Hyderabad: Hip Hyderabad

May 1, 2012
2012 / May 2012

During a madcap evening in one of Hyderabad’s trendiest neighborhoods, hipsters rub shoulders to the tunes of Tollywood — the moniker for the local burgeoning Telugu film industry. Banjara Hills, one of the city’s bustling enclaves, is lined with nightclubs and pubs serving popular Kingfisher beer.

The new Taj Falaknuma Palace, the former residence of the nizam of Hyderabad, is sprawling with hints of a princely India. The property completed a 10-year renovation, and jetsetters now glide along its marble floors toward the Hookah Lounge.

Meanwhile, at the recently opened Park Hotel Somajiguda, glamorati sip on cocktails at this architectural masterpiece by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, and talk turns to nearby Hussain Sagar Lake. There, audiences queue for late-night shows at the Prasads IMAX, whose five screens often showcase the latest Hollywood flicks.

Insiders call Hyderabad the most happening place in southern India. It’s amazing fodder, but India’s fourthlargest city and capital of the state of Andhra Pradesh is poised for other-worldliness as the planet sets its sights on a new and improved city. Often dubbed the “City of Pearls,” this ancient city 440 miles southeast of Mumbai is no stranger to good fortune. Many of its historic landmarks tout a dynastic grandeur.

Nighttime is the time to check out Charminar, the city’s beloved landmark akin to New York City’s Statue of Liberty or Paris’ Eiffel Tower. Shutterbugs snap pictures of the four-minaret structure that originally stood in the city center. It’s a favorite lovers’ hangout and a preferred spot among the Hyderabadis, who welcome visitors to this breathtaking site.

Built in 1591, markets bustle around Charminar, with vendors of every stripe vying for the attention of passersby. Be sure to visit Lad Bazar, considered the place for shopping and as old as Hyderabad itself. Expect plenty of color, charm and stunning displays of jewels, bangles and pearls.

As the sun sets, a riveting sound and light show illuminates the historic Golconda Fort with a memorable nightly performance.

With the likes of Google, Facebook, Amazon, Microsoft and other high-tech giants setting up shop amid the lush backdrop, Western influences have meshed in this mosaic of cultures, of which Hindu and Muslim are  predominant. Witness the profusion of U.S. bars and luxe hotels, all of which bow to culinary bastions and sleek cafés. By the posh GVK One Mall in Banjara Hills, the night begins at the Hard Rock Café, where local bands regularly compete for their chance to perform at the upcoming Hard Rock Calling London later this summer.

At Ramoji Film City, a world of fantasy opens as the globe’s largest film studio complex regularly ushers in the curious to watch film shoots and tours. For a bird’s-eye view, the Ramoji Tower is the ticket.

Late-night moviegoers find plenty on offer at multiplexes throughout the city; Hyderabad’s main commercial center, Chikkadpally, is home to 20 cinemas. Or head to Kompally, one of Hyderabad’s fastest-growing suburbs, to take in a show at the four-screen multiplex known as Cine Planet.

Hyderabad’s night show — whether at ancient landmarks or new cinemas and trendy clubs — truly entertains.

Weblinks

Andhra Pradesh Tourism

India Ministry of Tourism

Park Hotel Somajiguda

Prasads IMAX

Ramoji Film City

Taj Falaknuma Palace

Introducing

FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.

Daily
Oct 14, 2019

A New Generation of Sea Life Takes Up Residence in Las Vegas

The Mirage in Las Vegas welcomed a new addition to its Secret Garden and Dolphin Habitat. A baby bottlenose dolphin, born Aug. 16, represents the fourth generation of dolphins living in the habitat.

To New Heights

United Airlines announces a number of new routes.

Feature
Oct 13, 2019

How to Prevent Your Miles and Points from Expiring

Keeping up with expiration dates for various miles and points programs is not typically something high on anyone’s to-do list. Here are a few ways to keep track of your points across programs and get ahead of any impending expiration dates.

Feature
Oct 13, 2019

Cathay Pacific Drops Dublin–Hong Kong Route

Hong Kong’s Cathay Pacific is suspending its Dublin (DUB) route this November. The move means Ireland will lose all direct links to Asia, as Hainan Airlines canceled flights to Beijing (PEK) and Shenzen (SZX).

TAP Air Portugal Adds 15 Flights Each Week From U.S., Canada

TAP Air Portugal is adding 15 new weekly flights from the United States and Canada by summer 2020,  a new record for the carrier of 71 weekly flights between North America and Portugal.

News
Oct 13, 2019

United Unveils New Livery

United unveiled a unique new livery at its Newark (EWR) hub last month. A Boeing 757 aircraft features livery designed by a New Jersey artist and the design prominently focuses on imagery from both New York City and New Jersey. The artist, Corinne Antonelli, won United’s Her Art Here contest, a competition that invited women around the country to submit their livery designs.

Feature
Oct 11, 2019

New Baggage Rules for Virgin Australia

Travelers flying with Virgin Australia will soon get an extra baggage option, but there’s one catch: The owner of the extra bag must be under 23 months old.

The Island of the Knights

Welcome to Rhodes, a medieval treasure beautifully preserved throughout the centuries. Rhodes is the capital of the Dodecanese, an island ideal not only for those who want to relax, but also for those looking for an action-packed holiday! With its bright green hills, rich green valleys and uninterrupted line of golden beaches, Rhodes is truly a blessed place. “The sun island” has more sunshiny days and milder temperatures throughout the year than any other location in Greece. It is, after all, one of the country’s easternmost places and among the first to welcome summer on its impressive beaches. Add in the excellent facilities for tourism, the island’s special blend of cosmopolitan and traditional, and numerous cultural and archaeological sites, the most important being the Medieval (Old) Town, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and you’ve got the perfect holiday destination. While on Rhodes, don’t miss a daytrip to nearby Sými. An island of sponge divers and seamen, Sými used to have 30,000 inhabitants before the Second World War and was the richest island in the Dodecanese, despite its small size. Today, Sými attracts many visitors thanks to its beautifully preserved Neo-Classical buildings and the famous Archangel Michael monastery at Panormitis.

Feature
Oct 11, 2019

Ethiopian Airlines Adds WiFi to A350 Planes

Ethiopian Airlines helps passengers stay connected thanks to new in-flight WiFi service available across most of its Airbus A350 fleet.