Amsterdam in a New Light: The Must-See Winter Festival

By Author

Published on December 28, 2023

Ever wondered what makes Amsterdam shine even brighter in winter? It's the Amsterdam Light Festival! This is not just any winter festival; it's a kaleidoscope of lights that turns the city into a twinkling wonderland. Imagine strolling along the canals, crisp winter air nipping at your cheeks, as you gaze at stunning light installations created by artists from around the world. Sounds magical, right?

The Amsterdam Light Festival is all about celebrating the beauty of light in the dark winter months. Each year, artists, designers, and architects get their creative juices flowing to light up the city's waterways and streets. The festival offers two main routes: the Water Colors boat route and the Illuminade walking route. Whether you're cozied up in a boat or wrapped in your warmest scarf on foot, you're in for a treat!

What makes this festival unique? It's not just about pretty lights. Each installation tells a story, ignites a conversation, or makes you think. From playful to profound, the artworks add a layer of warmth and wonder to the chilly cityscape.

Imagine cruising down Amsterdam's iconic canals as they become an open-air art gallery. The reflections of the light artworks on the water double the magic! And if you're on foot, every turn brings a new surprise, from twinkling tunnels to glowing sculptures.

This festival is for everyone - families, couples, solo wanderers, and groups of friends. Kids will be wide-eyed with wonder, and adults will feel like kids again. Don't forget to grab a hot chocolate or a cup of mulled wine to keep you toasty as you explore.

The Amsterdam Light Festival changes themes annually, so it's never the same experience twice. Artists interpret the theme in their way, ensuring a fresh and exciting array of artworks each year.

So, if you're planning a winter trip or just happen to be in Amsterdam during the festival, don't miss this glowing spectacle. It's not just about seeing the lights; it's about experiencing the city in a whole new way. The Amsterdam Light Festival is where art, technology, and a touch of winter magic come together to create an unforgettable experience.

The Leela Palaces Hotels and Resorts Hosts Grammy Winner Ricky Kej for ‘Rhythm of the Earth’ Concert Series

By Nithyakala Neelakandan

Published on June 18, 2024

The Leela Palaces, Hotels and Resorts recently collaborated with three-time Grammy Award-winner Ricky Kej for an exclusive concert series titled ‘Rhythm of the Earth.’ This three-city musical tour aimed to raise awareness about environmental conservation and sustainability. The concerts were held at The Leela Palace Bengaluru, The Leela Palace New Delhi, and The Leela Palace Chennai, offering audiences an immersive experience that combined music with powerful environmental messages.

Ricky Kej, a globally acclaimed music composer and environmentalist, has received numerous accolades, including three Grammy Awards and recognition as a UNESCO MGIEP Global Ambassador for Kindness. His music is a powerful tool for promoting climate change awareness and encouraging tangible environmental action.


In line with its commitment to sustainability, The Leela Palaces, Hotels and Resorts launched its new campaign, #ThinkBigStartSmall, during these concerts. A significant highlight was the introduction of in-house water bottling plants under the brand ‘Aujasya by The Leela,’ replacing single-use plastic bottles across its properties. This initiative underscores the brand’s dedication to reducing its environmental footprint and promoting conscious luxury.

Last month, The Leela Palace Udaipur introduced new eco-friendly boats on Lake Pichola, equipped with the latest green technologies to minimize the hotel's ecological impact. Additionally, The Leela launched ‘Tishya by The Leela,’ a line of 100% vegan and eco-friendly bath amenities. These initiatives reflect the brand's holistic approach to wellness and sustainability.

Anjali Mehra, Chief Brand Officer and Senior Vice President of Marketing at The Leela Palaces, Hotels and Resorts, “Sustainable luxury today is changing the paradigm as guests seek fulfilling experiences in harmony with nature and their sociocultural surroundings. We at The Leela are committed to providing these experiences and have in fact taken significant measures to reduce our carbon footprint, focus on holistic wellness of our guests and contribute towards community development through meaningful partnerships. Our #ThinkBigStartSmall campaign will highlight these initiatives and how each step that we are taking, no matter how small, is culminating in achieving a larger goal. Our collaboration with Ricky Kej is a testament to a shared passion and the brand’s commitment towards positive environmental impact. We are excited and feel privileged to be a part of the great work that Ricky is doing.” 


The ‘Rhythm of the Earth’ concerts were not only musical events but also a showcase of The Leela's signature wellness program, Aujasya by The Leela. The program focuses on holistic wellness through mindful eating and restoration, featuring a special zero-food-waste menu curated for the concerts.

Ricky Kej expressed his excitement about the partnership, highlighting the power of music to communicate important messages about conservation and sustainability. He appreciated the overwhelming response from audiences in all three cities and the opportunity to reach a relevant audience who can drive change. “I am excited to have partnered with The Leela for a 3-city tour of Rhythm of the Earth,” said Ricky Kej.

The Leela Palaces, Hotels and Resorts, headquartered in Mumbai, operates eleven award-winning properties across India. Celebrated for its luxurious hospitality, the brand emphasizes sustainability and community development through various initiatives and partnerships. As The Leela continues to evolve, it remains committed to offering guests unforgettable experiences that honor India's rich heritage and natural beauty.

This collaboration with Ricky Kej and the launch of the #ThinkBigStartSmall campaign mark significant steps in The Leela's journey towards achieving Net Zero and setting new standards for sustainable luxury in the hospitality industry.

Regent Hong Kong The Signature Suite Collection Revealed

By Nishang Narayan

Published on June 17, 2024

As part of its stunning transformation, the reimagined Regent Hong Kong continues to enhance its allure with the unveiling of the Signature Suites. This trio of luxurious residential retreats, each featuring a private outdoor terrace and whirlpool, offers unrivaled views of Victoria Harbour and the dazzling Hong Kong skyline, along with bespoke service tailored to individual preferences.

A Trio of Unique Luxury Retreats

The Presidential Suite, Terrace Suite, and CEO Suite showcase the sublime aesthetic of visionary Hong Kong-born architect and designer Chi Wing Lo. These one-of-a-kind personal havens elevate the Regent Hong Kong experience to new heights. Celebrating the Beauty of Contrasts, Lo has created timeless spaces with serene design sensibilities that stunningly juxtapose the hotel's spectacular vistas from multiple angles, providing guests with bespoke experiences that inspire special moments. From wedding ceremonies and intimate soirées to exclusive private events and romantic getaways, Regent Hong Kong's signature suites set the stage for exceptional experiences.


Michel Chertouh, Managing Director of Regent Hong Kong, comments, "Each of our Signature Suites is designed to offer a highly personalized experience and the height of sophistication and discreet luxury. Guests will feel as if they are living in a luxurious contemporary residence with spaces that become their own, rather than a hotel suite." Lo has reenvisioned each suite with warm cream tones, custom furnishings in natural oak with leather detailing, and artisan craftsmanship, creating a tranquil ambiance with understated sophistication, elevated above the bustle of the city, while overlooking it all.

Exceptional Luxury and Discreet Service

The Signature Suites are the crème de la crème of the 129 stunning suites at Regent Hong Kong, among a total of 497 guestrooms. Each Regent suite is a residential-style luxury retreat with a spacious living area and Oasis bathroom. Guests can bask in discreet luxury and elevated amenities while enjoying magnificent vistas in Harbourview and Seaview Suites with intimate private havens designed for indulgent moments. Bespoke service 'on your terms' includes access to the exclusive Regent Club, offering elevated experiences over breakfast, afternoon tea, and evening cocktails.

For those seeking the pinnacle of luxury in Hong Kong, the Signature Suites at Regent Hong Kong promise an unparalleled experience, combining world-class design, breathtaking views, and personalized service to create unforgettable stays.

Goan Specialty Coffee: A Blend of Sustainability and Flavor

By Nishang Narayan

Published on June 15, 2024

Goa, known for its picturesque beaches and vibrant culture, is also making a name for itself in the world of specialty coffee. The state's burgeoning coffee scene is characterized by a commitment to sustainability, artisanal practices, and a focus on high-quality, single-origin beans. This evolution has created a unique coffee culture that attracts both locals and tourists.

Sourcing and Sustainability

Goa's specialty coffee often begins its journey in the region's lush plantations, which emphasize sustainable and ethical farming practices. Local coffee farmers prioritize organic cultivation methods, avoiding harmful pesticides and fertilizers to protect the environment and ensure the health of their crops. These practices are not only better for the planet but also enhance the quality and flavor of the coffee beans.

Sustainability extends beyond farming methods. Many Goan coffee producers engage in direct trade, establishing direct relationships with coffee farmers. This approach ensures that farmers receive fair compensation for their work, promotes higher quality standards, and fosters a deeper connection between the producer and the consumer.

Artisanal Roasting and Unique Flavours

Once harvested, Goan coffee beans undergo meticulous processing and roasting to bring out their best qualities. Local roasters often focus on small-batch roasting, a technique that allows them to experiment with different profiles and highlight the unique characteristics of each bean. The result is a diverse range of flavors that often include fruity and floral notes, reflective of Goa's rich terroir.

The rise of specialty cafes in Goa has further propelled the popularity of these artisanal coffees. These cafes are dedicated to showcasing the nuances of Goan coffee through expertly crafted brews and innovative coffee-based beverages.

The Role of Specialty Cafes

Specialty cafes play a crucial role in promoting Goan coffee culture. One notable example is Boho Box Cafe, located in Anjuna, North Goa. According to Ambika Saxena, CEO of Boho Box, "At The Boho Box, we've crafted more than just a cafe; we've created an experience. Nestled along the tranquil Baga River in Anjuna, North Goa, our bohemian-themed sports bar and cafe redefine the art of unwinding. We take pride in offering an exquisite blend of stunning river views, a diverse menu, and an ambiance that's trendy, vibrant, and serene, all in one. Our carefully curated continental cuisine, signature coffees, and refreshing cocktails ensure that your taste buds embark on a memorable journey with every visit."

Boho Box Cafe epitomizes the holistic approach to coffee culture in Goa. It offers a space where guests can relax, work, and enjoy the unique Goan vibe, all while savoring some of the best coffee the region has to offer. The cafe's emphasis on creating a memorable experience, rather than just serving coffee, reflects a broader trend in Goa's specialty coffee scene.

Trends and Innovations

The specialty coffee industry in Goa is also keeping pace with global trends. Sustainability remains at the forefront, with many cafes and roasters adopting eco-friendly practices and packaging. Additionally, there is a growing interest in cold brew coffee, which is known for its smooth texture and low acidity. Cold brew variations, including flavored and nitro-infused options, are becoming increasingly popular among coffee enthusiasts.

Another emerging trend is the infusion of coffee with health-boosting ingredients like adaptogens and superfoods. This aligns with the broader wellness trend, transforming the coffee-drinking experience into a mindful, health-conscious ritual.

To conclude, Goa's specialty coffee scene is a dynamic blend of tradition, innovation, and sustainability. From the careful cultivation of coffee beans to the artisanal roasting and the unique offerings of specialty cafes, every aspect of Goan coffee culture is designed to provide an exceptional experience. Whether you are a casual coffee drinker or a connoisseur, Goa's specialty coffee promises a journey of discovery and delight.

For those looking to immerse themselves in this vibrant coffee culture, a visit to cafes like Boho Box offers a perfect introduction to the flavors and ambiance that define Goan specialty coffee. As the industry continues to grow and evolve, Goa is poised to become a significant player on the global coffee stage.

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