Malavika’s Mumbaistan: Jaipur Massive, Again
He’s been referred to as the ‘millennial Hugh Hefner,’ perhaps because 22-year-old Padmanabh (Pacho) Singh, the polo-playing scion of the erstwhile ruling family of Jaipur, has earned the reputation of hosting India’s most glamorous parties at his fairy tale palaceUpdated: Mar 16, 2020 01:25 IST
He’s been referred to as the ‘millennial Hugh Hefner,’ perhaps because 22-year-old Padmanabh (Pacho) Singh, the polo-playing scion of the erstwhile ruling family of Jaipur, has earned the reputation of hosting India’s most glamorous parties at his fairy tale palace in Jaipur, to which he occasionally shows up in a stylish velvet bathrobe, much like Hefner was known to do, at his Playboy Mansion. Referred to as ‘Jaipur Massive’, the occasions are seen to have once again galvanised the international jet set and put ‘Jaipoh’ back on the glam-map, something only achieved by his great grandmother, Gayatri Devi, who had been toasted all her life by European monarchy, Hollywood stars and café society alike, thus enhancing the Pink City’s mystique.
Since her passing in 2009 at 90, it was said that Jaipur had lost one of its most sparkling jewels – one that had been an immeasurable asset in bringing the world to its door. There would never be another royal who would capture the world’s imagination, royal watchers had been heard to rue.
Well 11 years later, it appears that the Rajmata’s mantle has passed to her great grandson. In a very short time, the boarding and British public school-educated Singh seems to have caught the world’s attention – from walking the red carpet at Milan for Dolce and Gabbana, to listing a suite at his palace on Airbnb – the swashbuckling millennial seems to revel in his role as a ‘Gen Next Prince’. Last week, along with his friend Claire Deroo, he threw open the doors of the City Palace Jaipur for his annual Holi party. And expectedly, it was a magnet for the young and restless from all corners of India and abroad. “One of the main attractions was the ‘Bhaang Lassi’ counter,” said a Mumbai high-flying society gadfly, a fixture on the scene. The after-party moved to the palace rooftop, where there was nonstop dancing for a full seven hours with DJ’s such as Vishal Shetty and Jade putting on a deep house and techno performance. It was surreal.”
And yes, we are informed that there were hordes of well-heeled foreigners lapping up the heady ‘palace experience’ and more importantly, spending those much-needed euros and dollars, just like in the good old days.
Against All Odds
“Got a flood of beautiful messages from audiences all over who got a chance to watch it. They got a spark of joy in these unfortunate times, which feels great,” says director Homi Adajania about his film Angrezi Medium which released this Friday, smack in the middle of the closure of theatres across the country due to the Covid-19 outbreak. The majority of critics who’d watched the story of a doting single dad intent on making his daughter’s dreams of foreign education come true, against a backdrop of small town India, had been charmed by its heart-warming tale he says.
About the latest challenge the film faces (after all the director had managed to complete it against all odds in spite of his leading man Irrfan Khan being diagnosed with a serious illness), the deep-sea diving Parsi from south Mumbai appeared sanguine.
“It was too late for us to stop the release as it had already released globally a day before,” he said, adding, “The Covid-19 scenario is unprecedented. Once all this blows over, it will all work out.”
All gyms closed in Mumbai. Film stars will have to WhatsApp their gym looks to Viral Bhayani.
-Kamlesh K Singh
In these times of Covid-19 travel restrictions, spare a thought for someone who by his own admission “is addicted to travel and loves everything about it”.
Entrepreneur Sajjid Mitha, who circumnavigates the globe along with attractive wife Laveena Advani Mitha at a seemingly dizzying pace, and who had four scheduled trips for work and pleasure coming up in March and April alone, was all set to embark once more on his globetrotting when he says he received a much-needed rude awakening in the form of a WhatsApp message.
“Like so many who have been putting up a brave front about the risks associated with coronavirus, I too believed that I was young, fit and above all, unafraid,” he’d posted this weekend on social media. “That was until Laveena shared with me a European doctor’s opinion which she had received as a WA forward this morning. For me, it was the missing link – ‘a slap in my face,” he wrote.
In the article, the doctor had advised that the only solution to contain the spread of the virus was to impose strict social restrictions. “Do not forget that as a carrier you can spread the disease to others who are more vulnerable. People who may not have the same immunity and fitness levels you have,” the post had read.
Mitha says this is what immediately prompted him to cancel all plans for travel.
“We’re spending our time in each other’s company which we so love – catching up on our reading, watching shows on Netflix, researching the net to remain updated on the progress of the pandemic while avoiding overreacting to the barrage of WA messages on the subject,” he says.
Of course, travel remains on their horizon though. He says the couple is planning a post-pandemic holiday’ once things settle down.