We stayed in New Delhi for an overnight and then returned to New Delhi the next day. We chose to stay at the ITC Maurya instead of looking for higher-end properties. Although it wasn’t as extravagant as The Leela Palace it was still very reasonable and affordable.

This post is one chapter on our third Round the World trip via South Korea, Vietnam, Singapore, the Maldives and India. This trip was redeemable through Air Canada’s Aeroplan, Starwood Preferred Guest (Marriott Bonvoy), and Hyatt Gold Passport(World of Hyatt), loyalty programs. For more information on how this trip was booked, please see our trip introduction here. This index contains information about other aspects of the trip.

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“An older classic property with compact rooms that has been serving the New Delhi Embassy District for forty years, that is anchored by Bukhara; one of the more famous Indian restaurants in Delhi”

Booking and Getting There:

We had such an excellent stay with The Leela Palace on our last pass through New Delhi, it was a shame not to be staying there again. In reality, we had a twelve hour layover after our Air India Jaipur – New Delhi flight, so we opted for something a bit more main stream. We passed a JW Marriott on our way in. If we had known that it was new, we would have probably stayed there. We chose to stay with an old Starwood friend: the ITC Muraya in the embassy district.

We ended up on a Global Navigator rate which included breakfast for two at 8000 Indian Rupees per night ($109 USD), which was a very reasonable price for a hotel in a major urban centre. There are many hotels in New Delhi. Make sure you do your research.

We had a chatty driver at the hotel from a company that seemed to have been contracted by the hotel. The driver wore a very basic uniform that looked quite worn. He did have to suggest that he needed tips for his family. It was quite a contrast to our Leela arrival experience.

Arriving to The ITC Maurya Hotel:

The ITC Maurya, A Luxury Collection Hotel.
Sardar Patel Marg, Akhaura Block, Diplomatic Enclave, Chanakyapuri, New Delhi, Delhi 110021, India

We arrived at the ITC Muraya’s chaotic driveway. There were about 20 people standing around blocking the entrance way. They helped us unload our bags and then walked over to the X-ray scanner. After passing through the scanner, we found the front desk. It was obvious immediately that there was a difference between the Leela & the ITC Muraya. It was not possible to check in at the front desk. First off, it was a bit of a wait to find an actual staff member to man the front desk and check us in despite 50-60 people wandering around in the lobby. This was followed by a further 10 minute ordeal to process all the paper work, take photocopies of the passports, then have the staff member complete the forms, then sign the forms. Both of us were Starwood Preferred Guest members and had electronic profiles in the mainframe. However, it didn’t seem that this made any difference. We were able to get to our destination without any problems, but it was difficult to imagine what would happen if there were people waiting to check in. These photos were taken much later in the evening.

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The Front Desk of the ITC Maurya
Reception at the ITC Maurya
Lobby with Concierge Desk (on left)

The lobby art is one of the best features of this hotel. Although it’s unique and has a certain feel, I found it quite engaging. Most hotel lobby tend to be dull and look the same after a while. This artwork included vignettes that represented different personalities.

The ITC Maurya Lobby
A Beautiful Art Display overlooking the lobby lonuge
Chaitrya Art Gallery
Vignettes of life in India

The art placard encouraged people to search for themselves. I believe I found myself in the mosaic with my camera, or any other FlyerTalking Trip Reporter or travel blogger.

I see myself in the mosaic with the camera.

The Room: An Executive Club King

We led ourselves up to Room #1441 on the Club Floor entitled the “Grand Presidential Floor”. The hotel was built approximately 40 years ago and advertises itself as the “favorite for heads of state for over 40 years”. The truth is that the hotel’s rooms are small by modern standards.

We arrived to a compact room but nothing that wasn’t unbearable for a brief 12 hour stay. It was the Grand Presidential Floor for small countries and small people. Two suitacases and two rollsies were parked around the floor and stood in the room, making it even smaller. The parkway square wood flooring made me laugh; it reminded of my grandfather’s house from the seventies.

An Executive King Room
A Compact Room Footprint
Narrow Spaces if travelling for two

The bathroom was a standard version with a small footprint, as is typical for hotels built over forty years ago.

A Single Vanity with a wall of towel racks

Executive Lounge:

We had lounge access due to booking an Executive Level. Drinks were not included in our rate, but were on 50% offer off between 6-8 PM. The lounge was very dismal. The lounge was dark and drab, with meager snacks that tasted like leftovers from a party you were late to. The lone staff member that drew the short straw was totally overworked, serving 12 people at 6 different tables all by himself. Our order from the reception bar (prepared elsewhere in the hotel by the looks of it) would take 20 minutes to arrive. It was not a place of exclusivity as some people were picking at their naked toes while sipping their whiskies .

The Grand Presidential Tower Floor Sign
The Executive Lounge
ITC Maurya Executive Lounge Snacks

Restaurant Bukhara:

We quickly packed up in the Executive Lounge and headed downstairs for a delicious dinner at Bukhara. Bukhara, which is a well-known Indian restaurant, served robust North West Indian food. It is one of many restaurants within the ITC Muraya Hotel. We turned up at about 6: 30 PM without a reservation and were able to get seated after about at twenty minute wait.

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Bukhara Restaurant Reception
Surprisingly no prices on the menu at the outside entrance

However, once we got seated inside, it wasn’t so bad with North American tourist pricing at entrees around 1,900 Indian Rupees or $25 USD per dish.

Bukhara Non Vegetarian Menu

Parveen provided delicious samples of Dahl, Pehwara Kebabs and Tandorii Aloo. There are no gas fires, but only tandori ovens or charcol grills. The dhal was especially famous – Parveen indicated that they had sold over 2.5 million dishes in the past 15 years. The majority of the cooking was done in open kitchens that were visible to diners.

Bukhara Open Kitchen
Bukhara Dining Room

The food was delicious and the highlight of our trip. Famous visitors have visited the Burkaha bar, including Tony Abbott, Australia’s Prime Minister, and Tony Blair, the British Prime Minister. Arnold Schwarzenegger, the Hollywood actor, and many others from Hollywood.

Famous Diners Wall

The food flavours were extraordinary; Indian spices combined with freshness that was easy to approach. The naan bread was also exceptional – it had a unique taste.

Peshawri Kebab
Tandori Aloo
Baked Naan

Staff also allowed us to take silly souvenir photos with the provided bibs, which made for wonderful memories of our trip and stay.

Enjoying an Indian Kingfisher Beer while wearing a Bukhara Bib
A Feast at Bukhara

Bukhara was an exceptional meal experience. If you’re ever in New Delhi, it is highly recommended. Excellent service was also a part of the dining experience.

The Bottom Line: Our stay experience with ITC Maurya, a Luxury Collection Hotel

Our stay at ITC Muraya was good. It was not a memorable stay. I have had more pleasant and personable experiences at anonymous Westin hotels across North America. If you have a limited budget and need a property with all the trimmings, the ITC Muraya is the perfect choice. It has a pool, lounge, and many international restaurants. Couples and families might find the rooms a bit cramped. Although the ITC Maurya was not in the same league of The Leela Palace, it was still a pleasant experience to have both. Bukhara was my highlight. I would go back to this property and not miss it. My next stay is likely to be at The Leela Palace, or somewhere else.

If you’ve stayed at ITC Maurya, did you visit Bukhara for terrific Indian food?