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Travelling to India? Stay at the Westin

Westin in Gurgaon

Westin in Gurgaon

I stayed at the Westin in Gurgaon…

Design in hotels, even as far as those fabulously exotic luxury resorts go, must necessarily walk the tightrope between mundane functionality and magnificent opulence that will grab the attention of the increasingly discerning guest. At the fabulously plush Westin Sohna, it sure veers towards the latter -— except that it builds in another contemporary trend into its expression: Green architecture.

As the first Starwood Westin property in India — there are others slated to come up— the Sohna resort is certainly a showpiece; complete with the no-partitions, open bath areas (with clear glass ceilings to maximise views of the nature outside) attached to their plush suites. But while luxe bathrooms (often decorated with expensive antique bric-a-bric as is a trend), these are a talking point here.

The resort design is reminiscent of a rural setting with individual suites built in clusters, while the common facilities (a reception area, the restaurants, banqueting, a spa) are central. All the construction has been, in fact, done around existing trees, with an exposed brick finish given to buildings to reinforce the feel of being enveloped by nature. There are other eco-friendly measures too incorporated into the design: natural materials have been used widely to conserve energy, there are open air pavilions and large openings leading up to shaded open areas, there’s rain water harvesting and recycling of water and excavated earth from the site has been used to create contours in landscaping. Nothing like basking in luxury and feeling virtuous at the same time!

Massages: I tried a Gemstone Massage, which is different from a hot stone massage using black stones. Here, you get to choose one particular gemstone from a set of four, depending on what type of healing you need—a rose quartz, to heal your heart chakra, for instance, and so on. Then, you choose a complimentary body oil that the massueur will use. It’s really quite a wonderful experience and so relaxing that I fell asleep in the middle of my massage.

Sunday brunch: You can spend the weekend, either soaking in the sun on a hammock outside your hut or going through a very lavish brunch spread with live grills that is laid out in the open. And after that, go for a ride on a golf cart or on a horse to see this magnificent hotel.

Miles from covilisation, this is your ideal quiet weekend getaway.

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