Hyderabad has developed in leaps and bounds. The city has touched gold since Chandra Babu took over as the CM way back in '95. Since the development of the Hi Tech city on the skirts of Jubilee hills, the main shopping and activity magically moved to Banjara Hills and Jubilee Hills. It is a pity scene today. Ask anyone who has visited the nizam city recently, all they talk about is the 'happening' BH and JH, for them Abids, Nampally are just out of the city. And ask any true Hyderabadi, they will vouch for Abids as the main centre.
Yes ABIDS, the name synonymous with shopping and spending quality happy time with family or catching up with the latest release, had a shop belonging to a jewish valet called Albert Abid of Nizam VI of Hyderabad state, hence it came to be known as Abids.
For some, the association have to do with school, college, studying or teaching and for many, like me, its the visit to the cinema or eating out, shopping or leisurely browsing old books on a sunday afternoon.
It had the most english medium schools, Grammar, Stanley, Little Flower to name a few, and kids studying in any were considered 'smart'.
The beautiful Taj Mahal Hotel
Heritage building, once belonging to a Parsi family and later turned into the Taj Mahal hotel, was my family's favorite destination to have yummy south indian Dosa, Idly or full meals, before catching up with the latest release at Santosh-Sapna (I must have had seen more movies in Santosh theatre than at IMAX or INOX.) or Ramakrisha 35mm/70mm theatre. For delicious hyderabadi dinner, we had always gone to Annapurna Hotel on Abids-Nampally road at times after the movie.
FD Khan Stores
The Book Store
The Frame Store
FD Khan is one place where the parents will most certainly take their kiddies for their uniforms or school bags shopping, while Femina boutique was gor grown up girls. My mom had always shopped for my dad at S Kumar next to Annapurna Hotel.
Although I had discovered it much later, the area have two historical stores, one catering to framing and other for book lovers.
Abbas and Co has been in the framing business since 1931, “very soon we are going to be heritage”, said the proud owner and extremely friendly Mr. Fakruddin. And one has to mention AA Hussain in the same breath when talking about books.
If you are looking for authentic leather jackets or bags or belt, then head to Abids. If you are looking to explore the churches of Hyderabad, then head to Abids.
Ofcourse its a little differnt story today with the high end glitz or glamour and fast paced of Jubilee Hills can never understand the politeness and slowness of Abids. Thats the charm and character of Abids. Still.
Whether shopping for festivals, special occasions or for that matter anything, Abids was the answer to hop and explore. Its 'Abids forever' for many of us!
A trip to this area is like recharging ones battery.
I used to look at this wonderful architecture with amazement
Meena Bazaar Lane