October 28, 2012
Time Travel with Cinderella at ITC Grand Chola
Ohh no no… I don’t have a step mother and two step sisters. My dad didn’t marry another woman. It was my knee! I have a muscle cramp. I can’t drive. I can’t walk, can’t move around freely. I was confined to my room.
Indiblogger my Cinderella Tale Fairy God-Father, knocks on my gmail door with an invitation from the ITC Grand Chola Dynasty.
The mail announces, ITC Prince has called for a ball on 26th October 2012, 2pm to 7pm. The best blogger have surprise gifts waiting. The ITC Grand Prince would give away lot of goodies to the bloggers who can woo him!
All the smart, intelligent, beautiful, fun loving bloggers of the Indiblogger town are invited. The tandora was on the Facebook, twitter, blogs and everywhere around.
The Ball! the Ball ! I want to go the ball, but how can I? My fairy god-father Indiblogger wanted me to reach the venue. There are so many aspiring people who want to join. I have ticket but how do I go??? Inspiration was my pair of wings!
Cinderella at the ITC Grand Chola
I am a Scientist, a Fulbrighter and I travel a lot. I have stayed in the best and in many worst places too. Few of my best staying experiences were at The Leela Palace, Bangalore, The Hyatt Regency, Atlanta, The Holiday Inn, Goa and a few others.
I was at the Leela Palace for a meeting organised by Thirumalai Chemicals way back in 2008. I was invited by GCIV to The Hyatt Regency, Atlanta for a work shop on Human Rights, last November. Find the pictures here.
The Holiday Inn , Goa is an amazing place for fun. I was there last May for the Fulbrighters orientation.
I heard a little birdie say that ITC Grand Chola is the third largest hotel in the country, after Renaissance (759 rooms) and Grand Hyatt (694 rooms) — both are placed in Mumbai. Grand Chola, has 522 rooms and 78 lavish one, two and three bedroom serviced apartments, with their own gym and swimming pool serviced apartments in luxury style with LEED Platinum green hotel certificate. Now it’s time to say Chennai has something to show cast and feel proud off.
I stood awed at the façade, the reflective corridors, the heavenly lighting; the multi layered marble motifs, the sophisticated carvings and other pieces of art. It was a time travel to recall the grandeur and lifestyle of the imperial Chola dynasty. The motifs made me feel Royal, as though, I was this Kundavai Pirattiyar from the Royal Chola Dynasty who is to be adorned with the title Sembiyan Mahadevi. I did feel a hypothetical Queen’s robe and throne. I had to switch over from Cinderella to Kundavai Pirattiyar!
Starting from the Sangam lobby, I got to walk through the corridors paved of marble. The marbles and the art work on the marbles remind us of the famous Brigadheswara Temple in Tanjore. There are nearly 50 varieties of marble and stone. The lighting in the lobbies are colossal with enchanting chandeliers.
The ITC Grand Chola spreads over three gopurams or wings. The range of facilities found here are exciting. There are places to eat and drink. They include Nutmeg - the Gourmet shop, Café Mercara Express- serves a fine selection of beverages, Madras Pavilion- restaurant with A’la Carte cuisine, Peshawri- Mouth watering cuisine which offers a delightful range of tandoor grilled meats, vegetables, kebabs etc, Tranquebar- for mocktails and cocktails, Ottimo cucino Italiana – features a marvelously large live counter where we can watch our feast being prepared – from wood owen fired pizzas to an astounding variety of artisanal pastas. The Cheroot – A perfect place for an aromatic cigar and fine malts, Pan Asian, Royal Vega and I-Place are yet to open.
The Royal facilities don’t end here, there is a huge health spa, three swimming pools and gymnasiums, a shopping arcade, and an art gallery reflecting the ITC Grand Chola’s theme. However, the most outstanding feature is the largest convention center in the country,”Rajendra” with a 30,000 square foot ballroom built with no pillars. Ranjendra can be divided into eight separate halls using of sound proof banquet partitions, or used as one contiguous space.
The luxury accommodation took me to another world. The walls are painted with eye soothing colors. The drapes are elegant and rich. The furnishings are soft and just ideal. The best feature is the iPad-controlled mechanisms in all the rooms. I just wish that there is a Kundavai piratiyar presidential suit too. The ITC guys have only Eva for the ladies! The luxury accommodation takes us ahead of time.
If we get lost in the grandeur, don't panic we have got the touch screen kiosk in every floor to find our way out
As all good things come to an end, the ball at ITC Grand Chola also came to an end. Ouuchhh Ouuchhh I just remembered I have a knee injury, a muscle cramp….No, I didn’t leave my glass slippers there. I have several reasons to go back to ITC Grand Chola. I am looking forward to arrange some of my SMARTER project workshops at ITC Grand Chola
Thank you Indiblogger
Thank you ITC Grand Chola. Special thanks to Smriti for taking us around
psst: I am sorry for the picture quality as all the pics are clicked using my Samsung galaxy ace plus, for the very first time I used the camera on my mobile. Cinderella didn't have her camera ready when she started for the ball :( . Thank you Indiblogger for the last group pic :)