Bandra is for fun and frolic today, one of the most expensive location in the Suburbs and fondly also called the "Queen of the Suburbs". Retaurants, night clubs, bars etc. are dotted at every street. One of the most expensive restaurants with the best of Page 3 crowd is here. Bandra has a unique advantage of being in close proximity to South Mumbai and suburbs and the residential areas are very posh like Pali Hill, Carter Road and Bandstand are the famous of the lot.
Bandra East on the other hand is turning into a Commercial hub with most of the Financials Cos setting up operations there. ICICI Bank, Citibank, HSBC, IL&FS, NSE, Lucent Technologies, Rentworks, Euronet, Oracle, Motorola, Dupont, Cisco have their operations already set up here.
Legend has it that the name Bandra comes from the Marathi word Bandar meaning port .
In 1543, the Portuguese took possession of the island of Bombay by force. The Portuguese gave the Jesuit priests the sole ownership of Bandra, Parel, Wadala and Sion. In 1570 the Jesuits built a college and a church in Bandra which was called St Anne's College. In the mid-18th century, the traveller John Fryer records that the Jesuit church, which stood near the sea shore, was still in use. The Portuguese built several churches in Bandra, including the famous St. Andrew's Church, which has the distinctive Portuguese-style facade. Bandra has the unique distinction of having the most churches anywhere in the world- 5 Churches and also a Basilica of Our Lady of the Mount.
In 1733 when the Kunbi farmers migrated to this island from Bombay, because the fish manure they used was banned, they found St. Andrew's church (still extant), St. Stanislaus's Orphanage and a monastery of St. Anne. After this was destroyed in a Maratha raid in the year 1737, when the Portuguese troops were aided by the English, a slaughter house was built on the same spot.
There was also a chapel of Mount Mary, build around 1640. Local tradition has it that this was destroyed in 1738 during a Maratha raid. The statue of the virgin was recovered from the sea by fishermen and temporarily installed in St. Andrews, before being shifted to the rebuilt Mount Mary in 1761.
Bandra remained a village with plantations of rice and vegetables in the low-lying areas of the island until it was connected to Mahim by a causeway in 1845. Although many bungalows were built here in the boom years of the 1860's and 70's, the fashionable Pali Hill area, now full of film stars, saw the first constructions only in the 1880's.
R D National College was originally set up in 1922 in Hyderabad (Pakistan) under the guidance of Dr. Annie Besant. After the partition of India, it was set up again, in 1949, in Bandra.
Bandra (West) became one of the most fashionable suburbs already by the middle of the century. Bandra (East) is regarded as a commercial area, consisting of the Bandra-Kurla Commercial Complex.
Bandra railway station is connected via the Western Railway and the Harbour Line which is an offshoot of the suburban Central Railway. BEST buses, autorickshaws and taxis are abundant here.
Bandra also being centrally located makes it easy to move to different parts of the city.