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Travel tales

Howard Johnson, Kolkata – One Stop Destination for Luxury Experiences

The Hotel

With the opening of various MNC and corporate offices in the so-called new Kolkata, we have seen major hotel chains setting up their units in areas like Newtown, Eastern Bypass, etc. mostly catering to the business community who visit the city for short durations. Among these Howard Johnson, by Wyndham Hotels (HoJo) certainly has what it takes to stand out in a crowd. Through HoJo Kolkata, Wyndham brings its iconic HoJo hospitality to the cultural capital of India. 

HoJo Kolkata is one of the premier destinations in the airport area for business and leisure travelers and is Kolkata’s new address of Happiness. It in fact is a synonym for luxury and convenience when it comes to a hotel.  One feels at ease the moment he walks into the open lobby with abundant natural daylight.

Only 3.1 km and 15 minutes away from the Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose International Airport, Kolkata, the hotel is a Fun Friendly, and Happy Place to stay for the entire family with amenities to make you smile. The hotel built in 2017 has 90 well-appointed rooms and suites spread over 6 floors, with an all-day dining facility, gymnasium, 1,420 sq ft event space – meeting room/ banquet space, and free parking space.

The hotel is an ideal place for corporate houses to hold their meetings and events. It’s the most convenient hotel option if you’re hosting an event in Newtown, Kolkata. You can make use of the unique function space and experienced planning services of the hotel staff here. Any business traveler staying here is thrilled with the location and helpful amenities like high-speed Internet access, as well as a spacious work space in every hotel room. 

The Room

The hotel has beautiful rooms with comfortable feather beds. The non-smoking deluxe room that I was staying in had everything – a comfortable bed, a flat TV with multiple channels, an ironing board, slippers, and essential toiletries. It was enough to pamper me and make me want to stay longer. The marble-lined bathrooms were enormous, with separate toilet and shower. The space is well balanced and organised.

The Neighbourhood

The Howard Johnson by Wyndham Kolkata Hotel is located near New Town Square, Chinar Park in Kolkata. The hotel location is convenient to attractions across the New Town Eco Park. If you’re traveling on business, the nearby Ecospace Business Park is a hub for many IT companies. Also, a 10-minute drive brings you to Silicon Valley New Town. Biswa Bangla Convention Centre is also close by.

For sports lovers, Salt Lake Stadium – one of the world’s biggest football arenas, or Eden Gardens – India’s largest cricket stadium is the best option. Technology savvy travelers also have a lot to explore – they can gaze upon the stars in Asia’s largest planetarium – the Birla Planetarium, or get involved with interactive exhibits at Science City. One can also visit the lively Aquatica Water Park, Mother’s Wax Museum, Princep Ghat, and discover history at the Victoria Memorial, Belur Math, Dakshineswar Kali Temple, St. Paul’s Cathedral, and the Indian Museum.

The Service

Totally up to international standards. As soon as I walked up to the reception desk through the open lobby, the sweet lady behind the counter addressed me with my name with her sweetest smile and I instantly realised that I am in good hands. My check-in was done at a lightning speed, in fact, everything was ready for me as they knew my time of arrival.

Mr. Sudhanshu Rathee, GM also welcomed me. He later told me that the USP of his hotel was this friendly and personal service to every client checking in at the hotel. Let me mention here that the checkout was equally fast and simple. This is one service that I have not seen being performed so efficiently anywhere else. It was even better than the express check-in and check-out service provided by some luxury hotels.

The Food

HoJO Kolkata offers complimentary breakfast to all its guests at NEST Coffee Shop.

The buffet breakfast at Nest is enormous with tables loaded with different dishes – Indian, Chinese, Continental, Italian, etc. – Fresh fruit counters, fresh fruit juices, all varieties of oats, cornflakes, and breakfast cereals, cheese counter, varieties of bread, cakes and muffins, Indian breakfast items like poha, puri bhaji, stuffed parathas, live egg counter and more. The live South Indian food counter is refreshing with amazingly soft, light, fluffy idlis and dosas. I tried a little of about one-fourth of what was available and was full. 

The food is outstanding and the atmosphere is relaxed. The breakfast served at Nest surpassed my expectations.

The buffet spreads during lunch and dinner are equally sumptuous and flavourful with local and international dishes. Local Sondesh and Rosogollas were a delight to savor.

Loved

Loochi and ChonarDaal – an authentic Bengali breakfast dish that was served at Nest.

Hated

The hotel’s main entrance – you have to enter through a side lane beside a shopping mall. Also, there are no direction signboards on the main road and the cabs drop you near the mall only from where you have to walk a good 400-500 meters.

The Bottom Line

The hotel is affordable with basic tariff plans plus weekend packages and is very well priced in comparison to others. However, it is their special weekend packages that are even more attractive. For the monsoon season, they have special rates which make it more convenient for the guests to choose.

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