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“FANTASTIC!!”
Review of The Imperial Hotel

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The Imperial Hotel
Ranked #10 of 716 Hotels in New Delhi
Certificate of Excellence
London
1 review
“FANTASTIC!!”
Reviewed January 31, 2012

We went back to the hotel after first staying there 6 years ago, the same fantastic, friendly service as you would expect with a 5 star deluxe hotel. The spa is new and definitely worth trying. Stayed in the Heritage Suite which is worth every dollar!

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Hong Kong
Level 4 Contributor
23 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
Reviewed January 31, 2012

My family and I (4 adults) travelled to India for the first time and stayed at the Imperial for 2 nights - 1 before, and 1 after, our train trip on the Royal Rajasthan On Wheels. I will use point form to write my review:

Location:
- Good, in the city centre, close to Connaught Place, the main shopping area.
- 20 to 30 minutes from the airport, which is also in the city area, just beyond the ring road.
- There are 2 tourist taxi stands and a petrol station right outside the 2 gates of the hotel, which means getting taxis should not be an issue.
- Metro constructions on the main road outside the hotel means walking in and out is a nuisance, but the noise could not be heard from the hotel, which is set in own grounds, some 100 metres back from the main road.
- Security check at the main gate and the usual metal detectors and bag check at the main entrance. But as with most Indian security checks they are very cursory if you are a foreigner.

Public areas:
- Old world charm, beautiful. For a likelinewss, can compare with Raffles in Singapore, although personally I think the Imperial is better.
- Jasmine incense mingled with the smell of fresh narcissus flowers gives a most pleasant smell in the main hall
- 3 restaurants:
i) "1911" - the cafe/restaurant where you can also have breakfast. Inside area, and outside terrace overlooking the gardens. Good choice of breakfast buffet but can be crowded/noisy/messy on weekends with many kids.
ii) San Gimignano - Italian restaurant with a pizza over. I did not visit this restaurant.
iii) Spices - Thai / SE Asian restaurant. Atmospheric, good food, albeit somewhat pricey. Inside seats are a bit dark. There is also an outdoor area which is brighter and quite pleasant.
- 2 bars:
i) A sports type of bar next to the 1911. I did not visit this.
ii) Another smaller but intimate bar, all wooden panelled and traditional, with a brightly-lit indoor patio area just outside, ideal for afternoon teas or a quiet drink. This is next to Spices.
- Shopping: Only a Chanel and a Book shop, neither of which belong to the hotel's operations.

Rooms:
- Being an old hotel the rooms differ tremendously. Some bathrooms have a separate shower cubicle, some don't.
- We had 2 rooms on the first night, one on the 2nd floor, and one on the Ground floor quite close to the pool. The G/F room was very noisy during the night as early in the morning many staff were walking from the pool door to the main lobby, and with marble floors and wooden doors that have big gaps, the sound insulation was poor. We only managed to get some sleep as we were exhausted from a flight that landed in the early hours.
- Most rooms have no view, even those that face outside. Small windows.
- It was very cold. AC had no heat-mode. In the winter you need to ask the staff to bring in those small portable heaters (but numbers are limited so you need to book)
- Beds are extremely comfortable, as are the linen.
- Rooms are medium-sized to small (vastly different from room to room), but decorated with old-world charm, all dark wood, white linen, marble floor. Colonial-style.
- Crappy hair-dryer, no tooth-brushes or toothpaste provided.

Front desk:
- 2 at the main reception, 1 at the cashier, almost throughout the day, which is good when quiet but inadequate during peak hours.
- Staff's service attitude could change depending on your dress, like for us it did (the first time round we were dressed in casual sports clothes, the 2nd time we just got off a luxury train and they knew, to our treatment was quite different)
- Ignored request for a high floor and for adjoining rooms, blaming it on our travel agent (who has indeed made the request and showed us the communication)

Concierge:
- Usually only manned by 1 person, so he/she is always busy what with answering the phone and also dealing with your request, and appears hassled at times. But general attitude is efficient and helpful.
- Be careful when booking the hotel car. There is a minimum charge for 2 hours, with prices indicated for additional hours. But really the additional hour price is meaningless as they actually charge in blocks of 2 hours, 4 hours, and whole day only.
- Trip to the train station (within the inner city area) and to the airport are charged much higher/exorbitant fees. You cannot choose to include this in your hourly charge.

Bell service / entrance staff:
- Bell boys come to your room immediately when called, are diligent and efficient.
- However, if you have 1 bell boy pick up your suitcases from your room, you can see the others standing around and not helping. However, when you appear to board the car/pickup, people appear miraculously from all directions just to help lift your suitcase into the trunk (snatched from the original bellboy), additional staff just standing there doing the "Namaste", at least 4-5 people fluttering around expecting tips suddenly. Not a real complaint here, just saying.

Cost:
- We were charged 16,000 Rupee for the first night and 18,000 for the second and this was already through an agent. This was room only, and substantial additional taxes (all manners of taxes, at least 3-4 of them) add on another 20% or so.
- Expensive but similar prices to most luxurious hotels in the Western world.

Summary:
- Historical, beautiful hotel. In the city centre yet in its own oasis of a garden and feels like living in the colonial era. Service is adequate but not magical, and differs depending on your dress and perceived wealth.
- If you like Raffles, you will like the Imperial.

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Belgium
Level 6 Contributor
128 reviews
47 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
Reviewed January 30, 2012

But the rooms miss cozyness. They feel cold.The food is great though

  • Stayed September 2011, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bath, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
86 reviews
36 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
Reviewed January 27, 2012

greta hotel in the centre of Delhi - service is excellent and the rooms are very comfortable - the only slight issue was the Spice route restaurant which we thought was expensive and overrated

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
331 reviews
129 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 207 helpful votes
Reviewed January 27, 2012

This is a hotel which rightly has excellence as its title. Quiet refinement is the key to the ambiance. Location is central in New Delhi close to the heart of both the Raj era at the Lutyens designed New Delhi and historic Delhi elsewhere.

Rooms are spacious with large bathrooms. Service is quiet and excellent. Gardens are relatively small but provide an oasis of calm. Noise is minimal in what is an exuberant country. Expect to find weddings progressing in the grounds which provide an insight into the culture of the wealthy.

Restaurants offer a variety of cuisines with the flagship Spice Route offering Thai and other selections fro SE Asia. The San Gimigniano is the Italian offering with a pizza oven. There are other restaurants as well if the others are not required and the delights of Delhi outside the hotel are limited.

Shopping is literally on the doorstep with the Government sponsored Cottage Industries across the road and Connaught Circle a short walk away. A still to be completed Metro Station will one day open up an easy access to the rest of Delhi from the doorstep of the hotel.

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Illinois
Level 3 Contributor
19 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed January 27, 2012

If you are a first-time visitor to India probably there is not a better introduction to the country than this hotel. The staff attire and the hotel architecture take you back in time often and the service is simply great. The hotel is close to a major shopping area in Delhi (Connaught Place) and that gives you an opportunity to walk around the area and get a feeling of the city.
Some reviews suggest that the hotel rooms are small but this is understandable as this is a historical hotel within the city and you have to adjust to what it is available. Nevertheless, we stayed in a Heritage room and we did not feel that the room was small. Further, we stayed in our trip in Oberoi and Taj hotels and The Imperial was of a comparable caliber (indeed, The Imperial is a better hotel than the Taj hotels we stayed in).
As all luxury hotels in India you are isolated from what is going on in the street. Some might find this and advantage whille others may think it is a drawback. It depends on your taste.
Overall, we had a great stay and will stay again at The Imperial whenever we get back to Delhi.

  • Stayed December 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kampala, Uganda
Level 6 Contributor
108 reviews
67 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
Reviewed January 27, 2012

Amazingingly beautiful hotel, in the old style. Superb service with wonderful differences from the norm. Very impressive collection of art throughout the hotel. Great food and exceptional cocktails. The grounds are beautiful and full of wildlife, especially in the evening with the owls coming home to roost.

I would and I will be heading back to this hotel in the future.

  • Stayed June 2011, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Imperial Hotel

Property: The Imperial Hotel
Address: 1 Janpath, New Delhi 110001, India
Location: India > National Capital Territory of Delhi > New Delhi
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#7 Romantic Hotel in New Delhi
#7 Spa Hotel in New Delhi
#8 Business Hotel in New Delhi
#8 Luxury Hotel in New Delhi
#12 Family Hotel in New Delhi
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:5 star — The Imperial Hotel 5*
Number of rooms: 233
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Also Known As:
Imperial Hotel New Delhi
Imperial New Delhi
Imperial Hotel Delhi
The Imperial Hotel Delhi
The Imperial New Delhi
Hotel Imperial
Grand Imperial Hotel
The Imperial Palace Hotel

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