CITY OF MIL­LIONS AND MIL­LION­AIRES

Sunday Herald Sun - Escape - - WHAT’S YOUR BUDGET MUMBAI -

It’s big, bold, and though its name was changed years ago, will for­ever be known in many hearts as Bom­bay. Al­though it can be over­whelm­ing at first bite, Mum­bai at­tracts both dream­ers and mil­lion­aire busi­ness­men. More mod­ernly known as In­dia’s Sil­i­con Val­ley, it’s In­dia’s rich­est city – home to 46,000 mil­lion­aires and 28 bil­lion­aires along with a to­tal wealth of $820 bil­lion.

But it’s not just those seek­ing tech fame and for­tune be­ing lured to Mum­bai, with Mother In­dia beck­on­ing Aus­tralians to her shores. Searches for In­dia, specif­i­cally Mum­bai, are up by nearly 25 per cent year-on-year in 2017, and Ex­pe­dia tips this might be the year many Aussies ex­plore the coun­try, broad­en­ing their hori­zons be­yond but­ter chicken.

“When I’m over­seas I love eat­ing like the locals, and you can’t leave Mum­bai with­out try­ing a spicy vada pav, a tra­di­tional street food of deep-fried potato dumpling in­side a bread roll and served with chut­neys,” says Lisa Perkovic, Ex­pe­dia.com.au travel ex­pert. CELESTE MITCHELL

*RATES BASED ON SEARCH FOR AC­COM­MO­DA­TION FROM AU­GUST 16-17. 2018. SUB­JECT TO AVAIL­ABIL­ITY, LIM­ITS AND CHANGE WITH­OUT NO­TICE. When you need a re­prieve from the ca­coph­ony of sights, smells and sounds of In­dia’s al­pha city, you’ll find it in the art deco charm of Ho­tel Har­bour View which is lo­cated in the old Bri­tish Quar­ter of Co­laba. With just 12 rooms, the crown­ing glory of this ho­tel is the rooftop Bayview cafe – pro­vid­ing sweep­ing views over the city and Ara­bian Sea, along with deca­dent Parsi del­i­ca­cies and in­ter­na­tional eats from break­fast un­til the wee hours. You’re within an easy stroll of The Gate­way to In­dia, Co­laba mar­kets, Co­laba Cause­way, the iconic Leopold and Mon­de­gar cafes, and the Kala Ghoda art precinct from your com­fort­able base. Com­pli­men­tary break­fast is served each morn­ing while air­port trans­fers, room ser­vice and wi-fi are part and par­cel of ev­ery stay.

EX­PE­DIA.COM.AU Less ho­tel, more ec­cen­tric art mu­seum, Le Su­tra of­fers dec­o­rated rooms based on In­dian mythol­ogy. Each floor and each key-turn re­veals a new chap­ter. A team of 120 painters, 40 sculp­tors, and 15 de­sign­ers weaved their magic in the cre­ation of this bou­tique ho­tel in the artsy neigh­bour­hood of Ban­dra, where Bol­ly­wood star-spot­ting is al­most a sport. Pull up a seat un­der the fes­toon light­ing in Out of the Blue cafe and re­turn for com­pli­men­tary buf­fet break­fast. In the side court­yard you’ll find the white­washed Olive Bar & Kitchen of­fer­ing Mediter­ranean fare while on-site day spa Ang­dai makes a mas­sage a no­brainer. Grab a city map from re­cep­tion and head out into the hub­bub. Bi­cy­cles can be ar­ranged. Leave time for brows­ing in the Karma Korner spir­i­tual book­shop.

EX­PE­DIA.COM.AU This is the type of place you book just for the chance to sit at its bar. Glow­ing pur­ple, 33 floors up, you’ll know you’ve ar­rived when you’re seated with a Mum­bai sour in hand at the Four Sea­son’s rooftop bar. With only eight guest rooms per floor, you’re promised views of the Ara­bian Sea or the Mum­bai sky­line. The spa of­fers 24-karat pure gold fa­cials along with a ded­i­cated Ayurveda room, trop­i­cal rain and Scot­tish cold mist show­ers, and colour ther­apy. But for an in­vi­ta­tion into lo­cal life, for­get Uber Eats and join the dab­bawalas to help hand-de­liver dab­bas (stacked lunch tins) across the city. This de­liv­ery trade has been in­grained in Mum­bai cul­ture for 125 years. To get around, a town car ser­vice is at your dis­posal, along with com­pli­men­tary valet park­ing.

EX­PE­DIA.COM.AU

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