A year and a half after being severely damaged in the Mumbai terrorist attacks, two of the city’s most celebrated hotels, the Taj Mahal Palace & Tower and the Oberoi, have opened again—a testament to the city’s robustness and strength. The lobby of the Taj—a plush Edwardian palace on the Arabian Sea—has a new contemporary look, with dragon-patterned panels and etched glasswork, but the heritage wing’s 297 rooms and suites remain reassuringly classic, filled with period furniture and original works of art. A striking tower on Marine Drive, the Oberoi has been completely transformed; its modern guest rooms, freshened up in a palette of ivory and sage, also received much-needed tech updates, including Wi-Fi and iPod docking stations. The airy lobby, where waiters serve tea and cocktails, is detailed with white Thassos marble and black granite. Book a table at Ziya, a 74-seat restaurant by star Indian chef Vineet Bhatia.
Taj Mahal Palace, Mumbai
1903 grande dame with dramatic interiors—vaulted ceilings; silk carpets; onyx columns—overlooking the 85-foot-high Gateway of India. The lobby of this a plush Edwardian palace has a new contemporary look, with dragon-patterned panels and etched glasswork, but the heritage wing’s 285 rooms and suites remain reassuringly classic, filled with period furniture and original works of art.
The Oberoi, Mumbai
Cosmopolitan elegance characterizes everything about the Oberoi's recently renovated flagship, located on Marine Drive, a scenic coastal boulevard that lines Mumbai's south side. From the cherry-red concert grand piano that graces the airy main lobby to the colored glass panels that line Vetro, the hotel's Italian restaurant, it's apparent that sleek furnishings were prioritized here. The 287 guest rooms (all graciously updated with WiFi and iPod docking stations) are decked with pietra dura tabletops, oak wood floors and ivory, leather-clad headboards. The hotel is also home to the city's first and only 24-hour spa and a heated outdoor swimming pool, bordered by cushy chaise lounges that look towards the ocean.