Is this the most expensive suite in India?

The Raj Palace is the oldest mansion in Jaipur, the capital city of Rajasthan. The lavish palace was converted into a luxury heritage hotel in 1996, and is an unmatched example of Rajasthan’s regal character, charm and grandeur. Each opulent suite has its very own museum inside, displaying a range of antique clocks, weaponry and jewellery. The suites are decorated in priceless antique Indian furniture. Walls are adorned with hand-painted murals and grand crystal chandeliers hang from the ceilings. The hotel’s dining room is home to the world’s largest chandelier, along with a large collection of royal silverware.

The ‘Maharaja’s Pavilion’, also known as the ‘Presidential Suite’, is a four floor suite with its very own private elevator connecting each floor. Boasting four opulent bedrooms, the total area of the suite is 16,000 square feet. The Maharaja’s Pavilion was awarded ‘Asia’s Leading Suite’ by the World Travel Awards in 2012-13.

Raj Palace suite

The first floor of the Maharaja’s Pavilion has a private lounge and bar. The first floor was once the woman’s quarters, also known as the zenana. According to long standing Indian tradition, female members of the royal court had to be separated from the palace’s communal areas. Each individual suite had a private walkway, meaning the ladies were within easy reach of the ruling Maharaja.

The second floor was used by the Maharaja himself and it overlooks the inner courtyards and palace gardens. The walls are intricately adorned with gold leaf and mirror work. A highlight of the second floor is the private museum, featuring the Old Throne and Bolsters of the Maharaja. Like the royal women in the zenana, the Maharaja himself at times required privacy from public goings-on. His rooms would be kept under the strictest guard and only those summoned by him could enter. In other parts of the palace intended for his entertainment, the Maharaja and his male guests would spend hours smoking hookahs, reciting poetry and enjoying musical performances.

Raj Palace suite

The third floor of the pavilion was once the Prince’s Suite and has a library and lavish dining room. The third floor also has a grand dining area, along with another bedroom. From childhood, princes were raised to lead an army. Princes were not only trained in the art of war, but also educated about legal matters and the virtues of charity. His room was decorated with various battle scenes and handmade weapons.

The fourth floor was formerly the Maharaja’s pleasure pavilion. It has a private roof top terrace with breath taking views of Jaipur, along with a private hot tub. The fourth floor is home to the private spa and butler entrance, and is extravagantly decorated with silver, gold and ivory furnishings; including gold bathroom fixtures. The pleasure pavilion was an intimate setting within the palace where the Maharaja could spend time with his queens. Miniature paintings at the palace give a good idea of the eroticism involved with court life.

How much is the most expensive suite in India? The Maharaja Pavilion Presidential Suite is £8,125 per night, exclusive of meals and taxes. The Raj Palace also boasts a Palace Suite, Prestige Suite, Historical Room and Heritage Room, starting at £275 per night.

The Maharaja Pavilion will soon be outdone as the most expensive suite in India, as the Raj Palace open the ‘Shahi Mahal Suite’ in October 2014. Priced at £30,000 per night, the Shahi Mahal has been under renovation for the last 12 years.

Madeleine Hann is CEO and Co-Founder of Indian Excursions Co.

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