Gurgaon is fast-emerging as the next entertainment junction in NCR. With top-notch venues offering live entertainment, world-class micro breweries, bowling alleys, amusement parks and high-rise malls housing global brands and other avenues, the city has come of age giving the national capital a tough competition.
"There was a time when we had to go to Delhi to watch cultural events, but now most top performances are hosted here," said Ruchika Rai of DLF Phase 2. "There is a huge demand for theatrical and cultural programmes in Gurgaon. Groups from across India come here to perform and even run double shows in one day," said Kamini Singh, corporate head of Epicentre.
“I don't mind shelling out R25 or 50 extra for a ticket, if I get to watch a play in Gurgaon. It saves me a lot of time and tension of travelling to Delhi," said Renu Gupta, a regular at the events.
Live shows of Zangoora and international magician Franz Harary at the Kingdom of Dreams (KoD) are a major attraction in the city. "Facilities offered at KoD have made it a must visit," said actor Rishi Kapoor, who visited the Millennium City two days ago.
The presence of international hotels like the Westin, Leela and Trident has made Gurgaon the preferred choice of most film stars.
The city recently hosted the Golden Kela Awards for the first time. “It was a bit more expensive, but convenient. Film personalities like Vishal Bhardwaj, Abhishek Chaubey, Cyrus Broacha were staying at the Leela - the complex where the function was organised - so they didn't have to brave the traffic to reach the venue,” says Jatin Verma, the organiser.
Bowling alley, Blu-O, at the Ambience Mall is a destination that film stars like Deepika Padukone, Kareena Kapoor, Ajay Devgn, Ranbir Kapoor and Priyanka Chopra frequent to promote their films and interact with fans. One can find mementos, with their initials, here.
An official of the Haryana Urban Development Authority said Gurgaon will have many entertainment avenues in the near future to host large events.
“An amusement park will come up on 58 acres in Sector 29 and 52, while an exhibition-cum-convention centre has been planned at KMP Expressway junction. The government also plans an European technology park on 1,000 acres near Palli village in Aravali,” he said.