New Delhi, May 9 (IANS) From a platter of Indian sweets to large-sized coffee mugs and a personal masseur, everything was customised to Hillary Clinton’s tastes. After all, the Tata suite of Taj Palace hotel seems to be the chosen address for the US secretary of state whenever she is in Delhi.
The hotel had hosted her in 2009 and then again in 2011. In fact, the Tata suite had hosted Clinton during her trip last year and she returned there for her two-day stay in the capital that ended Tuesday.
According to hotel staff, special preparations were made for her this time too.
The in-house lifestyle store, Taj Khazana, flew in master craftsmen from across the country to showcase handicrafts and art work such as Gond paintings from Madhya Pradesh, Phad paintings from Rajasthan and pieces of Garva and Tarakashi work as a part of Clinton’s shopping experience.
Rajesh Wadhwa, executive chef, Taj Palace, who has served Clinton before, was familiar with her tastes.
Some of the hotel’s signature dishes – pan seared foie gras on brioche, preserved ginger, warm duck dressing, Camembert cheese souffle, Spanish paprika sauce, roasted Chilean seabass, fava conchigli, liquorice sauce, penne in Perigord black truffle sauce and sun dried tomatoes – were offered to her.
Hotel officials claimed that her favourite Indian preferences from Masala Art, the hotel’s Indian fine dining restaurant, were chargrilled jumbo prawns and creamy chicken kebab with burnt garlic.
A sumptuous breakfast of idli, vada and other south Indian delights was also served during her Tuesday meeting with Indian External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna.
Incidentally, Clinton also chose a Taj hotel, Taj Bengal, for her stay in Kolkata in 1997. This time, Clinton was in India on a three-day visit that began in the eastern metropolis.
The Tata suite at the Taj Palace here is outstandingly crafted and one of the largest in India, combining luxurious environs with modern amenities.
It has hosted several luminaries such as outgoing French president Nicolas Sarkozy and first lady Carla Sarkozy Bruni, Chinese premier Wen Jiabao, former Russian president Dmitry Medvedev as well as Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda and first lady Hitomi Noda since its opening in 2010.