Renting rooms with your significant other made easier
Moral policing in India ensures that holidaying or booking hotel rooms with the opposite gender is never easy. Prying eyes are ever present, no matter what your intentions. Luckily, the tech market has sniffed out this problem and found solutions. Here’s a look at apps and websites that make your accommodation process hassle free. StayUncle
This startup hit the news recently for being the first hotel booking service for unmarried couples. What was initially meant to be just another booking aggregator by BITS graduate, Sanchit Sethi, soon became a speciality service for couples because they found the need for it. The rooms can be booked for 10 hours instead of the usual 24 hours. It only recently became available in Bengaluru. Details: StayUncle.com
Oyo Rooms has been at the forefront of the hotel booking aggregator industry for the past few years. They promise low budget rooms and quality hotels on the go. The app recently launched a feature especially designed for unmarried couple-friendly rooms. Called ‘Relationship Mode’, the feature is available on the website and the app.
If indifferent hotels are not for you, try Airbnb. Local users in the city sign up and offer their rooms or homes to guests. While all homes may not be as accommodating, most are upfront about their rules and do not mind couples staying over. They even have easy refunds if things aren’t to your liking. Details: airbnb.com
Couchsurfing.com is a website that lets you connect with locals and stay in their homes for free. It is a great way to meet other travellers in the area and get an idea of the locality. You can search for hosts using several filters such as age, location, languages spoken, and gender. Usually, these hosts never have a problem with couples or groups with mixed genders.
— Anagha M
Remember important dates from your kids’ school calendar with Coo
A minor slip up by Shilpa Bhandarkar led her to set up Coo — an app that’s a mash up of a communication platform and a planner, geared towards parents of school going kids. “I had forgotten to send my daughter with money for a charity bake sale in school, so she was the only one in class without a cupcake to munch on. I felt bad and wondered if there was an easier way to remember things. Then, I found that other parents faced the same issue — keeping track of activities, due dates, projects, etc,” says UK-based Bhandarkar, the former COO for the Africa branch of law firm, Linklaters.
Further research revealed that when it comes to technology, there was next to nothing aimed at making parenting easy. So it was really necessity that led to the invention of Coo, which she co-founded with Amit Rai, who brings 14 years of marketing experience to the table. “In one calendar year, an average child has 500 events, this is not including the extra violin or ballet classes. With Coo, you can create groups with fellow parents, use it to communicate important dates, requirements for special days, share pictures, and so on,” she explains.
The shared calendar feature lets people mark events, which then show up on everyone else’s. The marked events pop up as notifications on your screen, ensuring there is no duplication of entries. Launched in July, the app has over 1,200 users. Having raised an initial round of funding from UK-BASED investors, Bhandarkar shares that they aim to bring in revenue by using it as a platform to host flash sales of kids’ products.
— Rashmi Rajagopal Lobo
Journalist and TV personality
Vir Sanghvi was in Bengaluru last
week for the launch of Eazydiner, a premium restaurant reservation website. Guests were seen sipping on cocktails and
nibbling on hors d’ oeuvres.
The launch of Smoor, a new luxury
chocolate lounge by Bliss Chocolates was the talk of town last weekend. Socialites and food lovers got a taste of their sinful
chocolates over sangria and quick bites.
Collage Shop India
Chennai designer Minnie Menon launched
her new jewellery collection this week. The event saw a fashion show choreographed by Karun Raman. Minnie’s daughter,
Anu Menon, of Channel V’s Lola Kutty fame,
was the emcee for the evening.
Goddess Gagged comes to Bengaluru for the 2Stroke tour
The 2Stroke tour, which has Indian bands on a whirlwind tour of the country, makes its way to Bengaluru this weekend. This edition features the Mumbai outfit, Goddess Gagged. “Bands in India don’t really go on tour as much as bands in the West do,” says Uddipan Sarmah the man behind the tour that promises to be a new chapter in Indian music. “The challenge comes with finding venues,” he adds.
Goddess Gagged, best described as progressive rock with an edge, is playing at seven cities in 10 days. “It gets a bit hectic,” says Krishna Jhaveri, the bassist. “We have had early morning flights and long drives after late night shows. But it is so much fun and that keeps us going.” The concert will also have sets by Chennai’s Tails on Fire and Bengaluru’s Diarchy.
Tomorrow, 9 pm. At the Humming Tree, Indiranagar. Tickets (Rs 400)
— Anagha M