Mumbai's new open Aer bar, poised on the edge of a sky scraper
Aer, the highest rooftop bar in India is open at the Four Seasons Hotel in Mumbai. Thirty four floors above street level, sunset happy hour for Moët & Chandon by the glass and a panoramic view of old and new Mumbai in one clean sweep.
Put it like that and you'll have 700 people attending the opening party. Which is exactly what happened and the next day nobody could remember a thing.
A place that lets you experience and appreciate both old and new Mumbai.— Vincent Hoogewijs, General Manager, Four Seasons Hotel, Mumbai
So I went back, for a good look at Mumbai’s best view and it was still there. I could see Haji Ali, the race course, the old Mill areas, the new sky scrapers, city lights and the sea. It's windy and dimly lit, but black shawls, slick mini torches (to read the Lebanese and Mediterranean tapas menu) and weights to hold down champagne flutes, off set the high altitude conditions.
Aer's design, with an abundance of mirrors and glass, feels clubby at the staircase but the roof top furniture is minimalist and luminous and despite what that sounds like, is also comfortable. That's because the design team includes Bob Bilkey, Oscar Llynas, Nozer Wadia, Ritu Nanda, Elsie Nanji and Annalisa Beliettati. Organic industrial designer Ross Lovegrove’s 'Love Bench' features at the entrance. Rhythm and blues music adds further silkiness to this much-awaited Mumbai bar and the stage is set.
At 7:30pm on a weekday you'd feel out of place if you weren't a man wearing a white shirt, entertaining a client from Europe. I'd vote for this as a venue for pre-party gaming on weekends. Or as an in between spot waiting for evening to turn to night. It doesn't know it yet but Aer is a crucial piece of the puzzle in Mumbai's pitch to be the most entertaining city in Asia, in the coming decade.
Aer, Four Seasons Hotel, 114 Dr. E. Moses Road, Worli; tel. +91 (0) 22 2481 8444. Moet Chandon at Rs 500 a glass. Open from 5.30pm–1.30am daily.