The enormous and magnificent residences of Indian kings and queens in princely states of India are nothing but a hint of the grandeur of their heyday. These palaces are the marvel architecture of engineering and the historical monuments of India. Although after independence in 1947, India’s royalty lost its power but the palaces were not left in vain. They still serve a purpose. The large castles and mansions of the kings set the trend of becoming luxe hotels and give the lavish experience a guest can get in a royal ancestral home. We present to you a spectacle of heritage hotels.
Giving a picturesque view, Umaid Bhawan Palace, built in the 1930s is situated in Jodhpur. The megastructure has 347 rooms and serves as the principal residence of the erstwhile Jodhpur royal family. Today, a part of the palace has been turned into a hotel, managed by the Taj group having 70 guest rooms including the luxurious "Regal and Vice-Regal Suites" and the fabulous "Maharaja" and "Maharani suites".
Rambagh Palace is known as Jewel of Jaipur. Built in the year 1835, the mansion was renamed Rambagh after the then reigning Maharaja, Sawai Ram Singh II. The Royal family of Jaipur stayed at Rambagh as their home until 1957, when it was first converted into an upscale hotel managed by them first and later in 1972, managed by The Taj Group of Hotels, Resorts and Palaces.
Located on the banks of Lake Pachola, the crescent-shaped building of Shiv Niwas Palace is a former residence of the Maharana Fateh Sing of Udaipur, Rajasthan. The hotel is run by the HRH Group of Hotels, itself owned by the current Maharana. Shiv Niwas was converted into an income generating luxury heritage hotel in 1982. The famous attraction consists of19 deluxe rooms, 8 terrace suites, 6 royal suites and 3 imperial suites.
Falak-numa means "Mirror of the Sky" in Urdu. The Taj Falaknuma Palace was built by Nawab Vikar-ul-Umra, prime minister of Hyderabad in 1893. It belonged to Paigah Hyderabad State, it was later owned by the super-rich Nizam of Hyderabad. In 2000 Taj Hotels started renovating and restoring the palace. It consists of 60 elegant bedrooms, the Aada restaurant which specialises in Hyderabadi slow-cooking, world’s longest dining table with 101-seats.
Thakur Mohan Singh Ji, ruler of Chaumoo and the then prime minister of Raj built the first Palace of Jaipur in 1727 which is today known as “The Raj Palace”. The Palace is still being inhabited by his 16th generation descendant and current owner Princess Jayendra Kumari. The hotel After restoration of the palace with 50000 sq ft of hand painting and 8000 sq ft of gold foiling, the palace opened as a grand heritage hotel in 1997. The Government of India awarded Raj Palace as "the best heritage hotel of India". Raj Palace of Jaipur has been voted as "The leading heritage hotel of the world" consecutively for seven times by World Travel Awards.
Guests are now hosted by the descendant of 18th-century warrior queen, Ahilya Bai Holkar in the Ahilya Fort of Maheshwar. It is a magnificent structure that is around 250 years old. From the ramparts, you can watch life along the holy Narmada River far below, it is perched-up high on a hill and thus offers an amazing scenic view of the ghats below.
With the blue waters of Gaibsagar lake on one side and a cove of private reserve forest on the other, this beautiful 19th-century palace stands on the lakeshore in the historic town of Dungarpur near Udaipur. The history of Udai Bilas Palace, Dungarpur, Rajasthan dates from the mid-19th century. Its owner, the Maharaja of Dungarpur, renovated the rooms preserving many of the original art deco furnishings in the 20 guest rooms, including the 'English’ bathrooms, exquisite rajput anchitechure, fine murals, miniature paintings and stone carvings.
Samode Palace is heritage monument built by the noble feudatory with the hereditary title of 'Maha Rawal' or 'Maha Saheb’ of the Amber and Jaipur principality in Rajasthan, India. Samode Palace was initially built in the sixteenth century as a Rajput fort. The Samode Palace is located 40 kilometres north of Jaipur city. The interiors of the palace are composed in the ancient architectural style of Rajasthan: marble floors, intricately ornamented pillars, mosaic walls, with luxurious carpets, and decorated with old wall paintings.
Ramathra Fort currently is owned by Thakur Brijendra Raj Pal and his royal descendants Ravi and Gitanjali Rajpal. This 17th-century fort stands high on a hill in rare wilderness. The Royal Fort was given as a fiefdom to Thakur Bhoj Pal by his father Maharaja of Karauli in the year 1645. Now it has been converted into an accommodation facility for tourists. The hotel’s walled vegetable garden and a whirlpool tub in a turret.
It is a small hotel on the edge of the Thar Desert. It is inside a breathtaking500-year-old Ahhichatragarh Fort restored by Maharaja of Jodhpur. What makes this place so appealing is the special access, outside of public opening hours, to wander through the exquisite painted pavilions.