Cool pools

Fancy a romantic dinner in a restaurant overlooking a pool? Here are the best poolside restaurants and cafés in India. Take your pick.

     Print Edition: June 29, 2008


Where: The Park, 17 Park Street, Kolkata.
Contact: (033) 22499000
Meal for two: Rs 2,500-plus taxes
Must try: Fatoush Salad, Ricotta Ravioli with Porcini Mushroom Sauce, Chicken with Black Pepper, Malabar Parotto.
Open: 24x7 (deck chairs and pool-side loungers service only for hotel guests)

The chill factor

The outdoor space by the poolside at The Park is a perfect chill zone as dusk sets in. Just sit back and relax on the wooden loungers or luxurious beds, which are placed around the pool, and capture the changing colours of the city sky as the underwater lighting punctuates the night with its own magic and the resident DJ helps you to unwind after a stressful day.

There are three Champagne Pavilions. Also on offer are a long list of cocktails (Aqua-fizz, Vodka Sangria, Madonna, Frozen Aquarita, Champagne Sangria, to name a few) and classic and contemporary world wines. Next to the pool is an inviting hot tub—if you want a relaxing dip. The open sundeck, on the other end, transforms into a perfect space for relaxed interactions at night. You can lounge around with a drink here, or enjoy a lovely meal. Just check out their Fatoush Salad, Spinach Pinenut and Ricotta Ravioli with Porcini Mushroom sauce, Occidental veg and non-veg platter, Chicken with Black Pepper, Coriander and Madras Onion, Malabar Parotto.

Ritwik Mukherjee


Where: Swami Vivekananda Road, Ulsoor, Bangalore
Contact: (080) 25558888
Must try: Steamed Prawns with Feta Cheese, Pan-fried Himalayan Trout, Ginger and Chocolate cheese cake
Meal for two: Lunch, Rs 1,300 Sunday brunch, Rs 5,500
Open: 6 a.m. to 2 a.m. (next day)

The chill factor

Besides being Bangalore’s latest name in the five-star hotel market, Ista, from the same group that started Ananda Spa in the Himalayas, is attracting droves of visitors to chill out at its pool-side. While a swim in the temperature-controlled pool is restricted to hotel guests, other visitors seem to willingly shell out in excess of Rs 2,000 to relax by the poolside. The attraction: an azure blue pool, located on the fourth floor of the property, with an outdoor jacuzzi, surprisingly located amidst lush landscaped surroundings.

Besides its relaxed atmosphere, Ista has located its Lido restaurant (named after the theatre once located in its premises), which offers eastern and western cuisine, an express lunch on weekdays and a leisurely Sunday brunch too. The Sunday brunch is a huge draw with unlimited vodka cocktails, beer, sparkling wine, champagne and live entertainment, with a live pasta counter, fresh salads, soups, starters and exclusive signature desserts like the Mango Parfait, Banana Palette and Duo Chocolate Slice.

Rahul Sachitanand

Kafe Fontana

Where: Taj Palace Hotel, Dhaula Kuan, New Delhi
Contact: (011) 2611 0202
Meal for two: Rs 1,200 (for the pool-side menu)
Must try: Shawarma and Tex Mex food.
Open: 24x7

The chill factor

The open-air section of Kafe Fontana is where you should be headed to beat the sweltering Delhi summer. “Out in the open”, as the name suggests, the restaurant overlooks the pool and even has a mini golf course by the side, where you could tee off between drinks. The 24-hour coffee shop has a refreshing menu that’s distinctly Mediterranean, and you can take your pick from the pool-side menu, or order the quintessential Fontana fare, which is served inside. Sit back and enjoy as your pals take a dip, while sampling Mediterranean delights like Falafel in Pita Bread or a slice of Coffee Toffee—a dessert that’s topped with caramel sauce.

Anumeha Chaturvedi

The Glasshouse

Where: Hyatt Regency, Ascot Centre, Sahar Airport Road, Andheri (E), Mumbai
Contact: (022) 66961234
Meal for two: Rs 2,000 approximately
Must try: The kebab platter
Open: 24x7

The chill factor

An informal, casual dining area overlooking the pool, The Glasshouse at The Hyatt Regency in Mumbai features delicious Italian trattoria-style cuisine along with some great kebabs and curries. The restaurant is an all-day affair and has an airy, chilled-out ambience. The offerings are prepared in an interactive show kitchen with an emphasis on fresh ingredients and healthy options. Open 24 hours, the restaurant has both an a la carte selection as well as sumptuous buffets for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Come here early for lunch or dinner if you want a table in a corner overlooking the pool, so that you can relax as you look at the calm blue waters and sip your drink or have a pasta.

Deepti Khanna Bose

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