This hotel was only open recently and the driver was a bit lost.Fortunately for me, I had my Google Maps active and I was able to direct him to the hotel. The hotel is located outside Jaipur city centre and located closer to Amber Fort. The architecture was meant to resemble that of a Rajasthani palace and fort with a main gate leading into a courtyard.
On entering the hotel, the luggage was brought to be screened for security while guests were provided with flower garlands and given a red blessing on the forehead. There was another small courtyard before entering the lobby proper. In the lobby, there was numerous well designed furnitures and local arts and crafts.
When I checked in, I was directed to the Gold Floor in the 1st level. Apparently I am the only guest in the gold floor that day. There was an extensive introduction to the facilities by Sandeep and I was given the option for the welcome drink of apple juice and ginger ale or sparkling wine.
Room No: 148 Category: Fairmont Gold King Room
Entering the room, I was greeted with a very long alleyway with a mirror and small hallway cabinet in between. The room itself is gorgeous with lots of attention to details and feels like a room in a palace with ornate handcrafted furnishings according to Sandeep. The middle of the room was a four poster bed while there was an armchair and ottoman by the window to enjoy the view of the Aravali hills and the water feature of the hotel.
Moving to the bathroom through the double door in the middle, it probably ranks as one of the largest bathrooms ever for a standard room. There was a huge sunken tub in the middle and enclosed stalls for the shower and the toilet. On both sides of the door were the vanity counters, which seems unique for the hotel. There is another set of sliding doors on the side leading to the alleyway.
The Fairmont Jaipur provides Reebok shoes and exercise gear for its guests and a set was provided inside the room during turndown service. The staff at the hotel also made a pair of swans from the towels during the turndown service.
For the first afternoon, I decided to just relax in the hotel and explore the facilities since this is a large resort hotel. My first stop was the Fairmont Gold lounge located on the same floor as my room (1st floor). Sandeep has prepared the afternoon tea for me but I decided to just take a few of the snacks and proceeded outside to enjoy the tea in the terrace while enjoying the views of the surrounding area in sunset.
The hotel has a pool and gym on the lower lobby level which can be accessed via the stairs from the ground floor. There is also a Willow Stream spa which is located in the white building at the end of the pool. Other facilities in the hotel includes a cigar room, a library, a large bar and lounge in the lobby level as well as a cafe beside the main reception. There was also a shopping arcade on the ground floor.
One more reason I really enjoyed this property was because it felt like visiting a traditional palace with a lot of hand crafted art works adorning the public spaces. The wonderful weather also provided a good excuse to walk outdoors and admire the sunset in Jaipur.
In lieu of the club lounge fare, they allowed me to choose a dish from the in room menu as I was the only guest that night. I ordered the Laal Maas (a Rajasthani lamb dish) which was fantastic and was served in the lounge. I thought they were quite generous with this option since I had a nice dinner comped in the hotel. In fact I liked the dish so much that I ordered it while I was still in India. The lamb dish is a spicy dish but it had a lot of flavour and the lamb was perfectly stewed to be tender and yet flavourful at the same time. I used the leftover gravy of the laal maas as a dip for the provided papadum and it was fantastic!
In the morning, I had breakfast at Zoya, which is the main restaurant since the club lounge was closed on the first morning and in the second morning I noticed the club lounge selection was less than that of the main restaurant. Breakfast at the restaurant was also fantastic with the staff all ready to introduce me to the various Indian delicacies for breakfast. They even serve classic Indian desserts like Gulab Jamun during breakfast.
During the evening time around dinner, there are performances at the terrace outside the Zoya restaurant. While the hotel is quite isolated in terms of location, there is a town around the hotel and a Le Méridien hotel beside. Furthermore the amenities in the hotel is adequate for guests staying and the food is also delicious. For the second night, I had evening snacks in the Gold lounge as I was not that hungry and there was quite a good spread including Chicken Tandoori, several cocktail appetizers and crispy bread with chutneys which I enjoy a lot!
My two days spent in the hotel can be considered flawless with a the wonderful host Sandeep providing a lot of assistance. My experience with the other staff in the hotel was also exemplary and I would really recommend a stay here! This was hands down the best hotel thus far in my trip.