Its the end of another year, and the newspapers and magazines are busy honoring Bombay's top-achievers for 2003. Here we would also like to pause and say a word of thanks to all those who were the actual backbone of the entertainment and lifestyle industry of Bombay in the last 12 months, the ones who make it all happen. We think they definitely deserve some credit for all the killing work that they put in to ensure that the rest of us have a great time!!
Best Public Relations Executives: Yvonne Rodrigues (Indage Hotels), Anjali Malhotra (JW Marriott), Jaya Joshi (Hyatt Regency). These ladies have tough briefs in a fickle market, but they have managed to pull off their assignments with unprecedented aplomb, propelling their client brands to the top of the country's entertainment rankings!
Best Event Manager: Stuti Jalan (Crosshair Communications). This 20-something girl has the knack of transforming the most monotonous launches and parties into fun events that everyone dies to get invited to. Her repertoire of novel ideas is seemingly endless, which is the reason that her two-year-old firm, of which she is the proprietor, holds such prestigious accounts like Provogue, Oikos, Exert Gym and Fosters.
Restauranteur of the Year: Vikrant Chougule of Indage Hotels. Promoters of Athena, Zaha, Sin, Mimosa...need we say any more??
Best Restaurant: Caliente, Olive. We just can't condense the beauty of these places in a couple of lines. You have to be there to understand this!
Best Lounge Bar: Athena, Zaha. Hip, happening and glamorous, these places are where Mumbai gravitates when it wants to put its hair down and party the night away!
Most Innovative Concept: Provogue Lounge. Provogue boutique by day, lounge bar by night, this has to be the best example of effective space utilization in a space-starved city like Mumbai.
Best Writer: Sangeeta Wadhwani (L'Officiel). Very few journalists have the ability to think beyond the box. Sangeeta can take the most jaded of topics and infuse new life into it by introducing fresh perspectives and innovative approaches. Also, her book, Shakti in the City, is the most terrific collection of short stories on contemporary Bombay that I have come across in a long, long time!
Most Professional Celebs: Jackie Shroff, Sanjeev Kapoor. Do you know that Sanjeev Kapoor shall work all night long to help you out if you need a rush article for the magazine; or that Jackie Shroff spent a major part of last New Year Eve finishing an article that he had promised to India Today Plus, simply because he believes that fulfilling a commitment is more important than anything else? And this was when he was on vacation with his family in Goa!
Most Down-to-Earth Celeb: Ashutosh Gowariker, Nethra Raghuraman, Poonam Dhillon. With the phenomenal success that these three have achieved in the fields of films and modelling respectively, one would expect them to be completely stuck-up brats. But meeting the unassuming Ashutosh, vivacious Nethra and unpretentious Poonam is like a breath of fresh air amidst the shallowness, ego battles and hypocricy that surrounds most of Bombay's celeb-circuit. Wish a few others took a leaf from their book!