Friday, December 23, 2016

Kingdom of Dreams Enthrals with Beyond Bollywood


              ~ the only Indian theatrical to stage at Westend, London ~

~ a musical extravaganza by Salim and Sulaiman that turns dreams into  
 ~ a sumptuous spectacle that is Beyond Love, Beyond Passion and  
                                         Beyond Bollywood~

I have always been a Bollywood Buff. It is the primary source of entertainment in India after all. We have all grown up with our Bollywood favourites and fixations. However sometimes the plots get predictable, stories turn repetitive and movie going experience becomes a bit jaded. That is when live entertainment steps in. Kingdom of Dreams has always been a popular hotspot for musicals inspired from Bollywood.  Perhaps they have caught the pulse of a movie-going nation and provided entertainment which may be based on Bollywood songs but adds so many new dimensions to it. Zangoora and Jhumroo have entertained thousands of music and dance lovers in Gurgaon. This time Kingdom of Dreams, RG Studios and the leading music composers of Bollywood, Salim Sulaiman have collaborated to bring us 'Beyond Bollywood', a spectacular musical at this one of a kind entertainment destination in India. The opulent Nautanki Mahal at Kingdom of Dreams is now hosting the dazzling show which has mesmerized audiences across the world since its International launch in 2015. From the prestigious Palladium and West End at London to Brussels, Germany, France, Algeria and other countries of Europe the magical theatrical has taken audiences on a truly cultural tour of India capturing the fire, grace and passion of Indian dance.

The story is a heartwarming tale of a dancer Shailey Shergill who armed with a burning desire to turn her mother’s dream into reality, sets out in search of her roots. The magnificent theatrical brings alive the sheer hypnotic splendour of India which casts a spell on Shailey and spurs her on in her journey to give shape and form to her mother’s dream. Beyond Bollywood is a grand theatrical experience that brings a mighty mix of masala, culture and Bollywood to Kingdom of Dreams.

The dances enthrall and the grandeur of visuals enraptures the audience transporting them into a magical world swirling with colour and romance as the protagonist explores her country of origin. I personally found the show a nautch higher than the previous shows as it incorporates many original tracks, folk dances and classical Kathak which definitely takes the flavour beyond bollywood. The story is woman oriented, which is also progressive. Some of the acts are much more breathtaking and daring.
Celebrated the world over this enchanting extravaganza has nine original music compositions of Bollywood’s wizards of music Salim and Sulaiman.  The show has been written, directed and choreographed by Rajeev Goswami a stalwart of Bollywood with more than 15 years of experience in the Indian Film Industry. Lyrics have been penned by Irfan Siddiqui the famous lyricist with movies like Iqbal, Fashion, Heroine, Kurbaan and Chance Pe Dance to name a few, in his portfolio of writing songs.
Speaking at the launch, Viraf Sarkari, Director Kingdom of Dreams said, “We have always wanted to stage shows which bring alive the beautiful heritage, culture and performing arts of India. Beyond Bollywood is a show which has won rave reviews across various countries in the world and is now being showcased in India at Kingdom of Dreams. I am sure the audiences here too will love this spectacle as much as it has been appreciated elsewhere in the world”.
Salim Sulaiman the accomplished music composers said, “Beyond Bollywood is a grand musical extravaganza that brings the experience of West End and Broadway to India. We truly enjoyed working on the music as it covers a vast range from classical, folk to pop music. We are really excited for it to play at KOD which is one of the finest venues in India”.
The ace choreographer Bosco who attended the event expressed his delight, “Beyond Bollywood musical is one of the most stylized Indian productions I have seen on stage. Mesmerising performances by the dancers showcase the strength of the Indian music and dances and its impact worldwide. I witnessed the thunderous applause and the standing ovation the show received at the London Palladium! I would like to congratulate the Director and Choreographer Rajeev Goswami for adding yet another feather to his cap by featuring the musical at the Kingdom of Dreams. I wish him all the best”.
Anumod Gagan Sharma, Managing Director Kingdom of Dreams said, “Beyond Bollywood has gained a lot of applause at international venues where it has been staged and I am sure it will appeal to the audiences at Kingdom of Dreams too.”
The sheer energy and chutzpah of the dancers and the performers cast a magical spell on the audience who kept asking for more. For tickets log on to and or contact on 0124-4528000.

Monday, December 12, 2016

Delightful DEL for Dilliwalas

DEL, the all day dining bistro at Roseate House, Aerocity is a refreshing new option for those looking for authentic, healthy and tasteful food. Inspired by the Delhi aero code, DEL offers gourmands a unique dining experience with change of menus at every meal time. I recently ventured into DEL, eager to explore what this hotel offered beyond the stunning architecture everyone keeps raving about. Just the way a house is converted into a cosy home by its inhabitants and their lifestyle, a beautiful hotel structure is converted into an alluring space one wants to visit time and again, through the hospitality of its staff, the warmth of the food and that special personal touch. 

I learnt that DEL offers the best of European, Oriental and Indian cuisine that will leave gourmet lovers in the city spoilt for choice. What more could it offer to this city of dilwalas! After I had taken a round of the stunning property which is so painstakingly curated, I must admit I was quite hungry and raring to go. The hotel is of course breath taking and long after you come back home, some vistas stay with you-the black marble lobby, the opulent grey villa suite, the rooftop infinity pool, the straight lines, shimmering water bodies, the charming uniforms and much more.

In DEL, there was a wonderful buffet spread awaiting and some names of dishes on the tent cards made me want to dash straight away and heap my plate. The menu on the other hand is a vast expanse of five menus that change at every meal time. But Chef Anuj Wadhawan had planned his special degustation menu for me. Chef Anuj is one of those dedicated chefs who lets his food do the talking. I could see so much thought had gone into each and every dish that he was talking about.

The meal started with a very light Chilled Cucumber and Chamomile Soup. It whet the appetite with out being overpowering. Up next was a very unique interpretation of the classic Salad Nicoise. Cured tuna with cured quail eggs and smattering of veggies. It was a bit bland but felt healthy and light on the palate. The other salad option was a House Beetroot and Burrata salad. Again I respect a chef who makes beetroot exciting!

Chilled Cucumber and Chamomile Soup
Beetroot and Burrata Salad
Tortellini with Kale and Raisins
Salade Nicoise

Scallops with Squid Ink

But by now I was wanting a more heady and robust experience and Chef Anuj read my mind. The next dish was a stunning Tortellini with Kale and Raisins. I thought that was a very unique combination and as someone who finds vegetarian food in restaurants a bit boring, I was quite blown away by the dish. It was perfectly balanced.

Rogan Josh Sous Vide with Quinoa Biryani and Blueberry Raita

But greater pleasures awaited. Next came the scallops and the black cod, very nicely grilled to perfection. And I had told Chef right in the beginning that Indian is my least favoured cuisine when eating out. But the show stealer was chef's interpretation of Rogan Josh cooked in sous vide, served with a Quinoa Vegetable Biryani and Blueberry Raita. This dish is a riot. Such a profusion of colours, flavours and textures on the plate, it leaves you spellbound.

The meal ended with a Chocolate Brownie with Ice-cream although there was no space for it. I personally found the dessert a bit unimaginative after such a superlative meal. But I am sure there will be many more choices. The best part is the chef is happy to conjure anything that you suggest with his own twist.

Through these courses, you feel bright and energetic as there is a lot of natural light in the restaurant with views of waterbodies and greenery. DEL reflects a grand sense of space. The 130 plus cover includes a posh private dining room that open to a sky lounge and a dining area amidst verdancy at the alfresco deck.  The variety of menus are sure to keep you going back for more and something new every time!

Monday, November 28, 2016

Get fired up at The Courtyard Grill!


~Tantalize your tastebuds this winter with some fiery grills ~
With the advent of winter, it’s time to enjoy the beautiful evenings and explore some new options in the city. With a slight nip in the air, Courtyard by Marriott Gurugram Downtown offers an eclectic experience at their all new outdoor restaurant ‘The Courtyard Grill’. I have always loved grilled food, light and easy. It is such a relief from overpowering gravies and heavy sauces. Grilled food let's you enjoy the authentic taste of meats and vegetables in all their natural juices and richness.

The Courtyard Grill is the perfect setting for a delightful meal in the chilly weather with a rustic yet stylish appeal. The restaurant celebrates the naturally bold flavors of the grill with the menu varying from chef’s crafted house salad with mesclun greens, balsamic dressing with your choice of charred vegetables to White wine marinated octopus with fresh garden greens.
The market styled restaurant gives its guests an option to choose from hand-picked meats, fresh seafood, to an assortment of garden fresh vegetables and have the Chefs prepare it with their selection of rubs, sauces and sides. Executive Sous Chef Saroj Muduli prepares his freshly made sauces, rubs, marinades and dressings with an array of options to suit the discerning palate of diners. The menu was curated by the very dedicated team.
Executive Chef Amit Dash has an eye for the simple, authentic tastes of regional Indian cuisines as well as international flavours and accents. The subtlety of personalized touches given in each and every dish by him is evident. There was turmeric and pineapple infused water on the tables. Chef Dash tells me that the flavours change every day. I found a lot of healthy twists given to most dishes, relishes and accompaniments. For a health freak like me, it was guilt free eating after a long time as every dish seemed well balanced.
We started with delicious sangria and some exquisite salads such as cured tuna salad with homegrown greens and char grilled chicken salad. For vegetarians a pumpkin and melon salad is supposed to be really nice. In the mains the Chicken Piccante particularly caught my attention with a judicious use of peppers with fine slivers of chicken and a hint of cumin. Grilled prawns and trout were also rather well balanced. Another welcome change was mild salt in most dishes. None of the overly salted dishes you find in most Delhi restaurants. Even the marinades are very light and easy and what I loved was they were just the way I like to grill food at home, with minimal salt and black pepper and lemon juice. For vegetarians there are many great options such as jackfruit kebab and crispy fried onion rings.

The al fresco area is just the ideal haven for anyone who wants to enjoy the crisp winter weather while having an appetizing grilled meal with an exclusively crafted cocktail. Surrounded by relaxing greenery with the gushing sound of the waterbody, makes it the apt place to unwind from the weekly routine. The charming and rustic khurja pottery on the sheesham wood table from Rajasthan, colourful glasses and furniture and hanging lights from the trees create quite an ambience.
For dessert the coconut milk crème brulee was simply exquisite. I heard the old fashioned brownie is also excellent. However I resisted as I am sure I will be back there soon to try it!

Located on the ground floor, The Courtyard Grill can comfortably accommodate approximately 44 guests, with a dinner for two costing INR 3400 plus taxes. Operational  only in the evenings, open all seven days for dinner (6.30 PM – 11.30 PM). Do visit the Courtyard Grill for an enhanced dining experience. 

For reservations, call: +91 124 488 8444 / Ext 8245





Friday, November 25, 2016

IWP presents Mélange: a platform that ignite the woman power for a Developing India

 Mélange, the annual celebration of Women Empowerment & Education by IWP is an event filled with a multitude of happenings such as Fashion Show (Ethnic, Indo-western and Western), Rock show, Play, Musical and Dance performances etc.



 Melange is a platform that believes that a professionally educated student with access to a network of professionals and opportunities to work outside of her community is more likely to have the passion, knowledge, and access to information required to navigate her education.

While the present reality is that many talented students are not getting enough opportunity to present and perform their skills that can create ripple in professional network. They don’t have a sustainable talent show stage where they can find people who can mentor them for a longer run.

Melange, aims to give students a plethora of information and open access to professionals in the Fashion and lifestyle. With its meet and greet and guidance networking, it wants to connect students with active professionals who have themselves gone through business’s complex system and can provide advice and ideas. It expects to see the IWP girls exposed to the realities of post education and for them to develop a working intuition of how to navigate their futures.

International Women Polytechnic, a decade-old polytechnic established & run by KLGR Educational Society having different branches in Delhi & UP. The Institute has been working for the social and economic upliftment of women, particularly those belonging to weaker and downtrodden section of the society.


This year the event will be graced by few prominent people such as Ms. Meenakshi Lekhi (An Indian Member of Parliament in the Lok Sabha from New Delhi constituency and national spokesperson of Bharatiya Janata Party and a Supreme Court of India lawyer) Ms. Parvathy Omanakuttan (Miss India 2008 and  first runner-up at Miss World 2008), Ms. Setu Kumar (Contestent, Miss World), Ms. Lotti (Theatre & Acting Personality), Ms. Swareena Singh (Finalist from Femina Miss india 1999),                Ms. Ila Valia (Director of a leading modeling & acting Institute) and renowned international models and the management of IWP and around 2000 Students on 26th November 2016 at 6:00 Pm at Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, New Delhi.


Monday, November 21, 2016

The Great Indian Film and Literature Festival 3rd edition, Gurgaon Chapter opens up at DLF Cyber Hub

Adoor Gopalakrishnan, Ruskin Bond , Prakash Jha, Subhash Gai, Anurag Batra and Sumita Misra inaugurate the event which aims to promote the vernacular spirit of Indian film and literature to showcase of intermingling demographics, varied cultures and multiple beliefs, promoting the diversity of varied cultures and the the same time accepting the world as one family – Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam
Eminent artists of film fraternity will inaugurate a three day-long event showcasing the vernacular spirit of Indian film and literature.
 The Gurgaon chapter 2016 opens at DLF Cyber Hub from 2nd - 4th December from 12:00 pm to 11:00 pm.
 The GIFLIF 3rd edition, will include a play and a music concert, in addition to a plethora of panel discussion on themes hovering around filmmaking, digital media, advertising, publishing, literature, script writing and film screening, as well as cultural stimulants such as book readings, Kavi sammelan, and a poetry finale.

 “The panelist gracing the occasion will be Padma Vibhushan, Dada Saheb Phalke Winner Adoor Gopalakrishnan, Subhash Ghai, Prakash Jha, Padma Bhushan Ruskin Bond, Kiran Nagarkar, Piyush Misra, Raj Shekhar (Lyricist - Tanu Weds Manu), Rajat Kapoor, Vinay Pathak, Juhi Chaturvedi (Writer - Piku & Vicky Donor), Major General GD Bakshi, Anjum Rajaballi (Writer - Rajneeti & Aarakshan), Annurag Batra, Anand Neelakantan, Sharat Katariya (Director - Dum laga ke haisha), Rajkumar Gupta (Director - No one killed Jessica, Aamir), Rahul Roushan (Founder faking News), Arunabh (Founder - TVF), Surendra Sharma (Renowned Poet), Dr. Sita Sagar and many more.
Key Note: Team GIFLIF also conducted preliminary round of poetry contest in rapid metro at Gurgaon on 13th Nov 2016, which was itself an unique attempt whose finale will occur on 4th Dec 2016 at Cyber Hub.
 A devised performance based on Shakespeare’s King Lear. Written and directed by Rajat Kapoor and accepted by Vinay Pathak, a performance of poetry on guitar by Raj Shekhar, and The launch of “Ballimaaraan” - a Piyush Misra band.
“SBI card GIFLIF is all set for the third edition of the festival after the successful execution of previous Gurgaon and Bhopal chapter, respectively in the year 2015 and 2016. The second edition of Gurgaon chapter has added few more dimensions to entire gamut of the festival. Along with film screening, panel discussion, book reading, kavi sammelan we added play and music concert as well” says Amit Sinha, a Hindi poet of exceptional caliber.

GIFLIF was started in 2015, from Gurgaon. “Film and Literature festivals were happening in isolation and came the idea of creating a synergy of both the forms of expression and expected it to create new bridges in connecting people and an entertainment value with intellectual stimulation at the core”

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Experience the bliss of an exquisite Sunday Brunch at Latitude at Vivanta by Taj – Gurgaon

~ Treat your palate to a carnival of flavours with an expansive feast featuring cuisines from across the world ~
Gurgaon, November 2016: Celebrate Sundays with indulgent meals in good company that inspire you to shake off the exhaustion of the week gone by.  Latitude, the award-winning world cuisine restaurant at the Vivanta by Taj – Gurgaon, introduces the all-new Sunday brunch for its guests.

Bask under the glory of the invigorating winter sun at the Alfresco or revel in the “height and light” of the restaurant which brings to you a new innovative menu to take your taste buds by surprise!

The Sunday delights at the new Latitude spread across a scrumptious array of delectable mezze, charcuterie, live grills, stone-oven pizzas to home-style Mediterranean preparations, traditional Indian delicacies and culinary favourites from the Far East. Adding to the pick-me-up first variety are live shawarmas and doner kebabs, gourmet compound salads and sushi, artisanal breads, rustic dips and a premium selection of mocktails specially curated by our resident mixologist.
While children can dig into the tranquillity of the sweet treats, adults too can experience nostalgic goodness as they indulge in sugary doughnuts and cupcakes frosted live along with sugar-kissed goodies and an indulgent range of desserts at the Pastry Chef’s Candy Station.
·             Dates: Every Sunday, 6th November onwards
·             Venue: Latitude, Lobby Level, Vivanta by Taj – Gurgaon, NCR
·             Timings: 12:30 hrs. to 15:30 hrs.
·             Pricing:
-              Brunch with Bottomless Brews: INR 2850 AI
-              Brunch with Unlimited Tipples: INR 4000 AI
-              Brunch with Bottomless Bubbly: INR 5400 AI

To book your reservations, call 0124-6673000 or write to

* Terms and conditions apply

Keeping in mind Gurgaon’s always on ‘bustling’ lifestyle, Vivanta by Taj – Gurgaon stands tall as an ode to the Millennium City. Avante garde in design, imaginative by nature and possessing vibrant bursts of surprises like the iconic Thai Pavilion, offering the best of Siam on a plate, the expansive Latitude, the energetic Tease bar, the gourmet delicatessen Deli4; the hotel offers stylized accommodation with high business efficiencies, large and versatile banquet spaces, an energizing Jiva Spa and unique Vivanta Motifs which showcase an alternative life.