Airport hotel vs. Imperial in Delhi?

Old Nov 11th, 2005, 08:25 AM
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Airport hotel vs. Imperial in Delhi?

At the end of our trip to India we are returning to Delhi late afternoon and then flying out on our international flight the following midday. While it would offer us one more night in Delhi, we are wondering if it might be wise to stay near the airport (rather than braving traffic both directions). Is there a top-notch hotel near the airport that we should choose, or should we just stick with our original plan to spend this night at the Imperial in town?
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Old Nov 11th, 2005, 09:13 AM
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can't imagine passing up a change to stay at the imperial....you have all morning and early afternoon to get back to the airport...
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Old Nov 11th, 2005, 10:22 AM
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The choice near the airport is the Radisson, which is a decent hotel from what I've heard but not in the league of the Imperial (I am not sure anything else in Delhi is, IMO). You will hit traffic coming into Delhi in the late afternoon but it shouldn't be too bad when you leave at mid-day. We left the Imperial for the airport mid-afternoon and had no problems what-so-ever. Stick with your original plan. If either of the days is a Sunday, traffic will be light on that day.
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Old Nov 11th, 2005, 03:01 PM
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Not as near the airport as the Radisson but nearer than the Imperial and a lovely property is the new Oberoi hotel, the Trident Hilton with an Angsana spa. Stunning architecture. However, it makes sense if your intention is to be in the hotel - if you want to wander around go with a Delhi hotel (this is Gurgaon). I'm not sure I'd go with the Imperial honestly - late afternoon means an early evening airport transfer the day you get in. If it is traffic time it could take a while. The next morning for a noon departure you need to check in 10:30 meaning you will leave your hotel around 9:15 (again traffic time towards the airport which unfortunately is on the same highway as Delhi's booming satellite suburb Gurgaon). Not sure it is worth the effort just to stay at the Imperial for 1 more night. Another option near the airport, not as near as the Radisson but a better property from what I hear is the Grand at Vasant Kunj. I forgot where you arrive back into Delhi from? If it is Rajasthan by road you could consider your last night at www.tiklibottom.com or www.neemranahotels.com (the Neemrana Fort). You will have to leave earlier your last morning but conversely will get there earlier the night before so net net same difference.
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Old Nov 11th, 2005, 09:49 PM
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Comparisons are odious!
I have some very good reports about this new place, called Uppal's Orchid, just a hop across from the airport. I have just sampled the meals there & were no doubt, of a very high quality.
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Old Nov 12th, 2005, 04:10 AM
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I have stayed at Uppal Orchid and I DO NOT RECOMMEND IT. The free transportation to airport turned out to not be free and was very expensive. We could have taken a taxi from anywhere in Delhi for the price. Since it was in the middle of the night, we just agreed to what we were being charged. And then, we had to wait on the driver until he was ready to pick up another passenger at the airport for the hotel--which made us nearly miss out departure for London. We were not happy!!!!!!
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Old Nov 13th, 2005, 05:12 PM
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While I am a huge fan of the Imperial and recco it consantly on this site, the Trident Hilton has to be seen to be believed and I actually would recomemnd it for your last night. It is really a stunning property in terms of archtecheture, it is set around a series of pools and looks like a Moghal palace itself. It has a wonderful spa and pool(hopefully will be warm enough for you to take advantage of it) and very good restaurants. Service is worth noting, even better IMO than the other Oberois in India. It is also very close to the airport. the only drawback is that you won''t want to go into town at all, it really is to far, so no last minute shopping or sightseeing is possible. They have a small gift shop in the hotel which has some nice things but nothing like the rest of Delhi. However, if you can schedule some spa treatments and have dinner, I think that would be a great last evening for your trip and get you ready for the long flight back.
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Old Nov 13th, 2005, 05:50 PM
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Thanks for the suggestions. We had not heard of the Trident Hilton in Gurgaon -- photos on web look impressive. The rate available for our one night is more than the rate we have at the Imperial. Our rate at the Imperial includes airport transfers, so we will not be paying out of pocket to get from/to the aiport. We arrive from Udaipur at 4:40pm (on a Monday). Unless shops are open in the evening, we won't be able to do much that night. Our flight out of Delhi the next day leaves at noon (we have to be at the airport by 10:00am at the lastest, we assume). Can anyone give us an estimate of how long the airport-Imperial car ride would take at those times of day (versus a car ride to the Trident Hilton)? Thanks a million!
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Old Nov 13th, 2005, 09:56 PM
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Having hotel transfers included in the rate is hard to beat, but remember that arriving at 4:40 pm on a weekday will put you driving into Delhi at the evening rush hour, so going in on Monday I think it will take you an hour and most likely more to get to the Imperial (its like 15 miles), you may want to weigh this into the equation for whether it is worth going into Delhi for your last night. To the Trident it would be 15 minutes or less (its about 6 miles), as you don't have to get involved in any city traffic. If you want to spend less than the Hilton but still be very near the airport, the Radisson is a very acceptable choice, it is even closer to the airport than the Trident. The Grand Hotel on Nelson Mandela Road was a Hyatt until about a year ago, and is less than 4 miles from the airport, I have not been inside, but it was built within the last 2-3 years and IMO would be fine for a last night, the pool area is supposed to be nice. (There is also a Grand Hotel Intercontinental in Connaught Circus in downtown New Delhi, so don't confuse the two.)

Shops in most hotel arcades will be open in the evening, not sure about the Connaught Circus or Central Cottages, my guess is that both are open in the evenings as I have found this to be the case in most areas, like Karol Baugh, but in some places like Haus Khaus Village the shops close around 7 pm.

My estimate is that from the Imperial to be at the International airport by 10 am in the morning would take you at least 45 minutes to get to the airport. The hotel could tell you for sure.
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Old Nov 14th, 2005, 02:05 AM
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Hi, fodor fans:
I intend to go to Delhi to attend a girlfriend 's wedding at the end of Nov. A friend of mine (not the bride) invites me to stay at her house when I was there. Since I know nothing about the traditions of India, I would appreciate any inputs. No. 1: What should I bring as gift to this family, who invites me to stay with them for 4 days. She's married, age 29. should I bring her husband something too? What kind?
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Old Nov 14th, 2005, 04:34 AM
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WinterTravel, if you are staying at Oberoi hotels in other locations write to them asking for a special rate for Trident Hilton. I had suggested the Grand in my post as well and Cicerone has too.It is a nice hotel and perfectly adequate for a night. As a matter of fact it is quite close to South Delhi's trendy Mehrauli area and if you feel up to it you could venture out to Olive or Laidback Waters for dinner. I personally would not do the trek into Connaught Place to stay at the Imperial.
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Old Nov 14th, 2005, 04:37 AM
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Anpwong, assuming you do not know the couple too well expensive his and hers perfumes, if they drink some good wine, or other specialty food would be an idea.
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Old Nov 14th, 2005, 05:06 PM
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I think the perfume is a fine idea, a silver frame or other good photo frame would be another, or also anything from your own country, esp if you know her because you both lived in the same country (which maybe isn't your home country). A picture book from your country, a handicraft typical of your country or region or some food (something which would travel well and can be imported into India) which is typical of your country. Chocolates are another idea which the whole family can enjoy.

For the man, unless they are Moslem, I would suggest a bottle of very good whiskey.
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Old Nov 14th, 2005, 06:19 PM
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Anpwong,

This custom of giving gifts to one's hosts is not strictly followed in India. I mean, no one will think the worse of you if you arrive without a gift and you will have committed no social faux pas. I will throw in another option to what has already been recommended to you by other posters - you could take your hosts out to dinner one evening as a mark of appreciation.

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Old Nov 14th, 2005, 09:09 PM
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Cicerone, there are any number of Indian muslim men, especially in the urban areas, who enjoy their Scotch.
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Old Nov 14th, 2005, 09:31 PM
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anpwong
Any modern electronic kitchen appliance, as a gift for your hostess, will be well appreciated. Indian women generally spend a lot of their time in Kitchen.
BTW, whisky will not be appreciated if your friends come from an orthodox vegetarian family.
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Old Nov 17th, 2005, 07:34 AM
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hi there. Greetings from Delhi! yes, yes, yes, i definately think it would be wiser to stay somewhat near the airport for your last evening, versus treking all the way into town just for the evening at the IMPERIAl. First off, you must consder your arrival into delhi may be delayed! Second over all you should consider this is the end of your trip and by now you have probably had your delicous fill of INDIA and can use a good night sleep and a good dinner before your international flight and your shopping and nicknacking is over. To drive downtown from the airport late afternoon rush hour is not the best of ideas, and again, returning to the airport morning time(need to be three hours before-so lieky you will hit rush hour again/) is not advisable..There are three options mentioned by others that are near/aroudn the airport. The closest but least attractive option is the Radisson.It you are simply seeking a nice comfortable room for the evening and a good meal, this hotel is fine..I have stayed there many a times in transit! I have not stayed at the new Trident in Gurgoan aS OTHERS have suggested, but i have seen it and it is is really lovely and a very good option nearbye. I have stayed quite a few times at the now-called Grand in Vasant KUNJ, a hotel NOT so FAR from airport. IT HAS wonderful hotel rooms are really nicE HUGE, bathrooms hugE and great great resturants! TOO!!! a wonderful ITALIAN and a JAPANESE and a multicusine, and a wonderful INDIAN RESTURANT TOO. can certainly recco this property first hand for convenience and comfort..happy travels, bonita
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