Review: Be treated like a royal at the Imperial Hotel New Delhi

Review: Be treated like a royal at the Imperial Hotel New Delhi
Edited by Travel Weekly

    We recently had the privilege of staying at the Imperial Hotel in New Delhi, and we must say that it was a wonderful experience from start to finish. The Imperial Hotel is a true gem in the heart of New Delhi,  effortlessly combining exceptional service, rich heritage, and a fascinating history.


    Reminiscent of a 19th-century Indian Palace, in the land of Maharajas and Maharanis, The Imperial New Delhi was established in 1931 as the first hotel in New Delhi. Recognised as the best hotel in Delhi by Conde Nast Traveler 2023 Readers’ Choice Awards, it is among the top hotels in the world. One of the Grand Dames of the East, the architecture of this exclusive address has subtle traces of Victorian, Lutyens and Art Deco style.

    White marble colonnades, verdant gardens, and rooms & suites replete with Italian marble floors, polished Burma teak, Persian hand-knotted carpets, antique Chandeliers and Rosewood furniture, set the tone. Built on an eight-acre estate, it offers a haven and refuge in the heart of India’s bustling capital.


    During our stay, we were struck not only by the staff’s professionalism and attentiveness but also by their remarkably high emotional intelligence. This aspect of their service truly sets the Imperial apart and makes for a more personalised, comfortable, and memorable experience.

    Staff are not only trained in the art of hospitality, they possess a deep understanding of human emotions and an ability to anticipate the needs and desires of each guest. Aware of our long, sleepless transit, staff streamlined our check-in process and offered tea and breakfast in our rooms should we require it, wished us a good rest and said they were here to answer any questions. We were also greeted and acknowledged by all staff anywhere and everywhere during our stay. This emotional intelligence translates into a level of service that goes beyond the ordinary, making you feel not just like a guest but like an honoured friend. 


    The Imperial Hotel does not just excel in providing a luxurious stay; it also goes above and beyond in helping guests explore the vibrant tapestry of Delhi’s main attractions. The experienced Concierge helped us map out the days of exploration, considering not only what we had on our list, but what we should not miss. Their dedication to creating memorable experiences extends to offering expert guides and a comfortable car service (with plenty of fresh cold water, and WI-FI!) to ensure that we could fully immerse ourselves into the city’s rich history and culture, comfortably.

    A day trip to the Taj Mahal is a must. (Supplied)

    The need for a guide was at our request, and the Imperial Hotel arranged for a knowledgeable and lovely University professor (who also has a tour guiding business with his daughter) who led a fascinating journey through Delhi’s main attractions. The guide was not just well-informed about the historical significance of each site, but also brought these landmarks to life with engaging narratives and insights.

    This added dimension to the Imperial’s service ensures that guests not only enjoy the comforts of the hotel but also gain a deeper understanding of Delhi’s cultural and historical significance. It’s a testament to their commitment to making every guest’s stay an educational experience.

    The Imperial Spa and Yoga Sanctum

    The Imperial Spa experience is nothing short of heavenly. The spa facilities and offerings are designed to provide guests with a sanctuary of relaxation and rejuvenation. The Imperial’s spa and new yoga sanctum is a serene haven that pampers both body and soul. The Yoga Sanctum features soft wooden floors and beams that adorn the ceiling, and the centerpiece of this enchanting space is a breathtaking 400 SQFT living green wall that not only adds to the aesthetic appeal but bathes the room in refreshing oxygen and a calming ambiance.

    The spa itself is a beautifully designed space, with an air of tranquillity. From the moment you step inside, you are enveloped in a soothing ambiance that instantly melts away any tiredness or stresses. The spa’s serene decor, soft lighting and quotes from Rumi set the perfect backdrop for an indulgent visit.

    Spa at the Imperial. (Supplied)

    The range of treatments and therapies available at the Imperial’s spa is nothing short of extraordinary. Whether you seek a traditional Indian Ayurvedic massage, a revitalising facial, or a body scrub (I had all 3!), the skilled therapists customise every treatment to meet your specific needs. Each session is a sensory experience that leaves you feeling refreshed and renewed.

    What truly distinguishes the Imperial’s spa is the attention to detail. The pre and post treatment amenities, such as steam rooms, Jacuzzis, and relaxation lounges, add an extra layer of indulgence to the experience. The spa staff were committed to ensuring you were left feeling pampered and attended to, making this a must-visit during your stay.

    Relax by the pool with drink in hand! (Supplied)

    The pool area is another highlight of the Imperial. Surrounded by lush greenery, it offers a peaceful oasis where you can unwind from the busy city. The pool was very well maintained and an ideal spot for a refreshing dip.


    Every single piece of furniture and fabric that adorns the hotel’s 235 rooms and suites offer sophisticated accommodation with high ceilings, stunning views, and stylish marble bath fixtures. The residential style is accentuated with a selection of carefully curated furnishings and modern amenities.

    Grand Heritage room. (Supplied)

    The rooms at the Imperial Hotel in Delhi area luxurious blend offering a range of options to cater to different preferences and needs.

    Art at The Imperial

    The art at the Imperial Hotel in Delhi is a captivating and integral part of the hotel’s rich cultural tapestry. The hotel is adorned with a priceless collection of over 5,500 original artworks from the 17th and 18th century, that reflect India’s diverse artistic heritage and history.

    Art at the Imperial. (Supplied)

    Highlights about the art at the Imperial:

    • Historical Artifacts: These artifacts include vintage photographs, artwork, and objects that provide a glimpse into India’s past and the history of the hotel itself.
    •  Antique Furniture and Decor: There is an exquisite selection of antique furniture and decor, such as classic colonial-era furnishings, intricate wooden carvings, and ornate chandeliers.
    • Paintings and Murals: The Imperial’s hallways and public spaces are graced with numerous paintings, murals, and artworks that pay homage to various facets of Indian culture, history, and heritage.
    • Art Deco Design: The Imperial is renowned for its art deco architecture and design, which is evident in the hotel’s interiors.
    • The art at the Imperial serves not only as a feast for the eyes but also as a reminder of India’s rich history. Whether you’re an art enthusiast or simply appreciate the aesthetic beauty of your surroundings, the Imperial’s art collection is impressive.


    The dining experiences at the Imperial offers various on-site restaurants, three re-fashioned and picturesque outdoor terraces that all cater to an array of culinary preferences, from authentic Indian cuisine to international favourites.

    The Spice Route. (Supplied)

    Dining options include:

    The Spice Route: The Spice Route is a world-renowned restaurant at the Imperial, known for its exceptional Southeast Asian cuisine. The decor is inspired by the ancient spice trade route, and the menu features dishes from various countries in the region.

    1911 Restaurant: This restaurant offers a blend of Indian and international cuisine. It is an elegant and charming dining space perfect for both casual, outdoor, and fine dining experiences. This is where breakfast was served.

    San Gimignano: San Gimignano is the Imperial’s Italian restaurant, serving authentic Italian dishes in a Tuscan-inspired setting.

    The Atrium: The Atrium is the hotel’s stunning tea lounge and conservatory. It’s an ideal spot for a traditional afternoon tea experience.

    Final Comments

    We’ve covered everything about this amazing hotel in this review, and can’t speak highly enough about it! If you ever have the chance to visit or suggest to a client, Imperial Hotel in New Delhi won’t let you down.

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