If you think you have stayed in the best hotel in the world, dream on. Correct the delusioal thoughts by bookig yourself a week here. It is a tourist destination in itself not just a bed for the night. If yiou can afford to stay here on your Indian adventure book a few extra days here to get the best out of your experience. When we arrived at Udaipur we were dissppointed when we drove to mthe hotel through the city it looked very ordinary. However on arrival at the lakeside jetty for the boat the lights shone. The lake is majical and the hotel viwed from the jetty stunning. It reminded me of the first time I went to the Excelsior or Ciprianni in Venice. The boatride their is one of the many wows. as is the boat ride there and back every time you leave the hotel. Do it early morning at sunrise, during the day, sunset and at night. That is four free excursions. The hotel inside is wow wow wow, all the communal areas are out of this world. Architexturally, design wise, and florally, The lilly pond, the pool area where you lie by the pool looking at city palace, and the restaurants and lounges and bars. Around every corner a startling view. Even by Taj standards the service is impeccable plus.
We were lucky enough to be upgraded to a Roayal suite (cost rack rate 150,000INR) fro a de luxe (rack rate approx 55,000) not sure it was worth the extra money if you were paying but a class better. We could see the sunset from our bed. Our agent wanted us to stay at the Oberio as he thought the rooms were better, but we looked at standard and deluxe rooms and they were very good.
The rooftop restaurant where a set price menu is 4500INR approx was outstanding with the little brazier heaters to keep you warm. Food, service and views world class. It is said to be the 19th most impressive view in the world, the Grand Canyon being first. The breakfast buffet and food a la carte items were unexpecteddly good. We lived on 5 different yoghurts and lychees!! The eggs benedictine very good, and they even did crispy bacon just like I ordered. The pastries were a week point suprisingly. Try to get an outside table by the ponds, they can be reserved and there are only 6.
The highlight was an evening on the Maharajahs boat The Gangaur. Not cheap but a breathtaking experience. Cost is 60,000INR fpr up to 8 people, good valus for 2 if you are lucky enough to afford it, but outstanding value for 8. It is worth canvassing other guests to do it as you get a cheaper mind blowing night!!!! You start with champagne, great canapes and the lake to yourselves with 6 oars man rowing. If you want a surprise like us dont read on. You pass a ruiined colonad under City Palace, and BOING!!! music starts and 4 dancers appear for your personall dance show. On a cruise of the lake fireworks started and I thought it was a bollywood wedding, but No, It was just for us!!!!!
We then had dinner on the deck with our own chef, waiters and musicians. Need I go on? I had handpicked the menu with their executive chef that morning over a 30min consultation. Their foie gras done sauteed and chilled was an outstanding duo, and they specially made a seafood bisque with cognac and caviar!!! My partner had her favourit Rhubarb Crumble another special. The Place opossite was done up for a wedding and we had an outstanding light show with lasers over the lake. That was just lucky!! The entire evening including champage, 3 hours on the boat, michelin star standard dinner and a totla of 22 people helping just you 1000pounds for 2 for a lifetime memmorry. only 150 pounds each if you can finmd 8 likeminded souls. Rates with a Grand Canyon Helicopter and river experience, in my book and cheaper!!!!
The spa was a good experience and reasonable by hotel standards for a massage. 5000INR approx,
when I had my beared trimmed for 500INR I even had a welcome experience, towels and their signature cocktail all thrown in. Oh did I tell you no-one accepts tips. They all insist on a centalised tip, which you can give or not at departure.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The ethereal Taj Lake Palace affords guests the pleasures of India's bygone princely era. Over the centuries, it has played host to royalty, poets and writers and the Maharana's guests. Trappings like a welcoming vintage car ride to the charming city of Udaipur, the Jiva Spa boat, royal butlers, recipes from traditional Mewari cuisine and arrival by boat - all little facets that make this former pleasure palace the celebrated luxury hotel it is today. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Taj Lake Palace Udaipur Hotel Udaipur
- Lake Palace Udaipur
- Taj Lake Palace Hotel Udaipur
- Lake Palace Hotel Udaipur
- Udaipur Taj Lake Palace