Located on the southern tip of the Mumbai peninsula, at the end of the Mumbai's Marine Drive, Nariman Point is named after Khursheed Framji Nariman, a municipal corporator who had initiated the area's development as an extension to the Back Bay reclamation. Nariman Point houses some of India's prestigious business headquarters, and despite its decline (see below), it remains one of the more expensive business districts in India, exceeded only by Delhi's Connaught Place and – since April 2012 – by Mumbai's own Bandra-Kurla Complex.
Prior to 1940, the area was part of the Arabian sea. A popular leader of the Congress, Khurshed Nariman (affectionately called Veer Nariman), a Bombay Municipal Corporation corporator, proposed to reclaim the area from the sea near Churchgate. To accomplish this task, the shallow seafront was filled with debris from various parts of the city. Reinforced concrete cement was also used, the steel for which had to be purchased on the black market at higher prices due to World War II.The entire cost was estimated to be 300,000 (equivalent to about 97.2 million in 2015). Additional reclamations were carried out in the 1970s. A construction boom in that decade also led to the development of commercial high-rises in the area.
In 2006, prior to the financial crisis of 2007–08, Nariman point was the 7th most expensive location in the world for office space. However, by December 2012 Nariman Point had fallen to 25th place while Delhi's Connaught Place remained the 5th most expensive location despite many offices moving to Gurgaon and Noida. During the same period, Nariman Point also dropped from 7th to 15th most expensive location for office rentals. The reasons for the decline were the high prices, lower quality and age of construction, and increasing distances from residential hubs which have now moved northwards and to the suburbs. In the first three quarters of 2012, Nariman Point had a vacancy rate of almost 25%, compared with 18% in the rest of the city.
Cuffe Parade and Backbay Reclamation as seen from Nariman Point
It is widely regarded as the 'Manhattan' of Mumbai and it boasts of a spectacular skyline and pricey residential condos. It is also the main financial district of Mumbai and houses most of the financial services and brokerage companies—both Indian and international. It is also the location for the Vidhan Bhavan which is the political headquarters of the state of Maharashtra.