Brainstorming over the options to visit for a quick getaway this summer? Push away the clichéd vacations in hill stations and bring a new spin to it. Indulge in a royal retreat for a change, take a stroll in elaborate gardens, indulge in traditional Indian delicacies and flip a few pages of our history on this holiday.
Here are a few places you can visit for the royal treatment and enjoy the centuries-old tradition of the country.
Noor Mahal, Karnal
The regal Indian palace hotel, Noor Mahal, set amid culturally rich land of Karnal provides the guests with a royal experience enjoyed by Indian Maharajas over the centuries. This royal abode inspired by the rich heritage of the country is an instance of elegance and grandeur.
The corridors of the hotel preserve the history of modern kings, queens and the culture in the frames in the form of beautiful photographs. The Rajputana and Mughal architecture, intricate furniture and antique paintings, decorated with authentic gold and natural colours, is a true blend of history and aesthetics.
Noor Mahal boasts of numerous imperial banquet halls making it a dream destination to take marriage vows and plan memorable celebrations. On top of that, Noor Mahal also hosts Noor’s Makeover Studio by celebrity hair artist Tarun Kapoor, who aspires to give the brides the perfect look for their big day.
The luxurious hotel sends you back to the old times as the natural light piercing in is soothing and certainly suitable for the place. On the other hand, the modern designs of the rooms are paired up with ancient and intricate décor. The special sleeping chamber called the “Khwabgah”, which consists of all the royal attributes, surely attracts the travellers. It includes two bedrooms, a living room, a dining room, separate bar, office chamber with a private terrace that gives the overview of Karnal city.
Frontier Mail, the fantastically designed restaurant recreating the legendary Frontier Mail that operated between Mumbai and Peshawar during pre independence days with elements taken from the actual train, has the traits of becoming your favourite dining spot during your stay. Other than the incomparable menu which comprises of cuisines from the regions through which the train made its initial journey, the décor is enchanting. Brown Sugar, an all-day dining restaurant offers over a wide range of exotic teas, coffees and saviours is perfect for leisurely meetings.
One of its kind property in the region – an epitome of true luxury, hospitality & services, Noor Mahal is one of the most sought after weekend getaways to unwind, relax, and explore the imperial lifestyle.
Neemrana Fort, Alwar
This fort, built over 500 years ago, where the Chauhan royal family used to live, has now been turned into a splendid resort. The beauty of this place will intrigue you as much as its history. Situated in the lap of Aravali hills of Rajasthan, Neemrana Fort, is a perfect weekend gateway from the capital city for a peaceful holiday. Since the medieval fort is located on the Delhi-Jaipur expressway, the travellers can pay a quick visit to the pink city too.
Although you would be staying in a luxury hotel you can still experience the royal lifestyle since the restored fort still holds on to its essence. Adding up to its beauty, Neemrana has a fantastic view of a Baori, traditional stepwell, a specimen of old architecture. The heritage hotel retains the authenticity of the fort and the medieval times by keeping the décor of the rooms closer completely traditional.
During the stay, guests can indulge in the adrenaline pumping adventure, zip line, which is totally worth giving a shot or maybe pamper themselves with the ayurvedic therapies for the wellness of boy, mind and soul. Neemrana, one of the past historic wonders, will give you the feel of culture and traditions.
Suryagarh, the beautiful hotel, situated in Jaisalmer, which is the gateway to the Thar Desert could be on your checklist for the next vacation. It introduces the travellers to the traditions of the city’s past yet framing them in a modern idiom. With a number of widespread unique gardens and courtyards around, which are lively spots and provides a great ambience, the hotel brings you closer to nature.
Landscape artists have conjured up a series of sculptural gardens reminiscent of times past. Fossil Hill is a must visit the spot to enjoy the beautiful sunset and the Lake garden is to witness the magical night in the desert.
Coming to the dining options, The Legend of Marwar, a speciality restaurant celebrates the culinary heritage of Marwad, bringing to your table the guarded trade secrets of Maharajas’ kitchens. On the other hand, Nosh, a dining room open around the clock, welcomes and serves the guests all day long. Draksh, the bar, could be the pit stop to indulge in the finest spirits from around the world.
The fitness enthusiast wouldn’t have to skip their workout on the vacation and train at the Akhara, the well-equipped gym. Meanwhile, Rait, the spa, fashioned on native wisdom and lore offers treatments designed for inner as well as outer well being.
From lavish to intimate in scale, these sets of rooms are individually configured to allow for personal preferences. The rich texture and designs of the suites bring out the timeless beauty of Rajasthan. Every stone is handcrafted; every feature is thoughtfully intended to reflect elements of the indigenous desert culture yet all the while maintaining the integrity of elegant, state-of-the-art comfort.
Rambagh Palace, Jaipur
The Rambagh Palace, which dates back to 1835 is situated in the city which already a royal retreat to visit. The forts spread around the city gives the travellers an insight into Rajasthan’s royal heritage. And during your visit to the Pink city, what could be better than staying in a real palace.
Staying in the Taj hotel group acquired Rambagh Palace, which was once the residence of Maharaja Sawai Man Singh ll, will take your experience up a notch.
The Mughal gardens spread out in the property, the extravagant chambers and spellbinding décor would remind you of the glorious times. Moving on to food, you can indulge in royal Indian delicacies as well as the Mediterranean cuisine and also sip in some finest spirits at the Polo bar.
The beauty of the palace enriches at night as it gets lit up and that’s an absolute delight to watch.
Narendra Bhawan, Bikaner
Narendra Bhawan, the abode of Narendra Singh, the last Maharaja of Bikaner, which has been now turned into a grand hotel is composed of memories from his travels to destinations near and far. Unlike some other palaces which hold on to the traditional setup, this palace-residence has a modern identity. A pulsating Bombay influenced by the burgeoning Art Deco movement; a regimental order and pageantry served up by his illustrious family’s interactions with the Royal Military Academies, as also, influences drawn from the glamour posts of Broadway.
At Narendra Bahwan, each venue has its own story to tell. The Gaushala, a verandah designed for easy lounging and entertainment is a tribute to Lord Krishna. The morning’s start with Bhajans or prayers in praise of the Lord and the evenings resonate with the Rasa Leela in play. The culinary heritage of Bikaner preserved over the years is brought to the guests here. The Diwali Chowk at Narendra Bhawan is a central open courtyard, dotted with canopies, where the guests can savour authentic Marwari delicacies. Meanwhile, Mad hatter, the bakehouse, flaunts all sorts of baked goods and Indian estate coffees and teas.
Elaborate ceiling details, Bikaner terrazzo floors and traditional crafts sit in harmony with Portuguese tiles and a distinctly English colour palette of the rooms reflects the adaptation of western lifestyle. Light and fresh, these rooms are a calm sanctuary set apart from the hyperactivity of the city. The hotel continues to preserve the rich artistic heritage of the city and to salute the vision of its last Maharaja.