Between temples and bazaars of the white city: a stay at Taj Lake, the floating hotel of the Maharana
When the king of the kings of Udaipur, the Maharana Jagat Singh II, ascended the throne of the kingdom of Mewar, he had his winter palace built on the island of Jag Niwas. The palace faced the East, to allow the inhabitants of the kingdom to pray to Sūrya at sunrise.
Its imposing columns, wonderful gardens with fountains and elegant white marble floors made it a little gem in the heart of Lake Pichola . Yet, from king to king, from the 1700s onwards, the palace began to fall into disrepair. It was abandoned by everyone, becoming a forgotten and decadent place. That magical and enchanted place now seemed deserted , with the silence broken only by the hum of the clouds of mosquitoes .
At least until 1971, when the little paradise of the Maharana passed into the hands of Jamshyd DF Lam . It was in that year that the winter palace shone again on the splendid Indian lake, transforming itself into the extraordinary floating hotel that still surprises guests today with a view of Lake Pichola and the white city .
Let time stand still as you cross the lake
towards the 16th century white marble palace.
Feel a cold shiver down your spine as you hear a tiger roar in the dense forest.
Free your soul and let yourself be enchanted by the magic of experiencing timeless traditions.
My trip to India: between the temples and gardens of the Venice of the East
My father loved this place so much that he had a reserved room in the ancient palace of the Maharana. I, on the other hand, have never been to Taj Lake Palace Udaipur , but after the trip to Mumbai and New Delhi, I decided to leave for the city of Udaipur, in the State of Rajasthan, and finally see this little paradise with my own eyes. of western India.
Udaipur, known as the white city , the city of lakes and the Venice of the East , is a fertile land, full of traditions, ancient palaces, ponds and architectural works that literally leave you speechless. My destination is in Lake Pichola, near another magical body of water: Lake Fateh Sagar.
Before reaching the hotel, however, I had decided to explore the historic center of Udaipur by tuk tuk and get lost among the bazaars, the colorful markets and the museums, such as the Bagore Ki Haveli and the City Palace Museum, passing by the parks and large public gardens, and then enjoy the sunset from the Jagdish temple.
Jagannath Rai , now called Jagdish , is dedicated to Vishnu and is one of the main attractions of the city. According to the scriptures, there are approximately 330 million deities residing in the great pantheon, all manifestations of the great Brahman – the creator deva of the Universe. From the city walls, all roads lead to the temple.
At a particular time of day, this place becomes truly magical, the grand staircase leading to the entrance and mandapa , the hall, the magnificent columns and the smallest details of the bas-reliefs and sikhara sculptures shine.
As the sun went down, the ferry to Lake Palace was waiting for me. Finally, I would see with my own eyes the hotel my father had loved so much.
Enjoy the enchantment of living in a rainforest as you walk through the clouds.
My arrival at the hotel on Lake Pichola
I have been listening to the history of this luxury hotel since I was a child and, every time, I seem to discover new surprising details. From Jagdish Temple to Lake Palace it is about 20 minutes on foot, also considering the ferry. Passing by the Hindu temple of Bheru Ji , I allow myself a memorable shot.
The trip to the floating hotel was like a daydream. The faint rays of the sun, which slowly fell behind the temples, the Aravalli mountains and the city of Udaipur, illuminated the white marble facade and it almost seemed to be heading towards Eden.
Upon my arrival, the ferry docked at the hotel’s small dock, where the concierge was waiting for me with a velvet umbrella in his hands and a cascade of red petals at the entrance. A welcome worthy of a king.
And in that moment, I was the king of the Mewar kingdom of my father’s tales.
Taj Lake: the historic home of the King
Discover the architectural wonders on a champagne tour,
while the peacocks exhibit their beauty by your side.
There is life all around the lake. When I woke up, enjoying a royal breakfast overlooking the lake, I began to observe the habits of the locals. Among those who enjoy a boat ride and those who greet the sun, there are women who wash their clothes on the shore and those who practice Puja to pay homage to their god or spirit guide.
With the sunlight it was possible to see the colorful palaces of Udaipur, the dense woods and temples, and hear the sounds of nature and the hum of the voices of the city that slowly awakened.
The Taj Lake Palace emerged from the water like a fairytale castle. It was the summer home of the Maharana and was built over 200 years ago. Today, the rooms recall that flourishing past, the architectures of the Taj Mahal and come back to life with the bright colors of Indian fabrics, with the beauty of the gardens and swimming pools.
Each room, from the Royal Suites to the Historical Suites, is furnished with a precise style and offers a suggestive view of Lake Pichola.
With arabesque ceilings, niches and canopies, teak floors, large decorated windows and works of art of Udaipur it seems to be lost in a distant time. But those who really want to feel like a king can choose the rooms with whirlpool tubs, rain showers, marble bathrooms and crystal chandeliers or stay in the suite named after the Maharana Shambhu Singh.
Inside this wonderful resort in India you can spend an entire day exploring all the rooms of the palace, enjoying delicious cocktails and relaxing with sessions of Jiva Boat Spa , the exclusive floating Spa that offers aroma-therapeutic massages and spicy wraps.
All that remained was to indulge in a magical dinner on the lake on the historic Gangaur boat, stop time and relive my father’s tales in this splendid hotel in India , enjoying a Masala Medley and a suggestive view of the Pichola.
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INFORMATION ABOUT THE STRUCTURE
Wines / Beers / Drinks : Amrit Sagar (signature martinis, cocktails and a large collection of premium international spirits at the bar).
Services offered : Hotel, Swimming pool, Fitness center with gym and fitness room, Entertainment, Babysitting service, Minibar in the room.
Other amenities: Restaurant and Lounge bar, restaurants within easy reach include Restaurant Harigarh, Jaiwana Haveli Roof Top Restaurant and Dining Room.