When one of our touring friends instantly decided to drop off to Darjeeling from Chatakpur for a day to celebrate my daughter’s 1st birthday, we couldn’t say a NO to that. The chilly March evening in Chatakpur was spent frantically searching for a hotel for a day stay in Darjeeling. The search was starting to prove futile and at that point, we closed in on a name called “Hotel Revolver.” The owner confirmed that they had two vacant rooms for our stay.
The next afternoon we headed towards Darjeeling which was only about a 2 hours’ drive. The owner Asenla Pradhan welcomed us in on reaching the hotel. We were quite awestruck since the time we entered the premises. There was “Beatles” all over. In fact, the name of the hotel was given from the most famous album “Revolver” of the “Beatles” band of the yore. We kept our luggage in the rooms “George” and “Brian” respectively and walked out towards Mall.
After an evening walk around Mall road accompanied with an extra sweet tea from a local seller, our tummies alarmed that they were attacked by hungry monsters. We walked up to “Boney’s Snack Bar”, our favourite local stop for momos, pizzas, sandwiches and Chinese food. My daughter had the delectable stuffing of a few vegetarian momos as she wasn’t eating any non-vegetarian food at that point of time. After the stuffing, she had a few spoons of vegetarian soup and rice. Her face glowed in containment after finishing her first birthday dinner. We had chicken momos, farmer fresh pizzas and packed club sandwiches for late night hunger cravings.
The friend about whom I mentioned at the introduction had ordered a birthday cake from the marvellous bakery of the “Boney’s”. We went back to the hotel and cut the chocolate cake with our daughter. She lapped up a morsel and slept while we enjoyed our packed food. I had to pack the left-over rice (my daughter’s prasad after her dinner) from the restaurant and took an accompaniment in the form of “Chilly Prawn” for my dinner. Before people start questioning my unusual choice, I would like to say I can eat rice with any food item and “Chilly Prawn” being one of my favourites, how could I choose something else?
We retired to our respective rooms for the night after ordering our next morning breakfast. While drifting off to sleep, a part of my heart was excited that my daughter would be tasting her first cow milk porridge in Darjeeling itself.
Next day, my daughter had a hearty breakfast with oats porridge. We tried out pancakes and sampled English breakfast platters available in the hotel restaurant. Our next stop was the Padmaja Naidu Himalayan Himalayan Zoological Park in Darjeeling.
The upslope walk past the animal enclosures was an indescribable experience, especially when one was carrying his or her child on the shoulders acquainting the two little eyes with the furry and feathered friends. Indescribable because it is impossible to translate the wonder in the eyes of the little humans into comprehensive words. I lost count how the hour in the zoo went by. We took a cab to the famous Glenary’s to complete our Darjeeling ritual of having a meal there while watching people and a peeping Kanchenjunga from the balcony.
The lunch was a simple affair with stews and rice for the kids, Fish and Chips and Meat sizzler for us. We packed a few cupcakes and chocolates from the Glenary’s confectionary section for our journey back to Kolkata, the day after.
After the Glenary’s ritual, we bade adieu with the promise to visit again next year to treat ourselves on the ambience and the gastronomic delicacies offered by the Himalayan Queen – Darjeeling.
Hotel Revolver (A Beatles-themed hotel)
Owner: Asenla and Vikash Pradhan
Address: 110 Gandhi Road, Behind Union Chapel, Darjeeling, West Bengal 734101
Phone Number: 083719 19527
Charges: Rooms – John & George (Double +1): Rs.1700/- (+GST)
Rooms – Paul, Ringo & Brian (Double): Rs. 1400/- (+GST)
Image Courtesy: World Wide Web
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