Vivanta by Taj - Malabar
Taj's latest brand, Vivanta (unveiled in 2010) stands for laid-back luxury, as reflected by this South Indian retreat, perched comfortably on Lake Kochi. Despite their Victorian decor, the 96 rooms include a range of seamlessly integrated tech amenities, ranging from 32" LCD televisions and ergonomically-designed work desks to dual massage showerheads, appealing to business and leisure travelers alike. The hotel's Jiva Spa offers an extensive list of Ayurveda treatments, including a blissful magnolia, lavender, and jasmine facial, while the traditional Rice Boat restaurant--housed under an authentic cane roof and featuring views of colonial Cochin warehouses --serves freshly caught Keralan bounty like snapper, soft-shell crab, and tiger prawns.
Congratulations to Mei Lin, winner of Top Chef Season 12.