This golden-yellow sandstone monument in Jodhpur is the world’s best hotel, according to TripAdvisor.
Securing the top position at the coveted TripAdvisor’s 2016 Traveller’s Choice Awards, Umaid Bhawan Palace in Jodhpur has been named the best hotel of 2016, garnering lavish praises from all around the world. The winners of this list were based upon the reviews by TripAdvisor travellers, from across the spectrum.
Constructed between the year 1928 and 1943, Umaid Bhawan Palace is renowned as one of the largest residencies in the world and was initially built for Maharaja Umaid Singh, who expressed his deep desire to provide some form of employment to his people, who were suffering from issues arising out of famine and drought. Set amidst 26 acres of land, this palace was designed by Henry Lanchester, the renowned Edwardian architect who drew influences from the Rajput culture and the Renaissance, in order to create this gem.
Today, Umaid Bhawan Palace is divided into three parts: the royal residence, the hotel and the museum. The royal residence, which is home to the royal family, comprises 347 rooms while the Taj Hotel owns 64 accommodations with 25 rooms and 39 suites. The palace has also played host to high-profile celebrity weddings such as Elizabeth Hurley and Arun Nayyar’s wedding in the year 2007.
The global recognition for Umaid Bhawan is a proud moment for India; therefore, on a celebratory note, let us take a look at what makes Umaid Bhawan Palace one of the most magnificent and exotic residencies for its guests.
Experience Royal Dining at Umaid Bhawan Palace
Renowned as one of Rajasthan’s finest restaurants, Risala offers a spectacular view of royal portraits, where you can enjoy delectable delights, the menu of which is inspired by the royal cuisines of the Maharaja. The exquisite Sunset Pavilion is Jodhpur’s highest dining point which offers you a chance to experience a ride in the elevator that was designed in the 1940s.
Trace the History and Cultural Heritage at the In-house Museum
Open until about 5 PM, you can visit the palace museum to gaze at royal paintings, porcelain, crockery and weapons from the 19th and 20th century. The museum also displays a collection of ornate and antique timepieces from European countries such as Ireland, Scotland and Germany.
Revitalise your Senses at their Zodiac Swimming Pool and Jiva Spa
You can rejuvenate your body and mind at the Zodiac Swimming Pool and Jiva Spa which is exclusive to the residents of the Taj. The serene ambience of the pool coupled with the invigorating spa experience is one of the perfect ways to unwind and relax.
Go Back in Time with their Vintage Car Tour
If you wish to marvel at the grand architecture, the landscape and also explore the palace gardens, then the best way is to take a vintage car tour. The palace provides you with this unique service where you can enjoy the scenic wonders, seated in the vintage car which once belonged to a royal family.
The palace also has a collection of vintage cars such as the 1947 Cadillac, 1927 Rolls Royce Phantom, 1906 Overland, the Morris Minor and many more.
Plan an Excursion to Mehrangarh Fort
This magnificent fort was founded by Rao Jodha in the year 1459 AD, and was popularly referred to, as the guardian of the city. This exquisite hill top fort preserves the costumes, furniture, musical instruments, palanquins and weapons belonging to the royal family. You can arrange for an excursion to Mehrangarh Fort to marvel at the carved panels and walls of the Sheesh Mahal, Moti Mahal and Phool Mahal. You can also visit the Mehrangarh Fort Museum that showcases artefacts such as paintings, textiles, vehicles and the likes.
Jodhpur’s Umaid Bhawan Palace is not just another hotel; it ensures a memorable experience for all its guests, making it one of the top choices for visitors and travellers from all around the world.