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dutyfree Oct 19th, 2007 08:23 PM

Favorite places to stay in Delhi and Agra?
I am taking my daughter to India in the next few weeks and everyplace that I have emailed in Delhi has come back saying that they are totally full or have periodic dates. I am looking for a place to stay in the southwest area of Delhi and then for an overnight in Agra to see the Taj. Any suggestions?

freeman0819 Oct 20th, 2007 01:24 PM

dutyfree- there is a MAJOR holiday/festival in India in a few weeks (Diwali). Many people in India travel during that time, hence the hotels being booked up and/or require minimum stays and high season surcharges. Highway robbery if you ask me, but that's why it's so problematic.

I have gone to India for business during that period for the last 4 years, and it's always the same deal. The average rate for hotels, meaning Hilton type hotels, US standard were $250 and up.

In Delhi, I have stayed at the Intercontinental near Connaught Place, the Uppals Orchid (an Ecotel) and The Ashok hotel. In Agra, I have stayed at the Mughal Sheraton.

If you do go to Agra, and stay at the Mughal Sheraton, can you tell me if they have corrected their beverage menu to say Diet Coke instead of Diet COCK? Definitely lost in translation, I would say!

freeman0819 Oct 20th, 2007 01:27 PM

oh- the actual date of Diwali this year is November 9th

dutyfree Oct 20th, 2007 08:58 PM

Thank you for informing me of the holiday-wish I had known about it sooner as I would have switched our days around some. How long does it last and is it religious?

freeman0819 Oct 21st, 2007 03:12 AM


I am not Hindu, so I don't know all of the specifics and the significance, but here's some info I found on wikipedia:
or this one:

It is a five day festival.

It won't be impossible to find a room, but it might be pricey. What's your budget per night?

chimani Oct 21st, 2007 03:25 AM

Must it be the South West? And from where are you getting those email addresses. Or, put another way - what/where are you using as your source of possible places to stay?

BUKU Oct 21st, 2007 07:47 PM

Hi, Diwali dates are 9 and 10/11. It is the Hindu Festival of lights. SO everything around that time is festive- probably equivalent to Christmas in the west. MOreover local schools are closed on holiday for 2 weeks at least during that time (again like christmas holidays in the west). SO there are lot of local tourist as well holidaying with the kids

Mitch04 Oct 22nd, 2007 06:21 PM

The "Delhi Bed and Breakfast" is cute, safe and offers excellent home cooked meals. It's spotlessly clean and well located. They do airport pick ups, and will also drive you to the station if you plan on catching the express to Agra (including making sure you find your correct seats).

This is the Trip Advisor review:

We stayed in the magnificent but frightfully expensive Oberoi Amarvilas in Agra with a balcony room. It ws to die for!!!

dutyfree Oct 24th, 2007 07:43 AM

Both the Delhi bed and breakfast and the "New" Delhi bed and breakfast are full for this next month except for some single days. I agree that they seem very nice both from their websites and how gracious they were in writing back and suggesting things. SO.........back to the drawing board.
I have written several Indian travel agencies and even though I tell them that I cannot afford more than $150 a night they are giving me hotels that cost $300-600 a night which I am sorry is absolutely ridiculous(especially in our financial situation).If anyone can think of a decent,clean safe place to stay(and I don't mean a hostel) please advise. Thanks!

Mitch04 Oct 25th, 2007 02:49 PM

All I can suggest is that you either post a question or do a search on Lonely Planet's Thorn Tree, or India Mike/s website, which is excellent (

Girlspytravel Oct 26th, 2007 06:19 PM

Dutyfree-I was doing some searches for inexpensive hotels in Delhi and I found one you might want to look at CLASSIC HOTEL-right in the middle of the shopping district in Delhi, and it gets excellent reviews on TA for spotless rooms with space. Rooms start at around 30.00 US/nt.

dutyfree Oct 26th, 2007 08:18 PM

Thanks Girlspytravel-I will look into it. Great website! I FINALLY booked my airfare using miles today so am leaving on November 7th and coming back on November 19th. My son wanted us to wait until Diwali was over but we don't have the time off of work to afford that so went ahead and planned the days.I am getting excited so now if I can book the hotels I will be less stressed-thanks for any help or advice!

Girlspytravel Oct 28th, 2007 10:05 PM

Sounds like a great trip-I'll be interesting to hear about your experience before I get there in January!

lcuy Oct 29th, 2007 12:18 AM

Just got back from India this evening... diwali preparations are just now beginning, and everyone we met said they were sorry we'dd miss it!

We stayed at the Amarvillas in Agra and the Imperial in Delhi. Balcony room at Amarvillas in the perfect October weather was truly heavenly.

Imperial was lovely, but has definitely slipped since 2 years ago. Buffets are smaller, service has been reduced, even the bath cosmetics are not as nice. Spa that was advertised as opening over a year ago is still not bulit, so there is nowhere to take a shower after 2pm checkout and prior to late evening drive to airport. They want a half day price to stay till 6pm.

With prices up 100%, I felt like I'll try a new hotel next time I'm in Delhi.

Trip report will be coming soon...

dutyfree Oct 29th, 2007 08:16 AM

Icuy-how was the hotel in Agra? Would you recommend? Is Connaught Place the spot that you would recommend staying at in Delhi? Thanks!

rhkkmk Oct 29th, 2007 10:13 AM

try thr nikko metropolitan in delhi and the sheratons in agra and jaipur

CFW Oct 29th, 2007 08:08 PM

lcuy, Welcome back! zglsf you hsf s good time & great weather. Looking forward to your trip report.

CFW Oct 30th, 2007 02:44 AM

well, no, I wasn't drinking! Just working too late & checking fodor's to unwind & think about travel before bed.. ... meant to say glad you had a good time.

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