Taj Mahal Palace and Tower
The Taj Mahal Palace and Tower – or ‘the Taj’, as it is best known – has played host to Maharajahs, freedom fighters, artists, politicians and countless celebrities over the years, is both a city icon and the grandest of all grand dames when it comes to hotels in Mumbai. Observant guests will notice a neat little glass case on the wall by the Louis Vuitton shop that showcases the faces of the many guests who’ve stayed with large black-and-white portraits. Nowadays, Sheiks and their entourages fill the lobby along with bemused tourists and loyal locals.
Since the horrific terror attacks of 2008, the Taj group has been busy fully refurbishing both the tower wing and palace wing. Now, linking them both is a tasteful plaque with the names of those who lost their lives by a waterfall and a statue of the tree of life. There is a beautiful, new sandstone Dhol Purjali flanking the new tea-room close to reception. Breakfast is taken in the Shamiana Restaurant below billowing drapes – and offers a large buffet and unrivalled service.
The Taj Mahal Palace and Tower is home to a fine host of restaurants from Wasabi by Marimoto to Souk the middle-eastern restaurant on the top bar and Masala Bay. The Harbour Bar is the perfect spot to nurse a single-malt or to sip a G&T in true colonial style. No trip to Mumbai, or even India, is complete without a stay here – if the rates are out of reach, pop in for afternoon tea.