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The Urbanist’s Mumbai: What to Do

Shop Like a Maharashtrian
Three of the city’s grooviest storekeepers on where to buy antique carpets, haute saris, and silver Ganesha key chains.

Good Earth (shown left and right).  

“I’ll spend my life saving for the long sautoir necklaces made of diamonds and emeralds at Nirav Modi in Kala Goda (ITTS House, Saibaba Marg; Nearby is Sabyasachi Couture (Ador House, 6K Dubash Marg;, filled with incense and traditional fabrics. Sabya is known for his bridal saris and lenghas, but twice a year he sells his well-priced prêt line (from $473). I also recommend Dilnavaz Mehta’s gallery at Hindoostan Revisited (98-2022-2062;; they have old maps for $47 and 18th-century lithographs.” —Cecilia Morelli Parikh, co-founder of Le Mill

Chor Bazaar (Mutton St.; 22-2347-2427) is a great permanent market, if one is happy to rummage and has a couple of hours at hand. I go there for furniture, movie posters, lamps, coins, glasses, and vintage telephones. For modern Indian home décor, dinnerware, pillows, knickknacks, and sustainable apparel, I like Good Earth (11–12 Raghuvanshi Mills Compound, Senapati Bapat Marg, Lower Parel; And for jewelry, I love the tribal necklaces from Northeast India that start at $350 at Amrapali (No. 62, the Oberoi Hotel, Nariman Point;” —Payal Khandwala, founder of Payal Khandwala

Mahendra Doshi (Giriraj, 201 Walkeshwar Rd., basement; has the most exquisitely restored Art Deco and Colonial furniture. They do mirrors and trays from about $60. Mahado (130–132 Great Western Bldg., Shops Nos. 1 and 2, Shahid Bhagat Singh Rd.; 22-2202-1909) has magnificent new and antique carpets from about $150, plus shawls and cushions. For souvenirs, get silver Ganesha key chains from Silver House (41–43 Laga Nigam Rd., Mahip Mahal Bldg., Shop No. 3;” —Tina Tahiliani Parikh, executive director of Ensemble

The Art Star’s Guide to South Mumbai
A mixed-media, multi-neighborhood art crawl, devised by Asia Art Projects director Elise Foster Vander Elst.

Map by Jason Lee  

Start in: Kala Ghoda

1. Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya
“Open since 1922, the CSMVS, formerly the Prince of Wales Museum, houses a diverse collection of ancient Indian art and artifacts. After visiting the permanent collection, check out two of the special-exhibition galleries: Premchand Roychand and the Jehangir Nicholson. Past shows have featured 3,000-year-old mummies and works by British painter and Indophile Howard Hodgkin.” 159–161 Mahatma Gandhi Rd.; 22-2284-4484;

2. Galerie Max Mueller Bhaven
“This spacious gallery, run by the Goethe-Institut, has contemporary works by the best German artists, plus Indian artists with links to Germany. A robust events program often accompanies the exhibitions, and on Friday nights they show German films.” K. Dubash Marg; 22-2202-7710;

3. Kala Ghoda Café
“In addition to serving the best coffee in town, it often hosts informal but tightly curated exhibitions.” 10 Ropewalk Ln.; 22-2263-3866;

4. Artisans’ Centre
“Since 2011, owner Radhi Parekh has been on a mission to promote traditional arts and crafts from around India. This is an excellent place to pick up gifts like Gond art, hand-spun women’s clothing, and ceramic bowls by Pune-based studio Curators of Clay.” 52–56 Dr. V. B. Gandhi Marg; 22-2267-3040;

5. Filter
“A funky design store run by an advertising agency. Check out the Mumbai-inspired tetrapod paperweights and selection of Desi publications, including Motherland, a beautiful quarterly with a different theme each month.” 43 Dr. V. B. Gandhi Marg; 22-2288-7070;

6. Delhi Art Gallery
“This three-story building focuses primarily on 20th-century Indian art. Drop by to see works by master painters F. N. Souza, S. H. Raza, and M. F. Husain, and don’t miss the quaint bookshop on the ground floor.” 58 Dr. V. B. Gandhi Marg; 22-4922-2700;

Cab to: Colaba

7. Galerie Mirchandani + Steinruecke Gallery
“Mother-daughter duo Usha Mirchandani and Ranjana Steinruecke often show small-format works and have presented several ‘Art for Young Collectors’ exhibitions, catering to those on a smaller budget.” 2 Sunny House, 16/18 Mereweather Rd.; 22-2202-3030;

8. Sakshi Gallery
“A major player in the Mumbai art scene for the last 30 years. It has presented works by Chuck Close, Gregory Crewdson, and Julian Opie.” 06/19, Grants Building, second fl., Arthur Bunder Rd.; 22-6610-3424;

9. Chatterjee & Lal
“This vibrant gallery, run by a husband and wife, hosted author Rana Dasgupta’s first photography show, as well as a solo exhibition by U.K.-based artist Hetain Patel wherein a life-size sculpture of Spider-Man both confused and delighted visitors.” 01/18, Kamal Mansion, first fl., Arthur Bunder Rd.; 22-2202-3787;

Hooray for Bollywood
An outing for every breed of Hindi-film fan.

The B-Town Virgin: Shah Rukh who? See an 11:30 a.m. screening of Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge, the longest-running (and most beloved) Bollywood film in history, at the storied Maratha Mandir cinema. Maratha Mandir Marg, Mumbai Central; 22-2307-7330.

The Casual Appreciator: You don’t know much about the movies, but you like those campy graphics. Shop for vintage Bollywood posters and other kitsch at Mini Market, Bollywood Bazaar, and Super Sale, a trio of family-run ephemera shops in Chor Bazaar. 31/33 Mutton St.; 22-2347-2427.

The Aspiring Extra: You don’t know much about the movies, but you think it’d be fun to “star” in one.Loiter near touristy Leopold Cafe in Colaba. With any luck, you’ll be approached by a casting director seeking film extras. The pay is lousy but it makes for a good story. Shahid Bhagat Singh Marg, Apollo Bander.

The Choreography Buff: You’re responsible for 10,000 of the YouTube views for Disney’s ABCD2 trailer. Sign up for a full-day Bollywood package ($140 to $170) through Bollywood Tours. You’ll get a behind-the-scenes look at live sets, professional dance sequences, and opportunities to meet cast and crew. 22-6528-2097;

Urban Amalgams
Emerging neighborhoods and their New York City equivalents.

Lower Parel
Do this: Bask in air-conditioning and conspicuous consumption at High Street Phoenix’s Palladium, a textile mill turned gleaming luxury mall; eat brown-butter dosas and jackfruit-coconut curry at Floyd Cardoz’s esteemed Bombay ­Canteen, and close out the night at indie ­microbrewery The White Owl.

Do this: Shop for graphic-art prints at Kulture Shop and avant-garde caftans at The PlayClan, dive into a plate of tangy dahi puri at 40-year-old chaat haunt Elco Pani Puri ­Center, and make nice with the lifers at old-school rock bar Toto’s Garage.

Do this: Immerse yourself in the colorful world of Krishna consciousness at the Sri Sri Radha ­Rasabihariji Temple, eat all the street food on jam-packed Juhu Beach, and dance till the wee hours with the collar-popping VIPs at EDM megaclub Trilogy.