Old Guard

India Today - - BUZZ - By Malini Ban­er­jee

One of Kolkata’s old­est and leg­endary ho­tel has fi­nally open af­ter ren­o­va­tion. The Lalit Great East­ern Ho­tel, once known as Wil­son Ho­tel, and men­tioned in Rud­yard Ki­pling’s books, was built in the 1800s and has hosted guests like Mark Twain and Ho Chi Minh.

Great East­ern has man­aged to re­tain the old charms and yet bal­anced it with the new. The century-old piano still stands in the cor­ner of the con­tem­po­rary lobby. The wind­ing iron stair­case is an im­pos­ing pres­ence in the ho­tel’s airy atrium. But the best part is the Great East­ern Bak­ery (pic be­low), which still has the century-old oven, al­though it is no longer in use. The ho­tel ac­tu­ally started off as this 173year-old bak­ery bak­ery, which is the old­est part of the build­ing. Its con­fec­tionary and sa­vories were once con­sid­ered leg­endary and they are all up for grabs. The bak­ery has man­aged to re­tain a few of the old fa­vorites in­clud­ing Dim Puff (priced at a mod­est Rs 35), which is a savoury patty with an egg fill­ing. Also on the menu are sal­ads, grilled sand­wiches and a va­ri­ety of breads. Cost Rs 12,500 per night, per room At 1,2,3 Old Court House Street, Dal­housie Square Tel 4447777

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