Lonely Planet has given Hyderabad the distinction owing to its role as an “Old City recapturing past glories” according to its website.
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Hoteliers and tourism stakeholders are certain to benefit from this recognition. Lonely Planet goes on to tell its readers that the city is best for culture, cuisine and value-for-money.
The city apparently earned a spot at the top owing to the recent restoration of the several palaces in Hyderabad’s Old City, including Falaknuma Palace, which the website describes as a “seven-star hotel skilfully restored by the Taj Group, which is now an exceedingly plush time capsule.”
To its target base, which looks for lesser known tourist locations, it goes on to say: “Other monuments and buildings are being fixed up, but the city, and many of its architectural gems, is still off the radar – which keeps the masses at bay. Elegant and blossoming, but also weathered and undiscovered, Hyderabad’s Old City is ripe for exploration.”
Hitherto seen as only a business city, with only a few hotels focusing on spa and weekend breaks for local residents, Hyderabad looks like it could develop a sizeable leisure tourism business in 2013, if the rankings are to be believed.