As I mentioned in my previous post, I stopped by the Rambagh Palace Hotel for a meal in the afternoon after touring some sights in Jaipur. Why did I choose this hotel? Well because it used to be a former royal residence that is now a luxury hotel commanding prices in excess of US$400 per night. Since I was not about to pay those rates, the best way would be to drop by for a meal. My driver was not too familiar with getting to this hotel though and he had to stop and ask for directions. Ultimately we did arrive at the gate and there was a security check before we were cleared to pass through.
There was a long driveway before we arrived at the porch where a doorman on duty opened the door for us. From the moment you arrive, you can immediately tell this is a true luxury hotel. Prior to heading here, I made no dining reservations and I was able to enter with no problems. There was also no questions asked. If the Fairmont Jaipur is a reminiscent of a Fort, this one makes no pretence of being a palace. There was grand marble tiles, chandeliers and windows with ornate detailings all around the lobby which makes it bright and inviting. It was colourful and subtle at the same time, and has a very nice ambience to sit down and read a book!
Across the lobby are another set of glass-panelled doors that leads to a fountain courtyard. The gardens of the courtyard was perfect in all senses with beautifully manicured lawns and polished tiles that gleam in the sunlight.
From there I made my way to the building facing the lawn where the restaurants are all located at. The hotel basically has 3 dining venue that day which was open, the first one being Suvarna Mahal, the hotel’s Indian fine dining restaurant, the second being the Rajput Room which is a more informal all-day dining restaurant and finally the last being the Verandah located along the terrace and lawn serving afternoon teas and light meals throughout the day.
I picked Suvarna Mahal since it serves a variety of Indian dishes that was classified in terms of their origins and was surprised to find a very ornate dining room reminiscent of French chateaus. The table setting involves a lot of bling and was definitely fitting for a Maharaja. But I was very much drawn outdoors towards the Verandah that has a nice tea time ambience on the outdoor terrace and was perfect for the cool sunny winter in Jaipur. Which is why I asked the server if I could have my meal on the terrace outside instead.
With that I got seated in patio and enjoyed the afternoon lounging outside and enjoying the flocks of pigeons that seems to be everywhere in India. There was also more guests enjoying afternoon tea in the lawn across from where I was seated. I had ordered a dhundhar murg dish which was a Rajasthani chicken dish cooked with raw mango and flavoured with saffron along with makai ki roti which is a corn bread cooked in an earthen griddle. However due to the season they had no mangoes and I thus decided on the Laal Maas once again.
The lunch was fine though if I were to compare I think I liked the one at the Fairmont Jaipur a bit better. The server recommended me the corn bread which is a new variety of bread I had while in India. This was slightly sweet and was grilled to a nice crispiness that I enjoyed.
After the lunch, I took a walk around the polo grounds and there was actually a horse carriage with an attendant at its helm. Not sure if guests could take the carriage ride, but I preferred to walk around and take photos of the hotel grounds. There are also some peacocks in the polo grounds.
Should money be of no issue, the Rambagh Palace hotel is definitely a beautiful hotel to stay in, and what it lacks in view, it provides in grace and elegance. The whole hotel is a pleasant place to take a rest in the afternoon. Even if you do not have a meal here, perhaps an afternoon tea on the lawns would be wonderful as well!