The one too many cooking shows flocking television channels worldwide might just be an indication that food has long moved from being a necessity to an art form, of sorts. The Pullman Hotel at the Aerocity in Delhi, embraces this new culture and prides itself on its ‘artsy’ ambience.
As my chauffeur-driven Innova pulled into the Aerocity to the tunes of Wakhra swag ni, I glanced out at the impressive facade of the Pullman. Nothing too spectacular from the outside, I was prepared for just another run of the mill five-star hotel experience. And so, not too enthusiastically, I waited to see what I would uncover inside.
It wasn’t until I had checked in that I got around to taking a look at the lobby and the intricate raindrop shaped chandelier that hung from the ceiling. The plush couches strewn across the lobby were in shades of green and blue; each table decorated with a splash of the good old modern-meets-traditional style lamps. I was later told that the space was designed with a peacock theme in mind and the colours represented the feathers of the bird dancing in the first rain; poetic, to say the least.
The Pullman and the adjoining Novotel were built in tandem and designed in a way to complement each other. The Novotel lobby, designed on a lotus theme, had matching tones to that of the lotus flower. While the Pullman is a slightly higher end luxury property, the Novotel caters to a more family friendly audience. The colour tones of the Novotel are definitely warmer with a far greater emphasis on natural light. Pullman, on the other hand, creates the mood of a room with various different kinds of artificial lighting.
The Pullman is also home to the largest ballroom in Aerocity, fittingly called the Peacock Ballroom. They also have a variety of meeting rooms, which can be customised to the required size. Adjacent to the meeting rooms is an informal meeting area.
I was seated at the charming little lobby bar called ‘Pling’, named after the sound an ice cube makes as it hits a glass. The interiors, again peacock-themed, were covered in mirrors that made the room look larger than it was. Preoccupied with the Spanish guitar that was playing in the background, it took me physical effort to pay attention to the itinerary being read out.
Walking into my plush little room with a front row seat view of the pool, I looked around at the queen-sized bed, strewn with colourful throw pillows against the padded silver wall, with ornate printed patterns. The snow-white bath strategically positioned almost in the middle of the room stood ready with a bowl of rose scented bath salts; there was a giant LCD screen right in front of the bed against a golden wall, again, printed. The juxtaposition of the warm and cool colours gave the room a unique look of being homey as well as like a hotel. I waited for the housekeeping staff to leave before putting the bed through the ultimate test—I plunged into the mattress and felt myself bounce back; I knew I would sleep well.
As lunchtime rolled around, I was taken to dine at Pluck, which offered European and Indian cuisine. The chefs, quite literally, pluck most of the produce from the neighbouring herb garden where seasonal vegetables and herbs are grown. Delicious as the food was, the presentation was something straight out of Masterchef—think little tuiles and onion ash being flooded with Parmesan soup in front of you. Pluck also had something called the vino deca, a portable wine dispenser by the glass; unique to the hotel and not to mention, very fancy. In fact, Café Pluck roasts its very own coffee beans as well.
Clearly, since I was clearly having such a hectic day, it only made sense to try out the hotel’s Woo Wellness Spa. The hour-and-a-half long vinotherapy with a red wine-based scrub and a glorious back massage tones revitalises your body and also has incredible anti-aging properties, I was told. Repeatedly. Complete with cinnamon tea and a rain shower chamber in every therapy room, if you’re ever in the mood for feeling like royalty, walk on in.
Dinner reservations at the Southeast Asian ‘Honk’ restaurant were made for 7pm; I’d initially thought this to be a tad early, but I soon realised why. Honk, named after the instantly recognisable honking sounds in the streets of south Asia, doesn’t merely provide you with food; it turns dining into an experience like none other. The Chef’s brainchild, Honk was designed entirely by him, complete with all the cutlery being custom made for the restaurant in workshops and warehouses across the globe.
Two hours, four courses, multiple cuisines, and a gamut of conversation later, the journey through elevated street foods of Asia came to an end. The restaurants across the hotel also make it a point to pair different cocktails, and not just wine, with each course of the meal, so make sure to ask the chef for his recommendation.
Finally, satisfied and on a food high, I made my way up to my room fantasising about the rose scented bubbly bath I’d spend the next hour soaking myself in. With that, wrapped in the soft, plush robe, I curled up in bed with my laptop and watched Game of Thrones on the complimentary high-speed wifi.
I eventually fell asleep with a stupid smile on my face, already making plans about the next time I’d be here; ah, such was absolute bliss.
Asset No. 02, Aerocity Hospitality District, IGI Airport, New Delhi – 110037
270 rooms and suites