The IHB Guide: 5 types of Bangaloreans that Jayanagar caters to!

Where residential meets commercial, the locality of Jayanagar has plenty to offer. From an adventurous day out to dance studios to yes, of course, delicious food, here is our guide to Jayanagar according to your personality/interest!

For the Gamer’s DNA

Challenge your friends to a game of laser tag at the hi-tech battledrome set-up at ‘Talk to the Hand.’ They also offer an array of exciting games that are trending and futuristic – perfect for any gamer’s appetite. Their hip and stylish café serves up some quick bites and yummy delights that serve as the perfect fuel for an energy packed day spent at the hub.

Get in touch: Talk to the Hand – No. 653, 2nd Floor, HM Zeta, 11th Main, Sri Aurobindo Marg, 4th Block, Jayanagar (next to McDonalds). Ph: +91 9945406090

 

For the Music Lover’s soul

Catering to music-lovers’ delight, Music House & Radel Electronics has what you need – be it a quick fix for your first guitar, some serious overhaul for your favourite keyboard or just the need of an arena for you to explore. While Radel Electronics will charm you with its range of classical music instruments such as the Sitar, Tanpura and Shruti boxes, they also add a modern twist with a range of digital instruments like the electronic Tabla & Veena. Music House offers a range of guitars, keyboards, violins, drums and accessories from A-Z and a one-stop-shop for expert maintenance of all instruments.

Get in touch: Music House – No. 25, 100ft Ring Road, 5th Block, Jayanagar. Ph: +91 7829004321 & Radel Electronics – No. 217, 8F Main Road, 3rd Block, Jayanagar. Ph: +91 9342420720.

For the Gourmand’s desire

Having formed enough of a centre of its own to be self-sufficient, a strew of restaurants and pubs and street-food joints have sprouted in Jayanagar in the past few years, adding to the buzz. While every nook and corner has some mouth-watering street food delights such as vada pav, momos, chaats, sandwiches and sweets, the restaurants cater to cuisines ranging from grilled BBQs and Italian to typical tam-bram South-Indian and the ever favourite Chinese.

#IHBLoves: Onesta (above), Meghana Foods, 1947, Watson’s, Bottle Breacher, Hari’s Super Sandwich, Shivaji Military Hotel, Stoned Monkey.

For the Peace-seeking Wanderer

Thankfully, Luru still has a few serene lakes and parks that make for pleasant evening walks and Jayanagar is one of the lucky locations to play host. You can choose to take a quick walk around Yediyur Lake or survey the Nandavana Park. The park is one of the newer additions to the area and has an exclusive play area for kids and a fountain that comes on at 7:00 pm, turning into quite an attraction for the locals. The park charges an entry fee of Rs. 5 for children and is open from 9:00am to 1:00pm and 4:00pm to 8:30pm, every day.

Where: Yediyur Lake – Kanakpura Road, Jayanagar & Nandavana Park – 38th Cross Road, 4th T Block, Jayanagar

For the Dancer’s spirit

Who doesn’t love to dance? Jayanagar offers some great options to take up dance lessons of your choice: pop-up, part-time, or professional. Visit the nationally acclaimed dance academy, Nritarutya, for an electrifying dance fitness workshop that helps you learn international dance forms. Dance to the latest chart-toppers while simultaneously getting full body workout: win-win! On the other hand, for the slightly more serious intender (and the flexible!), get adventurous with more contemporary forms of dance. Created by Founder and Lead Choreographer, Mayuri Upadhya (wife to famed folk singer Raghu Dixit), they support & initiate the understanding of new Indian dance expressions from unique urban structures.

Get in touch: Nritarutya – No. 475, 1st Floor, 39th ‘C’ Cross, 9th Main, 5th Block, Jayanagar. Ph: +91 9916072270

 

 

The IHB Foodie’s Guide: Bangalore-Mysore Highway

We all looove a long weekend, and for a lot of us that meanss kicking back and taking a long drive or a bike ride on the famous Bangalore-Mysore Highway. While that sounds incredibly pleasant (well, depending on traffic), the only crapper (ahem, no pun intended) is usually the substandard highway food that you have to settle for. Nahh, we refuse to let that dampen your experience; so we took it upon ourselves to lay it all out for you.

Our top picks for the best eateries are:

Maddur Tiffany’s (Maddur)

We love ourselves some maddur vada at any given point of time and if you’re a newbie on this route you gotta stop by Maddur Tiffany’s and order yourself some piping hot, crunchy and delicious-as-hell maddur vada and coffee. The Thatte Idlis here aren’t too bad either.

Vaishali (Channapatna)

If you’re stopping for breakfast at Vaishali, their Dosas are decent and if you are planning on grabbing some lunch here, we have found their natti chicken dishes to be good. In addition to the food, we heart Vaishali because of its convenient location and inexpensive prices!

Kamat Lokaruchi (Ramanagara)

Good ole Kamat is another restaurant you can count on for top quality South Indian food (breakfast or any other meal). We recommend ordering their Mude Idli or their North Karnataka Jolad Rotti meals… sooo gooood!

Poojari’s Fish Land (Srirangapatna)

If you’re looking for some seafood while driving down the highway, you can unhesitatingly stop at Poojari’s for a meal. Their range of fish dishes are good, reasonably priced and most importantly super fresh! We recommend ordering their fish curry meals. You can’t go wrong. Oh and beware of fake Fishlands around Poojari’s so look for “Poojari’s” preceding “Fish Land”.

Bhuvaneshwari Military Hotel (Srirangapatna)

Chances are, you might not have heard of this place, given its inconspicuous location. It is a small military hotel by the highway that appears to have been dug into the road, but don’t let the appearance fool you! From a flavourful Paya to a delicious meatball curry and from soft, earthy Ragi Muddes and fluffy Idlis to spicy Mutton chops, this place has it all! Yes we compiled a list, but really, this is our absolute favourite!

Now that we took care of your highway food woes, cruise without a worry! We’ll see you there xx

Bookworms of Bangalore, here’s a list of our 5 fav libraries in the city!

Who doesn’t enjoy some quiet time with their favourite book to de-stress from the otherwise whirlwind routine of the city life? Here are some places where you can find your food for the soul:

State Central Library

One of the oldest and most loved libraries in the city that is also a stark landmark for sight-seeing. The red brick building with a well-maintained rose garden stands out amongst the verdant greenery of Cubbon Park, adding to the charm of the structure. It is said that the archives contain a copy of every book published in the state after 1970, amongst various other collections, that will satisfy your research and leisure reading demands. A total of 2,40,093 (and counting) books and periodicals are currently part of their collection, waiting to be explored.

Location: Sir Seshadri Iyer Memorial Library, (State Central Library) 
Cubbon Park
Timings: 8:30 am – 7:30 pm
Contact: 080 – 2221 2128/ 080 – 22867358

Eloor Library

A chain of libraries in India over the past 34 years, the Eloor Library in Bengaluru has one of the finest collection of books that any book lover would love to dive into and discover. Membership can be availed for as little as Rs. 1000 per head which is fully refundable at the time of closing. Cost of renting books is also reasonable at just 10% of the cost of the book (subject to a maximum amount), with a reading time of 14 days as the standard. Right from new arrivals and classics to general fiction, non-fiction, philosophy, sports and cookery, the sections of Eloor range far and wide.

Location: G – 9, Blue Cross Chambers, Infantry Road Cross
Timings: 10:00 am – 7:00 pm
Contact: 080 – 42057280/ 080 – 25591408

British Council Library

With state-of-the-art facilities and an atmosphere that inspires creative thinking that feeds the wanderlust of your mind, this library is definitely a stand-out from the others, by character. Besides being a space for reading and renting noteworthy books, the library is also a social arena where you can meet friends and explore the resources. They even organise skill based workshops and lively meet-and-greet sessions with authors on a regular basis.

Location: Prestige Takt 23, Kasturba Cross Road
Timings: 10:30 am – 6:30 pm
Contact: 0120 456 9000

Mythic Society Library

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Established in 1909, this library caters to the curiosity of the intellects interested in Anthropology, Archaeology, History, Epigraphy, Culture, traditions, Art & Architecture, Folklore Ethnology, Literature and allied subjects. They also host several lectures by renowned professors on various topics of interest (sign up for their newsletter to keep track). Additionally, a grant provided by the government for their centenary celebrations has allowed for a spacious hall that is to be made into an art museum and a guest house, exclusively for accommodating out station scholars.

Location: 14/1, Nrupathunga Road, Opposite Reserve Bank
Timings: Tuesday to Saturday 10.00 am to 5:15 pm; Sunday: 10:00 am to 4:00pm; Monday Holiday
Contact: 080 – 2221 5034

Just Books

Your typical ‘Rent, Read and Return’ format that has been brought to the city – Just Books has as many as 30 facilities all over. For those that find it hard to commute to the bigger libraries, this one is the perfect option and accessible without much effort from any part of Bengaluru. Moreover, you can easily rent your favourite books online, from the comfort of your homes, and have it delivered as per your convenience. This new generation community library chain provides a unique reading experience for all book lovers with a wide range of books available on all topics.

Details: Multiple locations across the city (30 facilities). Find details of your closest outlet here.

So, get your reading glasses out and pair it up with a steaming mug of tea/coffee to enjoy your favourite weekend read!

Love cycling? Here’s a list of top trails around Bangalore!

Done with our picks on the top trekking trails around the city? Time to continue the adventure with our brand-new list on bicycle trails around Luru that you will thoroughly enjoy:

Melukote

Cheluvanarayana Swamy Temple
Cheluvanarayana Swamy Temple

A bike trail with a dose of spirituality is what Melkote offers as it accommodates several temples, some of them offering their own measure of recreation. The Cheluvanarayana Swamy Temple (above) may appeal to the artists and architects with their traditional, yet concrete pillars that showcase artistic carvings that are sure to amuse.

While, the Yoga-Narasimha Swamy Temple offers a 300 (alternatively, you may choose to bike your way up half way) step climb for some light exercise.

Distance from M.G. Road –  Approx. 145 km via Kunigal

Turahalli Forest

800 acres of deciduous forest mostly dominated by Eucalyptus trees, Turahalli is also known as Karisma Hills is just an easy 30 minutes’ ride from the city. The ride to the forest is not a very tiring one as the tar roads make it pleasant throughout. As you reach the forest, you enter a mud road after which the climb gets a little steep as to reach the summit in about 200 mts.

There are several South-Indian style breakfast places for you break at on the way. Or, you may choose to pack something up to enjoy a bite once you reach your destination.

Distance from M.G. Road – Approx. 19 km via Kanakapura Road

Thattekere

Imagine cooling off by a serene lake post an energizing bike ride… enjoying a picnic lunch under the shade of a welcoming tree…. and indulging your curiosity as you try and name some of the exotic birds that you may spot! Well, that’s Thattekere Lake, for you. Besides the gentle trail that makes the bike ride enjoyable for everyone, the lake scores high in our list as it is one of the last remaining lakes in the city that remains untainted.

Moreover, it’s clean surroundings, lush greenery and warm sunshine make it a bird watcher’s paradise, as well.

Distance from M.G. Road – Approx. 50 km via Hosur Road

Big Banyan Tree

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A biking trail that takes you around a 3-acre space that houses a Banyan Tree over 400 years old! Due to the age of the tree one cannot decipher the original tree trunk as its roots have spread across to look like trunks themselves, providing a great resting or picnic spots.

This biking trail does not take more than 6 hours in all and works as a great getaway for a half-day retreat. However, beware of monkey trouble!

Distance from M.G. Road –  Approx. 36 km via NICE Road- Bangalore- Mysore Expressway

Cycling Wine Tours

The Bangalore to Mysore stretch offers a host of options for wine aficionados and one of the better ways to get there is to get on your bicycles and enjoy the ride. There are plenty of eateries on the way for tea/coffee breaks and a scrumptious breakfast.

The many wineries are happy to welcome guests for a quick tour and lesson on wine and have them venture into their vineyards for a day well spent – sipping on fine wine alongside some delicious food while looking over the scenic yards.

#IHBSays

  • Ensure you wear loose and comfortable clothing
  • Dress in layers (t-shirt + light jacket) to stack up them as per the weather
  • Wear comfortable shoes and carry spare socks/laces
  • Do not carry heavy bags
  • Load up on fluids (water, juices, energy drinks) and sunscreen
  • Carry a packed lunch with a picnic mat
  • A Frisbee or a board game would add to the fun

Amateur Astronomer’s Guide: Stargazing in Bengaluru!

There is something about the infinity and mystery of celestial wonders that we just can’t deny! If you, like us, are ever-intrigued by the beauty of the cosmos, you can start by exploring your hobby, right here in Namma Bengaluru. Here is your handbook to becoming an amateur astronomer:

Start off by joining a group. Bangalore has two active unions related to astronomy as a hobby à

Association of Bangalore Amateur Astronomers (1976)

An independent, non-profit housed in the Jawaharlal Nehru Planetarium. The ABAA frequently conducts fun and interactive activities like telescope building, night sky observation and astro-photography. Giving beginners the perfect induction is the ‘Know Your Stars’ program conducted on the first Sunday of every month. Besides giving an insight into the stars, constellations and planets, you can also learn about the basics of using a telescope! Also, take home a star chart as a souvenir, provided to all visitors, with a lesson on how to use it.

Website: Click here

FB: Click here

The Bangalore Astronomical Society (2006)

The BAS is a non-profit organization working for the promotion of astronomy as a hobby as well as a science for the city folk. Join their Google Group and be a part of all the trending discussions about latest astronomical developments and exciting activities. You can post your questions and have them answered, on topics related to the universe, astronomy, telescopes, stargazing, observing and astrophotography. Download their specially designed log books for free from their website – a great tool to kick-start your hobby! They even have certification programs such as the upcoming ‘Messier Catalogue Visual Observer’ – their first certification program to appreciate amateur astronomers for interest in visual observations.

Website: Click here

FB: Click here

The Jawaharlal Nehru Planetarium

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Founded by the Bangalore City Corporation in 1989, it has become a landmark of the city and a fond memory of local school trips. With a 15 meter diameter dome, and seating capacity of 210, the planetarium also houses a Science Park and a Science Centre. The ‘Space Master’ projector showcases the night sky as seen with the naked eye to give a spectacular view. Attracting as many as 200,000 visitors a year, the’Sky- Theatre’ show blends science with art, literature and cultural aspects of many countries. With special visual effects, animation and videos, these shows are sure to provide an out-of-the-world experience, literally! Daily show timings (except on Mondays and second Tuesdays): 3 p.m. in Kannada and 4.30 p.m. in English.

Where to stargaze?

  • Hosahalli – about 20 km off Doddaballapur, approximatelely 70 km from Bangalore.
  • Shivanahalli – about 35 km from Bangalore. Here, the ABAA has a 12″ telescope for observations with many more activities for space lovers.
  • The Jawaharlal Nehru Planetarium – every Sunday at 6 pm, there are talks given by experienced amateurs on upcoming heavenly events as they await a clear night when the telescope is brought out for some serious stargazing.

#IHBSays

  • Do your research – The Lunar Calendar is your almanac. Ask around for the best vantage points hit Google and the local astronomy websites to get a heads up on what to look out for on any particular night. Be observant of the movement of comets and stars, learn names of constellations and try your skill at spotting them!
  • Make use of technology – Several Apps are now available to feed the appetite of astronomers. The Google Skymap App can help you locate stars, constellations and the pole star among other things, while The SkEye Planetarium App (on android) calibrates the section of the sky you are pointing at (almost) instantly, with a huge database of deep sky objects for reference. AccuWeather App on the other hand can help you plan your stargazing night out on a clear night for best viewing.

Trekking: An Explorer’s Guide to Top Trails Around Bangalore

Feeling adventurous? Take a pick out of our list and try one of the trekking trails around luru that will make you forget you’re just a few hours away from home (and no, we don’t mean Electronic City!)

Makalidurga

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Credit: Bangalore Hikers

Situated near a village of the same name, Makalidurga is a trekker’s paradise with a landscape that is a mix of green hills, lush forests and fort ruins. The railway track passing through the foot of the hill adds to the rustic feel. It also offers other activities such as rappelling and rock climbing. At a towering height of 4,430ft, the hill unfolds a visual treat once you reach the top – a carpet of green and the sparkle of a lake, as you watch out from the Makalidurga Fort. This site is also one of few night trek destinations that makes for a quick weekend getaway from the city. You can either drive down in your own vehicle or choose to take the train to the Makalidurga station and begin your trek from there.

Approx. distance from Luru – 100 mins/60 km

Level – Easy to moderate

Nandi Hills

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Credit: Clement Francis

Home to Tipu Sultan’s Summer Palace, these are the famous Hills of Bangalore that needs no introduction. Gather your posse and mark this one on your calendar for a day well spent. Open from 6:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. every day, we suggest you get in at day break to avoid the bottleneck at the forest department check post. You can park your car or bike at the designated parking lot and choose to explore one out of the two trails (north & south). Alternatively, we recommend getting up on your good old bicycle to navigate the hills. Budget friendly accommodation is also available for an overnight stay, at: nandihillsreservations.in. Standing 4851 ft high, don’t forget to carry your woolens!

Approx. distance from Luru– 120 mins/62 km

Level – Easy to moderate

Shivaganga

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Besides being a worthwhile destination for trekkers to survey, the Shivaganga Hill also offer a lesson on religious history. Be sure to spot the angle from which the hills outline the form of the Shiva Linga. As you make your way up the 4,488 ft high hill, there are several small temples that lead to the Shiva Temple at the top which is located in a cave. The last part of the climb may test your fitness levels a little but don’t give up. Be sure you do not carry many things or bags as monkey trouble is something you do not want to face! Instead, carry your money in a small pouch and purchase refreshments from the many sellers throughout the climb.

Approx. distance from Luru – 80 mins/54 km

Level – Moderate

Savandurga

Savandurga

Known to be the largest monolith in Asia, this one is a must-try for any trekking enthusiast. Consisting of two smaller hills, Billigudda and Karigudda, it rises to a height of 3937 ft at its peak, with its gentle slopes allowing for a comfortable climb even for novice trekkers. Take cover in the cool shelters of the ruins of a majestic fortress that was built by Kempe Gowda II and once a citadel to the legendary Tipu Sultan. The gradient offers spaces to set-up your camp so carry your tent if you would like to stay a little longer and enjoy a sunrise or sunset.

Approx. distance from Luru – 90 mins/60 km

Level – Easy to moderate

 

Anthargange

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Part of the Shathashrunga Mountain Range, Anthargange has something of interest for everyone. Check out the caves carved out of volcanic rocks, pay a visit to the temple, listen to the soothing sound of the perennial spring that flows out through a fissure or just take in the varied landscape. Night treks at this range are extremely popular as exploring the caves in the mysterious moonlight adds to the thrill of the trek.

Approx. distance from Luru – 100 mins/70 km

Level – Easy

Karighatta

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Jpeg

A perfect beginners’ trek, the Mekedatu, Karighatta trail takes you along the banks of the river Cauvery rising to a height of 2697 ft above sea level. Once you ascend to the peak, it gives you a fabulous view of the surrounding areas for miles, including Mysore and Srirangapatna. Also keep an eye out to spot the confluence of the Cauvery and Lokpavani rivers. The hill can also be climbed using the 450 stone steps that have been carved out as a pathway to the temple at the hill top.

Approx. distance from Luru – 120 mins/98 km

Level – Easy

6 Local Start-Up Apps That Are Making Bangalore Proud

Start-up seems to be the trending buzzword with Luru (being termed as the start-up capital of the country and all), here’s a look at the some of the city’s most promising offers that have already kinda made their mark:

unnamed-2Entree

Ordering-in has become synonymous with substandard food and shabby service. This premium food delivery app is determined to change that. It offers diners top-notch service, a curated selection of Bangalore’s best eateries to choose from (Sunny’s, Sancho’s Shiro, Toscano), and wait for it… the ability to order from multiple restaurants in a single delivery (No more “I want sushi. But I want butter chicken!” fights).

Website: Click here.
iOS: Download here.
Android: Download here.

unnamed-2Dunzo

Haven’t we all wished for a 36 hour clock to be able to finish those pesky and time consuming chores that we just have to get done? Dunzo presents the next best thing by creating an app that literally serves as your personal assistant. From picking up and dropping stuff off to fixing zippers and completing trivial paperwork, consider it dunzo-ed!

Website: Click here.
iOS: Download here.
Android: Download here.

unnamed-3Wheel Street

Bikes, galore! Whether you want to rent an Activa or a Dio while you’re in town for the weekend or want to get a bit adventurous with a KTM or a Hyosung, this is your solution. Just punch in the pick-up and drop-off dates and time to be shown an array of budget friendly options. With no restrictions on kilometers and complementary helmet and tax & insurance included for your safety, rides start with as little as Rs. 10/hr.

Website: Click here.
Android: Download here.

unnamed-5Scripbox

Want to get rich but don’t know how to navigate the daunting universe of investment funds? Scripbox is your personal online financial advisor that explores the market for the best investments and even does the math for you. With investment options starting at just Rs. 1000, they chart out your road map to achieving long-term financial goals.

Website: Click here.
iOS: Download here.
Android: Download here.

unnamed-4Highway Delite

Who doesn’t love road trips?! Luru is as famous for its weekend getaways and here to make our highway escapades all the more delightful is Highway Delite – your go-to almanac for anything that you may need while you’re on the road. Verified and reviewed lists of restaurants, hygienic washrooms, emergency numbers, medical aid and value-for-money bed & breakfasts are just some of the details available at your fingertips.

Website: Click here.
Android: Download here.

thrillophilia-logoThrillophillia

This one is for all the adventure junkies, always on the look-out for their next dose of adrenaline! With over 10,000 activities across 150 + destinations with some affordable price points, this Luru start-up is out to redefine the way we spend our weekends. Dreamed of a quaint getaway amidst tranquil coffee plantations in Coorg or a volcano trek in Indonesia? Thrillophillia has a package that fits your bill.

Website: Click here.
iOS & Android: Download here.

A Weekend Getaway: Villa Urvinkhan, Chikmagalur

Villa Urvinkhan, located in the Western Ghats of Chikmagalur, is where luxury meets the warmth of a home. The name Urvinkhan literally translates to “Dense Forest” as coffee plantations and lush greenery surround it.

It’s the perfect destination for whoever wants to take a break from the city life, and is seeking some fresh air, nature, hikes, or just a relaxed day by the homestay’s infinity pool. Yes, you read it correctly – an infinity pool in the middle of a plantation!

UrvinkhanYou will experience a blend of old world charm and modernity, as the amenities are all contemporary, especially the luxurious bathrooms, which have an open bath. There’s even a jacuzzi in the bathrooms! The rooms, however, take you way back with their four-poster beds, fireplaces, and wooden flooring.

Food wise, Villa Urvinkhan serves South Indian and continental breakfast and authentic Malnad cuisine (cuisine of Karnataka) for lunch and dinner. (We suggest you prepare for some indulgence.) Villa Urvinkhan also produces gourmet Arabica coffee and allows you to experience the plantation life. So if you’re a coffee person, you are going to be in heaven!

vill3If you don’t want to laze or casually stroll around the property, the homestay organises various activities such as trekking, fishing, night walks, coffee plantation tours, cycling, hiking, and ATV trails. Or are you interested in wildlife? You might spot some Indian gaur, deer, peacocks, wild-boars, and plenty of different species of birds.

Whatever the purpose of your visit, Villa Urvinkhan is a crowd favourite!

Get in touch –

Where: Chikmagalur, Karnataka
Visit their website here
Contact them on +91 9886059876  or +91 9880841553

Image courtesy – Villa Urvinkhan

A trip down Bangalore’s memory lane with cartoonist, Paul Fernandes

Bangalore’s very own cartoonist and illustrator, Paul Fernandes, has created works of art that are true to what Bangalore used to be and the old Bangalorean vibe.

Wondering what we’re talking about?

Paul Fernandes has created a series of watercolour cartoons that portray Bangalore from the 60’s and 70’s. The series includes Bangalore’s famous landmarks that are till date famous, favourites, and popular.

His inspiration comes from his childhood as he states,” Our old house was torn down to build a set of apartments for me and my nine siblings. It was a huge house, with beautiful gardens and 40 fruit trees. When it all came tumbling down, it compelled me to look at the changing city. And I started drawing places that I remembered fondly while I was growing up.”

So let’s take a look at Bangalore from Paul Fernandes’ eyes.

Koshy’s

PaulKoshys
The Only Place

PaulOnlyPlace

Bangalore ClubPaulBloreCLub

Commercial StreetPaulCommStM.G RoadPaulMGrOAD

You could visit Paul Fernandes’ gallery called Apaulogy near Richard’s Park for some colour, creativity, and of course, plenty more illustrations of old Bangalore.

There’s a new app in town, and it’s perfect if you’re a Luru Localite

The Brains Behind This

So what’s epic is, the idea of Localite was born between 4 Bangalorean friends. We absolutely love that. Karun, who is leading this initiative has extensive experience in international retail brands. Dev, is a tech mastermind, and has worked with Conde Nast. Sandeep brings the international work exposure from AOL & Rohan, a Luru-based architect who is epic with stores and retail design. What’s the one thing that ties them all together? They’re offline shopper extraordinares. Ha.

The Eureka Moment

Karun, the one with insane amounts of in-store experience with customers realised a lot of them wanted to sit at home and ask for product pictures to be sent to them via Whatsapp as that was the most convenient way. (Ummm , we’re definitely guilty of that too). You know, the asking for more products and price ranges so you can choose if the store has what you need (and if it was worth the effort and trip really).  Hence, boom. Let’s introduce Bangalore to an app that does exactly that for you. Your personal window shopper if you will. A nifty catalogue of all things local, right in your palm!

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The Low-Down

Localite is a two sided app. On one hand allowing offline retailers a chance to market their stores and products on a mobile platform (yeaaaah) and on the other hand for users like us, it’s just great to know at the click of a few buttons, the stores and all its products that are nearby. The beauty of Localite is that it’s location specific and extremely intelligent in recommending products to consumers based on popularity, freshness of product, proximity to user etc. etc. etc. Sounds too good to be true.

What’s Next?

So Localite has plans to integrate various features to make the app more interactive and beneficial for users and retailers alike – whether you’re a store owner, or a compulsive shopper it makes all of us happy!

What We Heart

They’re rooting for the local underdogs! They’re going to have this dedicated section for local retailers (Woot represent!) who are city specific. We love that the many home grown retailers who are facing stiff competition to the major Indian and Global brands have this to equal the playing field with the other biggies.

Get On It – NOW!

For those you who are keen explore the app and get more deets, here you go:

Download (Android)
Download (iOS)

View their website here or follow them on FB here and Instagram here.

For retailers who are interested to get listed, there is a section on the website which enables them to get in touch with the team to set up their store on Localite. Or, let’s make life easier for you, just click here already xx

 

IHB Design Guide – The State Central Library

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The transition is almost therapeutic as you step off MG road, leaving behind a bustling metropolitan, into the verdant precincts of the Cubbon Park, strolling down paved pathways looking for a century old rotund red building christened the Sehsadri Iyer Memorial Hall or the State Central Library. It must have been deliberate to have placed a library in the heart of the city’s most prominent lung space where the visitor is eased into a mood for solitary rumination as he progresses from the madding crowd at the gates, past modest clusters of friends, couples and dog walkers as the crowd dwindles and you find yourself in a paradox of a public space where human interaction seldom reaches beyond thought and book.

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The Building, constructed in 1915 by the Mysore State PWD under the patronage of the Viceroy Lord Nathaniel Curzon follows a European style characteristic of many institutional buildings built during the British Raj. The design of the red brick structure is straight forward and symmetric with two entrance porches on stone columns flanking a two-tiered horse shoe shaped central hall. The inner tier houses the library while the administrative section is spaced in between both tiers.

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The “apse” or the rounded end of the building gracefully fans out an array of gorgeous arched windows. The teak wood frames painted dark green (a favourite colour to finish teak in back in the day) brilliantly compliment the striking red walls. These windows are the most ornamental feature, framed within tall horse shoe arches (1). Neat lines trace the arch intercepted only by column capitals (2) at the spring line (3) (the point where the curve of the arch rises from the support) with a prominent keystone (4) at the apex. The window within is dissected by a balustrade (5) running just below the spring line supported by ornamental brackets (6) that give the lower window a unique trapezoidal top (7).

PC: Islamic Voice

PC: Islamic voice

The building stands on columns (8) following the “Tuscan order” which, for the benefit of the layman, is the most solid and least ornate of the five classical column orders. The style was favoured by the British PWD as they laid down guidelines to simplify the construction of colonial public buildings by doing away with superfluous ornamentation while preserving the scale and dignity of architectural treatment.

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PC: Bibliotheca Sanctus

The Interior of the central hall reveals an uninterrupted double height space capped with a barrel vaulted roof. (Truly vintage) Industrial dome shaped lamps drop down low from the ceiling, but the main source of light is a series of clerestory windows (9) arranged atop the inner tier, streaming in soft golden rays of natural daylight. The style of the Tuscan order (10) continues with plain arches (11), wrought iron balusters (12) and simple cornice bands (13) – a language reflected again in the design of the wooden shelves (14).

The shelving system follows the horse shoe profile in 3 concentric layers which allows for continuous lines of sight across the space. A very efficient planning feature especially considering the place is a treasure trove of over 2.5 lakh books including a Braille section! The outermost layer of shelves arranged against the wall is split into two levels, the top level supported on fluted wooden columns accessed today by modern steel and glass staircases (15). But the quaintest feature is at the level below with arched nooks (16) fitted in between bookshelves with table ledges for a more private reading experience!

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There is a very interesting play of acoustics thanks to the barrel vaulted ceiling, which is normally considered an acoustic nightmare in a public space, because they tend to undesirably focus sound waves and interrupt useful sound reflections. A space of such a scale with lime plastered walls, wooden panels and floors, is considered acoustically “wet” where sound isn’t absorbed quickly and has a long reverberation time. So, even the slightest of sounds would resonate against the grand volume before getting scattered into smaller reverberations. The beauty of such a space being used as a library, is that this type of acoustic makes a person increasingly conscious of the sounds he makes encouraging one to maintain the decorum and silence befitting a place of solitude. The result: You’re standing inside a large vaulted space with its table capacity almost full. You’re delighted to pull out a copy of “Paul McCartney: A definitive biography by Chris Welch” off the arts shelf, because, what is Bangalore if you don’t find the Beatles in every nook and cranny? As you rummage through the pages you’re suddenly aware of the spontaneous rhythm generated from the only sound you hear… the soft, calming flutter of every page that’s turning.Screen Shot 2015-11-20 at 10.57.04 PM

From Syria, With Love: Experience the Taste of Arabia

CPM_2302Admit it, there’s always been a certain fascination with Arabian things. Maybe it’s the grandeur, maybe it’s Disney’s portrayal of Aladdin, but mostly it’s the beautiful homely nostalgia we experience with the not-so-different smells from their kitchen. They know how to cook, and they DEFINITELY know how to feed. Chef Rami from the Ritz at Jumeirah, Dubai is no exception to this stereotype. He fed us with such affection and sincerity like our well-being and health solely depended on his cooking. To us Bangaloreans, that felt like home.

It’s all about that Hummus & Fattoush

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We were served an array of Mezze and were definitely not disappointed! The pita bread (choice of white/wheat), black & green olives with beautiful feta cheese and the refreshing tabouleh left our palates tingling. The winner who took it all though was the beautifully prepared fattoush with the nicest, meltiest fried pita croutons that we’ve laid our taste buds on! Do not skip. We repeat, do NOT skip the mezze.

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Special shout out to the Zaalouk (Smoked eggplant with garlic with a yum tinge of chilli paste and a dash of cumin) and the hummous (no, honestly one of the best ones we’ve had), if you’re a beetroot fan, of course the beetroot hummous shouldn’t be ignored.

The Big Ones

Yes, we know mezze can be quite heavy, so we’re here to tell you to go easy on them! Trust us, you don’t want to miss the mains. Just when you think you know middle-eastern food, Ritz throws you a curveball.

On our mains we first sampled the Arabic Mixed Grills – kofte, skewers, kebabs, chops.. the works! All of them were absolutely finger lickin’ and it’s safe to say you should save enough space to be able to have one of each.

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For all you veggie foodies out there don’t stop reading yet, they have a huge array of veg. dishes that won’t leave you hungry! The lentil soup, the spicy potatoes, the eggplant moussaka, the green beans with coriander, the afore-mentioned zaalouk (which is pretty much an Arabic version of baingan ka bharta) and lots and lots more!

That’s not all, we were served an amazing variety of non-veg mains to eat with the absolutely delish mudardara (long grain perfectly cooked rice mixed with equally well cooked vermicelli). The chicken with potatoes were brill, but we couldn’t get enough of the okra and lamb, which were packed with a surprise spice from cinnamon. It’s truly a combo we’ve never tried and now we can’t get enough.

For your sweet tooth…

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Apart from the normal spread that the Market offers, their Arabic special available was the Oum Ali. This was the most perfectly singed, caramelised and doused bread pudding we’ve experienced in quite a long time. What sets it apart is, that they use croissants (not any ol’ bread) to make it! This was the perfect ending to a colourful and meat-heavy spread! Love love love. xx

What we experienced was the Syrian inspired buffet, but they have a Moroccan, Persian and Lebanese one too. So while calling them to reserve, find out.. or better yet, pop in and be surprised! If this spread has anything to go by, we can safely say none of the cuisines will leave you disappointed. A little birdie told us they were rolling out a shwarma station soon.. you lucky so and so.

Details

‘Taste of Arabia’ runs till 9th October, 2015 at The Market, Ritz Carlton.
For reservations, please contact +91 80 4914 8000.

The Market - The Ritz-Carlton, Bangalore Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

I Heart BLR’s Essential Checklist for sleeping Under The Stars!

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We’ve compiled a checklist for all you beautiful people who are helping out and have signed up for Under The Stars 2015. We don’t want our do-gooders to arrive at Indiranagar Club unequipped and having to deal with any sort of last minute crisis (Read OMG, I forgot my pillow. Damn my arm’s going to wake up numb now). So here are all the necessities:

  • A chatai or mat to keep your derrier in check
  • Sleeping bag for you fancy campers or a cushy warm blanket for the newbies
  • Pillow (optional), but like we said, we don’t want you waking up all cranky!
  • Warm clothing just to be safe and comfy
  • Raincoat (it’s Bangalore, you never know!)
  • Sensible footwear (yes, we understand heels aren’t NOT sensible, but hey, please chappal or flat shoe this one?)
  • Mosquito repellent because let’s not rough it out too much?
  • Sufficient moolah for all the yummy food and drink stalls (no one’s gonna lend you anything once they see what’s selling!)
  • Games – could be cool app ones on your phone, or maybe a good ol’ box of Taboo 🙂

Most importantly, please bring your sense of adventure because honestly, then forgetting some of the above won’t matter 🙂

Please buy your passes, if you haven’t already. Just click here and BOOM! Thank you for helping us help the needy xx

Let’s uberPOOL: SF > NY > LA.. next stop BLR!

Due to the recent carpooling initiative by the Bangalore Traffic Police to increase the utilisation of cars on the road, Uber has officially come forward and announced their newest initiative uberPOOL.

We’re so proud they’re launching soon in our very own Luru (after San Francisco, New York, LA and Austin). You will now be able to share a ride—and split the cost—with another person who happens to be requesting a ride along a similar route in your city! How epic is that?

How a sample trip with UBERPool will look like

How does UBERPool work?

  1. REQUEST  – Enter your destination in the app.
  2. GET MATCHED UP – During your trip, you can be matched with another rider traveling along a similar route.
  3. SHARE AND SPLIT – Riding solo? Travel with a co-rider and save. Two or more people? Request a different Uber option please.
  4. BE ON TIME – The first rider may already be in the car, so be ready to hop in when your Uber arrives. You’ll be dropped off in the most efficient order. 

We’re so happy with the news as this just takes Bangaloe one step further to being what it really is – a city of the future, just greener, cleaner and more eco-friendly than ever before!

A Weekend Getaway – The Bison Resort

Long weekend or not, sometimes you just need to get away from the city life. If you’re looking for some peace and quiet, or excitement, or both – The Bison Resort needs to be on your to-do list. Located on the Kabini River backwaters, this luxurious wildlife resort gives you the best of comfort, service, and adventure. IMG_0778_2Accommodation:

The “rooms” are inspired by African style tents where you can pick between tents, machans, or the suite cottage. They all have a breathtaking view of the river and forest, while giving you the perfect blend of rustic nature and luxury.Bison2Bison1IMG_0777Things to do:

Enjoy a dip in the pool, take advantage of their library, or if you want to relax and simply take in your surroundings, head over to the Observation Deck for a stunning view. For other Common Activities, the resort offers fishing, coracle rides, and treks.

IMG_0774If you really want to take advantage of the location, which you should, we recommend their Star Activities. These include Bush Dinners – a dinner on the banks of the backwater, Backwater Breakfast – a South Indian meal by the backwater, drinks by a crackling campfire, camping if you want to step out of your luxurious tents, and of course, safaris. bison4Speaking of safaris, if you’re lucky, you’ll spot a tiger.11882397_861282933965926_6894538361201098677_oOr maybe even this big guy below!10446222_757378851023002_6286453607192936101_oApart from the big cats, there are plenty of birds, deers, elephants, and more that will leave you in awe of the wilderness.

So as you can see, it’s impossible not to visit The Bison thanks to everything it has to offer. For details on how to get there and more, visit their website here.

Image courtesy – The Bison, Shaaz Jung Photography, and Nikita Mankani

Relax and Rejuvenate – Luru’s top spas that pamper you silly!

You don’t need an excuse to get pampered; everybody needs to sit back and relax every now and then. Be it hump day or a Sunday, here are the 3 spas you have to check out!

They all offer a wide range of services and treatments, but we are here to tell you what you should go for. Other details can be found on respective websites.

The Palms Spa

This luxurious spa has more than just the regular massages and body polishes, which is why it’s a favourite for a spa day.

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Our recommendation: The Matrix Rhythm Therapy, which has been introduced for the first time by the spa itself thanks to Dr. Ulrich Randoll. He discovered how to regenerate cells through mechanical pulsations, which heals and restores muscle and tissue tone. It works best for – joint pains, mobility increase in limbs, migraines, and neck pain (coupled with a steamed herbal compress and massages).

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Details:

Website: Click Here
Facebook: Click Here
Location: 10 Nandidurga Road
Ph: 080 41170555

Angsana Oasis Spa

This spa has been around for a while, accompanied with a resort in one of their locations. Their treatments extend to being specific, as they have packages for “Him” and “Her”.

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Our recommendation: Spend the weekend at the resort (image above) because apart from spa treatments, you can enjoy a swim, play some tennis or squash, AND your kids can be entertained with skateboarding and video games.

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Details:

Website: Click Here
Facebook: Click Here
Location: Doddaballapur, UB City, Prestige Ozone
Ph: 080 28468892

5th Element Spa

The cool thing about this spa is that it concentrates only on the Thai way of treatments. Their menu includes the Thai basics, as they want you to truly get the whole exclusive experience.

Details:

Website: Click Here
Facebook: Click Here
Location: Domlur, Rest House Crescent Road, and Race Course Road
Contact: 080 41268111/080 40917771/+91 80 41311140

The Cubbon 5 – Introducing the statues of Bangalore’s most precious park

If you’re Bangalorean, you’ve definitely walked or driven past the stone inhabitants of Cubbon Park. You’ve been living with them in the city for years, but do you know all of them? Don’t worry, with mpmurthy’s help and epic photography, we’ve rounded up all the statues that glare down on us while we hustle and bustle!

Statue #1 – The Empress of India

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Who: Queen Victoria (Alexandrina Victoria; 24 May 1819 – 22 January 1901)
When: George Frederick Ernest Albert, Prince of Wales & Duke of Cornwall & York unveiled this statue on 5th February 1906.
Where: In a corner of the park near Mahatma Gandhi Circle.

Statue #2 – King of the United Kingdom

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Who: King Edward VII (Albert Edward; 9 November 1841 – 6 May 1910) was King of the United Kingdom and the British Dominions and Emperor of India from 22 January1901 until his death in 1910.
When: Installed 1919
Where: At the North-Western point of the Queen’s park.

Statue #3 – The Namesake

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Who: Lieutenant-General Sir Mark Cubbon KCB (23 August 1775 – 23 April 1861) was a British army officer with the East India Company who became the British Commissioner of Mysore state in 1834.
When: The statue was unveiled in March 1866 by Lewin Bowring.
Where: In front of Karnataka High Court.

Statue #4 – The Maker of Modern Bangalore

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Who: Sir K. Seshadri Iyer KCIE (b.1845 – d.September 13, 1901), or Sheshadri Aiyar was an advocate who was also the second Dewan of Mysore state since the reinstation of the Wodeyar family on its throne in 1881 and was the longest serving Dewan of the princely state as well.
When: Unveiled by (then) Viceroy and Governor General, Lord Charles Baron Hardinge of Penshurst on the November 20, 1913.
Where: The staue is situated in front of the State Central Library (also called Cubbon Library)

Statue #5 – Maharaja of Mysore

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Image Courtesy: Darshik

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Who: Chama Raja Wadiyar X  (also known as Chama Rajendra Wadiyar X) was the ruling Maharaja of Mysore between 1881 and 1894. Chamaraja Wadiyar was a great patron of arts and music and a violin virtuoso himself.
When: Installed in 1927.
Where: On the way to Lavelle Road. In the central portion of the park near the tennis pavillion with a floral display and fountain in the front.

#LuruLists: Bangalore’s 10 Most Stunning Structures!

1. Indian Institute of Management – Designed by the architectural genius himself B.V. Doshi, this iconic structure is almost a pilgrimage to present/aspiring students alike.

This design follows the ‘no divides, no doors’ policy and hence, conserves energy – human and mechanical, optimises technology and adopts innovative ways of building by using alternative materials. The best part about this campus, is how the landscaping, inspired by the courtyards and gardens of Fatehpur Sikri, effortlessly merges with all the concrete as though they were meant to be.

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2. Sri Sai Spiritual Centre – This aesthetically pleasing temple designed by acclaimed Architect Sanjay Mohe of Mindspace Architects makes the visitor go through a process of experiencing all their five senses of smell, touch, sound, vision and taste.

It makes you experience a smooth transition from outside to inside, light to dark, warm to cold, porous to dense, from the noise of traffic to the calm inside all accentuated by the sound of bells and fragrance of flowers.

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3. National Gallery of Modern Art (NGMA) – This beautiful gallery functioning in the all-white Manikyavelu mansion on Palace Road houses approximately 500 exhibits that are spread across a corridor, tiny rooms and large spacious halls spanning within two floors. The lovely lawns and water features provide the art inside, stunning surroundings.

The art, classified according to different time periods, art schools and by artists – showcases artists such as Raja Ravi VermaJamini RoyAmrita Sher-Gil, the Tagore brothers, Rabindranath Tagore and a large number of contemporary artists as well.

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4. World Trade Center – One look at the picture, and you know why this Brigade Group building features on our list.

In addition to its snazzy all-glass facade and funky curve, what adds to the cool quotient is the surrounding landscaping & the super awesome bars, restaurants, lounges and shopping in the vicinity.

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5. Oracle Financial Services Software – Previously known as i-Flex Park, this concrete beauty designed by DSP Design Associates pvt ltd., is one of the only buildings in India to have unique cantilever construction plus several energy saving measures including special provisions for natural light. Basically, no need for artificial lighting! Pretty cool we think!

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6. Vidhana Soudha – The seat of Karnataka legislature, this building is the largest legislative building in India. It follows a Neo-Dravidian style and was conceptualised under Kengal Hanumanthaiah our second Chief Minister.

With it’s massive central dome crowned by the likeness of the Indian emblem, this structure stands tall with a bold inscription at the entrance telling every passer by that ‘Government’s Work is God’s Work.’

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7. Vivanta by Taj, Whitefield – Designed by WOW Architects & Warner Wong Design, this contemporary building screams out chic in bursts of earthy colours. Its ultra-modern glass exterior with multi-level landscaping makes this a must-visit hotel for the design passionate.

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8. Maitreya-Buddha Pyramid – The world’s first & largest pyramid solely built for meditation can accommodate 5000 people and is fitted inside with over 600 natural Himalayan crystals to amplify the Pyramid energy. It’s geometric design collects, radiates, and stores cosmic energy and hence helps reduce stress levels and tension in the physical body!

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9.Karnataka High Court – This Graeco-Roman building is hard to miss amidst the beautiful Cubbon Park because of it’s eye-catching red and it’s infinite Ionic columns.

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10. The Bangalore Palace – The Maharaja of Mysore’s family home, this Gothic structure with it’s signature creepers half-way up stands the test of time. It’s equally palatial grounds have seen the likes of Elton JohnDeep PurpleThe Rolling StonesGuns N’ RosesMetallicaLudacris & Flo Rida to name a few.

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