYTHING more refreshing than a cold-as-ice Corona? Plus, THIS was the precise moment Nowshad discovered he finally loves Instagram, follow him @nrizwanu :) yay!
The all-you-can-eat kind at buffet lunch was absolutely stellar.
(I think its also because they’re currently running massive trials for Yuuka, their soon-to-be-launched Sushi & Sake spot on the 37th floor and importing the stuff right from Japan! Delicious.)
I admit it, I’m no foodie (that’s all Nowshad) but OMG the dessert selection at Seven Kitchens was Charlie and the Chocolate Factory crazy! No matter what you do, do NOT leave that place without trying the Belgian Bliss chocolate ice-cream. (You can thank me later.)
That’s right, the Seven Kitchens Chef (who hand delivered our tea) has green eyes. It’s really quite riveting and since all 4 of us commented on this individually I had to put it in my list :)
PS. We asked him what he loves best on the menu and he smiled and said, “the jalebis” don’t you love him a little more now?
I love three-tier snack trays and the one at Palladium is particularly delish. While they have a wide variety of teas to chose from, I went desi with a masala chai and devoured everything from the chocolate eclair to the prosciutto and melon snack. Yum!
There’s something delightfully haunting about cello music. Also the fact that the performer was playing the piano remotely through her iPhone was mad cool.
Dinner at Mekong included wake-me-up Espresso Martinis that were as delicious as they were potent. #WideAwakeAndLovingIt I went for my fave pink drink – The Crosmo (a Cosmo with a berry twist!)
Nowshad got fancy with special effects, that the bartender was somehow even able to recreate in the bustle of Li Bai later that night!
Now THAT’s mixology! Also my friend Bavidra tried the Dirty Martini and was most impressed. #BisforBond
Clearly the bar staff knows their stuff! Well done boys :) Simply World Class!
Meanwhile, Nowshad perfected his Instragramming skills :)
We’ve been to Mekong once before and without-a-doubt the food has only gotten BETTER! The Peking Duck especially was to-die-for-delicious and I wouldn’t miss the edemame truffle dumplings if I were you!
All through the next two months look out for amazing offers and contest prizes at Palladium. In fact one of my lucky blog readers won an luxurious cocktail evening for two at Li Bai just yesterday :)
Buddy staycations are so much fun! The four of us hopped between Exo and Li Bai for the remainder of the night before going up to watch Holland beat Costa Rica in the World Cup (Go Holland!) Li Bai had a killer percussionist on deck along with the DJ and he was awesome sauce, watch!
FYI, they have an Owl Menu on offer at Seven Kitchens after midnight if you get the munchies. We were in a food coma from Mekong so we skipped it but next time I’m definitely checking it out!
Is there anything comfier in life than a hotel room bathrobe? I didn’t think so. Which is why I spent most of Sunday morning dressed like this. (Yup, THAT’s my sleepy face!)
And since I’m always torn between sleeping in and not missing the breakfast buffet, how awesome is it to get it delivered right to your room on a sleepy monsoon Sunday morning?
FYI, the bathrobe selection also came in a kimono print for the stylishly inclined and the spa robes for girls were right out of OB1’s wardrobe in Star Wars!
On day two we took a little tour of the property in an attempt to work up an appetite for brunch and perfect our filmy poses :) and of course I yelled, “stop! #letmetakeaselfie.”
I was amazed by just how many banquet rooms they have and the fact that Bappi Lahiri would give each one a double thumbs up :P
I mean the chandeliers, mirrored tiling and massive banquet halls were overwhelmingly awesome (here’s a flashblog of the GQ Best Dressed Party that happened there too). Meanwhile, all I could think about was how this place was just begging for a game of hide and seek and I see why Lakmé Fashion Week is moving in :) so perhaps I will find a way to play at LFW! #WinWin
I have decided, THAT is how all future Sundays should be lived. So of course we went back to Seven Kitchens for their enormous Sunday Brunch spread. One of the things that everyone agreed upon was the fact that NOTHING beats fresh orange juice, nothing. Not even Moet! So we decided not to play favourites and made Champagne Mimosas instead :P
Psst! Here’s a peak at what’s for brunch.
Our waiter at Seven Kitchens was all kinds of awesome. Not only was he all cute and cuddly, Jaydev paid special attention to all our favourite things and made sure we had them before we even knew we wanted them the next day at brunch! Take for example this pink sorbet daiquiri he made me, simply because he remembered I love pink, awwwww!
Since it was Saher’s pre-birthday weekend we got the band to sing for her at brunch. Both Saher and Bavidra agreed that the Indian version of Happy Birthday is WAY cooler than the original. (Just wait till they hear this!)
This was potentially the highlight of our trip. The Spa at The Palladium falls in my top 2 spa experiences in Mumbai hands down. We even took a little swim in the jacuzzi to warm up and the couples massage rooms had their own personal tubs too!
Just so you know, the one hour deep tissue spa massage is incredibly luxurious and relaxing. Think out-of-body experience guaranteed to put you in an amazing mood for the rest of your week! We emerged from The Spa completely rejuvenated and refreshed ourselves. Well done Palladium! #massagemagnificence
Oh and we had these supercool service bells as well :) #tingting
Unfortunately we ran out of time to hit the pool but we sat by it for a while. The temperature seemed just perfect and the infinity view too. Deffy helps that its 10 levels up!
While we dipped, the boys took a power nap!
After that our chauffeur-driven Benz dropped us off to watch Shiamak Davar‘s Selcouth dance show at the NCPA where Bollywood hottie and Twitter-newbie Arjun Kapoor happened to be in the audience and retweeted my blog about it, yay!
So would I recommend this staycation? Oh hells ya! Leave a comment below if you want deets and like I said, follow @StayAtPalladium to win an awesome stay-cation grand prize at The Palladium Hotel yourself and don’t forget to hashtag #MonsoonAtPalladium while you’re at it! xoxo