For jewelry designer Lena Skadegard, New Delhi is replete with color and inspiration. Here, her top picks for visiting this vibrant metropolis, from the city’s most elegant gardens to its most artisan-minded boutique.
India International Centre
I often stay here or meet family and friends at 5 p.m., to have tea on the terrace overlooking the fountains, or to drink in the bar next to lily ponds. The Centre is adjacent to Lodhi Gardens and has its own beautifully planted, ever-changing gardens. The lectures, readings, dance, and classical Indian music recitals are almost all free and generally of excellent quality. No membership is required for the cultural programs, which are brilliant. Definitely worth writing into your agenda while visiting Delhi.
Triveni Kala Sangam
A lovely space to meet friends for lunch or tea—take time to visit the many small art galleries and exhibitions. There is a small outdoor amphitheater looking onto a stage, which is another open gallery. The school also has a covered ceramics area that feels like a shady oasis.
Triveni Tea Terrace, College of Fine Arts at the University of New Delhi
205 Tansen Marg, New Delhi, near Bengali Market
If you can brave Hauz Khas, which is less treacherously crowded early in the day, visit this café during your meander. Quiet, accommodating and well designed, with good light, innovative cool drinks, and meals.
Hands down, the strangest and most unexpectedly alluring market in New Delhi, with something for everyone. At once a bustling parcel of history and a reflection of the massive shifts India continues to evolve through. Everyone stops by for one thing or another. And it’s just a walk (and a few leaps) from Lodhi Gardens.
The Rose Hotel
Just a truly wonderful hotel—elegant, quirky, aesthetically compelling, run by a French couple. The interior changes often, alternating between rustic, expressive and whimsical. Great for meetings or evenings even if you’re not staying there. Beautiful French press coffee.
This is a great shop, with truly original, sophisticated and wearable design, all of which is firmly rooted in the history of traditional craft, including hand-loomed fabrics, indigo, and natural dyes. Loomed denim natural indigo jeans, one of a kind wax-resist and shibori silk chiffon dresses.
Gardens like no other, protected by the Archeological Survey of India. Take a gorgeous walk amongst bodhi trees—the trees of awakening—as well as rose gardens, jungles, tombs from the 15th century, and the stunning architecture of J.A. Stein’s Glass House. Go every morning, early, for a morning constitutional, or on Sunday for a picnic. Do feed the dogs.
This organization was created to educate children who had been living on the streets. Learn more about Karmmarg—and consider donating time and energy.
Shop Lena Skadegard
Read more about Lena’s history with India in Journal – Profile : Lena Skadegard
Photographed in Dehli by Julie Hall