What’s better than a vacation? I say, spa-cation! And there is nothing like getting away from it all, without going away which is the best part of opting for a city escape. I recently experienced weekend bliss at Vivanta President (earlier called as Taj President) which I discovered to be perfect for a staycation/ spacation getaway.
The chill life
Gooey sinful cookies and the perfect Hot Chocolate greeted me in my Premium indulgence room which was spacious, bright and offered an expansive view of South Mumbai. The dessert feasting was followed by taking a dip in the phenomenal pool and a soothing siesta. After some gratifying sleep, I took time to focus on myself as I spent over an hour at the property’s well-equipped fitness area. I also devoured Trattoria’s scrumptious bruschetta and pizza which I think are always just other-worldly delish!
Being a spa junkie and having travelled extensively to spas all over the world, I am of the belief that Jiva which is rooted in India’s ancient approach to wellness is a total sanctum of bliss. And yet again, it didn’t disappoint! An ebullient therapist greeted me on my arrival and talked me through my problem areas.
My therapy was Narikela-a soothing coconut scrub followed by an hour-long Indian aromatherapy massage (Vishram). The process included exfoliation and moisturization using a blend of ingredients that had a cooling effect on my skin. My therapist’s deft hands kneaded and scrubbed my body with this mixture of ground coconut, coconut milk with a hint of turmeric.
She then trussed the body in towels to let the cleansers do their work while giving me an invigorating head massage that elevated me to spa nirvana. After a quick shower, my therapist’s gentle strokes drift me off in sweet slumber. No worries and stress, just visions of tropical wellness take over my mind.
My treatment ends with my favourite- Jiva’s Vishudhi Chai. Made from fresh, organic jaggery, lemon and garnished with a whole-leaf basil, the tea detoxifies me thoroughly. A strong whiff of jaggery after a two-hour long spa session brings me back to my blissful natural state of being, swapping stress and tension for a return to self.
And then the best blow-dry of my life awaited me at the Taj Salon. It was quick, done meticulously by the gracious staff and gave me my red-carpet moment. Add to this extravagance, the lip-smacking food dished out by the hotel and my getaway felt like absolute immersion.
For dinner, I chose to bask in the delicacies at Konkan Café. I was head-over-heels in love with the complex and irresistible flavours of delicate curries, divine seafood and the Hot Jalebi with kulfi which is a forever favourite!
At Thai Pavilion, I basked in The Yum Ma Muang (raw mango salad with water chestnuts), Pia Nueng Manao (steamed John Dory with coriander, chilly, peanut in tangy sauce) and Tub Tim Grob (diced water chestnut with coconut milk), all so mouth-watering that the tastes are imprinted in my palate.
Vivanta President ticks all the right gastronomic and wellness boxes. After all, Taj group’s Chef Ananda Solomon had travelled extensively to get every bit of it spot-on. The Thai Pavilion which is to ring in 25 years is credited to be the country’s first Thai restaurant. While it remains Vivanta President’s most successful restaurant, Konkan is its soul.
A hotel feature worth-noting here is that the property is pet-friendly and should you need a pet menu, the staff is at hand to attend your every need. They’re attentive, gracious and really the heart of Vivanta President. And here I was: primped in and out; this is what they call bliss.
Address: Vivanta President, Mumbai
90, Ganesh Murti Nagar,
Cuffe Parade, Mumbai, Maharashtra 400005
Phone: 022 6665 0808
Rates: From Rs 7,965 onwards
Note: The writer was invited by the hotel but all the opinions expressed herewith are her own