This was a first, Chhavi and I stayed for a night at Ibis Delhi Airport, a newly opened hotel in my own city! We went on the Saturday and came back on Sunday. Now that I have done it, it actually made for a relaxing weekend!
Ibis Aerocity is a newly open hotel in the close proximity to the international and domestic airports in Delhi. When I presented myself at the hotel, there was a big queue for check-out at the reception. Looks like their Pay What You Want campaign is working for them. The campaign ends on September 21. Ibis is an economy hotel from the Accor Group. They have free shuttle service to both the airports.
The Room: We had a cozy, clean room with a tea and coffee maker. The room also had a large flat screen TV. The bathroom is designed to economize on space. It was clean and functional. I liked the hair and shower gel as it had a pleasing mild fragrance. As my daughter would use the milk sachets to make milk for her, we asked for more from the housekeeping staff and they always gave it to her! All over the hotel they have posted messages asking guests to help them save the environment. They put two complimentary half liter water bottles in the room. There is a safe in the room.
The Food: I was pleasantly surprised by the buffet, both for lunch and dinner at Ibis. I have actually stayed in quite a few Accor hotels- Novotel in Pune and Pullman in Putrajaya, Malaysia. I have visited Sofitel in Bangkok. I have always found their food quite good. The food at Ibis, Aerocity was almost comparable to Novotal in Pune. I found the tomato khus khus and the curd rice quite well done. I liked immensely that they had baklava (among many other things) for dessert both at lunch and dinner. I have tried to cut down on sweet but at dinner I went ahead and had two baklava! For the breakfast I went with upma and idli and both were done well. I asked for milk for Chhavi and they gave it. I saw a mother asking for plain rice and daal for her daughter at dinner and she got it too.
At lunch Chhavi was not eating much and I was worried that she would bother me later for food. The e-commerce manager had joined us for lunch and I mentioned this. He said, “Ma’am there is a whole room service menu at your disposal! Order anything you like!” I wonder why did it never occur to me even in spite of having stayed in many hotels. They have a tea coffee dispenser at the buffet which in my opinion is a really nice touch.
The Gorgeous Swimming Pool: Ibis Aerocity has a gorgeous swimming pool. It was our major playground and it was popular with other guests too. On Saturday we spent close to two hours in the pool. I had to finally drag the kid out as she was shivering by the end. But what a gala time we had. I learnt swimming when I was in 4th standard. All through my school and college I had access to a pool. It is only now that I don’t have it, so whenever I get to use one, I go all out.
The kid is learning to swim, she is so hyper that she won’t keep her head in the water for more than a second! We started swimming together at Hong Kong and we continued at Ibis. Ibis has a separate kid’s pool but she wanted to come to the big pool where she could not even stand as the depth is 4 feet. I would take her around and gradually she got the hang of floating. In a way it was good that she could not stand, that way she was forced to do something. I would always remember Ibis fondly as this is where the kiddo started taking baby steps towards swimming!
After coming to the room after the two hour session, I ordered a pizza. She ate three slices, I put on a cartoon on TV and within 10 minutes she was fast asleep. Ibis makes nice thin crust pizzas. With the kid asleep at 6.00 pm I had a lot of free time at hand. I put songs on Sony Mix and read a PG Wodehouse. Oh the bliss of spending a peaceful evening at a hotel in my own city. I woke up Chhavi at about 9.00 pm for dinner. She ate a little bit and fell asleep again in less than hour. I had more free time!
We went swimming again in the morning before breakfast. The swimming pool was the biggest highlight of our stay. After breakfast, which ends at 10.00 am, it was almost time to head back home. My daughter told me as we were walking out, “let us come back again!”
PS. I was invited to the hotel by Ibis. My daughter and I truly enjoyed our stay there.
It was anything but a lazy Sunday. I woke up at the Lake Palace, Nahargarh in Rajasthan. As I wanted to click pictures when the light was good I woke up 15 minutes before sunrise at the ungodly hour of 6.15 am. I had manage to crash only at 11.45 pm the previous night. I was staying there only one night, though it was all my fault.
When the Justa group invited me to visit The Rajputana, Udaipur and the Lake Palace at Nahargarh they wanted me to spend more time. However, as it is March end, I have hardly got any leaves left. I took Friday off to travel till Sunday. Beyond that I had no scope. So there I was up at sunrise, clicking pictures.
After I was done with clicking pictures, I went for a swim in this gorgeous pool at the Lake Palace, Nahargarh. I didn’t had much time as I was leaving at 9.30 am for the Udaipur airport to catch the flight back home. But it was fun swimming a few laps in beauty of a pool, which I had all to myself at about 7.00 am today. Surprisingly the water was not too cold, which was perfect for me. The palace has a lot of birds, particularly pigeons which like to hang around in the changing rooms sometimes.
I quite reluctantly tore myself out of the pool as there was no way I could afford to miss my flight. In the rush, I went charging to the changing room, only to find two pigeons taking offense at my approach what they considered to be their domain. One of them flew past my nose giving it a light graze. Now it was my turn to get startled.
The hotel is about 32 kilometers from Chittorgarh, so if you are looking for an offbeat place to stay near Chittorgarh you could give this a try. You go to the hotel by a boat as it is in the middle of a lake.
There are many trips to document now, and at least one more trip to go, starting next Saturday. Stay tuned, I will keep them coming.
I started my India travel blog, Travel Tales from India in 2005. In 2016 I realized Travel Tales from India and Abroad better reflected my writings. I love to walk and ride in metros around the world. I have not been everywhere, I am not even close, but it is on my list. I also quite my job as a professor in 2015, it was a happening year! I did a Ph.D. from IIT Kanpur ages ago!
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