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

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.

Eclair Delight

Le Méridien Hotels & Resorts today announced the launch of its first-ever global éclair programme, Le Méridien Éclair, in partnership with award-winning pastry chef and new LM100 member, Johnny Iuzzini.  Le Méridien New Delhi will offer guests the opportunity to indulge in a variety of modern twists on the chic Parisian pastry, with the hotel’s pastry chef, Chef Vikas Shrivastava at the helmm offering three signature flavours – coffee, chocolate and vanilla – as well as unique creations inspired by New Delhi and other parts of the country.

Eclairs, Le Meridien, www.stylecity.in

Eclairs, Le Meridien, www.stylecity.in

“The destination inspired éclairs is a novel take on the chic Parisian pastry and offers a new perspective to our creative guests and helps them to discover not only interesting aspects of a destination but also experience local cuisine and share the experience at their next stop”, said Tarun Thakral, Chief Operating Officer, Le Meridien New Delhi.To celebrate the launch of Le Méridien Éclair, Le Méridien New Delhi will host ’A New Perspective on Eclairs’ and offer guests the opportunity to create their own éclair innovations guided by Chef Vikas Shrivastava. Guests of Le Méridien New Delhi throughout the months of June and July will also be encouraged to upload and share their experiences on social media using #LMeclairs.

Eclairs, Le Meridien, www.stylecity.in

Le Méridien hotels around the world will continue to feature a variety of destination-inspired éclairs, offering guests an authentic taste of the local cuisine and culture, from the Maple Bacon Éclair and Texas Honey Pecan Éclair at Le Méridien Dallas by the Galleria to the Dulce de Leche Éclair, infused with coconut, from Le Méridien Panama. Le Méridien New Delhi will feature the Jaggery Ginger Éclair, Rose Cardamom Éclair and Clotted Cream Kalakand Éclair to unlock the flavours of Delhi and Hazelnut Tamarind Éclair from Le Royal Meridien Chennai and Coconut Jaggery Cardamom from Le meridien Kochi. The Le Méridien Éclair programme comes on the heels of the brand’s recent announcement of a new global partnership with French Bossa Nova collective Nouvelle Vague, who has curated a 24-hour soundtrack for Le Méridien hotels around the world, as well as a new global beverage programme, Le Méridien Sparkling, inspired by the European aperitif culture. Together, these programmes elevate the guest experience via the brand’s signature Hub experience, encouraging visitors to unlock their destination through coordinates, culture and cuisine.

News: Chocolate Fever

I probably come in the 5% of the people in the world who don’t love chocolate, but even I have to admit chocolate can be an addiction and a definite mood enhancer. Keeping this in mind it is no surprise stores and cafes serving specifically towards Chocolate culture are the current rage. Namely The Chocolate Beetle and The Cocoa Trees.

The Chocolate Beetle, www.stylecity.in

The Chocolate Beetle is known  for its Signature Belgian Chocolate truffle cake, Beetle’s Brownie sandwich, flavoured hot chocolates in hazelnut, mint, cinnamon & irish cream,  Signature Belgian Chocolate truffle Shake, Low fat gelato’s & ice creams, Gulkand filled chocolates, Message chocolate bars , selection of imported chocolates. Offering low sugar & low calories offering for calorie conscious & diabetic in form of no added sugar chocolate bars, diet chocolate gelato, other low fat gelatos. It also offers customized gifting options for weddings as well as corporate gifts. Founder and Director The Chocolate Beetle Gurjeev Gulati says “The Chocolate Beetle Community” is consistently serving and delivering the highest quality chocolate products and providing outstanding personalized service in a vibrant, unique retailing concept.” Well I have not tried it personally, but it seems interesting from the looks of it.

The Cocoa Trees Store_1

While The Cocoa Trees retail boutique is a fun, interesting and exciting confectionary concept store utilizing a ‘shop-in-shop’ concept designed for all ages. The store has bright, tidy and warm interiors amidst vibrantly coloured shelves stacked with an effervescent range of brands and a wide assortment of treats. The Cocoa Trees incorporates retail store elements that encourage dynamic customer interaction, along with an ambience that is always aesthetically pleasing and welcoming, hence chocolate buying becomes a truly experiential affair.
So if Chocolate is your thing, do visit these stores.

Beauty Ritual: The Four Fountains Spa, New Delhi

RITUAL: Chocolicious Massage, 60 mins, Rs.2,199
LOCATION: The Four Fountains Spa, South Extension, New Delhi

Spa Treatment, Four Foundatins spa

So I know it has been long since gave you an update on new Spa treatments or reviewed a Spa but don’t blame me- blame the weather. I mean seriously the last thing someone like me, who abhors winters needs is cold products applied on my body. So I started this years Spa reviews post 15th February when its less cold with The Four Fountains Spa-one of the largest Spa chains in India with around 17 outlets all around the country. I learnt two new things about myself after this treatment 1.Always book a Spa treatment for Tuesday 2.I might actually start loving chocolate and I am not a chocolate fan. The former cause to have the best results of a Spa treatment, you need to resist alcohol, heavy food and need to be completely rested for 24 hours before and after the treatment. And the latter because though I prefer other sweets to eat I love chocolate for my body, which I learnt after this treatment.

My treatment started with a consultation with the in-house doctor who wanted to check my stress level so she could recommend the right treatment and prescribe a diet and exercise for me to follow at home. No marks for guessing, I come in the high stress category and the diet plan makes me want to cry- it says AVOID ALCOHOL, so have decided to follow it after the weekend! The decor of the place is simple with a no fuss approach, it has six body treatment rooms and one foot massage room. The one thing I had wondered was how they will manage to keep the sounds out in South Extension market, but they did somehow, and all I could hear was soothing music.

Chocolate and VanillaThe treatment I decided to try out was the Chocolicious massage, which uses a blend of dark chocolate and aromatic vanilla to create the perfect potion for your body. Dark chocolate is known to contain antioxidants that help you retain moisture and prevent loss of elasticity while Vanilla is known to reduce anxiety, both are well-known aphrodisiacs, so besides triggering the sex drive they also help release stress. The idea is to apply this concoction over the body with firm deep strokes, so the chocolate can soak into the body and work its magic. My therapist did a great job with that, in fact even I had not realised how stiff some areas of my body had become till she applied pressure there and I almost collapsed first in pain and then in relief when those joints opened up. After the massage is done I was told to go in for a shower, but this time I decided I will not use soap instead just wipe the excess chocolate with plain water. And since it was Tuesday, it did not matter as I knew all I had to do was go home  and get into pajamas. When I woke up the next day my skin was definitely feeling soft and as I write this article after two days I can confirm my skin is super soft. The winter dryness has vanished like magic, though I have been having strange chocolate cravings since the treatment but that I can live with as long as my skin glows and feels soft. So I highly recommend you go in for this treatment to do away with the winter blues 🙂

Festive mood at Leela Palace, New Delhi

Christmas is in full swing around the hospitality industry and I am super excited by the The life size Gingerbread House placed in The Leela Palace, New Delhi’s opulent lobby. Made of 3000 bricks of fresh-baked gingerbread on the outside and 900 larger ginger bread tiles on the inside, 1 metric ton of royal icing and adorned with wreaths, traditional glass balls, stars and bells along with gold foil decorations, the gingerbread house is designed and sculpted by the award-winning Executive Chef Glenn Eastman and his pastry team, took a whopping 120 man hours to complete.

Gingerbread House at The Leela Palace New Delhi.www.stylecity.in

DSC_9958In addition, pastry Chef  Vikesh Singh is belting out interesting gourmet hampers including handcrafted Santa shaped chocolates, plum pudding, sugar cookies, fruit cakes, mince pies, ginger breads and many more sold through the retail store Amalya at the hotel. I love these small Santa chocolates, the detail and design is so awesome I don’t think I would have the heart yo eat them. But that is me, I am sure kids would love santa chocolates (Gift option!)But another festive touch is the very sophisticated white X Mas tree adorning the lobby of the palace, almost touching the ceiling.