To the camera born

Pushing the envelope comes easy for Manoj Masand (31) – whether it’s using dido lights (which picked up an Oscar for light innovation) or highlighting a small area of Venetta Cuicine’s ready kitchen and reducing the intensity of light or employing a technology used in … Continue readingTo the camera born

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Bacchus callin’

Kapila Chandran is dreamy; bites her nails and loves her friends. She believes she’s always surrounded by fairies; has even named her dog Magic. And she hastens to add that Kapila means ‘the wise one’ in Sanskrit, though people around her think she’s a ‘dumb … Continue readingBacchus callin’

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Soul sanctuary

Go Goa and don’t forget to check in at the Radisson White Sands Beach Resort to be pampered their way, with air conditioned deluxe suites, a mini bar, banana boat rides, jet skiing, parasailing, go carting, Mediterranean food and ambience… the list is endless. It’s … Continue readingSoul sanctuary

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Summer popcorn

In terms of summer popcorn, it’s a far chunkier offering than Jurassic Park 2, I said last week when I wrote about the Suchitra international film fest. Now that I have seen some of its cinematic offerings, I can also add the word refined. And … Continue readingSummer popcorn

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Das capital

I respect women and consider them superior to the male species, says master lensman Prabuddha Das Gupta (45), when you ask him how he gets women to shed their inhibitions (remember his best-selling book on nudes in 1996?). “Women are more rooted and therefore more … Continue readingDas capital

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Taking the rupee all the way

If you’re in a creative business, you should be constantly accumulating references and material,” says Jaisingh Rathore, 30. “I’d really like a plasma screen for the new studio or maybe a projection system would be cool.” He was similarly seduced by a bike last year … Continue readingTaking the rupee all the way

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The good vibes

Have feet. Will dance. That’s Vibes, the eight-member band that’s into jazz, salsa and dances from cinema. Within four-and-a-half years, the band has trumped up quite an encore by notching assignments for such entities as Microsoft, Levi’s, TVS, Philips, Britannia, Airtel and Touchtel, among others. … Continue readingThe good vibes

The five stars

Bangalore’s best general managers of star hotels about their work ethic First, you have the VVIPs. Then you have the other hotel guests. And both are as important. The challenge for the general manager of a hotel is not to inconvenience either. And that demands … Continue readingThe five stars

Log in to Vani Mahesh

From a software engineer to running an online library, it’s been quite a career swing for Vani Mahesh (31). It’s a job she loves doing: reading books, buying the good ones and recommending them to others. And that’s in addition to software development and maintenance … Continue readingLog in to Vani Mahesh

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Sonal’s Solo

Variety rules Sonal Ramrakhiani’s life. She’s got a Gujarati name, but both her parents are Sindhi. And she was named after Odissi danseuse Sonal Mansingh. When she is not in the Titan Industries office at Golden Enclave on Airport Road holding fort as brand manager, … Continue readingSonal’s Solo

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Reporting is much like life. So many people and attitudes swim by you, sometimes affecting you, and sometimes ignoring you. And reporters have a foible. They record just about everything: the social butterflies and the snooty touch-me-nots. Here then is a broad classification of the … Continue readingSpecies

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Man at work

Bhushan Bagadia (21) met 700 people to pick 34 of the very best for the Femina Miss India semi finals early this year. The organisers were looking for 18 smart people to manage the control room, the hospitality desk and the travel counter. It was … Continue readingMan at work

Motor mouths

He is talking a mile a minute. The show is proceeding smoothly. And suddenly…chaos. He is hosting the wrong show. He is at the wrong venue. His head begins to swim… he hears a loud scream. He wakes up. It was the clock that had … Continue readingMotor mouths

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The woman in the Attic

It’s all things New York for Sasha Castelino, 28, MD, Phoenixx Apparel Services and Attic, the clothes store on Lavelle Road. Castelino is the buying agent for AXIS, NY. As an intern with Winona, NY, she designed mood boards and sourced fabrics and trims. With … Continue readingThe woman in the Attic

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Building blokes

Attitude and a little bit of latitude. And something that’s intelligent and inspirational. That about sums up the work of architects we have picked for this story. Open-to-sky courtyards, free-standing stone monoliths ensuring cross ventilation and security, tiled walkways, semi-circular verandahs, stepped dividers between the … Continue readingBuilding blokes

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Speaking of auras

He is good at coining one-liners. ‘A lot can happen over coffee’ for Café Coffee Day. ‘The heart has its reasons’ for C Krishniah Chetty & Son. ‘Crafted from desire’ for Vanity Fair. That’s what Tarun Cherian does as creative director of Scion Advertising. And … Continue readingSpeaking of auras

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The Lakme girl

Shobha Sehgal’s first pay was Rs 1,000 for working three hours at a beauty salon. “And I gave all the money to my mom,” she says. “Four months before I finished my beauty course, I opened a salon of my own.” That was in 1985. … Continue readingThe Lakme girl

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Mind your language

‘It’s a rainy Sunday morning in downtown Jayanagar, but inside the three year old Bouyancee Centre, the mood is sunny.’ Those were my opening lines in the very first full-length story I wrote as part of this publishing house. “I love it,” said my editor. … Continue readingMind your language

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MTV Bakra

The time was 3.40 pm. And it was a Thursday, the day we fall over ourselves to send the City Reporter to Press. And my cellphone rings. It was a call for help. “I am right outside your office. The front tyres of my car … Continue readingMTV Bakra

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Standing Ovation

Opposites attract. Ask Royce Pappachan (23) and Ekta Hoora (21). If he trips on rock, she sashays to old Hindi classics. If he’s skilled in computers, she’s a trained fashion designer. “We are always arguing and correcting each other,’” says Hoora. But ask Pappachan what … Continue readingStanding Ovation

Maximum entertailment

Wall-to-wall and floor-to-ceiling curved screens and digital sound, state-of-the-art projection, stadium seating arrangement to ensure unobstructed viewing from anywhere in the auditorium, eye-catching architecture, cup holders on every armrest, avant-garde lobbies with studio-effect interiors, ample parking space and central air conditioning. That’s what a multiplex … Continue readingMaximum entertailment

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Levitating Meghna

She may not defy gravity. But her lifestyle store, Levitate, does defy the conventional shopping experience. Swing past the doors of 93 Residency, take up the flight of stairs leading to the first floor and you reach a cul de sac. Before long, you realise … Continue readingLevitating Meghna

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Fly Buy Dubai

Spread over 3,885 square kilometers, Dubai that’s 10.655 metres above sea level indeed rises above the ordinary with its mother of all festivals, the Dubai Shopping Festival. It’s four weeks of unadulterated fun on the run, with over 220,000 Indians making it to Dubai every … Continue readingFly Buy Dubai

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The big idea

Where do creative people get their inspiration from? Ted Hughes attributed it to fishing. JG Ballard thought it had more to do with whisky. We are not digging deep into the source of their bright ideas. Instead, we dwell on the big ideas that brightened … Continue readingThe big idea

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Sonia at close quarters

Sonia V Narayanan, 32, has always looked at things from close quarters. Whether it’s ‘early morning traffic choking Delhi’s broad-necked roads’ or ‘two well-respected families whose reputation begged her silence’, her pen has captured it all. “All the characters are inspired from life but none … Continue readingSonia at close quarters

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Chatting up Chatterjee

Designations change all the time, because everybody is doing everything. And Saugatha Chatterjee aka Soggy (36) is no exception. From a management trainee with Coats Viyella in 1993 to business head for their international retail and sourcing consulting division, Intrad, Soggy has come up the … Continue readingChatting up Chatterjee

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Bollywood calling

Lights, camera, action… This might not be what you could possibly hear at the Bombay Film Institute near Ulsoor Lake. But you will hear trainer Aqueel Syed (35) cautioning, ‘An actor is just a puppet in the hands of a director. His only job is … Continue readingBollywood calling

To Lee or not to Lee

Welcome to the edge, says the denim jacket of her scrapbook. Danger: extremely flammable, cautions her ad campaign on an apparel line. Welcome to 34-year-old Suparna Mitra’s life. Her job is to make Lee part of every young adult’s wardrobe whose age is between 17 … Continue readingTo Lee or not to Lee

Attitude but no latitude

Attitude can make or break a person. We as reporters are whipped by attitude every other time. And sometimes, it can be unsettling. I remember my English lecturer once saying, “You know because of what happened in the class (he had sent out a few … Continue readingAttitude but no latitude

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Life is Bella Bella

It happened over dinner at an apartment on Cunningham Road. Housewives Vandana Virwani and Michelle Suri, both 37, thought of ways to get their professional lives back on track. “After marriage and children, we wanted to do something with our lives. One thing led to … Continue readingLife is Bella Bella

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Friday to Thursday

FRIDAY We sit on our haunches (Srihari, Bala and Jaideep included) and decide what to do in City Reporter this week. In fifteen minutes flat, I have enough work to keep me busy through the week. In the evening, I am in the midst of … Continue readingFriday to Thursday

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A bit of Chari

It’s not very often that I consult an online name reader to get a perspective about the people I’m going to interview. It’s not even something I deeply believe in. But I turned to an online name reader a few days back, before I stepped … Continue readingA bit of Chari

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Reinventing the Chakra

A lot can happen over java. There was Ziba Bhagwagar sipping her black coffee with a friend at Max Mueller Bhavan, when she was informed of a job opening at Trends, the ad filmmakers. Three years later, she is very much around and making films, … Continue readingReinventing the Chakra

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Pot Puri

Her bio runs into three pages. Her sense of design is ever changing (‘I changed my frame from a round one last year to a rectangular one this year’). She morphs into something else just as easily (after several years in garment design, she started … Continue readingPot Puri

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No holds bard

Some are born with the Bard, some achieve the Bard and some have the Bard thrust upon them. In Phil Bathol’s case, it was all of the above. Bathols was vacationing in the Himalayas in January 2002 with his Sikkimese wife. His biggest daily challenge … Continue readingNo holds bard

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Shetty’s Stop

Zero per cent attitude. 100 per cent work. That’s the first thing you notice on the white board when you enter Sharan Shetty’s cubicle. “It’s zero per cent negative attitude that I am talking about,” clarifies Shetty. And we sit down for a chat that … Continue readingShetty’s Stop

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Mimicking Mimi

Argentinian artist Mimi Maruri (35) first came to Bangalore to see Sai Baba in ‘91. Along the route, romance happened. She met Javid Burhan (35), a businessman dealing with precious and semi-precious stones. Seven years of courtship later, the couple walked down the aisle. That’s … Continue readingMimicking Mimi

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Naseer and his candids

Naseeruddin Shah’s in town. And he promises ‘stimulating theatre’ at the Chowdiah on August 22. He is helped here by famous Urdu writer Izmat Chughtai (now no more) whose three short stories will be brought to life by Shah, his wife Ratna Pathak and daughter … Continue readingNaseer and his candids

On I Gear

He watches one Hollywood movie a day. Well, almost. He collects crystals of all shapes and sizes. Well, almost (his mother has done most of it and he is carrying on the legacy). He loves cooking. Well, almost (his culinary skills don’t go beyond making … Continue readingOn I Gear

Yadev’s Wild City

He spends a lot of time reading in the loo. Sitting on his table right now are Barry Long’s Journal, Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged and Fuzzy Thinking by Bart Kosko. But he’s no litterateur. He has groomed art directors, creative directors and fashion design students, … Continue readingYadev’s Wild City

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Food, clothing and Akiva

Both met at a children’s school and two months later, Akiva (which means, shelter) was born. Businesswomen Roopa Ravichandra (37) and Neetu Gupta (37) now have a partner in progress. They have shared their expertise with designer Raj Kumar Shroff of Arachne to introduce Ravage … Continue readingFood, clothing and Akiva

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Forum’s friend

Suresh Singaravelu (51), CEO, Prestige Estates, who is building India’s largest multiplex, The Forum on Hosur Road, should have read James Redfield’s Celestine Prophecy and all the coincidences it dwells on. Because his life has had its share of coincidences. There he was in the … Continue readingForum’s friend

Business as usual

There’s an old Chinese saying that goes, ‘When planning for a year, sow corn; when planning for a decade, plant trees; and when planning for life, educate people.’ BML Jain, an IIT (Kanpur) graduate, took that to heart and came up with the idea of … Continue readingBusiness as usual

Homing in

Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue. The hallmarks of a home today are trendy, earthy and global. From parquet to pottery, Bangaloreans are not just buying homes; they are putting themselves into every wall. We went out into the market to discover what … Continue readingHoming in

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Horsing around

He had to lose 3 kilos in a day to be in the saddle. And he took it up as a challenge; played golf all day, walked all night, sat in a sauna for long hours and starved himself like a refugee. And eureka, he … Continue readingHorsing around

He’s on Route 91

He is a qualified mechanical engineer. He has a ‘hi-bye’ relationship with Aishwarya Rai. He is a walking encyclopaedia on Bollywood. And he loves to listen to his own voice. Not to mention he’s single and seriously ready to mingle. Chaitanya Hegde (31) is all … Continue readingHe’s on Route 91

Saad, Saad, Saad

When he was six years old, he played a maid servant in a spoof on Cinderella at Baldwins. At 17, he became a young prince in Girish Karnad’s Hindi play, Rakta Kalyan. A year later, he was a hitman in The Dark Side of Comedy, … Continue readingSaad, Saad, Saad

Collective Chaos

Collective Chaos is a group of like-minded folks given to a life of understanding cinema and ogling at its many contours. It’s over two month’s old, and is already host to over 200 members. Like-minded, did I say? Let me correct that. Each one’s point … Continue readingCollective Chaos

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The finishing edge

In times of Sony PlayStations and mobile phone texting, Sudhir Udayakanth (29) was into mind mapping for the ministry of defence in Singapore. What’s that, you ask? It’s text-based training on air defence artillery. Example: Calculating how an F 22 can escape a missile fired … Continue readingThe finishing edge

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Abhay Deol is a 420

You must have loved his offbeat films, but Abhay Deol goes off the beaten path in real life, too. And you don’t have to look far for it. Go to his garage and you will see his Maruti jeep with the number plate reading: 420. … Continue readingAbhay Deol is a 420

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Lip balms are no good

Lip balms are no good. Not the Vaseline or the Himalaya lip balm. However, Nivea’s Hydrocare does work. It’s priced over Rs 100, many times more than the others in the market. But even Nivea doesn’t really solve the problem permanently. Pray why? Coz everytime … Continue readingLip balms are no good

3G generation

My 5-month old daughter belongs to the 3G era. And her initiation has already begun. Staying at her grand parents home 320 kms from Bangalore where I stay, she is on a video call every other day. And she’s quite familiar with the iPod Touch … Continue reading3G generation

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Mozilla 4 is here

Mozilla gets the much needed update. To all those who are on some version of 3.0. However, like every update, this one has it’s pitfalls. For one, some of your add-ons don’t work. The most important to me is one that shows the page rank … Continue readingMozilla 4 is here

Sachin needs a voice coach

Whenever Sachin Tendulkar appears in tv commercials, I wonder why he hasn’t been trained for it… The physical presence is fine, it’s the voice modulation that needs working. Then again, most celebrities need voice training for tv commercials. Genellia D’souza needs to discard her southie … Continue readingSachin needs a voice coach

2012: End of days?

I don’t know about that, but if you want to get more updates on this, you can visit:

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Full moon magic

Black or white. Magic is most powerful when it’s in full bloom. And that’s what will happen tonight with the moon coming closest to the sun in 18 years. So what does this purport? Well, my friend Tarun Cherian has received an interesting message: “This … Continue readingFull moon magic

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OLEDs, Google TV, holographic displays, UDTVs and more will change the way we watch television Television has long been the preserve of the masses and the classes for the last several decades. But only now is it coming into its own. The promise of watching … Continue readingTV3.0

Money magic

March is that time of the year when we file our tax returns and plan for the next financial year. When I asked a few people well-known in the financial sector on how they manage their monies, here is a summary of what they told … Continue readingMoney magic

Personal finance

With March still staring in our face, here are ways to trim your finances and look forward to managing comfort for the next financial year. Don’t buy second best. Sooner or later, you will end up spending more and inconveniencing yourself further. Buying the latest … Continue readingPersonal finance