SUITECASE OF MEMORIES WITH HYATT

Do you ever visit a same place twice and it only gets better with every visit? Dharamshala has become a yearly visit for me and in last 5 years, there is something about its culture, food but most importantly experiences I think, that keeps making me want to go back every year. This year however was a bold move.  I (just like everyone else) was cooped up for a really long time and my friends and I decided to go experience a safe hospitality with Hyatt Dharamshala.  

It was my second visit to the property and under all safety measures their hospitality is exactly what we needed post lockdown. The beautiful room that gave away the view of breathtaking Dhauladhars and pine trees, while in-room it was spacious enough for us 3 girls to have a spacious 3 days of stay. Getting ready in the spacious bathroom and walk-in closet reminded us of the days gone by. The rooms were well equipped with all modern amenities, special mention to the room coffee machine and bath robes that, we used the most! 

While our day introduced us to new experiences our night matched up to it as well. We spent our evenings at 2082, the bar at Hyatt that is one of the best in Dharamshala. An ideal place for an aperitif or after-dinner drink. With both indoor and outdoor seating options, and an adjacent fireplace, 2082 is a comfortable venue offering a wide selection of premium alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, light munches and an afternoon tea selection. What one must try are the locally infused drinks, that were refreshingly new for our taste buds. 

Food – Hyatt Regency Dharamshala Resort offers a variety of locally inspired cuisines which provides authentic Himachali experience as well as the comforting delight of Global cuisine.  Thym there all-day dining restaurant offers both indoor and outdoor seating, and is an ideal setting for family dining through a combination of interactive breakfast buffets and thoughtfully curated à la carte menus for lunch and dinner.  

The resort features a ‘Home Cinema’ that can accommodate up to 15 persons at one go, delivering an intimate audio-visual experience. On our last night at the property, I enjoyed a dose of ZNMD with my friends and couldn’t have asked for a better end to the holiday.  

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Le Dupleix , Pondicherry

Situated in the heart of old French Quarter of Pondicherry,  Le Dupleix was built in the 18th century as the residence of the Mayor of Pondicherry, and stands on one of the most important corners of the French town. The beautiful experience begins right at gate that is topped with perfectly manicured vine leaves. The massive wooden door entrance lead you to heart of the restored building – the courtyard that is surrounded by modern hotel with deep French roots.

Rooms
Every room in this hotel is different! Every detail in each room has been specially thought out and chosen for that room alone, with the end result being a hotel with delightful surprises around every corner. The mix of the modern and the traditional gives much warmth, but at the same time ensures that the hotel is exceedingly comfortable.  It’s no wonder that the Conde Nast Traveller Readers’ Travel Awards listed Le Dupleix as among the three best boutique hotels in India. While the rooms are extraordinary i loved the courtyard the most, giving me a full view of the property, a place where i did a lot of reading in company of 200 (plus) year old mango tree, had all my meals and some great evenings catching up with friends over finest of wine and food.

Food

Le Dupleix and Pondicherry have a very complex, diverse and cosmopolitan culture and they bring it all together, in the menu at Le Dupleix. One of the main things I have noticed over my repetitive visits is that they keep upgrading their menu and are far from boring or old fashioned; so heritage and tradition of Pondicherry is modernized and becomes part of their culture that’s moving forward. Influence of Creole is clearly visible in Le Dupleix’s menu through recipes from New Orleans (which created some of the most exciting Creole dishes) like Gumbo soup and Creole Shrimps & Crab cake. The menu celebrates Japanese cuisine with Miso Glazed Fish & Soba Noodle soup, Classic French dishes like Confit de Poulet & Crêpe Suzette, and presents dishes that stand out like Wild Game Quails & Soft Shell Crabs. 

The strongest influence on modern Pondicherry cuisine has been the emphasis on being natural, organic and healthy. At Le Dupleix they are going organic all the way; their rice, wheat, dals, spices and oils are all organic. Fish is fresh from sea, caught by local fishermen and chicken is free range & organic. Also all soups, salads, appetizers and main course dishes have been presented with suggested pairings of International and Indian wines that helped me experience beyond what i knew and enjoyed it thoroughly.

I know as a matter of fact that whenever i return to Pondicherry, i will revisit the property for its lobster night or their in-house Vanilla Ice cream, which by the way is the best vanilla ice cream i have had in my life.

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AkiMi Gourmet

I love desserts, I like to stock up and have at least two or three things at home to binge on. I found AkiMi on Instagram, their images look appetizing and I had to try some. We are all spending so much time at home and ( I am done experimenting in the kitchen for this year) trying something new is the most exciting thing these days found treats that that are not only good in taste but also healthier; imagine indulging in desserts, guilt free.

Brain child of MidhilaRaavi and Akila Vankalapati, AkiMi Gourmet brings you sinfully satisfying treats that are guilt free, vegan and refined sugar free. All their desserts are made from fresh ingredients, and since they are preservative-free, the shelf-life is limited. All the treats are made to order, so you know something special is whipped for you only after an order is placed.


The desserts are packed in minimalistic cardboard boxes, that can be reused. My top favourites are ‘Almond Flour Cake which is moist and flavorful ‘Pecan Pie Bars’ , ‘Banana Walnut Cake’ and ‘Chocolate Cookies’ arrive like a gift box. I totally forgot about their vegan brownies that are extremely lightweight, healthy and satiate your cravings for chocolate (never thought, I could put these two in same line)


They also offer things like Energy Bites that include flavours like cocoa pistachio, dark chocolate and peanut butter, black sesame bites and even postpartum bites made with nuts and edible gum, range of Tea Cakes. Their ‘cheat eats’ menu offers carrot, pistachio and strawberry cakes, along with brownies.


While you may find the prices on heavier side than the usual desserts, the quality too is better since they use. Gourmet food is a premium, especially because of the quality of ingredients used and the elaborate process that ensures nutrition is intact. This is why we might be a bit expensive compared to the other processed and packed equivalents in the market.”


They are delivering via Swiggy, Dunzo
Find them on Instagram at @akimi_gourmet

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Daughter Earth

Daughter Earth, a skincare brand that is close to home and incredibly good. The aroma of its moisturizer on my skin lingers while i type this and its is one of most amazing skincare brand for sensitive skin (mine is both sensitive and combination).

Coming across a brand that is made with a conscience, and doesn’t leave you to choose between natural and high-performance products is rare and . Every product we make is formulated without compromise.

As a skincare brand they went beyond organic, and formulated products with potent wild-harvested botanicals from some of the remotest habitats. What began as a quest for non-toxic skincare led them on a conscious journey to build products that are good for your skin and also deliver maximum results.

Products i Have Tried and Loved

Eternal Youth Phytonutrient Moisturiser – Smells beautiful, just a pea size and enough moisture, i use this in my night time CTM routine (but you can use it during the day as well, as it is equipped with natural SPF that helps combat free radical damage and photo aging) as i love smelling good when i am going to bed. Its rich in antioxidant-rich plant nutrients, gives long-lasting hydration, its lightweight, non-greasy and helps in radiance and youth-preserving treatment.

Eternal Youth Rejuvenating Serum – I love serums, i feel they are a perfect way to add an extra boost to your skin, i make sure to use serums morning and evening. The eternal youth serum is dermatologically tested, 100% active, preservative-free it helps correct skin and enriches skin with antioxidants, flavonoids and nutrients (Vitamins E, C and B). the serum helps skin microcirculation and delivers nutrients to the deeper layers for a rejuvenated and radiant skin. i also use it before make up sometimes and let it rest for 5 minutes, it gives me a nice glow and sets my make up perfectly.

Face Mist – Rose – Face mists are great, they give you instant of freshness, you use it directly, over your make up, while travelling and in your face pack (only if it is 100% natural, like this one) literally whenever and however you need it. A good face mist helps combat dryness and inflammation throughout the day. I never step with out a mist in my bag, especially during summers.

Wild Java Plum Ayurvedic Face Mask– Rich in skin-nourishing bioflavonoids, antioxidants and Vitamin C, Java Plums are nature’s gift to our skin. With the oil-balancing, acne-clearing and complexion-enhancing properties, these black fruits deliver a power punch of nutrition to the skin in the form of a mask. Also a great skin detoxifier. Suitable for all skin types. Make a mushy paste by mixing in floral waters like Rose, and apply a thick layer on your face and neck. Rinse off before it dries up and after rinsing, spritz your face with the rose mist and follow with the rejuvenating serum. This helps seal your skin with all the nutrition and forms a lipid barrier to prevent loss of hydration. Dull Skin or Uneven texture, Acne and dark spots, Uneven oil levels

Antioxidant Lip Balm – We all need lip balms, i can’t count the number of lip balms i have – in my bag, in my office desk, in my car, in my travel kit and one on my bed side.

An Antioxidant lip balm seals and hydrates your lips while also protecting from the harsh UV rays, helps with lip-elasticity and pigmentation on and around the lips. 100% Vegan and Beeswax-free.

Hope you enjoy reading this, for more such sustainable brands don’t forget to check out my Conscious Living tab and don’t forget to subscribe so you get all updates right in your mailbox. Also follow me on Instagram @ssatpreetkaur , Facebook –FashionEatista, for more instant updates on all things fun, food, fashion and travel.

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The statement Show ’19

The exhibit that brought best of jewellery brands and labels from all across India under one roof.

Designers and brand owners from jaipur, kolkata and of course Hyderabad participated, bringing in their best collection and some of the most exquisite pieces that definitely left me and most of the people awestruck.

Some pieces were perfect for modern souls, intricate designs and diamond’s while others included timless piece’s like jadau, emeralds and some with all new crystal collection. There was something to please every age group and taste.

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Cape of style

I do love a dress that makes me feel i have stepped out to shoot for Vogue. This orange cape dress in particular can be worn in multiple ways, all you have to do is – tie it differently. Surprisingly this is the first time i tried a solid color, especially orange. Paired with gold, i can that it turned out to be much better than i imagined it in my head.

Shades of orange are all great for Indian skin tones and pairing it with simple accessories and muted colors work wonders.

This cape by label A.projekt  makes me feel empowering, and is great fr a day soiree or a night out, either way it sure is to make a statement.

Jewelry – Prerto, Location – Taj Krishna,  Shot by- Zoya Ahmed

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Blenders Pride Fashion Tour 2018

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Gaurav Gupta with models showcasing his collection along with showstoppers Aditi Rao Hydari and Kangana Ranaut

Blenders Pride Fashion Tour was back in Hyderabad with a special showcase around
‘My Expression, My Pride’ by the talented designer Gaurav Gupta. The fashion enthusiasts of Hyderabad turned up in their fashionable best to witness the grandeur and glamour at Taj Falaknuma Palace.

The 14th edition of BPFT celebrates the self and the individual through its extraordinary new concept-‘Pride’ with shows across 4 cities, especially curated by India’s most blazingly talented, world-famous fashion designers- Rohit Bal (Mumbai), Tarun Tahiliani (Gurugram), Gaurav Gupta (Hyderabad), and Ashish N Soni (Kolkata). Together, these designers curated a journey that brought alive their own distinct versions of pride as an expression of success.

For the Hyderabad show, designer Gaurav Gupta weaved a seamless story around the concept ‘My Expression, My Pride’. In this age of technology, where everything is instant and our desire for immediate gratification is the only thing greater than our egos, the value of the ‘bond’ you have with yourself becomes increasingly important. Building on this ‘bond’, Gaurav Gupta aims at breaking the stereotypes, urging individuals to be sure of who they are, allowing them to constantly and consistently surprise both themselves and the world by their achievements. And then, that becomes a true expression of who they are.

With the designer Gaurav Gupta

What i wore to BPFT at the grand Taj Falaknuma Palace

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Fab Cafe,  Hyderabad

The new trend on rise is where good old retail therapy ends with a cup of coffee and good food. Just few months after Masaba Gupta opened her first store and cafe- Good Cow cafe, that meets retail and food under one roof, India’s yet another favorite brand known for its quality ‘Fab India’ as come up with their own cafe- Fab Cafe. With immense response in other cities, Hyderabad has seen the launch of its first outlet as part of the Fab India experience center.

The place offers a wholesome experience, you can shop, have a delicious meal and a plus is the kids’ area with staff supervision. You can enjoy your meal while kids are busy playing right in next room. I don’t see how catching up with friends and family can get much easier than this for a lot of women.

The café boasts quaint interiors, with full focus on menu. Just a look at it made me happy, it had familiar options with refreshing combinations. Fab Cafe

I began with the cold brew, with almond milk and loved how I have a healthier option, as I can’t help reduce my caffeine intake, this at least will be guilt free. Everything on the menu, I noticed as I ordered was a healthier combination of familiar food. Fab cafe focuses on offering gluten free and health friendly options of quick snacks and beverages.

The ‘Almond Fig smoothie bowl’ along with the ‘Berry Blast Shake’, came first from the all-day breakfast options. The crunchy topping of muesli, layered with fruits followed by gooey smoothie was outrageously delicious. I have always been a fan of smoothie bowls, they are eye pleasing and surprisingly nutritious bowls of goodness! This in particular was satisfying and it’s something you can have any time of the day to keep those hunger pangs away. They have flavors like Mango Mint, Peach Cinnamon, Chunky Monkey and lot more you can choose from. We also tried the veg option of ‘Ajwain Croissant Breakfast Sandwich’ which also has a non-veg variant with egg and bacon. A little to try in taste for me. They also offer options like Pao with Veggie Bhaji, Red Rice Uttapam Trio, Matter Paneer Stuffed Paratha with Cashew Cheese and Idli with Tamato Naryal Chutney and Sambar.

In appetizers we tried the ‘Spicy Sprout Filled Pani Puri’ simple yet innovatively done and comes with three flavors of water- Pomegranate, Pineapple and mint, ‘Tandoori Tofu Rumali Tokri’ another outstanding dish that is crispy shell stuffed with spicy tofu, served with mint chutney and cashew cheese. It was flavorful and I loved the whole crispy and soft combination in each bite. In Non-Vegetarian we opted for ‘Chicken Momos’ that are gluten free, made with jack fruit flour and root starch, served with garlic chive dip and chill chutney that nicely brings out a scrumptious flavor. The showstopper for me was however the ‘Kaleji Masala Dip with Chips’ it is spicy liver paste seasoned with south Indian spices and served with sweet potato chips. Every bit was a winner and I highly recommend this one.

Of course, I wasn’t leaving without trying out the desserts, especially when it comes with guilt free tag. I ordered for a ‘Baked Strawberry Nolen Gur Cheesecake’ that has a crumbly almond flour crust, sweetened with nolen gur, and topped with a scrumptious strawberry compote, ‘Himalayan Organic Honey and Walnut Tart’ another favorite dish for the day is made of almond flour, drizzled with honeyand gur, and tastes heavenly (especially with a cup of cappuccino). it was relaxing, intimate and the food.

While focusing on nutrition, the menu brings delicious, unique and creative recipes to the table at moderate pricing. They also have a range of slow-pressed juices, tea, coffee and coolers. The place is aesthetically pleasing ambiance, basic dishes with a healthy spin, that’s what the new ‘Fab Cafe’ is all about.

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La Villa, Pondicherry

La Villa, Pondicherry

La Villa, the sister property of Villa Shanti was my second stay on the trip to Puducherry. A beautiful street in French quarter leads to this 19th century French house, turned into a luxury boutique hotel.

Lobby at La Villa, Pondicherry

La Villa is much calmer, intimate and offers six tastefully done suits, each offering a completely unique experience. The property houses a restaurant, swimming pool, bicycles for rent, Wi-Fi and staff that is available throughout your stay to assist and guide you on anything.

Staircase to (bridge to) heaven- my room at La Villa

A cobbled way leads to it an open lounge area, connected to lobby that is my most favorite part of the property. The seating area is comfortable with walls adorning map of the city and shelves with well stacked books you can borrow throughout your stay.

The suite at La Villa, Pondicherry

Spacious and relaxed outdoors that comes with the penthouse suite at La Villa

I was offered one of their best rooms, pent house suite indeed ‘Bridge to Heaven’. The room surprisingly had no walls and only wooden sliding doors. So private, so close to being in an open-air environment, easy view of sunsets and sunrise. The staff informs you before they visit the floor, keeping your privacy intact, every evening they spray for mosquito (to avoid any, not that I encountered any) and light up candles for you to enjoy outdoors as much as indoors during evenings. The room has contemporary furniture designed in reclaimed old wood, a signature style bed, lounging areas, private bar, study table and a dining option and a fancy bathroom. All of it come together to offer you luxury through minimalism.

Everything about the room stands out, including the bed at La Villa 

You have the luxury to order in, just like I did as most of my time was spent exploring the city, I preferred to have a hot shower followed by dinner in room. Or enjoy a relaxing and cozy early dinner in the garden, order while you breathe in the pleasant air and notice the freshly bloomed flowers and wide spread branches.

In room breakfast in calm with only chirping birds around

Both the properties, Villa Shanti and La Villa have a very elegant amalgamation of tropical vibe and influence of bygone era in terms of architecture and surroundings. Even in term of food, they give importance to best quality of fresh and local products, the menu is limited though rich in flavor’s, colors and textures that will change with the seasons. The choice of fine porcelain, period silver cutlery, crystal and other natural materials will enhance your experience of sharing and relaxing around a delicious meal.

Long touristy day that ends with a delicious meal in comfort of my room 

The open air restaurant at La Villa, Pondicherry

My visit to Pondicherry will always be special, as it was my first ever solo trip and Villa Shanti and La Villa played perfect hosts, welcoming me with warmest of hospitality, finest food and memories I will cherish forever.

Its luxury when spa comes to your room

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NH 2 Food Trail by Marriott Hyderabad

Get on highway of taste with ‘NH 2 Trail’ a food festival curated by Hyderabad Marriott Hotel and Convention Centre. The food festival showcases food from streets of Delhi to cafes of Kolkata.

The effort that went behind the conceptualization is commendable. The team lead by Chef Aungshuman Chakraborty traveled 10 days on National Highway 2, stopping at most famous places, tasting food, even trying their hand on recipes, to get the best sense of flavors and what goes in process of it. They covered places like Delhi, Mathura, Agra, Kanpur, Allahabad, Varanasi, Bihar, Dhanbad, and finally Kolkata, savoring the best each city has to offer.

I was glad to be invited and be part of this food trail, that brought to life the outdoors of Mariott, not only were the dishes an inspiration but the setup, presentation was all given a hint of relatability to where they hail. There were 28 live counters and it took me first 45 mins to just go around, from a foodie point you will definitely need to visit twice before you taste it all, and trust me you will want to have a bit of everything. Apart from special counters outdoors, the buffet indoors will also be a part of the food festival.

From what I tasted I really liked the Chur Chur Thali, Butter Chicken, Malai Kofta, Lamb Chops and other Tandoor Kebabs that included Chicken Mutton and Fish all of which came from Delhi counter. Sattu ka partha with almost five types of chokha sets in perfectly with the weather, also the Litti Chokha that’s made right in front of you is proper winter food that’s so hard to find in Hyderabad.

Even when i wanted to take a break, i went for Puchka and Jhal Muri begging them to give me smaller portions. Inspired from streets of Kokata, they got the flavors just right. More from the state were steamed and baked Momos, Hakka noodles and Egg and Chicken Rolls.

Sweets were delightfully from the world famous Mathura, it has everything from Petha, Peda, Imarti, Jalebis and my favorite Malpua that comes topped with rabri, just thinking of it right now makes my mouth water.

Choose to have cocktails from special drinks menu, masala chai with Nankhatais or lassi because it’s not just food that will leave you spoilt for choice but beverages too.

They had so much more that I still wish to try, Parthas, Chole Bhature, Dahi Bhalle,Samosa Chat, Chaap both veg and non veg. Undoubtedly Delhi counter stood my favorite and also most recommended to begin with, but make sure you have ample of time and a good appetite for it is going to be one big feast.

It is one of the best food festivals of 2018 in Hyderabad and i would recommend you to take your family and friends along, as there is no better way to experience an array of dishes form different parts of the country, all at one place. I for one, am sure many travel memories are going to resurface and nostalgia will accompany throughout the evening of good food and ambiance.

Where: Okra, Hyderabad Marriott Hotel & Convention Centre
When: 14th Nov to 1st Dec for Dinners Only & Sunday Brunch
Price: 1800/- plus taxes for Dinner
2300/- plus taxes for Sunday Brunch (with alcohol)

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Naladhera, A mountain retreat

The Chalets Naldhera, Shimla

View from my cottage at Chakets Naldehra

Naldehra is located at distance of 22 km away from Shimla in Himachal Pradesh. Situated 2,044 meters above sea level, it is known for one of the best and oldest 18 hole golf course in the country. Historical facts state that this hill station was discovered by Lord Curzon, a Viceroy of the erstwhile British Raj. Impressed by its beautiful natural surroundings, he decided to make a golf course in this hill station. He also gave his daughter Alexendra Naldehra as her second name.

My log hut at Chalets Naldehra

Where I Stayed : The Chalets Naldehra

Chalets Naldehra is a quiet, secluded and stunning property which is located conveniently away from Shimla. It has one of the most attractive settings, with spectacular views from each corner of the property, beautiful landscaped lawns, gardens ideal for an intimate garden ceremony with a forest backdrop. The charming log huts with forest spread across it is a photographer’s dream and makes for a incredible mountain retreat.

The balcony that offer a beautiful view of  mountains, sunsets, sunrise and clouds clouds that turn fog and embraces you in a hug

The Chalets Naldehra is the first property built in India with the internationally recognized expertise that has come to be associated with Scandinavian log homes. The chalets have been built with technology and wood imported from Finland. These fir logs have been specially treated in a high-tech plant and been given a finish that is enduring, warm and welcoming.

Room with a view at Chalets Naldhera

Rooms: I was welcomed to experience a stay in their ‘Log chalets’ that come under their premium segment. These have a drawing/dining room, a bedroom and a parvis with sloping ceilings , I literally had a debate with my dad on who would take over it, as we both loved it equally. Its almost serene how the log huts blend in naturally with the surrounding forest, welcoming the moments of peace. Indoors are spacious, with a countryside feel yet equipped with modern day amenities and our favorite part was definitely the fire place, where we enjoyed your evenings of endless bonding over wine and hot gulab jamuns. Our wake up routine in mornings would be a welcome serenade of birdsong  as nature and its counterparts greet us in our balcony while we sip our coffee. On our second day we went for a walk on a track that begun from the property (much closer from our room itself) a short one but so mesmerizing that one can immerse himself in the grandeur of pristine, old growth, high country forest. On request they organised our morning tea amidst the nature, an experience that will forever be marked in my memory.

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Morning tea amidst nature at the Chalets Naldhera

Coffee with a view from my balcony at Chalets Naldhera

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While they have 2 restaurants, i preferred all my meals outdoors, breathing in every moment  i was there

Food at the revolving restaurant at Chalets Naldhera where for company you have moving clouds, endless mountains and obviously good food

 

Restaurant– Yet another spectacular part of the hotel is the ‘360° Top of the World’ revolving restaurant with huge windows that unfold vistas of the valleys and forests. The revolving restaurant can at a time accommodate up to 24 people and buzzes with Mozart throughout your meal. The food offered at Chalets Naldehra includes, Chinese, continental and Indian.They also offer meals at the shared lawns and an experience not to be missed is the evening tea in gardens with the sight of mesmerizing sunset.

Heated indoor pool at Chalets Naldhera

Pool: They have a pool so gorgeous that can give a modern-day infinity pool a miss. The heated leisure pool of the Chalets has been imported from Australia and placed in a large glass plant-packed hall that seems to bring indoors all the charms of the surrounding woods – it’s almost as if you are swimming with the cedars. Under a starlit sky or on a warm sunny afternoon or for that matter while the monsoon rain patters on the clear-glass roof or when snowflakes swirl, you can take a long leisurely swim or just lounge by the poolside soaking in bliss.

Post spa at Chalets Naldhera

Spa- The spa offers Ayurvedic therapies and massages, sauna, Jacuzzi pool, steam room, hot and cold showers are available. After all what is a retreat without a tranquil massage.

They also have a bar where you pour yourself a strong drink or have a cup of coffee, activity room, croquet green, putting green and library and other facilities. In keeping with the mystique of The Chalets Naldehra, every unit has been given a name that either belongs to the region or has been named after an explorer or adventurer of the region. For example, The Gerard Chalet – named after the brothers Gerard, who were amongst the earliest travelers and mappers of the tract. They also have conference hall that makes it an incredible venue for conferences, so maybe you should take your next team meeting or conference right amidst the hills.

What to do: Naldehra is dotted with several attractions which include temples, lakes, hot water springs, scenic beauty and golf course. Mahunag Temple is one of the most prominent attractions, from which the place has derived its name. Also, a visit to Shimla can be a day’s outing where you can indulge in some famous cafes, stroll around mall road and visit famous structures that belonged from the British era.
Book: www.chaletsnaldehra.com

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Staycation at Trident Hyderabad

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I have been focusing a lot on my travel side of blogs lately, when i am in town i work on my full-time job that helps me set my next travel goals, amidst all this when i got an invite for a staycation from Trident Hyderabad, i just obliged happily  

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Trident Hyderabad is a business hotel, part of The Oberoi Group located right in the heart of formidable global tech capital. A quintessential business hotel, thanks to its contemporary finishes, club floors with a dedicated lounge, and prime location in Hitec City.  From the lobby that is welcoming, staircase with grand chandelier to the rooms the architecture is modern fused with contemporary art; all while fulfilling that expected 5-star flair. We were mesmerized by the expanse of the property and how simple, yet artistic and modern the architecture was.

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Room: We were allotted the ‘Premier Suite’ one of the best at the hotel, that is perfect for work and relaxation. As soon as we entered there was cozy living room with a work desk and ceiling to floor glass window. The bedroom, spacious and contemporary had a walk-in closet and the bath area with a double vanity counter, bathtub, shower area, robes, toiletries, and everything required to ensure that you feel pampered at any given time of the day.  The comfort was so intense that overslept and ordered a lavish breakfast in bed, because for me its not a relaxing holiday until you get a good 10 hours sleep followed by breakfast in bed.

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The pool was our favorite part to unwind, the pleasant weather outdoors just added to the whole feel. From taking a long dip, lounging post breakfast to enjoying our cocktails and quick bites with twinkling skyline to accompany us during evenings, it was just splendid.  

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Restaurants 

Tuscany is an award-winning Italian restaurant that is focused on fresh seasonal produce, reinventing menu and hosting most interesting food festivals expanding the taste of Italy to guests in finest way possible. The risotto and pizza are my staple favorites here. I love Italian and food festivals like ‘Fiesta Fungi’ that bought a line of dishes all using mushrooms was this year’s favorite. With finest of wines, soulful dishes Tuscany is my favorite in-house restaurant at Trident Hyderabad, also it is open only for dinner only making it a great place for special diner dates.  

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Amara is a multi-cuisine buffet restaurant at the Trident Hyderabad that offers Mediterranean, Asian and European cuisines. The restaurant is functional all through the day from 7 am to 11 pm and also serves a la-carte. While Sunday buffet are extravagant the spread on weekdays are also lavish. We picked a seat by the long window glass that has a view of cyber towers and let world pass by as we savored everything from salads to desserts.  

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Kanak, I feel is heart of this uber luxury business hotel that offers Indian specialty. From a bar at entrance that offers you best of world class spirits to santoor players adding dreamy music to the ambiance the visit here is more of an experience that speaks luxury with every detail.  I was glad to be a part of ‘Lazzat-E-Rampur aur Awadh’ curated by guest Chef Rehman who is known for his expertise in this cuisine all over India. The food was a gastronomical journey of rich flavors, age old recipes in company of talented chefs including in house  Chef Dharmender Lamba, who shared stories and memories that made for an evening to cherish. The menu included dishes like Murgh Tikka Mirza Hasnu,  Chapli Kebab, Nasheela Jhinga in starters, Changezi Murgh, Yakhni Gosht Pulao, Nawabi Baigan Bharta, Anannas ke Boti, Taar Khorma in main course and star of the evening were desserts Ande ka Halwa, which was surprisingly good (i tried something like this for first time) and Chukander-e-Afroz made from beetroot served along with  Gur Ki Yaquiti. 

Ninety-Six, the lounge is open from 1 pm to wee hours of 4 am. Be at an after-meeting drink or just late-night cheer, it is a very soothing place that offers range of single malts, cocktails, beer and wine. The bartender can whip up some really fascinating cocktails just tel him what you prefer and leave the rest on the specialist.   

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Our experience has been a combination of excellent service, great food and warm people that would always bring us back. What truly touches your heart are the little things, the attention to details, in everything they do that sets them a class apart. 

Book : Trident Hyderabad 

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Dum Pukht Begum’s at ITC Kohenur  

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ITC Hotels are synonymous to the term responsible Luxury, with launch of their latest gem ITC Kohenur it has wooed its guests (and me) with artistic charm at every corner.  The moment you step in, the grandeur of the place engulfs you. The more you explore the more you realize how Kohenur dint just gets its name from the famous Kohinoor diamond found in Hyderabad but finds inspiration for its interiors from different legacies and aspects of the royal city of Nizams.

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Dum Pukht Begum’s

The restaurant offers a regal dining experience, one that needs to be enjoyed in complete leisure, from indulging in delightful aromas emanated from the dish to its flavors that’s spark your taste buds. Set in a beautiful setting, Dum Pukht offers a unique culinary experience that is inspired from the kitchens of begums. The food here is delicately spiced yet packed with flavors. There are two aspects to the Dum style of cooking: Bhunao and Dum or ‘roasting’ and ‘maturing’ of a prepared dish. Herbs and spices play their own unique role in Dum style of cooking by lending their characteristic flavors and aroma to the dish. The slow-cooking of Dum Pukht , pushes the spices, meat and vegetables used to give the maximum flavor and cook gradually in its juices.

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Appetizers at ITC Kohenur, Hyderabad

During my review chef had an exquisite line-up prepared all we had to do was sit back and savor it all. Our meal began with the welcome drink ‘Jamun-E-Sahi’ which was a jamun juice with hint of lemon and chilies. In appetizers I really enjoyed the ‘Dudiya Kebab’ that melts in the mouth just like its non-vegetarian counterpart ‘Galauti Kebab’ For the ones who are fond of lamb must try the ‘Kakori Kebab’ cooked to perfection with flavors of cloves and cinnamon.

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The appetizing dishes at ITC Kohenur, Hyderabad

I enjoyed the assortment of breads, especially the sheermal with dishes like ‘Qasar-E-Pukhtan’ paneer simmered in tomato gravy, ‘Murgh Khushk Purdah’ another aromatic dish that has succulent pieces of chicken. The mandatory try is the ‘Dum Pukht Biryani’, the showstopper dish which is mutton biryani served with curd chutney, raita and mirchi ka salan.

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Biryani at ITC Kohenur, Hyderabad (p.c  Saloni- salt to taste)

Wrapping up the meal we were presented with ‘Khwaish-E-Shereen’ , an assorted platter of desserts that includes Khubani ka Meetha, Badami Kheer &  Gulab Jamun.

 

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Desserts at ITC Kohenur, Hyderabad

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Spa Yoga by Jawed Habib, Hyderabad

To relax and renew is vital for living. Spa Yoga provides a complete luxuriate experience with their Services like body massage, scrubs, body polish and facials. All the products they use are in house Jawed Habib products that promise to give you a much needed pamper session and glow.

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The ambiance is very cozy, red and cream details in interiors give you a very majestic vibe. Welcoming with lime water, the staff is humble and hospitable. Once done choosing the treatment we were lead to begin. The first was a typical foot wash, where they dip your feet in water filled with rose petals and rinse them well.

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We were then escorted to our massage room, where the masseuse began the treatments. We choose to go with ‘Manipura Abhyanga’ for body; the name translates to beautiful and shining in Sanskrit. The treatment that lasted 60 minutes helps to balance and energize the Manipura chakra, it’s kind of healing therapy that triggers the body’s health by reliving of any stress and knots. The aromatic scents will fill your senses and leads you into de-stress zone. Next step was Body scrub, we choose to go for it as a spate treatment but they do offer some really good package deals.  ‘Shukla’ the heavenly body scrub massage lasted for 30 minutes and was simply phenomenal, the blend of Amalki, Yashti-madhu, Vrikshamla, Manjishtha and Shwet Chandan not just lightens the skin tone and nourishes it with Vitamin C but also makes one skin alluringly beautiful, I could feel my skin a lot softer, almost immediately.  I was sent off for a good 10 minutes steam, to let my skin absorb all the goodness of essential oils and benefit maximum out of my treatment. I love when they have Steam attached to your room, instead of going to some other space, after all its all about extra comfort.  the last treatment was the Whitening facial called ‘Shukla’ which is a blend of Amalki, Yashtimadhu, Vrilshamla, Manjistha and Shwet Chandan, an exclusively unique therapy for 60 minutes  that lightens the complexion and gives a soft even tone skin.

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Our treatment ended with some much needed nuts and ginger lemon tea, boosting our immune system and ready to spend rest of the day in relax mode. so if you need a break Spa yoga is place to head. Hyderabad blogger, Indian travel blogger

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Location: 1-8-303/31, NI Towers,, Sindhi Colony, PG road, Secunderabad. Ph: 09010538444

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Nail Ishq, Hyderabad

Everyone loves a good pamper session, and when it can give you a longer result it makes every penny spent worth it.

For ages women have loved to groom themselves, proper hair, skin and ofcourse nails. Nails are as important to us as much as the skin itself. Nothing speaks sophistication as much as well done nails.

Perfectly manicured nails and feet talk about an individual much better than half chipped nails or unmanicured (it may not be a word but it is definitely is an expression) hand and feet.

Comes to the rescue ‘ Nail Ishq’ Hyderabad. Tucked away in the corner of a dessert shop this Nail Parlour is my new favourite in town. They are the most pocket friendly Nail service in Hyderabad. They may not offer you a lavish manicure pedicure treatment but they offer skills to turn your nails into ones of diva.

From Gel Nail paint to Extensions, Metallic magic to Instagramable Nail Art they do it all.

I had two sessions with them, my experinace has been really good. The staff is well trained and know what they are doing. Show them a picture and they will excitedly paint your nails away. The quality of products are excellent and my nails stayed as new as it was when i got it done for almost 3 weeks.

However because the place is compact i would recommend you visit them only on appointment.

Location- Rd No 9, In Guilt Trip, Banjara Hills. Ph- 080081 62224