Answers from Our Experts (1)
Reverence for guests is a tenant of Indian culture, and the attentive hospitality at these places recommended by our Forbes Travel Guide editors will make leaving your hotel a real struggle:
1. The Leela Palace New Delhi. This stunning hotel opened recently, but the accolades are already piling in and it’s setting a precedent in Indian hospitality that will be hard to top. With the largest rooms in the capital, internationally acclaimed restaurants Le Cirque and Megu, and a spa by ESPA, the Leela Palace is the epitome of prestige.
2. The Imperial. Delhi’s first luxury hotel, The Imperial was the setting for the historic talks between Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru, Lord Mountbatten and Mohammed Ali Jinnah that led to the partition of India and to the creation of Pakistan. It still oozes colonial charm, and there is a curator-in-residence who will happily elaborate on the sweeping pillars in the veranda or on the antique artwork gracing the walls.
3. Taj Palace Hotel. The go-to scene for glitzy weddings and VIP sightings, the Taj is a Delhi institution. In addition to the classically modern interiors and prime location in the Diplomatic Enclave, we’re most impressed with the bed linens. The perfect night’s sleep is guaranteed thanks to the surprising range of selection on the “pillow menu” — which includes an aromatherapy latex one.
4. Trident, Gurgaon. Although this hotel isn’t in Delhi proper, it has a convenient location in the business district of Gurgaon and is near the international airport. Spread over seven acres of manicured lawns and reflecting pools, the rooms are bright and airy, the lobbies plush and grandiose, and the tea pastries indulgent.
5. Shangri-La’s-Eros Hotel. As soon as you step out of the Rolls Royce Phantom into the ornate lobby adorned with the work of renowned artist M.F. Husain, you know staying at the Shangri-La will be a special experience. Awaken the Mughal royal buried deep within you by pampering yourself with an ayurvedic massage before gorging on Thai food at the classy 19 Oriental Avenue.