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Eat, shop, eat again

Here’s a plan for you to spend the entire day at Lajpat Nagar’s busy Central Market. Get down at the Lajpat Nagar Metro Station. Exit from gate number 2 and walk down straight to the market.

entertainment Updated: Jan 15, 2011 00:31 IST
Vaishali Bhambri
Vaishali Bhambri
Hindustan Times

This south Delhi market has something to offer for all age groups. Least known by its original name —Pushpa Market — the Lajpat Nagar’s Central Market has a wide variety of women apparels, footwear, utensils, handlooms, accessories and eating joints. It has its share of glitzy showrooms too, but the bazaar’s roadside vendors are a major attraction. Get down at the Lajpat Nagar Metro Station. Exit from gate number 2 and walk down straight to the market.

Start with Golden Fiesta Pastry Shop. Don’t go by the name, the place also serves grilled sandwich, burger, sweet corn and the Chinese chaat, a mini platter of spring rolls, noodles, manchurian and honey chilli potatoes. Have grilled sandwich priced at Rs.40 and hot coffee priced at Rs.20 for breakfast. It would act as a fuel for you to roam around in the huge market, all day long.

Move to the only mall in the market, Competent Cine Court TDI mall (popularly known as 3c’s). Book your tickets and watch a noon show of a Bollywood film. Don’t skip the nachos and salsa dip in the intermission. The ceiling of the single screen theatre complex has a ‘universe type’ of appeal. We mean to say there is artificial lighting that look like stars and keep changing colours. Ticket price: Rs.175 for classic.

If you don’t wish to watch a movie, then take a walk in the mall. Try the honey chilli potatoes for Rs.95 or the chicken soup priced at Rs.130, served at Chopsticks at the mall’s food court. If Chinese food is not your pick, go for the Mughlai cuisine at Street Foods of India or south Indian food at Sagar Ratna. If interested in trying out some roadside food, go to the Chinese food van parked outside the mall. The egg chowmein priced at Rs. 45 is popular here.

Enough of eating, it’s now time for some shopping. The market is popular for a variety of salwar suits. The prices of suit pieces start at Rs.350. Many stores sell kurtis for as low as Rs.150. We like the collection at Shenhaai, Sabhyata and Westside, for their options for mix and match kurta-churidars. For some menswear, we will suggest Biglife Youth (earlier called Ritu Wears) for college type clothes and its men’s showroom for the office-goer look. Also, there are roadside stalls selling fake ‘branded’ sweatshirts, track pants and sweaters.

For wedding shopping, consider Novelty, Bombay Selections and CTC Plaza for bridal wear and Manyavar and Kurta Palace for the groom’s attire. Don’t miss the Anjali Bookworld that sells some rare second hand classic novels. The 15-year-old bookstore has more than 50,000 books spread across the shop. Alexander Solzhenitsyn’s The Gulag Archipelago is available in a seemingly untouched hardbound copy for only Rs.100, after bargaining, of course.

To beat the chill, eat the cold. Try the kaala khatta ice chuski from one of the many roadside vendors you may have seen by now. They are priced at Rs.15. Otherwise, have momos from the stall put up by two ‘aunties’ from Tibet. The steamed momos are priced at Rs.25 for vegetarian and Rs.35 for the chicken filling. The chaat lovers may try golgappas or papdi chaat from Keventers. Don’t miss the ram laddoo, also known as gulgule, served with grated radish and spicy green chutney.

Once done with the clothes shopping, you can look for matching chappals or mojris. The roadside vendors and stores sell stylish footwear including slip-ons, flats, peep toes and stilettos. At Kinston, popularly known as Kin’s, footwear, bags and clutch start at Rs.295. You may also find attractive and affordable neck pieces at the roadside junk jewellery kiosks. Don’t forget that bargain is your mantra as these vendors may quote a steep price. If the bhaiyya says Rs.300, bargain well, as you may get the deal at Rs.100.

If you want some gold or silver jewellery, this market is ideal. Visit Keshosons for some college type trendy silver jewellery and Dhirsons Jewellers for gold and diamond. Right outside these shimmery showrooms, sit the mehndi wallas. Since you are done with your share of shopping, get beautiful mehndi designs done on your hand, starting at Rs.25 for each hand. We will suggest Tiwari Mehndi Art because of the variety of designs it offers.

It’s dinner time. If still craving for fastfood go to KFC or McDonald’s. For a proper dinner, head to Bikanerwala Sweets and Restaurant. The tandoori platter served here for Rs.140 is filling and value for money. Also try the hot imarti priced at Rs.13 per piece for dessert. It’s fattening but then this is Lajpat.

First Published: Jan 14, 2011 18:14 IST