By Rashi Wadhera

As bonafide born and bred Delhi people, we still tend to fumble when someone asks for advice on where to stay when traveling to our city. Every traveller has different needs, from out-of-town relatives and foreign friends you made during your educational stint abroad, to your American professional counterparts and that looks-like-man-candy NRI son of your uncle’s friend’s cousin. And recommending a great place to stay is always tricky. You have to ask yourself – what Delhi experience would you like them to have?

Far from the maddening luxurious offerings of our famous Indian hotel chains, LBBD handpicked amongst youth hostels, pricey B & Bs and more relaxed home-stays to cover almost every traveller’s needs. Apart from all the essentials – wi-fi, linen, laundry and breakfast – they offer a certain warmth and hospitality and let you live as a local. The next time you are asked for advice, or are looking for a change of scene in your own city {hey, the man candy could have potential} check out these incredible alternatives.

Moustache Hostel 

Bang in the middle of GK 1, across the road from one of the city’s busiest markets, we spotted a certain regular looking bungalow with a 2013 iconic image on its name plate: a moustache. This is the Moustache Hostel, Delhi’s equivalent to youth/traveller hostels. Every corner you turn at the hostel gives you something exciting to do. The game room/common room is inviting, with each coffee table doubling up as huge game boards for scrabble, chess and snakes and ladders; a great touch of nostalgia. We spotted an easy on the eyes guest {don’t count on him being there if you do decide to stay here} on a semi-open terrace studded with fairy lights and iMacs, across the hall from a communal kitchen that is open to all guests to use. Each room has a total of 8 bunk beds, so this is your best bet to address two travel needs: budgetary constraints and meeting new people, all the while experiencing that special Indian hospitality.

Facilities include | 24 hr. hot water, 24hr reception, parking, common area, communal kitchen, Wi-Fi, secure lockers, game room, lounge area, breakfast, linen and a luggage room.

Recommended Room | Each room is furnished in much the same way and sleeps multiple people.

Estimated Tariff | INR 650 a bed

Don’t Miss | The chance to be able to interact and meet people from around the world. Also, look out for the satirical Delhi map in the common room; a humorous take on our beloved metropolis, it makes for a good laugh.

Where | S 25, Greater Kailash 1; Contact | 011 40793437

Follow them on Facebook, for regular updates, here.

Bed and Chai Guest House

More of a back-packers and travellers hostel, this travel home is for wanderers on a budget, set up by two French girls who moved to Indian two years ago on work and abandoned any plans of moving back! It has a warm, dorm-like environment and is almost always inhabited by young international travellers exploring India. The girls are very friendly, mega-efficient and defy almost every white woman living in India stereotype, if their friendships with auto drivers and local cab companies are anything to go by. They assist with anything you need in and around the city, from autos to cabs and tourist tours, and go as far as booking train and bus tickets, since it can be tricky for a foreigner. Featured twice in Conde Nast traveller, it’s 10 minutes from the East of Kailash metro station and 3 minutes from Greater Kailash M block Market. Bed and Chai should be your preferred choice for semi-private accommodation, since you’re bound to run into a fellow guest given the close proximities of the rooms.

Facilities include | Wi-Fi, laundry, free parking, breakfast and the choice to order other meals {besides breakfast}, if you place an order before 02:00pm.

Recommended Room | The Elephant. Although all rooms are quite similar, Elephant has the most inviting bed and tons of natural light.

Estimated Tariff | All rooms are priced differently, but the range is from INR 2000-3500. The bunk beds go for INR 850 a bed.

Don’t Miss | Each room is named after a mode of transport in India. From Elephant to Ambassador, our personal favorite is the Royal Enfield tribute. It is always interesting to learn about what stands out among all the things we take for granted, to a foreigner. And a little perspective with a comfortable bed is always welcome.

Where | R-55 Greater Kailash –I, Top Floor; Contact | 01146066054

Find out more here. 

Saket Bed and Breakfast

Marketed as a secret bed and breakfast, the Saket B and B is spread over 2 floors with a total of 6 rooms. The rooms are clean and functional, complete with marbled floors and traditional furniture pieces, which make it look lived in. What stood out are the giant walk-in showers and the impeccable cleanliness. Miraculously, it manages to block out Delhi city’s sounds {both human and mechanical}, and has a huge communal space read: drawing room for traveling groups. It is a short walk from the PVR Saket market and the Saket metro station. A little insider tip – their rates are subject to change {lower} if they’re not running at full capacity. With a helpful bevy of staff, we reckon it’s a perfect fit for the more corporate traveller.

Facilities include | Wi-Fi, in-room electronic safes, satellite TV, en suite bathrooms, AC/heating, breakfast and the option of home-cooked meals.

Recommended Room | Room no 21; sold as their version of a suite, it’s the biggest room available.

Estimated Tariff | 4500 for double occupancy and 4200 for single occupancy. {plus taxes}

Don’t miss | Unlike most places where you have to scramble to get breakfast before they shut it down, Saket B and B allows you to sleep-in; their breakfast buffet runs till noon.

Where | D-21 Saket, third floor; Contact | 9582872580

Find out more here. 

Tree of life Bed and Breakfast

Husband and wife duo, the Bazazs, set up Tree of Life over 2 floors just below their own house on the fourth floor. Being shown around by co-owner Ashwani, he explained their naming ritual; his wife and co-owner is a practitioner of Yoga and Reflexology and decided to name the place after a concept that exudes positivity and sanctity. Situated in a surprisingly green lane in Saket, it has a massive terrace, which overlooks the Qutub Minar and is perfect for winter days, seamlessly replaced by their air-conditioned rooms for Delhi summer days. The entire space is designed according to Vaastu laws {for the believers} and almost every room has a private attached balcony. Also allowing for long-stays, Ashwani is a hands-on host and is quick to offer advice and navigation tips around the city. Don’t miss the breakfast – it’s delicious and offers a multitude of options. A 10-minute walk from the Saket main market and metro line, it’s our choice for travelling families and working individuals with an interest in Indian wellness practices.

Facilities include | Satellite TVs, conference and meeting lounge, DVD and books library, Wi-Fi, 24 hr. water, power back-up, electronic lockers, doctor on call, meal of your choice ordered on request.

Recommended room | 6 rooms and all similarly furbished, so each room is similar and comes as highly recommended as the one next to it.

Estimated Tariff | INR 4500+taxes/per night

Don’t miss | The Reflexology and Yoga classes available in-house!

Where | D-193 Saket; Contact | 9810277699

Find out more here.

 

 *Note: This article has been updated since it was first published