By Kristy Alpert
I felt oddly at ease as I stood in a sea of bold colors and glittering lights, wrapped in silk and draped in jewels with the warm night air of Mumbai acting as a shawl to my bare and freshly hennaed arms.
The blush-toned bubbles were still sparkling to the top of my Champagne flute as a waiter approached with a bottle to splash a few more drops of Billecart Salmon Champagne into my glass.
I was in Mumbai at a Diwali (“the festival of lights”) celebration, and, although it was my first time wearing a sari and my first time in India, there was something magically familiar about the scene that was playing out before my eyes. Almost like I had had this dream before.
Only now, I wasn’t dreaming.
I was invited among a host of socialites, lifestyle influencers and media members from India and abroad to attend a Diwali celebration thrown by the Grand Hyatt Mumbai.
Not surprisingly, the evening was just as grand as the hotel’s name.
The event was held in the outdoor courtyard of the hotel and included performances by Bollywood dance troops with spectacular pyrotechnics, glittering decorations from the local store Good Earth and a curated dinner brimming with the flavors of India — including locally sourced ingredients such as Andaman rock lobsters, Kashmiri morels and Kerala vanilla beans — and exquisite wines served at a decadently grand table.
For most of the guests in attendance, the event would be described as rare, bespoke or even once in a lifetime, but for the staff and regulars of the Grand Hyatt brand, it was just another chance to celebrate the art of Living Grand.
It was in December 2014 when the Grand Hyatt launched the first Living Grand program, which included a global event spanning three continents and celebrations in Berlin, New York and Melbourne, Australia.
Each event was inspired by the local seasonal holidays and acted as an extension of the brand to showcase its larger-than-life identity.
The program was such a success that it soon spread to other locations, including a series of Chinese New Year festivities in February 2015 and over-the-top events in Singapore; San Francisco; Taipei, Taiwan; and Shanghai and Guangzhou, China.
Each event delivers surprising moments and experiences of abundance and grandeur for guests while celebrating the multicultural environment where they are held.
Living Grand has become the heartbeat for the brand, where guests at any location are able to share grand moments on social media with the hashtag #LivingGrand.
Everything from images of guests sipping Champagne by the pool to photos of door-to-door limo service now floods the feed. With thousands of events hosted and traditions brought to life through the campaign, Grand Hyatt plans to continue to dream up new ways to celebrate with its guests through the Living Grand events in both big and small ways.
For more information on the various Living Grand events, visit GrandHyatt.com or follow #LivingGrand on Twitter or Instagram.