Courtyard by Marriott Aravali Resort offers a luxurious stay and eclectic plates for the gourmand traveler amidst the foothills of the Aravali ranges
Resonating with Delhi's rich history and the thriving present, Courtyard by Marriott Aravali Resort offers a colourful diversity of art, culture and history
Cutting through the clouded skies and rain cascading on our plane up in the sky above 38,000 feet, we landed in New Delhi in the evening only to feel that wearing a blazer wasn’t a great idea. The capital city literally gave us a warm sweaty welcome, so, we chose to flaunt our crop tops and denims as we were chauffeured to the brand new sprawling Courtyard by Marriott Aravali Resort. The tiring journey braving the city’s traffic and pollution quickly felt worth taking when we had the first glimpse of this majestic property.
Situated amidst the foothills of the beautiful Aravali ranges, we find that our rooms opened to the view of a uniquely tiered swimming pool beautifully landscaped with a sun deck and waterfalls. We were tempted to jump into those blue waters but holding onto our horses, we quickly freshened up to grab a bite postponing the walkthrough of the property to the next day.
Mornings are beautiful when you are beholding a striking view of nature at its best. The sprawling 158-room hotel spread across eight acres provided not only a sophisticated environment and comfortable stay but also beautiful scenery to enjoy. As much as we wanted to linger in the company of nature, we decided to head for breakfast. And soon we were at The Aravali Kitchen which boasts inspiration from local and international fare and showcased a variety of gourmet offerings. The all-day dining restaurant overlooking the beautiful poolside offered a large range of breakfast options.
We learn that the breakfast menu is changed frequently by executive chef Shibendu Chaudhury, who is behind the creative culinary offerings here. The menu here has regional delicacies and international favourites while Glaze is a place for coffee lovers to indulge in the finest coffee during the day followed by locally crafted cocktails and craft beers at night. In addition, Huang is the hotel’s specialty restaurant that offers a variety of Asian cuisines and Olive Grove, the poolside bar and restaurant appears to be the perfect spot to enjoy a mesmerising sunset view with fresh cocktails and light bites.
After we strolled through the dining spaces and filled ourselves way too much, we were given a tour of the property. All rooms are fully equipped with an array of amenities including flatscreen televisions, a comfortable work desk and high-speed internet access. The other amenities include a rejuvenating spa and a 24/7 fitness center, which we found most necessary to burn the calories we gained gorging on food all day long. In addition, the property is pet friendly, so, now you don’t need to leave your furry friends behind when you go on that much-deserved holiday.
Rajneesh Kumar, General Manager, Courtyard by Marriott Aravali Resort also told us that Marriot as a brand has already started making environmentally conscious choices by replacing plastic bottles in the bathrooms with reusable dispensers. “The whole idea was to get rid of mini bottles and tubes in the bathrooms. It has reduced about 500 million tons of waste from across our Marriott properties. By next year we will also have a substitute for plastic water bottles. We have our own compost machine, so, all the waste is reduced. We are working on water intensity reduction, and food wastage with our in-house farming and gardening initiative,” said Rajneesh.
We were distracted again by a huge Tree of Life (an art installation with juice bottles) on the porch that serves fruit juices with a twist. We chose an Organic Carrot and Valencia Orange, and a Chilled Celery Shooter with Jaggery. Next we chose a Ciabatta Crostini with Ash Coated Goat Cheese and Artichoke on Focaccia with Black Olive Tapenade and this was delightful.
After this, it was time for lunch and this was quite the spread at The Aravali. Chef Shibendu had prepared an eight-course meal for us including an array of dishes for veg and non-veg lovers — the chef left us spoilt for choice. In fact, we didn’t have any space for dessert! So, dinner time was sober and light despite again being offered an array of offerings by the chef including tasters, appetisers and the main course. We chose to try the Palak Patta Chaat made with spinach crisps, hung yoghurt and chutney at dinner over a lot of conversation. For mains, we went the traditional route with Jowar ki Roti, Missi Roti cooked on traditional chulha and completed our meal with Khadi Udyog made with jaggery, fresh mango and shaved coconut. Chef Shibendu told us that each dish at the property is made from regionally produced ingredients, “and made with traditional techniques to provide a glimpse into the diverse and complex universe of local gourmet treasures.” Resonating with the city’s rich history and the thriving present, Courtyard by Marriott Aravali Resort’s culinary spread is definitely a colourful blend of art, culture and history. We left the hotel the next day after a scrumptious breakfast and pleasantries, still feeling rejuvenated from yesterday’s massage post lunch.
Priyanka Chandani priyanka.chandani @newindianexpress.com