Feel Good

From Cleopatra’s Spa Treatment to Green Porn, we bring you the best ways to feel good in Mumbai

Riffreel Turns Your Clips Into A Video
Friday, 21 November 2014 11:25

What: Surrender your GoPro and iPhone clips to riffreel and they’ll use them to tell a story, check their Facebook page here, each video costs Rs 1,800.

Why: You’ve just captured some cool footage on your scuba diving trip to the Andamans, but don’t know what to do with it? Hand it over to the guys at riffreel and they’ll sift through your clips, edit it and add a soundtrack to create a fun story. They’ll even work with footage from smart phones and GoPros.

When: You want clip art.

bpb Buy: Cotton Candy Maker For Your Kitchen
Friday, 21 November 2014 11:19

What: Cotton Candy Maker by Nostalgia on Elitify.com, Rs 5,995.

Why: Coiffe pink clouds in your kitchen with this adorable cotton candy machine that turns bad days into fun fairs. It comes with two plastic cones and a sugar scoop (sugar not included) and is a great alternate to that microwave you were going to gift your just-married friend.

When: Now. It’s important to floss daily.

A Penthouse For Your Party?
Thursday, 20 November 2014 20:08

What: Rent Monica Chudasama Vaziralli’s Penthouse Terrace, 8th floor penthouse, Oricon House, K Dubash Marg, same building as Kaya Skin Clinic, call Deepak on 9769836640 for inquiries, location scout and price details by appointment only.

Why: An 8th floor penthouse in Kala Ghoda with a 2,500 square feet terrace, ghosts of previous pretty parties and a view of Prince of Wales Museum, is yours if you want it. For a price and one night only! To be or not to be Gatsby?

Owned by Monica Chudasama Vaziralli, famous for her soirees and often spotted on Page 3, this plush pad is rented out for parties and shoots. The terrace wraps around the building and is attached to a 1,500 square feet living room and dining hall that can also be used. Fits 120 party people (swinging of hands while dancing is accounted for in the space).

When: Now. Better safe than soiree.

Art In The Park
Thursday, 20 November 2014 19:49


What: Art in the Park, an art and culture festival at Priyadarshini Park, Nepeansea Road, between 4 pm to 10 pm, free entry.

Why: First you cribbed that Mumbai has no parks. Then you found a park, stood under a tree, and looked at your phone the entire time. That’s not what Davies’ ‘stand and stare’ meant, you know. Take some time off from your gadgets this weekend to walk through Art in the Park, a festival at PDP that will feature music performances by tabla expert Anuradha Pal and musician Aditya Kalyanpur; exhibits by students of the JJ School of Art and Raheja School of Arts; pottery and book readings for kids.

When: Garden State from November 22-23.

What's Up With Mumbai's Rooftops?
Thursday, 20 November 2014 11:09

Floating high above the traffic you’re currently navigating – Bombay, you beast! – are four rooftops where new plans are brewing. One invites you for yoga by the sea, another lets you have parties on a socialite’s penthouse terrace, while you huddle around a vegetable garden with fellow farmers on a flyover farm, yelling “winter is coming.”

I Am Alchemy: A Sea Facing Terrace To Exercise

Launching on November 25, I Am Alchemy is a 200 square feet Khar terrace with a view of the sea, the shade of palm trees and the sound of wind chimes. Here, kickboxing coach Farooq Mistry, yoga teacher Sunaina Rekhi and meditation master Mark Luburic will take small batch classes and be the start of founder Harpreet Singh’s “fitness community”. Ex marketing at Vh1 and MTV, Harpreet had this idea when he quit his job and moved to the mountains for three months. “Living in a village called Bhagsu, where people from all over the world taught all kinds of things, was like the MBA my dad always wanted me to do.”

Plans to expand I Am Alchemy include a new line of juices and fitness food.

Getting there: 20th Road, Khar West (full address will be updated as soon as the space opens), call 9820715063 to register, see the schedule of classes on the Facebook page here.

Monica Chudasama Vaziralli’s Penthouse Terrace: Rent For Your Next Party

An 8th floor penthouse in Kala Ghoda with a 2,500 square feet terrace, ghosts of previous pretty parties and a view of Prince of Wales Museum, is yours if you want it. For a price and one night only. To be or not to Gatsby? 

Owned by Monica Chudasama Vaziralli, famous for her soirees and often spotted on Page 3, this plush pad is rented out for parties and shoots, and was last seen in an ICICI commercial starring Amitabh Bachchan. The terrace wraps around the building and is attached to a 1,500 square feet living room and dining hall that can also be used. Fits 120 party people (swinging of hands while dancing is accounted for in the space).

Getting there: 8th floor penthouse, Oricon House, K Dubash Marg, same building as Kaya Skin Clinic, call Deepak on 9769836640 for inquiries, location scout and price details by appointment only.

Essential Reading Before Comic Con
Wednesday, 19 November 2014 19:11

If we say ‘Comic Con’ and there’s an empty speech bubble hanging over your head, we can help. Ahead of the annual comic convention in Mumbai on December 19, we get the deputy editor of Tinkle Comics (cue nostalgia), the creator of the first manga series in the country and also the founder of Comic Con India, among others, to help put together a required reading list for you.

Prepare for many manga titles, blood, gore, silent comics, a short story called 'Three Septembers and a January’ and another that asks this: what if Superman had been raised in the Soviet Union? 

Dolly Pahlajani, Deputy Editor, Tinkle Comics

Thirty Days of Night: This series by Steve Niles and Ben Templesmith, is my absolute favourite because of its brash, unique strategies of vampire attacks and its bold, gory art.

Lucifer: I particularly like Mike Carey's writing and he has written most of this series that revolves around its biblical namesake. It traces the Prince of Darkness' adventures in heaven, hell and everything in between.

Sandman - Fables and Reflections: This is a collection of short stories that follow the journey of Sandman, the bringer of dreams. I particularly like this story called 'Three Septembers and a January' in which one man claims to be the king of the United States of America. Brilliant storytelling by Neil Gaiman.

Lucky Luke: One of my non-horror preferences (ha!). Lucky Luke, the daredevil cowboy and his horse, Jolly Jumper, bring the Wild West alive for me. Moreover, they are created by Morris, a Belgian cartoonist whose art I admire. It is also co-written by Rene Goscinny, the same guy who wrote Asterix.

Iznogoud: Another non-horror. Another Rene Goscinny series. This French comic has me in splits whenever I read it. It's about Iznogoud, the Grand Vizier to the Caliph of Baghdad, who does everything in his power 'to become Caliph instead of the Caliph'. And his schemes are so hairbrained that one can't help but love the guy... and laugh at him.

Hush: This one's Indian. It's a silent graphic novel by Manta Ray. Being a writer, I know how hard it is to tell a story without words but this comic has done it spectacularly.

Groo the Wanderer: I absolutely love Sergio Aragones' loony art and storytelling. Groo has both and therefore, is a treat to read! It traces the adventures of a well-meaning but bumbling warrior, Groo and his dog, Rufferto. 

Batman's Arkham Asylum: Ordinarily, I steer clear of mainstream superhero comics. But this one was a compelling read. Penned by Grant Morrison and illustrated gloriously by Dave McKean, this book is madness that transcends all boundaries of thought. I love Joker and this book brings out his character to the fullest. The bonus? In the hardcover, I found the entire script written out with basic sketches and layouts!

Abhijeet Kini, Comic Artist and Illustrator, Creator, Angry Maushi series

Angry Maushi - Second Blood: It’s a dark socio-political satire which follows a typical Mumbai maushi who can’t stop complaining about everything that’s wrong with the city, from the autos to the politicians to Bollywood.

Milk and Quickies: A comic book experiment which is quite dear to me, it comprises five short stories, written by a friend, with a different art style (designed by me!) for each one.

V for Vendetta: Everyone recognises the Guy Fawkes Mask. An iconic comic which till date is a symbol for political resistance. It’s very well written and illustrated.

Red Balloon: Inflated Animals, No Egos
Thursday, 13 November 2014 17:54

What: Red Balloon service for balloon decoration, call 8087227661 or email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 Why: Get your mind and balloons blown by the guys over at Red Balloon. Call in and they’ll send over a truckload of balloons and with 100 inflated ones costing under Rs 1,000, they win over other pricey services like Party Hunterz. These come in any colour your sky desires, metallic finish ones and in shapes ranging from round and heart to Mickey Mouse. They can also send over Anil to your party, a sweet man skilled at making balloon animals. We’re take one poodle and one inflated ego, thanks!

When: You want to score some good blow.

Inside Mumbai’s Libraries
Wednesday, 12 November 2014 20:04

Silence. Dust. Spectacles on a chain. Whispering. Shushing. Cards with delay dates. Postponed speaking.

We hadn’t been to a library since college – which is depressingly long ago – until last week when we heard that National Library Week starts on November 13. We visited four libraries that you probably drive past every day but don’t know what they look like on the inside. There, we chatted with librarians, enquired about membership, and gazed through stained glass panels at piles of books.

Yearn after reading. See our Mumbai libraries slideshow here.

J N Petit Institute Library & Reading Room

Peer through stained glass panels to see readers in different colours at The JN Petit Library, started in 1856 by a group of Parsi students from Elphinstone College. The reading room here is massive, well-lit and airy (beware of dusty books) and is rumored to be the largest in Asia. JN Petit has a variety of Parsi and religious books; newspaper records from over a 100 years ago; novels in English, Hindi and Marathi and current copies of The New Yorker and Scientific American. If you’re looking for a specific title, they can order it for you, which will come in by the 26th of the month, with a priority status for the person who requested it.

On our way out, library member Dipak Bhandarkar (a semi-retired actor) told us he’s been visiting JN Petit everyday since 1964 from Bandra. “It’s like a second wife to me.” The end.

Required Reading: The library houses one of four original copies of Firdausi’s Shahnama, a hand painted and illustrated 11th century epic poem.

Librarian: Senior librarian Nisha has been here for 12 years and hates answering the question, “What is a good book to read?”

Membership Fees: Membership is priced at Rs 1,000 a year, allowing you three books for two weeks and two magazines for one week at a time. New magazines and newspapers are updated regularly; new books are acquired every month.

Getting there: 312, Dr DN road, Fort, near Khadi Bhandar, call 22048463, 22025887. Open from 7 am- to 8pm daily.

David Sassoon Library & Reading Room

Smack in the middle of Kala Ghoda, the David Sassoon Library is beautifully put together with arches and printed tiles and gardens (seriously) and wooden deck chairs for napping.  They let members sit at a picnic table in the large garden space with a book that they’ve checked out and a packed lunch (we’re thinking of the Apollo Sandwich from The Pantry). Else you can lounge while browsing through magazines on the vintage deck chairs in the reading room’s balcony on the first floor. Both make for excellent spots when you’re looking for some peace and quiet in the city. Shhh! No talking! Apart from books on architecture, the arts and more notably, on palaces in Rajasthan, the library gets updated twice a year, since they aren't well funded.

Required Reading: They’re so proud of a book of letters from 1798 to the British regent Queen Anne from her secretary Lord Bolingbroke.

Librarian: Vaidehi is always eager to chat, has been there for about a year and a half and has previously worked at JJ Library of Architecture as well as the Mumbai University Library for over thirty years.

Membership Fees: Rs 5,000 a year allows you to check out three books or magazines at a time for 15 days.

Getting there: 152, Mahatma Gandhi Road, near Westside, Fort, Kala Ghoda, call 22843703, see their website here.

How To Be The Best Cat Lady
Tuesday, 11 November 2014 19:09

Actress Kalki Koechlin doesn’t have a dozen cats, but she does wonder about her potential to be a crazy cat lady, considering people often think she’s referring to her boyfriend, when really, she’s just talking about her pet kitty Dosa.  “We love spending time together, sitting on the couch watching House of Cards or Masters of Sex after a long day at work,” says Kalki, who adopted two stray cats Masala and Dosa six and a half years ago, but Masala ran away soon after.

Dosa batters even more now, and since his adoption has been in a bunch of photo shoots for PETA as well as other prominent newspapers.

Now your cat has neither Dosa’s fame nor Choupette Lagerfeld’s sarcasm, and fashion empire-owning master. The cat has you. You’re crazy + you love kitties, so you may as well be the best damn cat lady there is.

Here are some feline footnotes to help, a quick list that leaves out the usual grooming salons and pet stores so easily available online, to bring you the best recommendations from cat ladies in town. PS: It includes how to get Shapoor (of Shapoorji Pallonji Group)'s wife to groom your cat. Meow indeed.

Buy Organic German Kitty Litter

It’s like a fancy sand pit! Cat's Best German organic litter is about Rs 1,200 a bag. More expensive but much better than the Super Cat brand (which is everyone’s go to) because it lasts longer and is flushable!

Order online on http://jawsnpaws.in, Rs 1,200 a bag.

Get A Business Magnate’s Wife To Groom Your Cat

Posh cat ladies swear by Behroze, who happens to be Shapoor (of Shapoorji Pallonji Group)'s wife. She works on the first floor of Pet Zone and calls all the animals that come in for grooming by her dog’s name no matter what the poor pet’s name is. She’s incredibly gentle, and especially good with cats. 

Green Field Building, first floor, Maharshi Karve Road, Churchgate, call 66153497.

There’s also Peter who comes over to your home for cat grooming. Call 9930725614.

Get A Cat Sitter Who’s Studying To Be a Vet

Recommended by a friend of bpb, Jatin is studying to be a vet, and will come over to watch your cat(s) if you’re going on vacation. But if having someone stay at your home while you’re away creeps you out, you can also drop your pet off at his place.

Call 9820741967, charges about Rs 1,000 per night .

Buy Ayurvedic Shampoo

Most of our cat ladies recommended Himalaya Herbals for pet shampoos that are gentle and can be used regularly without any fear of your cat’s delicate hair falling out.

Available at all pet stores.

Get An Engraved Pet Tag

Because a regular one just won’t do. Bell the cat with adorable brass tags that come in circle, heart and fish shapes, and can be engraved with personal details in a jiffy.

Shake Hands, Daulat Shirin Co-Operative Housing Society, 31 D, shop no. 4, near Colaba Post Office, call 22162869, start at Rs 150.

Lie In Wait For Gourmet Meals

While most cat owners admit to spoiling their pets with fresh fish or boiled chicken liver, Harley’s Corner is soon launching gourmet meals for cats that will include mixed seafood, chicken and shrimp meals. 

Visit http://harleyscorner.in/

Buy A Cat Hammock

That also doubles up as a scratchboard. Nailed it!

Available on Petsgonuts.com, Rs 1,525, ships all over India.

Visit Tried & Tested Vets

Dr Leena Dalal, is wonderful with cats and has a great facility. She also sells food that is good for cats’ kidneys as male cats are more susceptible to renal failure. Oval Maidan, call 66153497.

Dr.Dipti Bhalerao is extremely patient. 4/5, Silk House, 630 JSS Road, Navjeevan Wadi Lane, Dhobi Talao. 

Dr.Karkare at Happy Tails is gentle and experienced. Shop No 1/2, Mangal Smruti Building 414, 14th Road, Khar (W), call 26483199.

The husband-wife vet duo at the Small Animal Clinic are kind and always have a compliment for you which is nice. 5, Ganpat Niwas, 13th Road, Khar (W), call 26058550.

Dr Sunita Patel comes highly recommended by most cat owners in the neighbourhood. Plot no. 3, Kartik Building, New India Society, 12th Road, Juhu, call 9871581769.

Dr Swali is experienced, offers pet supplies and employs good assistants that understand cats. Clinics in Mahakali, Andheri (E), Santacruz (W), Lokhandwala, call 9821120058.

Dr Ganesh Nayak and Dr Ankita at Animals Matter To Me came recommended by a couple of different cat owners. Tulsi Bungalow, near Tab Cab, Marve, Malad (W), view the Facebook page here.

If you have a stray cat in the area that needs desperate medical attention, WSD employs two vets full time on their pay roll who come and take a look at any animals for FREE. Call their helpline on 64222838 and they’ll be there within the hour.

Read To Your Cat

Wired: Garfield Creator Jim Davis on Garfield’s Influence in the Age of the Internet Cat.

Nymag: The 50 Most Fabulous Cat Ladies of All Time!

Washington Post: When Uber Delivered Kittens for Cuddles at Work.

Forbes: Cats on the Internet: A Psychological Explanation.

Kitty party of contributors: Aalekh Kapoor, Meenakshi Reddy Madhavan, Rainer Nair, Sanjana Bubber, Pratyush Bose, Sarah Sham, Suprita Mitter, World For All.

Picture courtesy: Kalki Koechlin

Gogo & His Ghagra: 20 Years Of Andaz Apna Apna
Tuesday, 11 November 2014 11:00

As Andaz Apna Apna completes 20 years and comes up for re-release this month, we reminisce while film experts like Anupama Chopra, Rajeev Masand and even 'Gogoji' himself, tell bpb why the movie gathered so many groupies.

 In a game of word association, we say ‘sari’ you say ‘blouse’, we say ‘ghagra’ you think ‘Gogo’? Then you’re probably a kid who grew up in the 90s, and whether Bollywood featured in your entertainment catalogue or not, you’ve watched Andaz Apna Apna(AAA) enough number of times to quote directly from Crime Master Gogo and gang, and you understand why twenty years later, the Internet’s heart still flutters when someone Googles the film.

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