Kingdom of Dreams: Indian culture, cinema & theatre
The Kingdom of Dreams Hindi slogan is, “Ye nahi dekha toh kuch nahi dekha”, which means, “if you haven’t seen this, you’ve seen nothing”. Call it a leisure & entertainment destination, a high-tech amphitheatre, a snap-shot of Indian culture, or a centre for entertainment, but it’s all of these combined. Located in Gurgaon, 30km from Delhi, the grand façade boasts regal architecture that takes visitors back in time. The 3 major areas are: The Culture Gully (Gully means “lane” in Hindi) offers a taste of the major Indian states, Nautanki Mahal, meaning “the drama place”, is a massive theatrical auditorium, and Showshaa, is a theater for Indian epics. The Kingdom of Dreams is a place for Indian cuisine, Bollywood cinematic culture and extravagant theatrical performances.
address: Sector 29, Gurgaon - 122001, Haryana
The Kingdom of Dreams Culture Gully, Nautanki Mahal & Showshaa
The Kingdom of Dreams isn’t a shopping complex or a theatre or a restaurant...well it’s all of them and more. Once you’re inside those golden gates you’re in a different world. They say that the spectacle is so grand it fits only in your dreams! There are several sections that make up the complex, including Culture Gully, Nautanki Mahal and Showshaa. Let me take you to each of those places one by one. Come with me to the world of dreams with an Indian touch!
When we walked into the culture gully, there was a starlit sky above us! But it wasn’t night yet. Then we found the… hmmm…artificial ceiling. Below the starry sky were 14 pavilions dedicated to each of the fourteen Indian states. These pavilions bring to life the environments in each state by way of their unique décor and the cuisine they serve. Each state also has an area where they sell “goods & services” associated with the respective states – so visitors can buy tasty eats as well as souvenirs. On the right is Punjab, with a truck parked outside the restaurant which looks like the quintessential Punjabi Dhaba! Bengal state offers machher jhol (fish curry) and kosha mangsho (chicken gravy). Hyderabad, of course, is all about its legendary regality! Then there’s us, Mumbai and Kerala. The Mumbai pavilion is set in a local train compartment, appropriate since it’s our biggest public transportation system. The culminating Culture Gully pavilion is a Goa beach, replete with little Goa-style spas. The exhibit includes a boat on an area covered with sand. Only the sea is missing! But there’s more to the Gully. There are live, impromptu performances of various local arts, like puppet shows or mini concerts where “Dhol” musical instruments are played. Since these performances are spontaneous, visitors never know which ones they’ll get to witness. Wait it’s not done! An IIFA (International Indian Film Academy Awards) cafe is also here in the Kingdom of Dreams. It’s called “The IIFA Buzz” – a Bollywood-themed resto-bar on the first floor of Culture Gully, which showcases Bollywood memorabilia, the IIFA Awards trophy, movie costumes and posters – devoted to die-hard Indian cinema fans.
The Nautanki Mahal has the look of a Rajasthan royal palace complex and has an 835-seat state-of-the-art auditorium. It hosts shows by dancers and renowned local and international artists. The Nautanki Mahal auditorium has a hydraulic stage, automated fly bars, and a high-tech Matrix sound system that makes the theater experience feel, sound and even smell realistic. For example, if there’s a restaurant scene, the audience can actually smell the aroma of the food.
Showshaa theatre is the latest addition to the sprawling 100,000sq. ft. complex. It delivers performances inspired by the Indian epics Ramayana & Mahabharata. However it’s also rented out for private…big fat Indian wedding parties!
Kingdom of Dreams Zangoora show
The Zangoora Kingdom of Dreams show is considered the best of all. It’s a dance-musical based the story of a warrior prince. It brings to life the magic of Indian Bollywood cinema. The Zangoora show has aerial dances & brilliant performances.
Kingdom of Dreams Jhumroo show: Kishore Kumar & Bollywood movies
The Kingdom of Dreams Jhumroo show is a tribute to legendary Bollywood singer Kishore Kumar. It’s a fun-filled act punctuated by classic Hindi songs from famous Bollywood movies sung by Kishore Kumar (born:1929 – died:1987). The cinematic theatrical performances include actors coming down the aisles and flying back up to the ceiling! The best part is that they ask the audience to join-in and claim their own five minutes of fame.