Living in Gurgaon

#1 May 14th, 2009, 19:29
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#1
Hi all,

Newbie to the site.

I am moving out with work to live / work in Gurgaon for 6 months from mid-June.

Feeling my way round all the excellent information already on the site, but one initial query I have is on the key point of where to live.

My work have offered (if I wish) to have a serviced apartment in The Palms club in Gurgaon. This all looks very attractive from their website but I fear may feel a little sterile and odd to live there for 6 months.

Could any locals comment on this and suggest alternative best spots to be looking (apologies, I do not know helpful information like available budget, though teh fact they are willing to pay for the serviced apartment may give some steer).

I would really like 2 bedrooms to accomodate visitors, an outdoor space would be fantastic (don't know how realistic that is).

Should I definitely be looking in Gurgaon or is it realistic / preferable to live in South Delhi and commute (car / driver are provided)?

All wisdom hugely appreciated.

Many thanks.
#2 May 14th, 2009, 19:54
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#2
It'll be a good idea to stay at the Palms club in Gurgaon. Commute from South Delhi will be painful.......
The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes - Marcel Proust
#3 May 14th, 2009, 20:11
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#3
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cachaca View Post Hi all,


I am moving out with work to live / work in Gurgaon for 6 months from mid-June.

My work have offered (if I wish) to have a serviced apartment in The Palms club in Gurgaon. This all looks very attractive from their website but I fear may feel a little sterile and odd to live there for 6 months.

Many thanks.
I am ex-pat living in the Palms. Love it!
Close to the malls, bars, restaurants etc.

Advice: If you can wrangle it out of your employers, try to get them to pay for a 6 month membership to the Palms Club (also called the Patio).

It's about 30 yards from the Palms, has a nice atmosphere and will give you a place to unwind, without having to drive.
Good luck, and PM once you get here - we'll get together if you wish.
#4 May 14th, 2009, 21:54
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#4
By all means, if you work in Gurgaon, try to live there also! If you have to commute from South-Delhi daily you'll be stuck in endless traffic jams, especially when monsoon starts.
#5 May 14th, 2009, 22:15
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#5
You definitely don't want to commute from South Delhi to Gurgaon -- I lived & worked in Gurgaon from 2004-2008 and people commuting from South Delhi took at least an hour each way and often more in maddening traffic.

The Palms also has a health club on the grounds called Ozone. Small by US standards (e.g. 24 Hour Fitness) but a decent weight room, treadmills, sauna, steam rooms etc. Very nice place by Delhi standards, though not cheap. I think I paid ~Rs. 30000 for a one-year membership, when exchange rates were much worse than they are now.

Overall the Palms is a nice upscale place, and suggest that you grab it. Would be happy comment on any other Gurgaon questions, as I lived there for a few years...
Last edited by curtdfw; May 14th, 2009 at 22:19.. Reason: adds
#6 May 15th, 2009, 05:00
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#6
Thanks all for the tips and views.

A couple of last questions:

- Do any of the serviced apartments there have 2 bedrooms? Bit of a detailed Q I know.

- How many 'residents' are there? Was a bit put off because it sounded a bit weird to live in a hotel environment, but if there are a few residents that would normalise it a bit.

Thanks again.
#7 May 15th, 2009, 06:15
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#7
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cachaca View Post
- Do any of the serviced apartments there have 2 bedrooms? Bit of a detailed Q I know.


Don't believe so, but give them a call:
http://www.thepalms.in/index.asp

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cachaca View Post
- How many 'residents' are there? Was a bit put off because it sounded a bit weird to live in a hotel environment, but if there are a few residents that would normalise it a bit.
We're not talking a huge number of rooms (I'd guess <50) but, again, give them a call.
#8 May 15th, 2009, 08:46
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#8
I could also recommend medical and dental resources in the neighborhood that I used during my years there; it's handy not to have to figure this stuff out when you're in the throes of Delhi Belly.

Send me a Private Message if you're interested...
#9 May 15th, 2009, 14:47
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#9
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cachaca View Post Thanks all for the tips and views.

A couple of last questions:

- Do any of the serviced apartments there have 2 bedrooms? Bit of a detailed Q I know.

- How many 'residents' are there? Was a bit put off because it sounded a bit weird to live in a hotel environment, but if there are a few residents that would normalise it a bit.

Thanks again.
Sorry, we are talking about 2 different 'The Palms'.

The one I live in is South City 1 and is almost all residential - families, expats, just a mix!

I think there is another Palms that is more service type apartments. Upscale - but don't know much about it.
Sorry for the confusion.
#10 May 15th, 2009, 21:48
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#10
Quote:
Originally Posted by AwayFromHome View Post Sorry, we are talking about 2 different 'The Palms'.

The one I live in is South City 1 and is almost all residential - families, expats, just a mix!

I think there is another Palms that is more service type apartments. Upscale - but don't know much about it.
Sorry for the confusion.

No worries!

I've decided to turn it down anyway, and so any good tips on apartments and buildings / areas warmly welcomed!
#11 May 15th, 2009, 22:49
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#11
Are you looking for furnished? Assume so, but that's going to limit the choice considerably. There are agencies that rent furnishings, but I'm way out of date on pricing. Keep in mind that you'd need to rent appliances, A/C etc.

Some comments from my years there:

1. The Palms isn't a bad location at all, and you wouldn't have to worry about cleaning, security, hiring a maid etc. Most flat leases in Delhi are for 11 months, though your employer may be able to help there. For a six-month gig I'd jump on it.

2. A consideration is that there's no equivalent of a multiple listing service in India. Any property dealer you or your employer go to will have access to or knowledge of a limited number of properties, though there's limited networking with each other. Again, your employer may help. The property agent is not your friend -- think used car salesman.

3. Look for at least 3 bedrooms -- 2 BR places will tend toward the tiny side. Also, square footage statements are generous to say the least -- they count footage of balconies, common areas and possibly toilet seats in their calculations.

4. Insist on 100% power backup. Electricity is very unreliable in Gurgaon and you're going to be there for most of the hot months.

5. Try to have your employer rent the place on your behalf. As a foreigner you can be conned easily, and they won't be. Also, company leases can typically negotiate smaller deposits (2 months instead of 3).

6. Don't know your country of origin, but in general westerners are desirable tenants, as they're less likely to cause trouble and more likely to pay on time. Take advantage of that.

That said, I've lived in Windsor Court (DLF Phase IV), and Heritage City (DLF Phase II). Both have good security and 100% power backup.

Windsor Court is a smaller development of 3-4 BR flats, great location for walking to shopping.

Heritage City is a much larger development of 2-3-4 BR places. Adjacent to malls, but it's on MG Road just adjacent to the malls, and the traffic is horrible, especially since they're building the Metro station right in front of it. That said, I had a great flat there.

Check out this site for info:
http://www.99acres.com/Delhi-Real-Estate.htm
#12 May 16th, 2009, 11:56
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#12
Cachaca, I think curtdfw gave some excellent advice. I don't know this 'The Palms' but he does and with his general remarks on the rental market here he's dead on the money.

If it's for 6 months I'd go for it also.

If you want to find a place yourself there's a million things you need to keep in mind that you won't immediately think of because they're obvious in the west but not here. As said, power supply is a major thing, there's also water supply, build quality, are the windows well-sealed (if not you'll get an inch of dust on all your stuff) etc etc.

If you need to rent furnishings, keep in mind that it's very hard to find acceptable quality stuff that looks good to a westerner, except at astronomical prices.
#13 May 16th, 2009, 21:07
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#13
Having a serviced apartment will leave you with fewer headaches and more time to enjoy and explore Delhi and India. They're used to westerners, and with your employer's support you'll have an easier time of it there: No housekeeper issues, dealing with minor repairs, utility bills etc. There are other serviced apartment providers (and you could probably find something with a kitchen if that's a consideration), but the Palms having a restaurant, bar, gym etc. is pretty handy. It may be a bit on the sterile side, but not to worry -- 100% India non-sterility is right outside the gates.

The comment by dillichaat about dust in Delhi is no joke. It's the dustiest place I've ever lived. My housekeeper mopped the floors twice daily. You don't want to be cleaning up your flat, and for westerners, learning housekeeper/maid management takes some time and frustration.
#14 May 17th, 2009, 00:02
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#14
Thanks all for some fantastically helpful replies.

I must admit to be torn betwen the ease and positive view for The Palms stated here, and the fact that having a good kitchen (I enjoy cooking myself) and also having 2 bedrooms were amongst my key minimum requirements.

I will wrestle with this more but the information provided has been invaluable.

On an unrelated point, I could do with a couple of new lightweight suits but thought it would be best to wait until I get to India for the price and more appropriate fabrics for the climate.

Could anyone recommend a tailor in Gurgaon (or New Delhi) who I could pop to in my first week or two to get these and roughly what price I sholuld be looking at for good quality tailor made suit(s) (2 pairs of trousers with each).

Thanks again and hopefully see some of you soon!
#15 May 17th, 2009, 00:24
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#15
If you've never had a custom-made suit you're in for a treat. The best tailor in Delhi is Vaish and Son up in CP. Not the cheaper and more common fused cloth but proper bespoke floating canvas used in construction. Big range of cloth from India, England, Italy etc. The last suit I had made there was in summer 2007: 2-piece single-breasted lightweight Italian wool in a Zegna knockoff pattern for about $600. Actual Zegna cloth would have been about $1000. You can certainly spend less. I got a double-breasted navy blazer for about $275.

Figure 2-3 fittings before delivery. Plan on delays: "no electricity at the factory" will be one of them.

http://www.vaish.com/

http://www.indianembassy.org/US_Medi...ed%20Price.htm

On the related topic of shirts, there are lots of tailors in Khan Market. I tended to use Grover and Sons as they had the best selection of cloth, but there are many others. Consistency is a problem, so I'd suggest taking a shirt with a fit you really like and tell them to copy it -- you'll get much better results.

For suits and shirts you'll be expected to pay for the cloth (probably about 60-75% of the price) at time of order and the balance on delivery. Cash is highly preferred, and will generally get you a better price (always ask for the cash price)and typically avoids the 12.5% VAT charges.

Btw, have you read Holy Cow by Sarah MacDonald and City of Djinns by William Dalrymple? Both are great foreigner-in-Delhi stories

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