Luxury Hotels

INDIA – 7

Oberoi, as a brand, is an Indian institution, the equivalent of Bulgari, led by the Bulgari family – or Hermès or Krug or other top brands that have eponymous association. The next Oberoi generation, Arjan and Vikram Oberoi, is ever mindful or, respectful of, heritage. But today is today, from the customers viewpoint.

The 1964-vintage, eight-floor hotel, in Brutalist style, was Intercon for a short while. Today it’s a destination in its own right, an urban resort approached via a winding drive. Inside the front door a spider’s web of metal wisps connects the two sides of the lobby, providing a modicum of privacy for activity beyond.

Suite 850, the 350sq m Kohinoor Suite, is an elongated L shape. There are six picture windows, looking down at forest and  golf course. Cross over, to the furthest end of the L’s short length, and there are another two picture windows, looking down at forest. Highly polished wood floors have some rugs. Integral to the whole is formal dining, a media corner, a library corner, and a wellness room with Technogym runner and a spa bed.

The library’s gold embossed leather-bound books include a 1916 tome, Lady Login’s Recollections, Court Life and Camp Life, 1820-1904, by E. Dalhousie Login, Lady Login’s Recollections, Court Life and Camp Life, 1820-1904. By one of the windows another lady holds court, a lifesize seated nude, a bronze by Bengalaru sculptor Dimpy Menon.

There are some well-placed sculptures, mostly abstracts, at strategic points around the gardens. Girlahead especially liked the stone Shyness, by Amar Nath Seghal. Here are two of the swimming pools (the third is inside, parallel to the spa). The gym’s down there too, lower level, down from the lobby.

Dinner at the lobby-set Dhilli was a reminder that nearly half of the 283-room hotel’s revenue comes from food and drink. Dhilli was full – as always, said hotel GM Vishi Rajsingh.The adjacent 360, the three-meal restaurant, was also busy, as it was the next morning at breakfast (see the video below). What a stylish extra it was, by the way, to be served eggs brought by an immaculately-groomed exactly-vertical server in a crisp white overshirt with mandarin collar. And oh, talking of eggs, 360 needs a prize for the number of different egg dishes available.