This was my third trip to Bangalore, a city I really like visiting for more modern vibes, after all our home in Goa is in a village in a jungle. I’ve shared a little about Bangalore so here are some tips if you are coming in for the weekend and want something a little more upscale want to do a few local things.
My Little Guide to Bangalore
Bangalore (newly renamed Bangaluru) is the capital of Karnataka, a state that I love and have spent more 6 weeks in total. I have written a lot of this state and the city of Bangalore so want to link a few of those here, as in this article I am focusing more a whirlwind weekend in Bangalore, if you only have a couple days to spare.
Trying the Local South Indian food
This is something that you don’t want to miss in Bangalore. Truly, you have to make this a priority. While you can walk in any little restaurant and get similar items, there are places that are famous for the dishes of this region. I’ve written about South Indian food and why I love it so much with it’s freshness and coconut bases.
VV Puram Street
Start at VV Puram Street where you can walk down the road (it looks pedestrian but cars will go down it) and look at the food being made so you can choose what works best for you.
I snacked on quite a lot, but shared with my buddy at the table. We had these potato spirals that had some serious spice on them, some fried pao you stuff with some masala and onion (my favorite), and a few other dishes you can see below.
I really liked the akki roti which was full of dill, a flavor I really like. You’ll also find Chinese here, as you do all over India, and all the hot bhaji (fried stuff) you could want.
Mavalli Tiffin Room (MTR)
MTR is absolutely the most famous place to go for breakfast. You’ve got to get a dosa if you’ve never had one. If you order it “masala” then you’ll have a spiced aloo (potato) stuffed inside which is really tasty. It’s served with sambar and a chutney you can dip it in. Of course you can order other things here like rava Idli and what I call “Indian donuts”. You have to get the coffee though. I shared on Instagram stories how the server poured it back and forth between two cups, perfecting it.
This place is crowded even when I got there at 730 AM. Think about the traffic as well which will make you even later than you think. The wait is actually organized and you give your name to the man with the clipboard. It may look hectic, but you’ll be in and out of there in an hour.
For “moden” local food: Feast at Sheraton
So Feast if the buffet at the Sheraton, but you can also order a la carte. The chef there is famous for his modern take on South Indian food. Typically, South Indian food is eating with your hands on a banana leaf. He changes up the style and makes it more of a fine dining experience. The chicken and prawn curry goes in my top 5 curries I’ve ever had in India.
The dish above was a pan fried fish with pineapple and creamed spinach…. such an interesting combination and so delicious. You have to order it. Dessert was a coconut version of my fave, lava cake.
Take in the Nightlife
Bangalore has always been known for it’s 11 pm curfew, which was a bummer in the past. These days, that has been lifted a little bit and I’m told it’s now 2 am. I couldn’t find an article to verify this. Regardless, the 5 star hotels and clubs they own are allowed to stay open past curfew so often that’s where people head for a great night out.
High Ultra Lounge
High Ultra Lounge is the highest building in all of South India, at 30 stories in the air on top of the World Trade Center. The views are incredible. There are a few different rooms, which have different vibes. One is more family friendly for dinner, another is like a lounge for dinner, and then you have the club style room where you have private tables and dining.
With an Aussie master cocktail instructor, you get some really cool drinks here. Actually, I haven’t had such crazy drinks before. One came out with smoke sitting on ice and rose petals, another was some ball sitting in jager which was injected with vodka via a syringe, then there was a whiskey drink they poured green tea on while serving. The hooka was really cool and you can pick and change up the flavors. I’m pretty sure it was the same as they had at the Persian Terrace restaurant at the Sheraton which they called the Rolls Royce of hooke; it’s flavored with champagne.
If you’re not keen on nightlife, you can come here for brunch and views. I had dinner here and the chef, who is from Burma, made some really tasty dishes. Definitely order the chicken with the secret sauce.
Shopping in Bangalore
There are a lot of malls in Bangalore like UB (the fanciest) and Phoenix. Because I stayed in the Brigade Gateway, I checked out the mall there which was Orion.
If you’re like me and live in India, this area is great to stay because the mall is on one side of the pond, the High Ultra Lounge is in this area, and because there is a 5 star hotel, school, and hospital, security is really good here so you’ll feel safe walking around within the Bridage Gateway. The Orion mall had all the shops I wanted to see (there aren’t many in India): Zara, Forever 21, Mango, Aldo, Sephora, Starbucks, and don’t judge but Krispy Kreme. I didn’t buy anything though since I just came from the US and did my shopping there.
If you want local things to buy you can go to MG road as well for more shopping. The city is full of places to pop in to buy anything you want.
In India, I get massages weekly. I have a masseuse who comes to my house. I’d been out of India for about 7 weeks and was dying for a massage! I think I’ve become addicted. I did the Shine massage at the Sheraton which was 90 minutes and there was jacuzzi time at the end (I didn’t have time to enjoy it though). The massage was perfect, a mix of Balinese and Swedish.. a little deep tissue too. I almost fell asleep.
If you’re here just the weekend chances are you won’t have a lot of time for that, but it’s okay because Bangalore isn’t really known for this. When you are at MTR getting your dosa in the morning, you can go to Tipu Sultan’s Summer Palace & Fort. Because of traffic, I recommend that you stay on this side of town for the day and go to VV Puram street for an early dinner since it’s just 15 minutes max from MTR. Where I recommend staying, the Brigade Gateway, is on the other side of town.
You might want to also visit the Nandi Temple, Lal Bagh (gardens), and look at the ISKCON temple (Hare Krishna temple you cannot enter or take photos). You can actually see great views of this temple from High Ultra Lounge.
Packing for Bangalore
Bangalore is a modern city and you’ll see the local girls here wearing a huge variety of clothing. Jeans are definitely okay and fitted t-shirts as well. You can wear tank tops in my opinion and even a skirt which is knee length during the day if it’s not tight. For nightlife, the Indian girls were all in club dresses; they were short, tight, and low cut. You can probably wear whatever you want on a night out. I packed skinny jeans, cute high rise UGG tennis shoes, black sandals, a couple tank tops, a kaftan, and two dresses that came to just below my knees. I brought a jacket and sweater. The weather here is a bit nippy most of the year.
You can use PackPoint to get a totally detailed packing list. It is a service given for free from the Sheraton but you can use it for anywhere not just when you stay with them. You put in your dates, destination, and what you’ll be doing there and it tells you literally everything you need, even extra camera batteries.
Where to stay in Bangalore
I stayed in Bridage Gateway in the Sheraton Grand away from all the hustle and bustle, which is how I like it. In India’s bigger cities I always go for somewhere that has a little ease to it and has places nearby like a mall, restaurants, and nightlife that I can safely walk to. Outside the Orion Mall next to Sheraton Grand are lots of restaurants. This is also an expat area with apartments inside. Lots of business people from abroad go out here.
I ate at the 4th floor Persian Terrace my first night and it was SO nice to have some meat! I can’t count how many kababs I had. I had some goat cheese with quinoa and a mezze platter to start. The kebabs were lamb, saffron lobster, and chicken. For dessert I had a fig and date date with icecream. I never knew I liked fig, but this was really tasty.
This is a hang out place for sure, and you need to book ahead. It has the best views, a great bar, and a pool. The hookah, as I mentioned is the Rolls Royce of hookah and they call them smoking cocktails. You won’t find this style around India. The smoke is unfused with fresh fruit and alcohol, for example the champagne pearl which has champagne, strawberries, and grapes. They have 5 smoking cocktails on the menu. Try it out.
I visited MTR, High Ultra Lounge, and VV Puram with Sheraton’s 1-hour gem program where they offer guidance to places nearby to get a great local experience. They also had something on offer called “paired” which was small tapas and wines/beers to match in the lobby bar. Bangalore is known for it’s craft beer scene and they match them up with Indian food so you can try a mixture of things.
The rooms at the Sheraton
I’ve been an SPG (preferred guest) since I stayed at the Sheraton in Maui. I also like W hotels who are under the same SPG umbrella. You can get upgrades and other benefits by signing up and it’s free. I was on a club floor (which means access to a club room that has snacks and drinks inside staff who will take a photo for you for Instagram lol).
My room was really insane. I had to send Ben a Whatsapp video and make him feel bad he didn’t come along. He had been working in Maharashtra all week and was too tired to make the weekend trip. He was jealous, and a lot of it was because of the huge chunk of cheddar cheese on the bar haha.
I had to head out on Sunday so had a nice breakfast before doing so in the club room on my floor. I didn’t do the buffet but instead ordered the Champagne brunch, because who doesn’t want that?
It was 5 courses, and my favorite thing was the spinach and corn pastry, and the quiche! One course was frozen yogurt with fruit and champagne poured on it but I put the photo on Instagram stories and forgot to download it. Dessert was so good; I’m going to try and get Ben to attempt to make it. It was a green apple sorbet with cornflakes and chocolate syrup…. seriously, the best thing I had all weekend!
What to Pack
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I was a guest of Sheraton Grand and was compensated in my time in writing this article. My opinions as always are my own.
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