Camellia Panjabi was born in Mumbai. She read economics at Cambridge and went on to become Marketing Director of Taj Hotels, India's most prestigious hotel group. Over the last thirty years she has travelled the length and breadth of India and has been involved in the setting up of restaurants in these premier hotels, featuring little known Indian dishes. In 1982 she set up the Bombay Brasserie in London. In 2001 she left the Taj Group to join her family's restaurant company Masala World in London, which owns Chutney Mary in Chelsea, Veeraswamy (the UK's oldest Indian restaurant) near Piccadilly Circus and Masala Zone in Islington, Soho and Earls Court. Amaya, their latest venture, has won several awards including The Tio Pepe ITV 2005 Awards for the Best Restaurant of the Year as well as the Best New Restaurant.