31 July 2017

Wonderchef Exclusive Brand Outlet Launch at Phoenix Marketcity, Pune!!!

Not everyone like entering the kitchen early morning, and there are few like me who believe ‘I can cook healthier(if not tastier) food to my kid than my cook’ and enter the kitchen. For all we women, the Wonderchef brand believes in kitchen being the ‘heart of our homes’, as it inspires us every day to create tasting memories with the food we cook for our loved ones, and has bought the kitchenware range which is a perfect blend of health, taste and convenience that inspires us to ‘cook with pride’. The pleasure to use them, the innovation, colours and designs, with uncompromising standards of quality makes cooking more interesting and fun with Wonderchef. Gone are those days when kitchenware were in metallic, blacks and greys. Every range is unique with Wonderchef, the vibrant Royal blue, purple, green, just not colours, but also unique prints in their Oscar and Picasso collection.
Food, Store Launch, Wonderchef, Chef Sanjeev Kapoor, Kitchenware, Cookware, Pune, Phoenix Market City
Wonderchef Kitchenware as a company was born out of the ‘love of cooking’. Driven by passion of making kitchen the centre of wellness and goodness in homes, Wonderchef was created by two enthusiasts, Mr. Ravi Saxena and Chef Sanjeev Kapoor in 2009. Wonderchef products are used in millions of homes in India where healthy and convenient cooking is a part of lifestyle. Wonderchef launched its first Exclusive Brand Outlet in Pune. The outlet is located at Pune’s Phoenix Marketcity, Viman Nagar. With this addition, now Wonderchef has 6 outlets in the country besides its omni-channel presence across 5000 retail outlets.
Food, Store Launch, Wonderchef, Chef Sanjeev Kapoor, Kitchenware, Cookware, Pune, Phoenix Market City
On the launch occasion, Mr. Ravi Saxena, Managing Director, Wonderchef Home Appliances(P) Ltd said, “Wonderchef has grown into a trusted & the most loved brand of non-stick cookware and healthy appliances in the country. Our clear focus is to strengthen this positioning. Everything we would do over the next three years would be in this direction till such time we are one of the top 3 players in kitchen industry in India. As of now we have total 6 EBOs and we plan to open 2 more stores in Delhi and 1 in Bangalore by next month. Soon we are going to be present across Metros with partners who are passionate about cooking and want to be a part of the growing Wonderchef family”.
Food, Store Launch, Wonderchef, Chef Sanjeev Kapoor, Kitchenware, Cookware, Pune, Phoenix Market City
Chef Sanjeev Kapoor launched the Outlet amongst a huge gathering and a live Cooking Competition was the highlight of the launch. Chef Sanjeev Kapoor judged the recipes and gave away prizes. He said, “I am very happy and overwhelmed to see the enthusiasm and zeal in the people of Pune. It gives me immense pleasure to see an evolving cooking culture with such innovative recipes. Wonderchef is committed to empowering women by enabling them to cook better. 
Wonderchef stores in Mumbai are located at Linking Road(Khar), Infiniti Mall(Andheri West), Viviana Mall(Thane), R-City Mall(Ghatkopar), Seawoods Mall(Vashi) and now at Phoenix Marketcity(Pune).

28 June 2017

Vijay Vilas Palace, Mandvi - A Photo Essay !!!

I was writing my last post on Laxmi Vilas Palace of Vadodara and realised though I had written about Vijay Vilas Palace of Mandvi under collective, I had missed a dedicated post for all the pics I had clicked of it. So here is a photo essay of Vijay Vilas Palace, which I visited few years back.
Gujarat, Mandvi, Heritage, Culture, History, Vijay Vilas Palace, Jadega Rulers, Lagaan movie set, Mohenjo Daro movie set, Hum DIl De Chuke Sanam movie set
Though Vijay Vilas is not as magnificent as Vadodara's Laxmi Vilas it was Ashutosh Gowariker's movies which made Kutch and Vijay Vilas Palace famous. Sets of his movies Lagaan and Mohenjo Daro were set in Kutch. The palace appeared as the British Royal residence in Lagaan and Aishwarya Rai's house in Hum Dil de Chuke Sanam. 
Gujarat, Mandvi, Heritage, Culture, History, Vijay Vilas Palace, Jadega Rulers, Lagaan movie set, Mohenjo Daro movie set, Hum DIl De Chuke Sanam movie set
This redstone structure was built by Maharaja Rao Vijayrajji, the Maharaja of Kutch. The structure is built in Rajput style with traces of Bengal adding to its beauty. Being a summer retreat, the palace is small compared to other palaces of the region and houses few artefacts, furniture and photoframes
Gujarat, Mandvi, Heritage, Culture, History, Vijay Vilas Palace, Jadega Rulers, Lagaan movie set, Mohenjo Daro movie set, Hum DIl De Chuke Sanam movie set

Gujarat, Mandvi, Heritage, Culture, History, Vijay Vilas Palace, Jadega Rulers, Lagaan movie set, Mohenjo Daro movie set, Hum DIl De Chuke Sanam movie set
The palace is surrounded by thick green which shelters peacocks, jackals and wild ass. The top most floor has an arched balcony and gives beautiful view of the surrounding green.
Gujarat, Mandvi, Heritage, Culture, History, Vijay Vilas Palace, Jadega Rulers, Lagaan movie set, Mohenjo Daro movie set, Hum DIl De Chuke Sanam movie set
Maharaja Vijayraji's Chhatri as seen from balcony

Gujarat, Mandvi, Heritage, Culture, History, Vijay Vilas Palace, Jadega Rulers, Lagaan movie set, Mohenjo Daro movie set, Hum DIl De Chuke Sanam movie set
Mandvi Beach and Royal family private beach as seen from the top floor of the palace.

Gujarat, Mandvi, Heritage, Culture, History, Vijay Vilas Palace, Jadega Rulers, Lagaan movie set, Mohenjo Daro movie set, Hum DIl De Chuke Sanam movie set

Gujarat, Mandvi, Heritage, Culture, History, Vijay Vilas Palace, Jadega Rulers, Lagaan movie set, Mohenjo Daro movie set, Hum DIl De Chuke Sanam movie set

Gujarat, Mandvi, Heritage, Culture, History, Vijay Vilas Palace, Jadega Rulers, Lagaan movie set, Mohenjo Daro movie set, Hum DIl De Chuke Sanam movie set

Gujarat, Mandvi, Heritage, Culture, History, Vijay Vilas Palace, Jadega Rulers, Lagaan movie set, Mohenjo Daro movie set, Hum DIl De Chuke Sanam movie set
That seems like wild boar head, not sure though

Gujarat, Mandvi, Heritage, Culture, History, Vijay Vilas Palace, Jadega Rulers, Lagaan movie set, Mohenjo Daro movie set, Hum DIl De Chuke Sanam movie set

Travel Tips

Vijay Vilas Palace is around 7km from Mandvi city and can be best reached by private vehicle. Its another half a km walk from the vehicle parking area to the palace.

Entry Fee
Regular Days 5 years to 11 years Rs. 15/-, above 11 years 30/-
Sundays and Public Holidays 5 years to 11 years Rs. 25/-, above 11 years 45/-
Mobile Camera Rs. 25/-
Still Camera Rs. 50/-
Video Camera 200/-

Timings
9:00 am to 6:00 pm

16 June 2017

Laxmi Vilas Palace, Vadodara - Signifying the Maratha rule in Gujarat!!!

Been visited to Vijay Vilas Palace of Mandvi, I thought Vadodara's Laxmi Vilas Palace was related to it. Only to understand, they both were no where related except for being in the same state of Gujarat. While Vijay Vilas Palace is of Jadega Rajas of Kutch, Laxmi Vilas is of Gaekwad, the Maratha family who ruled Baroda state, the present day Vadodara of Gujarat state.
Gujarat, Vadodara, History, Heritage, Culture, Maratha Rule in Gujarat, Laxmi Vilas Palace, Baroda, Gaekwad, Maharaja Sayajirao Gaekwad III
On our trip to Ahmedabad and Vadodara, we reached Vadodara by 9 in the night and checked in to the OYO Rooms we had booked at Fatehjung road which was few minutes walk from Sayaji Baug. We had planned a two day stay at Vadodara, the first day for the city tour and the second to Pavagadh hills and Champaner. First day started with the visit to Laxmi Vilas Palace.
Gujarat, Vadodara, History, Heritage, Culture, Maratha Rule in Gujarat, Laxmi Vilas Palace, Baroda, Gaekwad, Maharaja Sayajirao Gaekwad III
The palace was built in 1890 in Indo-Saracenic style by Maharaja Sayajirao Gaekwad III. It still being the residence of the royal family, opens only a part to the public. You enter the palace through the back entrance of the palace, collect your audio guide if you wish and start your palace tour. After going through few of the exhibits inside the palace you are out to get the view of the main entrance of the palace which is on the opposite side. The stunning structure is so huge that its difficult to capture the entire structure in one frame. The beautiful greens and golf course makes the structure look even more beautiful.
Gujarat, Vadodara, History, Heritage, Culture, Maratha Rule in Gujarat, Laxmi Vilas Palace, Baroda, Gaekwad, Maharaja Sayajirao Gaekwad III

Gujarat, Vadodara, History, Heritage, Culture, Maratha Rule in Gujarat, Laxmi Vilas Palace, Baroda, Gaekwad, Maharaja Sayajirao Gaekwad III
The ground has many statues and structures, off which the marble peacock urn is very well known. 
Gujarat, Vadodara, History, Heritage, Culture, Maratha Rule in Gujarat, Laxmi Vilas Palace, Baroda, Gaekwad, Maharaja Sayajirao Gaekwad III
Marble Peacock Urn in the palace ground

Gujarat, Vadodara, History, Heritage, Culture, Maratha Rule in Gujarat, Laxmi Vilas Palace, Baroda, Gaekwad, Maharaja Sayajirao Gaekwad III
Palace tower as seen from Marble Peacock Urn 

Gujarat, Vadodara, History, Heritage, Culture, Maratha Rule in Gujarat, Laxmi Vilas Palace, Baroda, Gaekwad, Maharaja Sayajirao Gaekwad III
A beautiful painting on the outer wall of the palace.
Gujarat, Vadodara, History, Heritage, Culture, Maratha Rule in Gujarat, Laxmi Vilas Palace, Baroda, Gaekwad, Maharaja Sayajirao Gaekwad III
Intricate carving on the window wall on the upper floor of the palace
Gujarat, Vadodara, History, Heritage, Culture, Maratha Rule in Gujarat, Laxmi Vilas Palace, Baroda, Gaekwad, Maharaja Sayajirao Gaekwad III
Watch for 2 crocodiles, 4 monkeys and bunches of grapes 


The palace has a huge collection of artefacts from different parts of the world, not to forget the original paintings of Raja Ravi Varma. The Durbar hall with chandeliers, stained glass window, Italian mosaic flooring has been the Bollywood hotspot with shoots going on most of the time. There is a cafeteria and souvenir shop too in the building. The palace compound also houses Maharaja Fateh Singh Museum and Moti Baug Palace both have separate entry gates from the main road and photography is strictly prohibited inside the palace and museum.


Travel Tips

Location
The palace is on the Jawaharlal Nehru Marg, around 3.5km from Vadodara Bus stand and railway station. And around 9km from Airport. 

Entry Fee and timing
Palace 
Rs. 225/- for Indians and Rs. 400/- for Foreigners
10:00 am to 5:00 pm 
Closed on Mondays and Public Holidays

Palace Museum 
Rs. 80/ for Indians and Rs. 150/- for Foreigners 
10:30 am to 5:30 pm
Closed on Mondays and Public Holidays