On our recent trip to Bangalore we stayed at Vivanta by Taj where service was beyond reproach.

There are no real kid related activities in a city hotel like this but they did offer a nice selection of DVDs and popcorn for a late night movie in the room!

Location, location, location: The hotel is fabulously located at the end of MG Road and easily accessible to most areas of interest via the metro or auto rikshaws.  The strategic location makes it easy to move from one attraction to another, sometimes being able to pop back for a quick rest as well.  1MG Road mall is right opposite and really useful for a quick bite as well as a well stocked grocer which  has an extensive selection of local and imported fruits and snacks.

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Room: We asked for a lake facing room on a higher floor. Mornings were greeted with calming sights of the beautiful Ulsoor lake but the horn blaring down busy MG Road really drowned the appeal.

Food: We chanced upon their mid-week street food buffet and signed up for all of us, kids at half price. The selection was amazing and a fabulous introduction to street food around India.  There was lovely lamb biryani, bhajis, rotis of all kind, chats, prawn and chicken tikka, kerala fish curry, appam and stew as well as desserts – gulab jamun, piping hot jelebis, carrot halwas, springy burfis and what not.

But all that the kids decided to eat was the BUN that came with the pav bhaji  (this is often the case when they are presented with too much choice, sigh!).  When our bill came, they didn’t charge for the kids as our observant waiter had noted on their culinary choices (or lack of it) and the manager waived their bill. This was a really sweet gesture.

The morning breakfast again is redolent with lovely food – my favourite was the masala omelette and Pongal.

Our experience: There is a nice green terrace on the first floor which offered us a chance for soccer in the evening! I find children always very welcome in South India and some friendly hotel guests even joined in their soccer escapades! Just like in Chennai, they love kids here!

The only downside to a busy city hotel is that it never sleeps. We had taken advantage of a Christmas offer and so it seems, did a whole load of others. Weekend nights especially brings Blimey, the club across the road, to life. Do expect music to pulsate till round 2 am. My two tykes slept through it all, thanks to long days at the parks but light sleepers beware!

A few hours before heading to the airport, my youngest was terribly ill with a bad stomach and couldn’t hold  anything in. They sent up coconut water and packed toast and jam which came in handy before we boarded the flight.  What really makes a hotel is the service, especially when one is in a new country with small kids. Here, they were not only welcomed but genuinely treated with care.

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