The best places to stay in four price ranges: budget ($), moderate ($$), expensive ($$$), and luxury ($$$$)

$

Maria Lodge
One of the more salubrious options in a city starved of good-value budget accommodation. Expect functionality, not luxury or polished service. 34 clean, basically furnished, shoebox-like rooms, all with televisions. 5/2 Grant Building, Arthur Bunder Road, Colaba; tel. 91 22 22854081.

Salvation Army Red Shield Hostel
Attracts swarms of shoestring travelers thanks to its cheap beds; economical dormitory (four spacious separate-sex dormitories, each with ten beds) and five private rooms with attached bathrooms. First-in-first-served policy for the dorm beds, but private rooms can be booked in advance. 30 Mereweather Road, Colaba; tel. 91 22 22841824.

$$

Bentley's Hotel
“A stone's throw from Colaba district's ever-restless street market, many of the rooms here still hint at colonial grandeur.”—Rafael Wlodarski, Mumbai author, Lonely Planet. Travelers’ favorite. 40 tidy rooms (a few with balconies); ask to see several before choosing, as some are more character-filled. 17 Oliver Road, Colaba; tel. 91 22 22841474. www.bentleyshotel.com

Grand Hotel
Centrally located three-star hotel with 73 comfortable, if somewhat lackluster and kitschy rooms; all with televisions, teak-wood writing desks, safes, and tea-and-coffee makers. Ask for a room with a decent Arabian Sea view. 17 Shri Shiv Sagar Ramgulam Marg, Ballard Estate; tel. 91 22 66580500. www.grandhotelbombay.com

Hotel Oasis
Thirty clean, comfy, and colorful rooms, but some can be claustrophobic (especially the singles). All are tiled and have televisions and direct dial telephones. No restaurant; snacks available via room service. 276 Shahid Bhagat Singh Road, Fort; tel. 91 22 30227886. www.hoteloasisindia.com

Metro Palace
Good-value choice; 35 rooms are nicely kept, each with television and some with balconies. Higher-price rooms have fridges and tea-and-coffee makers. Restaurant open from 4 P.M. and bar, open from noon, serves drinks and snacks. 355 Ramdas Nayak Road, Bandra; tel. 91 22 67744555. www.uniquehotelsindia.com

YWCA
Single, double, triple, family, and dormitory rooms available (depending on demand) in addition to 28 private rooms with attached bathrooms. Clean and professionally run; includes buffet breakfast and dinner. Non-YWCA members pay a small joining fee (about $1.25 per person; valid one month); open to men and women. 18 Madame Cama Road, Fort; tel. 91 22 22025053.

$$$

Ascot Hotel
Bright, fresh, contemporary atmosphere in the heart of old-world Mumbai. Twenty-five well-sized, very comfortable, and tastefully furnished rooms, each with television, safe, free Internet connection, and modern bathroom; on-site restaurant. 38 Garden Road, Colaba; tel. 91 22 66385566. www.ascothotel.com

Chateau Windsor Hotel
Fifty tidy rooms with televisions, fridges, free Internet access, writing desks, safes, dressing tables, and wardrobes; all have sun-warmed balconies with either sea or garden views. 86 Veer Nariman Road, Churchgate; tel. 91 22 22044455. www.chateauwindsor.com

Fariyas
“A veteran of many monsoons, the Fariyas's new rooms rank high among Colaba's best comfort options.”—David Stott, author, Footprint India. 87 smart and restful rooms with televisions, fridges, and tea-and-coffee-makers. Small swimming pool. Off Arthur Bunder Road, Colaba; tel. 91 22 22042911. www.fariyas.com

Regent Hotel
“I love the traces of Arabic-flavored decor and strong mint tea served here.”—Rafael Wlodarski. 40 airy, atmospheric rooms; all equipped with television, fridge, safe, and wardrobe. 8 Best Marg, Colaba; tel. 91 22 22871854. www.regenthotelcolaba.com

Suba Galaxy
“Brand new and broadband savvy, these airport-side rooms make a stylish HQ for outsourcers who’d rather avoid the ordeal of a downtown cab ride.”—David Stott. 48 contemporary-style and soundproof rooms; flat-screen televisions, free Internet connection, and writing tables. NS Phadke Road, Andheri (East); tel. 91 22 26821188. www.hotelsubagalaxy.com

$$$$

Intercontinental
“Book for the sleek looks and in-room gadgets, but it’s the view down Marine Drive from the roof bar that makes you feel like a jewel in the Queen's Necklace.”—David Stott. 57 immaculate and spacious rooms with every conceivable comfort. Health club, swimming pool, three restaurants. 135 Marine Drive, Churchgate; tel. 91 22 39879999. www.mumbai.intercontinental.com

Taj Mahal Palace & Tower
“A Mumbai masterpiece, with some of the best interior design I’ve seen; Belgian crystal chandeliers, traditional hand-woven silk rugs, onyx columns, and stunning objets d’art.”—Sanjay Singh Badnor, freelance travel writer/photographer, Times of India. 565 ultra-luxurious rooms; panoramic views of the Arabian Sea and Gateway of India; swimming pool, restaurants, spa, and business center. Apollo Bunder, Colaba; tel. 91 22 66653366. www.tajhotels.com

The Oberoi
“I love the hotel’s sleek lines and its breathtakingly stark and beautiful atrium. And if you’re lucky enough to get a sea view then rock on.”—Nicholas Brett, group editorial director, BBC Magazines. 333 swish rooms; courteous service. Swimming pool, restaurants, spa (Ayurvedic massages available), round-the-clock business center. Nariman Point; tel. 91 22 66325757. www.oberoimumbai.com

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