Chhavi and I had the pleasure to go for a staycation (on invitation) to Pullman Aerocity New Delhi for one night. After a while she told me, “this is the most stylish hotel I have come across!” I am always happy to spend time with the kid on holidays and staycations as she is a lot of fun. Pullman is located in Aerocity and is a good place for your rest and rejuvenation.
The Check In
The check in was a breeze for us, we went to the reception and after the usual formalities, we were on our way to the suite we were staying in. But before we went, Chhavi was quite taken in with the lights at the lobby. They reminded me of Changi a little.
We had a beautiful suite with a huge living area and a comfortable bedroom. But the highlight for Chhavi was the large bath tub. If she could have it her way, she would live for half a day just inside the tub!
She also loved the fact that there was a tennis featured chocolate waiting specially for her in the room! She has started playing tennis regularly and it delighted her immensely that the people at the hotel knew about it. A lot of credit to the hotel staff who went through my Instagram highlights and figured that out! It was special for me too.
We had a comfortable sleep in the room. From the bedroom I could see part of the airport but the soundproofing is good, I could barely ever hear the planes!
The Swimming Pool
There is a swimming pool within the hotel but we could not use it as it was too cold in February! But we would surely like to go back and enjoy the pool.
The Dining Options
There are many dining options at the Pullman. Our favorite was Honk Asian Restaurant where I ordered Phad Thai. We had Sushi and Dim sums before it. Chhavi thoroughly enjoyed her drink at the restaurant.
We also enjoyed a coffee roasting session at Café Pluck and later enjoyed a cup of coffee too! The breakfast was served at Pluck the restaurant and we had one lunch there too!
However, my most distinctive experience came at Pling with Kriti the master sommelier. Wine is something that doesn’t make much sense to me with each name vying to be more unpronounceable than the other! To me almost all wines taste good! So, I was not too sure what to expect in the wine tasting session with her. But she put me at ease from the word go and I actually enjoyed my session.
We went into great length about why we swirl the glass of wine, to why we sniff it and where does the aroma in the wine comes from! I had a great time.
It was Bonus Meeting My Student
It was great meeting my student Paramjeet at Pullman. He works nearby and dropped in to chat with Chhavi and me. It is always great catching up with my students! The seem to be more impressed with my travels rather than my teaching!
Overall Chhavi and I had a great time at Pullman New Delhi Aerocity Hotel! For Chhavi it is the most stylish hotel she has visited! I also realized that she has crossed that age when I used to be petrified she will break something when we went out! Kids grow up fast and they grow up only once! I should remember this more often and travel more with her!
PS. Chhavi and I were invited by the hotel to stay with them!
I am a big fan of stepwells. When I realized that there is a stepwell, Tooriji ka Jhalra in the old city at Jodhpur, I decided to go.
The cab dropped me off at Ghanta Ghar or the clock tower. It was my first foray into the old city even though this was my second trip to Jodhpur.
Right at the Ghanta Ghar there are two legendary shops, Janta Sweets and Mishrilal Hotel. Take your fill of Kachori, lassi, mirchi vada and the likes from these shops. Or like me, you can leave it for later.
Stops on the Way
I was walking straight to the Baori. But on the way there are street vendors selling all kind of knick knacks. I was stopped by a bangle seller and I ended up buying some for my daughter.
I next stopped at the Moon House Haveli which is home to popular Indian Brands like Andraab, Nicobar, Good Earth, Forest Essentials etc.
I was curious and went into Andraab declaring right at the door that I was only looking around. I was still welcome and I had a great chat about handicrafts, Pashmina and Kashmir. They have stunning designs at stunning prices.
I also had a great conversation with the staff at Good Earth. I did not know that it was a Royal Enfield venture! The Dharamshala Tea Company which sells through Good Earth was doing a tea tasting session at the Haveli. I did end up buying tea for home!
Toorji Ka Jhalara
The legend says that the stepwell was built by a queen, consort of Maharaja Abhaya Singh in 1740. But like many things in India it turned into a garbage dump in the modern times. Then came the JDH Restoration Project. JDH is the airport code for Jodhpur. You can read an account of JDH and restoration from the links.
Then I ventured to the Tooriji Baoli and I was then immersed in taking pictures. The Baoli is popular both with the tourists and locals, all trying to find a good angle and a good picture! I even gate crashed a plandid at the baori, that is the first picture in this post!
The day was already turning hot in February. There were only a few locals and tourists hanging around. I have a feeling that the local youth still swims in the baori.
Cafes by the Jhalara
Then I headed to the Open House Cafe which is right next to the Tooriji Baoli. There are two actually, the other called the Stepwell Cafe. I liked the blues of the Open House and decided to give them a try. I can vouch that Maggi tastes great near a stepwell too!
Lassi, Kachoris and the Like
I then started my walk back to the Ghanta Ghar but I had enough time to visit Misrilal Hotel and have a mawa Kachori and Makhania Lassi. Both tasted divine and I was ready to head back to my cozy homestay Surya Kunj!
If you are visiting Jodhpur do not miss out on visiting Toorji ka Jhalra. I am told there are more stepwells in the city, so that information has been stored for the next visit.
Mumbai and I usually meet when I have to attend an event in the city. This trip was no different. I was attending OTM and I was staying at Novotel Mumbai Juhu Beach. I was hosted as a blogger.
This time I was supposed to stay for two nights but it was not to be. My trip was cut short as I proceeded to Chennai and then Colombo on another blogging trip. I was staying in an sea facing suite right next to the Juhu Beach. I wish I could have stayed both the nights but my one night stand with Mumbai continues!
Novotel Mumbai Juhu Beach as the name suggests is right by the beach! From the swimming pool of the hotel you get a view of the ocean. The best bit about the trip was that my school friend Swati visited me at the hotel!
The check-in at the hotel was smooth for me as I arrived late in the evening after my event with Facebook Mumbai.
I loved my suite, the living room corner chair is the one to look out for. It gives you a fabulous view of the beach below and you can entertain yourself by people watching!
The bed was comfortable and the bathroom had a bath tub! I was told that the hotel has plans of refurbishing soon and it would be lovely to have a new look.
The breakfast at the Square had a large spread. Their fruit spread is particularly impressive. There are plenty of options both Indian and Continental options!
Dinner at Sampan
Sampan is the famous Chinese restaurant in the hotel. Being in Juhu I was told it is frequented by Bollywood stars. My dear friend Swati who lives in Mumbai joined me for dinner along with her son and husband.
We all agreed that we had an excellent dinner. The Head Chef Penpa Tsering was a bit disappointed when he realized 3 of us vegetarians but even then he served up a delicious meal for us.
My stay at the hotel was over way too soon. I didn’t even find time to walk by the beach which is such a pity.
But while I was waiting for the cab to arrive for my journey to Colombo, I got about 40 minutes in my room to laze around. It is then that I realized that the living room gets direct sunlight and if I would have stayed I could have seen the sunset right from the room.
I hope I will go back to the hotel after it is refurbished and I will get it to spend more time both at the hotel and in the city!
PS. I was hosted at Novotel Mumbai Juhu Beach as a travel blogger!