Lobby at Four Seasons Mumbai, Mumbai, India

Four Seasons Mumbai

In 2006, this contemporary city property was the Four Seasons' debut in India. Years on, it continues to deliver with plenty of comfort and service. Rooms, 202 in total, are some of the city’s most spacious with floor-to-ceiling windows showcasing the skyline, and feature marble bathrooms with sunken tubs. Being situated in Worli allows access to both South Mumbai’s cultural institutions and sights as well as the suburban neighborhoods of Bandra and Juhu, which is ideal for business travelers trying to make their way through this traffic-heavy metropolis.

Along with an open-air pool and two restaurants, the hotel boasts a futuristic rooftop bar and lounge, on its 34th floor, which is a favorite of party-going locals. Pop in for a cocktail or two at dusk as the sun sets over the Arabian sea.

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Lotus Sweet Bedroom at JW Marriott, Mumbai, India

JW Marriott

Arriving at this sprawling, 355-room property, it’s clear this hotel is a campus unto itself, an oasis in bustling Mumbai, complete with stylish restaurants (including Arola by namesake Michelin-starred Spanish chef Sergio Arola), hip nightclubs, and a stunning spa. Since the hotel sits in Juhu, close to several film studios, it attracts plenty of A-list stars, startlets, producers, and others in the biz, which in turn gives the place a certain allure.

While the property does have beach access, sun bathing is not common in India, so instead, choose from one of the three private pools, or linger by the on-site lotus pond. Or spend the day at the Quan spa, where the therapies include everything from a rose and milk bath to a cardamom and coconut-infused body polish.

The grand ocean suites, outfitted with large bathtubs that overlook the beach, are particularly stunning. Also impressive are the executive superior rooms with ocean views and access to the club on the fourth floor.

Club Suite at Taj Lands End, Mumbai, India

Taj Lands End

While not as grand as the Taj at Apollo Bunder in South Mumbai, this property still has plenty of the legendary brand’s virtues--from excellent dining to flawless service. And since it’s tucked away in a residential area overlooking the water, it feels impossibly serene, putting you in a true vacation mood.

The rooms to book include the Taj clubrooms on the 21st floor with sea views. (Ask for rooms ending in 27, 29, 31, 33 and 35.) However, the cityscape bay view across the pool has its own charm, looking across the gardens to the harbor with the Bandra-Worli Sea Link bridge. The Harbour Presidential Suite on the 21st floor is stunning as are the Luxury Suites and Grand Luxury Suites on the 20th and 21st floors.

In the mornings, take advantage of the seafront location and stroll Bandra’s Bandstand, where locals walk and jog along the coastline.

Swimming Pool at Taj Mahal Palace & Tower, Mumbai, India

Taj Mahal Palace & Tower

With gorgeous rooms and suites, excellent restaurants and a stunning pool, this is the place to stay in Mumbai. The story of the Taj begins with industrialist Jamsetji Tata, who was refused entry into a European hotel in the late 1800s. His answer: Build the grandest and most exquisite hotel to rival any other in the world. The heritage building, with its domes and black basalt exterior, completed in 1903, in fact, predates even the Gateway of India, which is essentially just across the street along the harbor. In 1972, a 22-story tower was added, bringing the number of rooms and suites to 560. Still, the heritage wing rooms have a charm all their own. One suite, in particular, honors Indian musician Ravi Shankar with memorabilia, photographs and instruments featured in the room. Even George Harrison of the Beatles checked into the hotel to take lessons from Shankar. Over the decades, dignitaries, celebrities and CEOs from across the world have stayed at the Taj. The property also boasts incredible restaurants from the European-inflected Zodiac Grill to Wasabi by Morimoto and Masala Kraft. Spend an afternoon at the pool, truly an oasis in the heart of frenetic Mumbai or enjoy treatments at the on-site spa.

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The Kohinoor presidential suite at The Oberoi, Mumbai, India

The Oberoi

Opened in 1986 with over 300 rooms, the Oberoi hotel sits in the heart of Mumbai’s business district and offers superb views of the Arabian Sea and along the “Queen’s Necklace,” a term for the lights that form a kind of string of pearls along the water. Among the A-list guests who have checked in, Bill Clinton, Bill Gates, Richard Gere, Jack Welch and Rupert Murdoch have all stayed in the Kohinoor Suite, which is an oasis of calm. Even standard rooms are exceptionally spacious with floor-to-ceiling windows. What the Oberoi might lack in history, it more than makes up for in its attention to detail and service.

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