Party Decor ideas for Diwali

Diwali is a festival of love and warmth that gets even more sparkling with the magic of diyas that light up the horizon. Diwali also brings together family and friends for celebration, cards parties and dinner. So this Diwali indulge yourself further by turning your diwali into a special decor moment.

http://occasionsbyshangrila.com/gallery/south-asian-weddings/sangeet-mehndi-garba/#prettyPhoto
http://occasionsbyshangrila.com/gallery/south-asian-weddings/sangeet-mehndi-garba/#prettyPhoto

Colours

Table SettingFor colours we recommend you either stick to traditional hues of sindoor red, haldi yellow and rani pink but in a complete modern avatar, keeping the prints simple and classy. Reflect the festive spirit on your dinner table as well. Go in for dinner ware that reflects the oriental sensibility, blend the two traditional hues of gold and silver to add panache to the celebratory meal…..Like making the tone on tone flower setting in a precious silver vase, a treat for the eye. Also set a colour coded card table infused with the sheen of silver. Strew an array of rich, colourful cushions to sink in and enjoy the gambling. Serve smartly in crystal and silver bowls.

Food
Indian mithais are so integral to the Diwali experience. Set the spread well. Cover the table with a rich textile that you fetch from your treasure trove…A brocade silk throw will work as well. Spread small, silver foiled pieces of mithais made of dry fruits—they look the prettiest on a precious silver platter or brass platters. Add marigolds, the most auspicious flowers to lend a sense of vibrancy to this yummy setting.

Femina 2012
Femina 2012

DIY
Not all the décor changes need to be expensive. As much as we discourage bursting of fire-crackers, we love using them in décor. Stack a bunch of silver ‘phooljaris’ in flower vases along with actual flowers. Use old Diwali cards for a collage and place them on cards tables with lamination on top. This looks festive and is cheaper than more expensive table cloths. Don’t just use fairy lights for windows, use them is vases to create inexpensive lamps, use them along the table runner to give a Diwali effect. Be careful though, they get hot so use the ones with fabric coverings.

Mostly be safe and have fun. A very Happy and Prosperous Diwali to you!

By Kashvi Mahajan

Romantic Evening

This one is a sure winner. Besides the comfort and luxury of a hotel we do like to go for meals for our special occasions. And ofcourse all of us know that besides the expense sometime after a tiring day at work you just don’t want to get out of your home. Here Small Luxury Hotels of the World(SLH) help us to create a romantic meal for two at home complete with serving wine like a Sommelier

The Arch, London, UK 

Gemma Dean, F&B Manager, The ArchLondon

“It’s all about first impressions, get your table set correctly and have a wow factor element – whether it be a pot of fresh herbs on the table, a personal name card with secret message or a special bottle of well selected wine ready. Match it with soft background music and candlelight and you’re on to a winner!”

Wentworth Mansion, Charleston, USA

Mark Severs, Restaurant Manager,WentworthMansion

“I have many guests order a bottle of wine that they are familiar with and have enjoyed at home.  It is amazing how many times the guest will comment how much more pleasing the wine was here at the restaurant.  There is infinitely more that goes into the tasting of wine than just the actual flavour – it’s the temperature, the stemware that it is served in and the feel it has on your hand, the visual presentation of the wine, the food you are enjoying with the wine, the surroundings in which the wine is being consumed, and the company that you are sharing.

The first step in wine presentation is making sure your bottle of wine is at the correct temperature.  The temperature will be different for whites and reds, as well as for wines with different weights. Once the bottle is selected and you have the correct temperature, I like to present the bottle of wine.  Tell your guest which wine you are serving, including the year. When pouring, twist the bottle about 180 degrees and wipe against a napkin so that no wine is spilled.  For white wines I will typically ask whether they would like the bottle kept on ice or on the table.  Some of your heavier whites (chardonnay) will benefit from a little warmer temperature. Make sure you top up your guests’ glasses throughout the evening.”

To check out more tips on How to Create Hotel style in your home click here

Perfect Martini

Photograph-Kartikey Shiva Styled- Aparna Kaistha

“Shaken not stirred” the famous dialogue by Ian Flemmings iconic character James Bond made the classic drink so popular. Here we have the bartender at one of the Small Luxury hotels of the world property DUKES bar, where Mr. Flemming was a frequent visitor, gives us tips on how to make that perfect Martini to impress your guests at the next house partyDUKES ST JAMES, Mayfair, London

Alessandro Palazzi, Head Barman, DUKES ST JAMES

“Drinks at DUKES bar is something of an occasion. Mix your own Martini at home and serve it up in a frozen glass”

Method:

–          A few drops of Martini DUKES Special blend of Dry Vermouth

–          75ml of frozen Gin or Vodka

–          Squeeze oil from a sliver of organic amalfi lemon peel into the drink and ream the glass with lemon peel oil

–          Add this lemon peel and serve

Cheers!”

Try out other simple cocktails and Margaritas for the next dinner you host.

To find out more tips to create hotel style at your home click here

Review: Flick a Dish Cafe, New Delhi

Having stayed away from home in a different city for almost 4 years, I know that nothing can take away the feeling of missing Home cooked food. As a matter of fact, eating out is just never as good and given the crazy lifestyle we all lead, cooking dinner each day seems like very difficult task, so we end up avoiding doing so. Keeping this concept of ‘Ghar ka Khana’ in mind we have a new cosy cafe, called Flick a dish.

IMG_6361

The cafe looks like someones living room, with red walls and curios across the walls, vintage table clothes, antique teapots and old Bollywood movie posters. A little off the main Ring road in Delhi, the idea behind this cafe is to satiate all those desires for home cooked food. Most dishes have kept authentic flavours in mind, but there are a few experimental dishes like Omelette curry. We wanted to have a simple meal, so besides the omelette we tried the Paneer Mumtaz and Chicken Korma along with Tawa roti. But even most other dishes like Chicken Pakora, Baked mushroom in white sauce, Malai Kofta, Mutton cutlets and mutton chops looked quite delicious, a must try for next time and looked right out of our grandmothers kitchen. IMG_6347

The restaurant is run by Mrs Jyoti Mathur, the author of ‘My Cooking Recipe book for Special Children’, who believes in making every meal a memorable experience. With a very simple menu, the experience is definitely something I would recommend you go for if you are craving a simple no fuss meal in what could be your grandmothers living room.    

Name: Flick A Dish Cafe
Address: A-66, Dayanand Colony, Lajpat Nagar-4, New Delhi – 110024
Contact: 011-26472292-93, 9810115058
Timings: 12 noon till 11pm
Meal for two: Rs 800

Review: DIVA Spiced, New Delhi

DIVA is a chain of fine dining restaurants in India. A brainchild of Chef Ritu Dalmia, each restaurant is famous for its own unique style and menu. A new offing from the same team is Diva Spiced. Situated at Meherchand market, it has taken the space of the old Chez Nini, ‘DIVA Spiced’ is an all-day dinning café offering Modern Asian Cuisine. Reflecting Ritu’s signature style of fresh and wholesome ingredients, the café introduces a menu which is a culmination of flavours, spices and innovations from the South East Asian belt. As Staying true to her classic style, a definite splash of European technique and presentation is evident in the cuisine.

DIVA Spiced_Ground_floor

DIVA Spiced is a 70 cover café spread with a ground and first floor seating. Keeping up with the DIVA legacy, Spiced has a warm and a cozy ambiance, but unlike other Asian cuisine venues it has its own take on decor.The interiors of the cafe have been designed by Anita Dalmia with a combination of vintage and contemporary style. The wallpaper is quite quirky with images of Asian women, Asian motifs and sightings while the chairs and furniture have an industrial appeal. Keeping Asian minimalism in mind the look is overall quite subtle with a play of bright colours. The style is very cafe like while the food is Ritu Dalmia’s take on Asian cuisine.

DIVA Spiced_1stFloor

Not for the weak-hearted or for people who do not like experimenting, the menu is a culmination of a lot of innovations, ranging from steamed crystal dumplings to grilled, fried and baked dishes. Some of signature dishes include tapas dishes like Panko Crusted Arancine filled with corn & chili jam, fried Zucchini flower stuffed with Tofu and Feta, Pork belly skewers with spicy yuzu Lemon dressing. For the mains there is a large variety like Goan Prawn Curry simmered in kokum and coconut served with ginger rice, stuffed baby eggplant in a whipped fennel sauce, Miso Marinade Salmon with soba noodles etc. For a sweet ending there are the regular DIVA desserts and a few special ones for Spiced such as a Spiced Mess- Lemon Grass Meringue with mascarpone cream and berry compote and the special black pepper infused chocolate fondant served with basil ice cream!

Address: 79-80, Meharchand Market (Ground & First Floor)
Contact no: 011 49051837
Meal for 2: Rs. 2200/- (without Alcohol)

Review: Tamra, Shangri-La, New Delhi

Tamra, the new all-day dining at the Shangri-la, takes its inspiration from the early ages of culinary evolution when copper (tamra) vessels were key components. I think the concept and the visual appeal of Tamra is fabulous. Tamra brings a high level of creativity to the casual dining scenario with a large variety of food offerings from around the world. It successfully brings old world charm and presents it in a new avatar,as it borrows its decor inspiration from the early trading markets when Indian spices, jute, copper, silk, leather and other items were appreciated at shores all over the world. Even the interactive kitchens are a tribute to the early market place, where Chefs showed off their skills and produced culinary delights to sell to traders and visitors.

Tamra, Shangri-la, www.stylecity.in

Walking into Tamra was quite a pleasant surprise for me as I am not used to seeing Hotel coffee shops go through such creative ideas and style the space. Tamra has a unique five, live kitchen concept, along with an elegant wooden bar next to the entrance. Conceptualized by the renowned Dubai based Stickman Design, the restaurant is a visual depiction of culinary delights from around the world. From the wheat grass lined planter boxes that form the backdrop to the continental station to Copper hanging pots that are displayed over the two infinity tables where mirrored walls provide an exaggerated view,the space gets an overall warm and convivial character

Tamra, Shangri-la, www.stylecity.in

Led by the hotels Executive Chef Martin Bracker, Tamra’s open theatre stations are Asian, Indian and regional, Japanese and Teppanyaki, homemade gelatos and a Dessert Bar, Cold Cuts, Cheeses, Breads and a Salad Bar. However despite the large Designed with intimacy in mind, Tamra has pockets of privacy screened off by decorative floor to ceiling jute rope partitions. Hanging shelves at the back of the show kitchens display decorative culinary installations and provide a quirky backdrop for the interactive kitchens while the counter tops are lined with signature dishes to showcase the food. The food itself is amazing! The variety and amount of food offered here possibly surpasses that of any other Hotel coffee shop buffet. They also have a ‘ghar ka khana’ counter which is perfect for the traveler who is missing home cooked food. Finally at Rs.2100++ (w/o alcohol) the buffet is also extremely well-priced. Piece of advice, go starving if you really want to enjoy the vast selection!

Review: Chew Pan Asian cafe, New Delhi

It is a pleasant surprise and joy to see bright and quirky interiors in an Asian restaurant, namely Chew Pan Asian cafe,  which is such a contrast from the usual sombre and zen interiors usually associated with Asian restaurants. But the decor is just the start as the food is equally delightful and unique. Launched in January 2014, Chew Pan Asian is all about experimentation with Pan Asian cuisine. The menu boasts of Chinese , Japanese , Thai and the Indonesian Cuisine and also boasts of an open kitchen as well as a live Teppanyaki grill.

Chew Pan Asian Cafe, www.stylecity.in

Spread over 2500 sq.ft. area the interiors of the restaurant are vibrant yet comforting. Walls adorned with the eye-catching black and white Aztec-patterned tiles have been carefully contrasted with Dholpur stone. Chew is a quirky, hip and vibrant restaurant. The furniture is a mix blend of booth sofa sitting, swing seats and turquoise blue chairs that make the dining experience at Chew super comfortable and fun! Asian inspirations within the space come in the form of carefully hand-picked ceramic plates and posters that adorn the walls and the elongated spice rack that features spices from Asia! My style pick was definitely the swing chairs which had been anchored to the floor, but as cool as they looked they also looked a bit uncomfortable, but then style before comfort I say!I also loved the wall with one liners, that included lines like “All you need is love, but also a little chocolate”, those pretty much made my day.

Chew Pan Asian Cafe, www.stylecity.in

Chew Pan Asian cafe, www.stylecity.in

The menu much like the decor of the place is quirky and fun. It is appealing and makes one want to actually read the menu without it seeming like an ordeal. For food, we asked the chef to get us small portions so we could try the various dishes on the menu. We started with the chew special house salad, which unlike what is expect from Asian dishes was actually not very sweet but quite fresh and light. We wanted to avoid Japanese dishes as it seems recently all we have eaten is Japanese food, so we stuck to other asian dishes. Of course the highlight was the various dumplings where they have something called crystal dumplings which i have never eaten before, but am glad I did as they were lighter than regular dumplings and we tried almost all on the menu. For mains we had Stir friend prawns and Chicken meat teriyaki with some steamed rice and some braised vegetables. We were very happy with both the service as well as the quality of our food. We ended with some Tiramisu and finger-licking chocolate molten cake. I would absolutely go back and have already recommended the venue to various people. Do try it for yourself!

Address: First Floor, M16, Outer Circle, Connaught Place, New Delhi
Phone: 011 41516164
Price: Rs.2,000 for two

Review: Hungry Monkey, New Delhi

The New York styled loft ambiance of Hungry Monkey; bare brick walls, concrete floors, the MS installations and the elegant wooden interiors come together in perfect synchrony to create an intriguing industrial feel. The creative typography of quotes on the walls, crafted using carefully chosen fonts are a perfect match to the stylish vibe of the restaurant. Already curious? Well, ‘curiosity is the beginning of adventure‘, is exactly what the walls of The Hungry Monkey tell you.With a faint old school meets new age magnetism, numerous little elements like encyclopaedias stacked on shelves, a vintage hour glass, Edison light bulbs and the rich brown of the wood everywhere bring to life these very stories.The Hungry Monkey, www.stylecity.inThe Flying Brunch, Hungry Monkey, www.stylecity.in

Inspired by sunny California, The Hungry Monkey introduces the city to ‘California cuisine’, which many may not be well-versed with, but worth a try. An out of the box offering, the restaurant brings you a rendition of varied dishes from the European culture with a unique twist of fusion. Even the “Flying Brunch” is a step away from the usual. After you pick your salad from the display, you get small quantity main dishes delivered to your table and you can pick and choose the ones you want to have or repeat. The Hungry Monkey offers an eclectic menu which focuses on a global palate, through a surprising fusion of flavours combined with fresh produce from organic farms like ‘Farmlove’, a pioneer in organic food in the capital. Dig into the Cold Spinach Gomae or relish the signature Bang-Bang Chicken Rolls. For the adventurous souls, the Expresso Pan Fried Chicken made with a light coffee sauce or the Asian Honey and Soy braised Pork Ribs served with Kimchi on the side are the perfect indulgent picks from the menu. While the Smoked Salmon Carpaccio is a succulent fusion of flavours, the White Chocolate Parfait with almond and vanilla filo pastry cigar along with Coconut French Toast leaves a lasting impression. The Flying Brunch, Hungry Monkey, www.stylecity.in

The bar’s hexagonal chemical bond inspired display itself has been designed personally by the owners who have left no stone unturned to bring you an exciting array of drinks. Always innovative in its ways, The Hungry Monkey serves its signature cocktails, the Old-Fashioned and the Manhattan, classic as well as smoked. The bar here easily boasts of a selection of delightful and many a times ‘difficult to spot in this city’ liquor.  Apart from popular modern cocktails, be assured to also come across beautifully infused renditions of the classics.

Eat | Drink | Play
Address – B 6/6 DDA Market, opposite Deer Park, Safdarjung Enclave, New Delhi
Contact No. – 011 46049801, +91 9810788196
Meal for 2 – Rs. 2000 ++
Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/hungrymonkeydelhi

New Launch: Royce’, New Delhi

After mesmerising customers in Mumbai and Bangalore, ROYCE’,the famed Japanese confectionary company launches in New Delhi at Ambience Mall, Vasant Kunj.Founded in 1983 in Northern Japan, ROYCE’ prides itself on its wide and unique offering that follows one underlying theme- chocolate products that are rich in flavour, textures, complexity and creativity.  Royce, Ambience Mall, www.stylecity.inOne of the brand’s most hot selling products is the “Potatochip Chocolate” range of confectionary. The “Potatochip Chocolate” are salty potato chips coated with a layer of milk chocolate on one side. The company’s other signature product, the “Nama”, is a cocoa-dusted truffle-like chocolate so fine and delicate that it requires a specially designed spatula to lift and hold. Then my favourite,as I am not a cocoa person is the “Prafeuille Chocolat”. This three millimeter thin strawberry-scented chocolate is inspired by the delicate French desert “millefeuille” and is filled with a medley of sweet-tart raspberry and blueberry reduction. Also in-store will be the “Criollo Chocolate”, this complex and aromatic chocolate is made from Criollo beans, the world’s rarest and most expensive cacao beans, found only near Lake Maracaibo in Venezuela.ROYCE' Criollo Chocolate, www.stylecity.in

ROYCE' Chocolate 'Hazel Cream' Wafers, www.stylecity.inEven the ROYCE’ store at Ambience, Vasant Kunj has been designed to complement the brands intricate Japanese identity and culture. The front fascia of the store as well as the display counter, mimic the delicacy and geometry of contemporary Japanese architecture and interiors. Materials like hardwood maple are used to blend in with existing surroundings creating a warm and inviting retail as well as tasting experience. The space has been designed as a transformative Japanese chocolate bar, conducive to exploration and interaction.

ROYCE' Potatochip Chocolate, www.stylecity.in
Burgundy Hospitality, a first-of-its-kind fine foods and luxury gourmet curator is accredited for bringing this unique brand to India. ROYCE’ chocolates are priced at Rs. 1050/- for 125gms onwards.To celebrate the festive season, ROYCE’ introduces a very special “Limited Edition Assortment Gift Box”. The Limited Edition Gift Box for Diwali has five varieties of ROYCE’ chocolate and a total of 38 pieces, including Baton Cookies (6 pcs), Chocolate Wafers “Hazel Cream” (6 pcs), Criollo Chocolate (6 pcs) and Pure Chocolates (20 pcs).Priced at Rs. 2000, the luxurious “Limited Edition Diwali Box”  is available at ROYCE’ Delhi, Ambience Mall, Vasant Kunj on a pre-order basis till the end of October.

Review: Moonshine Cafe and Bar, New Delhi

The term ‘Moonshine’, can be traced back to the 1920s American concept of distilling liquor at night “by the light of the moon” during the Prohibition era, is the name of the city’s new café and bar. MoonshineCafé & Bar boasts of a rustic, industrial aesthetic with a modern interpretation of a new-age speakeasy; with vintage décor and an artistic interpretation of Chicago’s skyline on the walls. The bar is modelled after the iconic 20s American watering holes and does a good representation of the same in todays modern day and age.Moonshine Cafe &  Bar, www.stylecity.in

The Bar seamlessly divides its vast expanse into various sections which play different genres of music to suit your mood for the evening. While electronic, house, classic rock and popular jazz tunes are a regular on the cafe’s playlist,the bar also boasts of having live bands and Sufi Performances! But music is just one of the things that make it a perfect night at Moonshine. They also serve a cocktail menu with a twist and scintillating renditions of classics. There is a choice of tipple for every occasion –the ‘Moonshine Specials’ on the menu have all the ingredients for a great night. I tried the LIIT which is yet to be launched in the official menu. It has blue curasao and apparently a secret ingredient which made me feel I am having a “chuski”

Moonshine Cafe & Bar 2

Moonshine Cafe &  Bar, www.stylecity.in

And if you are inquisitive about the food by now, expect to be pleasantly surprised as you re-discover your some old time classics and favourites with the menu. We tried the “Galouti Kebab”, “Beer Battered Fish” and “Moonshine Sliders”. While the Sliders and fish were quite tasty the Galouti Kebabs were out of this world and something I would recommend everyone to go and try. We then had a “Peri Peri chicken pizza” for the main course. It was the perfect choice for a perfect night. If you are around Hauz Khas and want to be taken back to an older time, do go by Moonshine Cafe and Bar. They even have Gentleman’s night every Tuesday, where the ladies pay while the men get free drinks.During the day, the property transforms into a relaxed venue with a terrace over-looking the greenery and ruins of Hauz Khas, leaving behind any trace of the previous night. Whether it is a night of revelry or a day of charm and serenity that you seek, at Moonshine Café & Bar, you’ll always find a corner just right for you.

Address: 30, Second Floor, Hauz Khas Village New Delhi, DL 110016
Phone: 098 71 555718