An Unforgettable Royal Experience At Jaipur’s Iconic City Palace In Collaboration With Airbnb
- 14 Oct '22
- 12:03 pm by Nuriyah Johar
There’s luxury hospitality. Then there’s living like royals. The latter ensures an experience that is wholly unforgettable; think stately chambers, private indoor pools, and a sprawling palace complex amongst other extravagances. In line with today’s tourism sensibilities that prioritize unique narratives over conventional ideas of luxury, the titular Maharajah of Jaipur, Padmanabh Singh has collaborated with Airbnb and opened his family home, the City Palace of Jaipur to tourists. The breathtaking Gudliya Suite now bookable through the Airbnb website comes with its own lounge, kitchen, luxurious bathroom, and private swimming pool.
Steeped in history, the 300-year old City Palace is one of India’s most iconic buildings. The Gudliya Suite lies within one of the private sections of the royal palace that, until now, has been used for the family and their special guests, including the likes of Bill Clinton, Princess Diana, and Jackie Oprah Winfrey. “I am thrilled that my family and I are partnering with Airbnb to bring the splendour of Rajasthan to life for travelers from around the world,” says the Maharajah. “My own travels with Airbnb have made me feel very welcome in new cities and cultures, and I am happy that the experience of quintessential Indian hospitality will be shared with others.” A paradigm of 18th century Rajput architecture, the palace offers an immersive insight into the royal Rajasthani life.
Design & Architecture
The City Palace is one of Jaipur’s most visited tourist attractions – a testament to its remarkable architecture. Its private sections comprise majestic chambers, airy reception halls, grand crystal chandeliers, gilded wall decorations, intricate carvings and in addition to the royal residence, the sprawling palace complex houses a large, internationally recognised museum.
Within all this stately splendour what stands out in the Gudliya Suite is interestingly, colour! From powder blue to emerald green, deep orange to bright yellow, every room is finished in a different hue, united with an architectural motif of arches. The interior feels royal yet contemporary; a traditional palatial space made fit for modern-day living. While the sprawling bedroom (complete with a four poster bed) and grand lounge are impressive in their own right, what truly serves as the suite’s pièce de résistance is the bathroom. A standalone tub in a flaming red-orange domed room epitomizes luxury in true royal fashion.
Another statement feature of the suite is the sprawling indoor pool that looks like it’s right out of a Wes Anderson film. Saturated peach hues take over this minimalist interior. A ‘pool’ by today’s standards, the space was originally inspired by Turkish baths, seeing as pools weren’t a concept in Jaipur in the 1700s.
Dining & Experiences
Expect the royal treatment to be extended to the meals, in Rajasthan’s inimitable style of hospitality. As part of the Airbnb experience, guests can avail of two curated gourmet experiences, breakfast and dinner, at City Palace’s in-house restaurant, Baradari, that’s also open to the public. Renovated for adaptive re-use a couple of years ago, its new avatar as a modern restaurant has been a success with travellers. In addition to this, traditional Rajasthani meals can be enjoyed at the terrace overlooking the Aravallis, and serene daily breakfasts can be had in the company of peacocks who are often sighted at the Palace’s lush gardens. Part of the experience is a private dinner set up at the iconic Chhavi Niwas (The Blue Room) complete with live musicians.
Further fortifying the experience of living like royalty, guests are looked after by a private butler and guide who arrange tailored experiences within the Pink City like shopping tours, guided walks through local museums, and other excursions. Additionally, the property offers an incredible guided tour of the 1700s complex conducted by a member of the royal staff who explains the intricacies of the architecture, art, and décor at the palace.
We’re entering an exciting new chapter of tourism in India, as is evidenced by the collaboration between Airbnb and the Maharajah of Jaipur. Unbridled indulgence layered with authentic stories and singular experiences are steadily redefining luxury hospitality, and we can’t wait to see what the near future holds.
– The charitable initiatives of the collaboration; the proceeds of each booking go to the Princess Diya Kumari Foundation, a local nonprofit dedicated to supporting rural women and people of Rajasthan.
– The private indoor pool that looks like it’s right out of a Wes Anderson film.
– The personal guard and butler experience; a member of the royal staff escorts you around for activities outside the City Palace and the butler attends to every whim.
– The private dinners arranged at the iconic Chhavi Niwas (The Blue Room) complete with live musicians.
– The generous use of colour across the Gudliya Suite.