MAYFAIR Lake Resort in Naya Raipur with its verdant gardens, luminous lake, and ample tranquillity is proof that there is more to the industrial hub. By Kumar Shree
There is absolute silence even though there are 20 of us in the bus. All eyes are fixed on the dense foliage around, trying to spot a tiger that might be hiding somewhere. The wait prolongs, and most of us give up. Just then, a dark figure peeks from behind the camouflage of grass and tea trunks, and keeps us curious for a good 10 seconds before finally coming out in the open. A sudden ecstasy takes over the insides of the bus, and the big cat, as if sensing the attention, struts and poses for the many cameras.
I’m at the Nandanvan Botanical Garden in Naya Raipur for a jungle safari, as a part of my weekend sojourn at the MAYFAIR Lake Resort. A swift and scenic ride of 20 minutes from the airport takes me to the sprawling resort, the looming façade of which catches my eye from afar. The property enjoys a strategic location with excellent connectivity from the Swami Vivekananda Airport and the railway station here. It also boasts sweeping views of the Jhangh Lake, which adds to the serene setting and gives MAYFAIR Lake Resort its name.
The warm and welcoming vibe of the property transforms into a regal one once you cross the glass front door. The buggy navigates through the grand reception area to the Super Deluxe Suite, where I’m to spend my weekend. The MAYFAIR Lake Resort could
easily qualify for a mini jungle with around one lakh trees planted across the property. The 1,440-square-foot suite is equipped to pamper you—think dedicated butler and private jacuzzi! The panoramic view of the Jhangh Lake elevates the experience further. It becomes difficult to believe that this serene property is housed right in the middle of one of the industry capitals of the country.
The 124 suites and rooms are tastefully done in muted shades of brown and white, and the walls of the bedroom sport an intricate floral pattern. The entire property is peppered with traditional Bastar art and pata paintings from the neighbouring state of Odisha. A golden dome-shaped structure by the lake stirs my curiosity and I ask Nawaz, my butler, about it. It is a mandap (a temporary platform for wedding ceremonies), he says. The resort is a preferred wedding destination, I learn, with its 95,000 square feet of lawn. The Mayfair Spa with the bridal make-up room, a manicure and pedicure station, a unisex salon, and a well-equipped fitness centre ensures that you look your absolute best on your big day.
The world-class restaurants here dish out delectable world cuisines. Mamma Mia serves bite-sized Italian and Mexican delicacies as well as scrumptious bakes and cakes in a quirky setting. Tea Pot, the 24×7 diner on the other hand, spoils you silly with a bevy of options to choose from—the live stations serve up Indian, Continental, Oriental, Italian, and more cuisines. The watering holes—Baron and Baroness, which sports a Scottish theme, the Lounge Bar, and the Jungle Bar are your destinations to unwind after a busy day of travel or work. Good music, dancing, karaoke, and a fine selection of premium spirits, cocktails, and delicious finger food await you here.
A Shiva temple, which is typical to every MAYFAIR property, finds a place here, and there’s also a library for those who enjoy everything from classics to contemporary reads. MAYFAIR Lake Resort, in short, indulges every kind of traveller.
Raipur, the capital of Chhattisgarh, enjoys good connectivity with every major city in the country by road, air, and rail.
MAYFAIR Lake Resort, Sector 24, Tuta, Atal Nagar, Raipur, Chhattisgarh.
Executive Room prices start from INR 8,450/USD 118 and Deluxe Suite prices start from INR 25,000/USD349; mayfairhotels.com
August to February.
Solo and business travellers.
Chitrakote Falls, Gangrel Dam, Ghatarani Waterfall, Nandanvan Jungle Safari, Naya Raipur Central Park, Urja Park, Vivekananda Sarovar, and the Champaran village are not to be missed.