Hotels in Delhi: My top choices

Prakash Kutir, homestay, Delhi, BnB, guest house, hotel, India, travel, woman, solo, safe

My beautiful room at Prakash Kutir

Hotels in Delhi: Accommodation, hotel and guesthouse options for women and travelers to Delhi, India

DELHI IS A VAST, teeming megalopolis. It’s the capital of the world’s largest democracy, India, and one of the most historical cities on earth. Old Delhi is a warren of bazaars, New Delhi is a planned city on a grand scale, and suburbs like Gurgaon and Noida sprawl in every direction. Delhi is a city that is daunting to most visitors, and for good reason: it’s huge, traffic-clogged, noisy, polluted … and one of the most interesting and exciting cities you will ever visit.

Love it or hate it, Delhi is where many visitors to India land. Some see Delhi as a necessary evil, but others — like me — have learned to love the city. In my blog post Delhi Guide: My top tips, I pointed out that location really is everything. If you stay in Connaught Place, Pahar Ganj or Karol Bagh — where most of the budget hotels are — you are 14* times less likely to love Delhi than if you stay in a more salubrious area. Keep reading for my top choices for hotels in Delhi.

Hotels in Delhi

In Delhi Guide: My top tips, I wrote: “My top Delhi tip is to stay away from the hustle and bustle. Stay instead in the leafy, upscale neighbourhoods of central New Delhi, South Delhi, or Mehrauli. Look for accommodation in home stays, guesthouses, hostels, or small boutique hotels. There are lots to choose from and more coming up every day.”

Blog posts about Delhi

I took my own advice in Delhi over the past year and stayed in several accommodations located in South Delhi that I would recommend to anyone — and that includes solo female travellers.

I recommend searching these neighbourhoods: Hauz Khas, Green Park, Greater Kailash and Kailash Colony, Panchsheel, Lodhi, Jorbagh, Safdarjung Enclave, South Extension, Sunder Nagar, Malvya Nagar, Saket, Vasant Vihar, Vasant Kunj, Mehrauli, Defence Colony, Lajpat Nagar, New Friends Colony.

*14 times is a *rough* estimate based on a complicated and highly secret formula
hotel, guest house, India, Delhi, women, travel, travelers, budget, cheap, accommodation, flat, solo

Back garden entrance to my lovely Flipkey flat in South Delhi

FlipKey: A room of my own

Over the past nine years that I have been traveling to India, I have stayed with friends — a Punjabi family — in their home in South Delhi. But this year due to changing circumstances, I stayed in a number of different places, and one of my favourites was a self-contained apartment I found through FlipKey.

“Find the perfect place to stay for your trip, and get great value along with the space, privacy and amenities of home.”

FlipKey is a vacation rental site from TripAdvisor. In Delhi, there are 94 listings (some cities, such as New York, have thousands). I used the map function to search because I knew I wanted to be in South Delhi. It was really easy to move around the map looking at various neighbourhoods. When you scroll over the pins, you can see a photo and basic info about the listing, and click through for the full listing.

hotel, guest house, India, Delhi, women, travel, travelers, budget, cheap, accommodation, flat, solo

Loved making tea in my Flipkey flat

You can also search by various other criteria such as price, rental type, amenities and, best of all, TripAdvisor reviews. You can check availability and book directly through the site, and FlipKey offers a Peace of Mind Guarantee and all owners are verified.

FlipKey offers everything from a room in a flat through to an entire house. My booking in Delhi was a charming, self-contained apartment within a large, family home. I liked the combination of safety and privacy. I was able to buy groceries and make meals at home, do laundry, work and also have the benefit of the house owners’ guidance and advice. It was like staying in a guest house, but more self-sufficient and private.

I can recommend FlipKey without hesitation. However, as always, do your due diligence to make sure the place you rent suits you, and the communication between you and the owners is good. It’s always a good idea to make sure your expectations are clear and understood. On FlipKey, you can contact the owner before you book, which is a good idea if you have any unanswered questions.

hotel, guest house, India, Delhi, women, travel, travelers, budget, cheap, accommodation, flat, solo

Veg stand outside my Airbnb apartment in South Delhi

Airbnb: All the comforts of home

Airbnb is another great choice for booking unique, affordable accommodations with all the comforts of home. In Delhi there are more than 1,000 listings, from a room to an entire house (and lots more listings all over India, especially Goa).

On Airbnb, you can search using many different criteria, from a map to room type to price, and you can also check availability. You can contact the host, and check out their profiles, and make sure they are verified; and you can read reviews by other guests — which I highly recommend!

hotel, guest house, India, Delhi, women, travel, travelers, budget, cheap, accommodation, flat, solo

The rooftop of my Airbnb apartment in South Delhi

I used Airbnb to find the apartment I ended up staying in all winter in Delhi. I originally rented it for two weeks and then left to go travelling. I enjoyed my stay so much there, and felt so at home and comfortable, that when I came back to Delhi, I contacted the host and negotiated several months’ rent.

That’s what’s SO great about Airbnb. You stay in a real person’s home, and if you connect with the person, you make a friend. Having a friend in a foreign city — especially a city like Delhi, that is so big and overwhelming — is worth its weight in gold.

Prakash Kutir, homestay, Delhi, BnB, guest house, hotel, India, travel, woman, solo, safe

Celebrating Diwali with the Gupta family at Prakash Kutir

Prakash Kutir: A home in Delhi

The Gupta family, who own and run the Prakash Kutir home stay in Hauz Khas Delhi, invited me to stay several times before I was finally able to take up their offer. And boy, am I ever glad I did. I stayed for Diwali, and celebrated with the family — and felt I was part of the family.

I love this homestay, which gives you both a comfortable place to stay in THE IDEAL location in Delhi, and also a genuine experience of staying with an Indian family.

hotel, guest house, India, Delhi, women, travel, travelers, budget, cheap, accommodation, flat, solo

Common areas at Thikana are anything but common

Thikana: Delhi’s ideal guesthouse

I wrote about Thikana here, without doubt one of the leading guesthouses in Delhi, in every way. Beautifully decorated, well located, safe, clean and run by friendly, helpful and efficient people — what more could you ask for? Thikana is located in a very posh area — Gulmohar Park, near Hauz Khas and Green Park in South Delhi — and it’s lovely.

Thikana owners Sheetal and Atul are not only friendly and helpful, they have done a masterful job turning a large, elegant family home into a luxurious and comfortable guesthouse. There are many good reasons to stay here, but the best one is that you become part of the family.

hotel, guest house, India, Delhi, women, travel, travelers, budget, cheap, accommodation, flat, solo

The park across the street from my Flipkey flat

Notable others

Red Maple

Red Maple is a cross between a guest house and a small boutique hotel. It is very comfortable, with very high standards of cleanliness and amenities. I reviewed it here.


Hostels are a new phenomenon in India as young (and young at heart) people discover the joys of budget, independent travel.

  • Moustache Hostel in Delhi is located in GK 1 near M Block market, a great South Delhi location. There’s also a Moustache in Jaipur.
  • Zostel is India’s first chain of backpackers’ hostels. They are in about nine cities in India so far. The one in Delhi is in Pahar Ganj, not my favourite area. But I have heard good reports.
  • The Madpackers Hostel in South Delhi has good reviews on TripAdivsor and Hostelworld. It’s in a great location, Panscheel Park (which is where I live in Delhi and I love it).

The City’s Best Hotels

Delhi has more outstanding 5-star hotels than any city in India, and this is the place to splash out. Even if you take overnight trains, stay in small guest houses and rough it on the road, Delhi is the place to seek some comfort and luxury, if only for a night or two. These are some of my top choices for providing a sanctuary from the hustle and bustle. Your body and spirit will revive!

  • ITC Maurya is where world leaders like Barack Obama stay when in Delhi, and Bukhara, one of the hotel’s restaurants, is regularly voted the best restaurant in India. Is that enough reason for you? I wrote about my stay at ITC Maurya in 24 hours in hotel heaven.
  • The Imperial is a grand, old Raj-era hotel that has been completely refurbished, and gleams and shines like new. It’s location on Janpath near Connaught Place is ideal, and one of the hotel’s restaurants, Spice Route, is superb: it has been voted one of the world’s most beautiful restaurants. I always stop for tea at least once while in Delhi, to soak up the atmosphere.
  • Claridges is a good, comfortable choice if you are on a stricter budget. It’s located in South Delhi, has expansive grounds and lots of amenities including good restaurants.
  • The Park is centrally located and very sleek. Fun place for a night out.
  • Hyatt Regency is another favourite, I love the pool and the expansive lobby.
  • Taj Hotels and Oberoi are always good of course, you can’t go wrong. I especially like the Taj Mansingh, which is in central Delhi and is known for its elegant coffee shop.
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22 Responses to Hotels in Delhi: My top choices

  1. Renuka May 26, 2015 at 8:14 am #

    Wonderful post! I am curious to check out The Rose and Thikana. I love Delhi’s upmarket neighborhoods like South Delhi, Hauz Khas, etc. I’m glad that you enjoyed your stay in the capital (which is supposedly the crime capital) and have all the good things to say about it.
    Renuka recently posted..5 ‘Offbeat’ Stays In India I’d Like To ExperienceMy Profile

  2. Rachel of Hippie in Heels May 26, 2015 at 9:13 am #

    the rose looks cute! i got totally twisted around last night in Delhi… had a layover for only 7 hours overnight so booked close to airport.. search on cleatrip and saw radisson blu clamining to be 10 min from airport. booked it.. then searched once landed and it said 40 minutes.. my driver said no theres one only 10 min.. so went there and they said no it’s the other… so BOTH were on cleartrip as in airport loop. bad advertising ugh! but when booking last minute, i usually trust cleartrip and dont read the whole website. lost almost 2 hours sleep 🙁 ok, rant over! lol
    Rachel of Hippie in Heels recently posted..One Month Backpacking Iran | Top 10 ExperiencesMy Profile

    • Asher Fergusson May 26, 2015 at 6:24 pm #

      LOL 🙂

      That strip 10 mins from the airport is a wild little place. I’ve stayed in some rather dodgy rooms for 1500rs in some of the back streets there. I have stayed at the Radisson Blu as well – their food is to die for! I’ve also sampled about four other 5 star hotels in Delhi. My favorite was the Leela Palace.

      Although, I prefer to avoid Delhi altogether if possible because I can’t breathe! 🙁
      Asher Fergusson recently posted..How To Navigate Indian Airports: It’s Harder Than You Think!My Profile

  3. Irene May 26, 2015 at 10:24 am #

    Hi, thank you for that great post. I am planning to come in Delhi in 2 weeks. Do you think I am on time before monsoon?. Did not check yet for which accommodation I will choose. But I took your post in my favorites 🙂

    It’s my first time in India. I am a bit scare about the city. Everybody told me that I should go at Kerala or Goa first. What do you think?

    Thank you again for your help

    • amit May 26, 2015 at 8:17 pm #

      Its better to aviod delhi…as it will be very hot these days…it better to go down south like kerala….which boast of state having both beaches as well ad hills….you can also go further to north in hills ….like himachal pradesh….hope it helps….

  4. Elen May 27, 2015 at 9:24 am #

    Love this! Delhi is my favourite city in the world, and I have such a hard time convincing people (especially other women) that it’s a great place to see. I rented a room in Defence Colony for some time, and although the costs there are a bit mad, and that drain is revolting, staying in a better part of town really does change your entire perspective of the city.
    Elen recently posted..Street art in MontrealMy Profile

  5. rafe May 29, 2015 at 6:07 am #

    Visiting India is always fascinating.Many cities in India have their own unique culture and traditions like cuisine,festivals.some people may not enjoy the poverty and pollutions here,but if you want to know life India is the place.

  6. Izy Berry - The Wrong Way Home June 5, 2015 at 1:49 am #

    Thanks for the good accommodation options! Definitely should try some of them. They look great!
    Izy Berry – The Wrong Way Home recently posted..Where I Stayed in Istanbul: Mercure Taksim IstanbulMy Profile

  7. Chella June 6, 2015 at 6:17 am #

    As you clearly stated, it is always prudent to do a research about the place your going to stay once you travel. I also think that although the leafy suburbs are better off in terms of security and ambiance, you don’t have to strain to fit there if you can’t afford.
    Chella recently posted..Sub-Prime Car Loans, How to Buy a New Car With Bad CreditMy Profile

  8. Linda June 15, 2015 at 10:48 am #


    Nice post. The Rose looks amazing!

    I’m going to stay 3 months in Delhi soon, do you have any recommendation for longer stay? 🙂 And with affordable monthly price.

  9. Kennedy June 21, 2015 at 4:26 pm #

    In choosing an hotel to take meals from one has to find the one that satisfies him or her most in terms of service, kind of food and the level of satisfaction derived. I find this post awesome as it gives an idea of some of the best hotels in Delhi if they have minimal information.

  10. Kennedy June 21, 2015 at 4:27 pm #

    In choosing an hotel to take meals from one has to find the one that satisfies him or her most in terms of service, kind of food and the level of satisfaction derived. I find this post awesome as it gives an idea of some of the best hotels in Delhi if they have minimal information. They look very cool and attractive

  11. The Fort June 26, 2015 at 3:17 am #

    Great work…. this article is really helpful for the visitors… All the hotels and places are superb specially The Rose, hauz khas..!!

  12. Anil_traveller July 18, 2015 at 8:39 am #

    A neat list. I agree with you on the pool and lobby of the Hyatt Regency, but I can’t say the same for their service – inconsistent by my experience. Thanks for sharing! 🙂

  13. Anirudh Singh July 22, 2015 at 12:37 am #

    Nice post Mariellen ! This is a great article for people visiting Delhi from India or from a foreign country. Keep writing great stuff like this!
    Anirudh Singh recently posted..List of 10 Best Shopping Markets in DelhiMy Profile

  14. Neha jain August 26, 2015 at 7:53 am #

    The article you have placed over here is really inspiring and useful for me and even for my colleagues.

  15. Ajay August 27, 2015 at 9:11 am #

    Nice work and nice post.
    Delhi is a great place to visit

  16. Nishi Gupta February 2, 2016 at 1:39 am #

    This is a really useful piece on hotel booking especially in Delhi. I have been through a lot of pain myself when booking hotels or staying as paying guest. It is good to have some reviews to check through before diving into anything unknown. I feel the recent launch of OYO Rooms has been very helpful as well. It is easier to book hotels (especially economical ones) and you can check out photos and read reviews as well. So if the above options are too expensive, then one can use this as well.

  17. Jisean@ Band Directory February 27, 2016 at 11:37 am #

    Like the hotels collection shared from of Delhi! If I visit Delhi I’ll definitely stay one of these hotels. Anyway, I’m visiting Kolkata next month, so hotel recommendations on that Indian city!

  18. shaina ratwal August 12, 2016 at 2:53 am #

    This is a great list, Me and my family are traveling Delhi in my next vacation we are surely going to consider this list. Thanks for sharing !!

  19. farnaz October 10, 2016 at 1:29 am #

    This is a great list of Hotels in Delhi, I am a frequent visitor of your blog.

  20. Ankit Singh February 1, 2017 at 7:16 am #

    Nice this is good list of hotels in Delhi. But i want to add one more hotel because when i last time travel in Delhi i stay in the hotel pearl for 3 days in karol bagh as my point of view this is comfort and good hotel in your list you can add it. And i am frequently reader of your blog .

    Thank you

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