Even though there have been many cosmetic changes over the years, the grandeur of the original 1903 building’s architecture, its history and location make this one of the most recognisable grand hotels in India while its reassuring permanence confers on the interiors a comforting sense of continuity. This inspired us to find the appropriate balance between opulence and restraint for the renovation of the Heritage Wing public areas, thematic suites and guestrooms.
The basis of the interior designs is unmistakably classical in origin but a strong sense of place is conveyed through a fusion of Indo, Moorish, Oriental and Florentine-inspired forms, motifs, decorations, embellishments and materiality as well as through the carefully curated antiques and artefacts. The public areas reflect the formality of the original architecture, providing luxury and comfort within a formal framework.
The interiors of the suites and guestrooms are highly characterful and memorable while remaining absolutely appropriate to the setting. Amidst this
luxury, guests are able to enjoy the highest level of leading-edge technology expected by the most sophisticated contemporary traveller.
Set beneath the stunning pitched ceiling, the Seagull Penthouse Suite was conceived to allow views of the ocean from every corner, whether working at
the study desk, sitting in the lounge, resting in the bedroom or pampering oneself in the luxurious bathroom. The artwork, accent fabrics and pattern
language all pay homage to an amalgamation of coastal, maritime and colonial stylistic references, very much intended to relate to the hotel’s sea-facing
location and to the period of the building’s construction.
In contrast, the interiors of the Ravi Shankar Suite are inspired by and represent a vision of the eponymous sitar maestro’s music interpreted through colour, pattern and texture. Like the Seagull Penthouse the bedroom ceiling extends upwards to take advantage of the roof space above while the layout was developed around the existing structure
and services of the building, but all the while drawing on one of the hotel’s key features; its spectacular ocean views.
The Rajput Suite on the other hand is a flamboyant, vivacious expression of the Indo Moorish style with its hand woven silk rugs, chevron pattern marble flooring, eclectic furniture and magnificent
artefacts including the centrepiece peacock relief panel in the lounge and the shimmering, crystal chandelier and dome in the study.
The Gateway of India Suite has a restrained, elegant atmosphere with veneered wall panelling, hardwood parquet flooring and brightly coloured, traditionally patterned rugs and accents. A similar design
philosophy has driven the interiors of the guestrooms and executive suites where Moorish and Oriental references are more subtly integrated into carpet patterns, bed head profiles and in the ceiling filigree. The overall compositions talk to guests on a number of levels and the results are interiors of refinement and sophistication.