What do you look for when choosing a place for a staycation? The priority for me is reading and relaxation. Thus, when an opportunity arose, I checked into the Taj Palace, located at the Diplomatic Enclave in New Delhi.
I’ve been to the property a number of times before but this time, the intention was different—it wasn’t an event or meals with friends or family. Armed with a book I’d been wanting to read, my diary to pen down thoughts in and with a hope of relaxation, I was ready for a staycation.
The Taj Palace has recently renovated their first-floor garden luxury suites and that’s exactly where I was headed. Opening the heavy door, I was greeted by the smell of fresh white lilies. The scent followed me around the suite, which I discovered slowly, at my own pace. Coloured in shades of brown, beige and white, the suite was simplistic yet beautiful and very modern. The geometric patterned rugs, the soundproof windows, the comfortable bed, a bathroom bigger than my apartment bedroom; I wanted to stay here forever. The best part about the garden suite is, well, the garden. Sipping on a cup of green tea with fresh grass under your bare feet in a congested city like New Delhi is luxury. As the wind blew through my hair and sunshine touched everything around me, I suddenly felt at peace. Taking my book, I sat on the grass, still wet from the morning dew, and began to read. I think I got through four chapters before realising my stomach had started grumbling.
Spicy Duck opened about two years ago and is the hotel’s Chinese restaurant. With its bronze and black shades, it’s a perfect spot for dinner after drinks at the Blue Bar. But I love devouring Chinese at any given time, so no points for guessing where I went. Start the meal with some Yin Yang hargao made with squid ink and scallop dimsum. Then go on to prawns dipped in the restaurant’s own ‘superior sauce’ before trying the Peking duck. For the mains, if you still have space, order the Chilean seabass in Yunan sauce and the sliced pork with chilli bean paste.
There’s nothing better than an afternoon siesta post a scrumptious lunch. Thoughts of work emails went out my head the moment it touched the soft pillows.
In the evening, I made my way to the outdoor patio of the Tea Lounge. Not only did the colour combinations of pink and teal sofas give me ideas for DIY decor but the Moroccan mint tea warmed my soul.
After dinner at the famed Orient Express, the best way to relax during a staycation is to soak in the big tub, wrap yourself in fluffy robes and then head outside to see the stars. Humid but bearable, I hummed Doris Day’s ‘Que sera sera’. I felt at home. The Taj group does that to you. Understated, luxurious and friendly, it’s no wonder I keep going back.
ACCOMMODATION: 403 rooms and 41 suites, including the garden luxury suite and garden presidential suite
+91-11-26110202; [email protected]