Authored by Sai Karthik Reddy Mekala
India is a magical destination, known for its grand architecture and rich cultural heritage. And one of the best ways to experience both is with a stay in a magnificent palace hotel.
Before the Republic of India was born, this was a region divided into 565 kingdoms. So there were (and still are) many opulent palaces, which have been converted into luxury hotels today.
The following is a list of the most incredible palace hotels in India, which will make make even the humblest traveler feel like a Maharaja. These hotels were actually once home to India’s royalty, and in some cases still are.
Incredible Palace Hotels in India: Stay Like a Maharaja in These Heritage Hotels!
Umaid Bhawan Palace
Palace stay in Jodhpur
Imagine yourself living with the royals, as a part of this palace is still occupied by the Maharaja of Jodhpur.
Built by the Rathore dynasty, Umaid Bhawan is a relic of the past that still oozes inspiration and grandeur of the royals of Rajasthan. Built on the highest hill of the desert city, the palace has been converted to a 5 star luxury hotel by the Taj group.
The hotel’s fine dining restaurant, Risala, is the place to be if you want to enjoy the dishes from the royal kitchen.
Why Jodhpur? Umaid Bhawan Palace is an integral part of why Jodhpur is a popular tourist destination. Jodhpur which is the second largest city in the state of Rajasthan is a popular tourist attraction sprawling with a lot of temples, palaces and other interesting sites.
Taj Lake Palace
Palace stay in Udaipur
Another palace hotel you will find if you happen to be in Rajasthan is the Taj Lake Palace. This luxury hotel that has featured in a James Bond movie, Octopussy, is on an artificial island in Lake Pichola. The scenic lake is the reason why Udaipur is known as the City of Lakes.
The hotel’s suites features both lake and palace courtyard views. Some suites even have panoramic view of the whole like, ceiling frescoes and balconies & terraces where you can stroll like a Maharaja.
As far as heritage hotels in Udaipur go, this is an incredible property which you don’t want to miss!
Why Udaipur? Udaipur is a popular tourist destination due to its scenic history, culture and forts. It is home to several Rajput era palaces of which the City Palace and the Shiv Niwas Palace stand.
Taj Mahal Palace
Palace stay in Mumbai
The Taj Mahal Palace hotel, an icon of Mumbai, overlooking the Arabian Sea, has all the features that are identified with a top luxury hotel – refined rooms, marble bathrooms and private lounges.
Unfortunately, this hotel was the venue for 2008 terror attacks in Mumbai. But a Mumbai landmark, it reopened in 2010 after 18 months of restoration work.
The palace hotel is just a six minute walk from the Gateway of India monument and short stroll from the Marine drive. While it was built to be a hotel, and not as a royal residence, it certainly emulates a palace!
Why Mumbai? An estimated 18.4 million people live in the city of Mumbai. It is the richest and most economically viable city in India. Most of the millionaires and billionaires of India are based in Mumbai. Mumbai is a crucial political, economical and cultural center.
Palace stay in Bikaner
Another destination palace that you could consider in Rajasthan is the Gajner Palace located in Bikaner. The Gajner Palace is a lakeside palace that is peaceful & serene as it is situated in the middle of the Thar desert.
Stretching over 6000 acres, the palace was once hunting grounds of the royals of Mewar dynasty and the English. The daily light and sound show, brings alive splendor and grandeur of the Mewar royals.
Why Bikaner? Bikaner is a cultural center of Rajasthan that features legendary Karni Mata temple, Bhandasar temple; Laxmi Niwas palace and the Junagarh Fort.
Palace stay in Kolkata
Since the 1880’s this huge white palace has been the resting place to the high ranking colonials during the British era. Located in the central business district of Kolkata, the Oberoi Grande still hosts the highest dignitaries from around the world.
The hotel’s Thai restaurant, Baan Thai, features traditional Thai dishes, that you might not find in the modern Thailand.
Why Kolkata? Kolkata, once the capital of te hnow extinct East India company, is a destination for people who are seeking to look at civilization, culture and human endeavor from a different perspective. Its people, its culture, its infrastructure and the overall vibe of Kolkata make it a desirable destination.
Palace stay in Hyderabad
The last but not the least, Taj Falaknuma. Once the residence of famous Nizams, but now beautifully restored into a heritage hotel, the property is located on a hill overlooking the City of Pearls.
Your arrival to the palace building from the gate is via a horse carriage as no motorized vehicles are allowed on the premises. To this date, only a selected few have had the chance to experience the grandeur of Falaknuma.
Why Hyderabad? Hyderbad features interesting landmarks like Golconda fort, Charminar and the Qutub Shahi Tombs. For shopping enthusiasts the city has bazaars like the Laad Bazaar and the Begum Bazaar.
The city is a cultural center as relics from previous times litter the old part of the historic city. In fact, the second largest film producing industry in India, the Telugu film industry is based in Hyderabad.
There you have it. The top palace hotels of India that all represent the culture and tradition of the colorful India.
OUR FAVORITE INDIA TRAVEL GUIDES: CLICK TO LOOK INSIDE ↓
INSPIRED?! PIN THIS TO YOUR TRAVEL PINTEREST BOARDS ↓
If You Liked This Post You May Also Like:
Photo credits: Umaid Bhawan Palace courtesy of property management. Taj Lake Palace by Saurabh Chatterjee of SIA Photography. Taj Mahal Palace Hotel by Ph | JunVR. Gajner Palace courtesy of property management. Oberoi Grand Kolkata courtesy of property management. Taj Falaknuma by Saurabh Chatterjee of SIA Photography.