As the saying goes, first impressions count. And, the glittery greeting given by the Palladium Hotel's spectacular chandelier-filled entrance is certainly captivating. It establishes an ambiance of grandeur that extends through the whole hotel, with a seamless combination of contemporary and timelessly ornate decor. Yet, there's more to the hotel than its elegant looks. As a new luxury hotel in Mumbai, the Palladium Hotel is determined to prove itself. Undoubtedly, it's succeeding too. The attentive, personalized service that the staff excel in delivering will make you feel very special indeed.
Upon arrival, I was escorted inside the hotel by a gracious staff member, who'd clearly been waiting for me. He recognized me and addressed me by name as soon as I got out of the taxi. That was a surprise! How did he know who I was? (I later found out that the staff study the profiles of prominent guests in order to recognize them accordingly. I guess I qualified, as the hotel knew I was coming to write a feature on them). A traditional Indian welcome, introductory letter from the hotel manager, fresh flowers and fruit in my room, and a phone call from guest relations to see if I needed anything all added to the feeling of being cared about. The service wasn't excessive or forced though. The staff genuinely seemed warm and helpful.
Location and Concept
The hotel, located in the central south Mumbai suburb of Lower Parel (around halfway between the airport and Colaba), opened as a Shangri-la property in January 2013 and was re-branded as the Palladium Hotel in September 2013. It's part the High Street Phoenix mall complex, which is one of the biggest malls in Mumbai and also consists of the high-end Palladium mall. The hotel was designed by Shekar Patki, principal architect of Mumbai based PG Patki Architects, and is owned by the mall's developer -- power couple Gayatri and Atul Ruia. This area used to be known for its cotton mills but they've reinvented it as an entertainment and shopping precinct.
According to the Palladium Hotel's manager, the aim is to develop the hotel as a luxury food and beverage destination. When complete, it will have a dizzying variety of venues at a rather dizzying height. Most will be situated on levels 37 and 38, which are the hotel's top two floors.
The Palladium Hotel already has many noteworthy distinguishing features that make it one of Mumbai's best luxury hotels. It's the tallest hotel in the city and has Mumbai's highest bars (Asilo and Li Bai), highest nightclub (Exo), highest Asian restaurant (Mekong), highest party suite (Zenith), and one of the Mumbai's best Sunday brunches (at Seven Kitchens). Future plans include adding a modern European restaurant (Anais), an informal Mediterranean dining and cocktail space (LED - Love Eat Drink), and a Japanese sushi and saki restaurant (Yuuka).
What really stands out about the hotel is its appeal as a place for celebration. I spent two days touring and exploring the hotel, and concluded that it has a venue for pretty much every kind of function imaginable.
Disclaimer: As is common in the travel industry, the writer was provided with complimentary services for review purposes. While it has not influenced this review, About.com believes in full disclosure of all potential conflicts of interest. For more information, see our Ethics Policy.