Marine Drive, Mumbai
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View of Marine drive from Air India Building
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Marine Drive is a 4.3-kilometre-long boulevard in South Mumbai in the city of Mumbai. It is a 'C'-shaped six-lane concrete road along the coast, which is a natural bay. The road links Nariman Point to Babulnath and Malabar Hill. Marine Drive is situated over reclaimed land facing west-south-west. A promenade lies parallel to this road. In 2012, the Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai announced that the entire road would be resurfaced, 72 years after it was originally laid.
The official name for this road, though rarely used, is Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Road. It was earlier known as Sonapur to local Marathi people. The highlight of Marine Drive is the beautiful promenade along the road where many of its residents take in a breath of fresh air and view the setting sun. The promenade is lined with palm trees. At the northern end of Marine Drive is Chowpatty Beach. This is a popular beach famed for its Bhel puri (local fast food). Many restaurants also line this stretch of the road. Further down this road lies Walkeshwar, a wealthy neighbourhood of the city, also home to the Governor of Maharashtra.
Most of the buildings which were built by wealthy Parsis sport an art deco look that was popular in the 1920s and 1930s. Miami in the United States is the only city in the world that has more art deco buildings along the seafront than Mumbai.
Real estate prices along the esplanade are high. A lot of celebrities live here, making it one of India's premier residential community. Many hotels dot the drive, most prominent among them being the 5-star Oberoi (formerly the Oberoi Hilton Tower however reverted to the original name as of early 2008), The Intercontinental, Hotel Marine Plaza, Sea Green Hotel and a few other smaller hotels. Marine Drive is the preferred connecting road between the central business district located at Nariman Point and the rest of the city.
Marine Drive is also known as the Queen's Necklace because if viewed at night from an elevated point anywhere along the drive, the street lights resemble a string of pearls,forming a necklace. It is also the world's largest viewing gallery and hence has been a host to a number of events that take place along the promenade. It is the major attraction in Mumbai city. It is a tourist place.
Swadhin Sadan in Marine Drive was the first cooperative housing society in Mumbai. It was inaugurated by Morarji Desai in 1949. It is located on C road of Marine Drive.
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Marine Drive has hosted the following major events in recent times.
- In 2014, on the occasion of the 65th Republic Day of India, the Protocol Department of the Government of Maharashtra held its first parade on the lines of the Delhi Republic Day parade along the entire stretch of Marine Drive.
- IAF airshow, October 17, 2004
- Bombay Marathon (every year since) 9 February 2004 — an international marathon.
- International Fleet Review 19 February 2001 — The world's major navies took part in the IFR.
- French Festival 1988.
Marine Drive follows the shore of Back Bay.
Marine Drive skyline, at night looking at Nariman Point.
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- Makne, Eknath (October 22, 2012). "Marine Drive will be smoother ride soon". Mumbai. Daily News and Analysis. Retrieved 2012-10-29.