Umaid Bhawan Palace is a luxurious palace located in Jodhpur, Rajasthan, India. It is one of the largest private residences in the world and is also a popular tourist attraction.
The palace was built between 1928 and 1943 for Maharaja Umaid Singh and was designed by British architect Henry Vaughan Lanchester. The palace was built to provide employment to the people of Jodhpur during a period of famine and drought, and it is said that over 3,000 artisans were employed in its construction.
The palace has 347 rooms and is divided into three parts – the residence of the royal family, a museum, and a luxury hotel. The museum has a collection of artifacts and memorabilia from the royal family’s history, including vintage cars, weapons, and personal belongings of the royal family.
The palace hotel is managed by the Taj Group of Hotels and has 64 guest rooms and suites. The hotel is known for its grandeur and luxury, with amenities such as a spa, swimming pool, and multiple dining options. The palace has also been a popular location for weddings and other grand events.
The palace is set amidst 26 acres of gardens, which include a rose garden, a lily pond, and a variety of exotic plants and trees. The palace is built of sandstone and is an example of the Indo-Saracenic style of architecture.
Overall, Umaid Bhawan Palace is a magnificent palace that combines luxury, history, and culture, and is a must-visit destination for anyone traveling to Jodhpur or Rajasthan.
How to reach
Umaid Bhawan Palace is located in Jodhpur, Rajasthan, India. There are several ways to reach Jodhpur:
- By air: Jodhpur has its own airport, the Jodhpur Airport (JDH), which is well-connected to major cities in India. From the airport, you can take a taxi or a bus to reach Umaid Bhawan Palace.
- By train: Jodhpur has a well-connected railway station that is connected to major cities in India. You can take a train to Jodhpur and then take a taxi or a bus to reach Umaid Bhawan Palace.
- By road: Jodhpur is well-connected by road to major cities in Rajasthan and other neighboring states. You can take a bus or hire a taxi to reach Jodhpur and then reach Umaid Bhawan Palace.
Once you reach Jodhpur, Umaid Bhawan Palace is easily accessible by road. The palace is located about 6 kilometers from the Jodhpur railway station and about 10 kilometers from the Jodhpur airport. You can take a taxi or a local bus to reach the palace. Alternatively, many hotels in Jodhpur offer pick-up and drop-off services to Umaid Bhawan Palace, so you can check with your hotel for transportation options.
Is the palace a Heritage hotel now?
Today, the palace has three functional parts. One of the parts is a fantastic five-star hotel. The residence of the royal family and the museum are the other two parts of the palace.
What are the timings and the entry charges?
The Umaid Bhawan Palace Museum is open from 10-00 hours to 16-00 hours. It is closed on Sundays. The entry fee for Indians is Rs 15, while for foreign nationals it is Rs 50.
Umaid Bhawan Palace was built between 1928 and 1943 for Maharaja Umaid Singh of the Rathore dynasty of Jodhpur. The palace was designed by British architect Henry Vaughan Lanchester, who combined elements of Western and Eastern architectural styles to create a unique style that came to be known as Indo-Saracenic architecture.
The construction of the palace was motivated by a desire to provide employment to the people of Jodhpur during a period of famine and drought. Over 3,000 artisans were employed in its construction, which used materials such as sandstone, marble, and wood.
The palace was named after Maharaja Umaid Singh and was completed in 1943. However, the Maharaja did not live long enough to see the palace in its completed form, as he died in 1947.
After India gained independence in 1947, the palace was divided into three parts. The first part was used as the residence of the royal family, the second part was converted into a museum that showcases the history and heritage of the royal family, and the third part was converted into a luxury hotel.
Today, the palace is managed by the Taj Group of Hotels and is a popular destination for tourists and visitors from all over the world. The palace has played host to many dignitaries and celebrities over the years, and it continues to be a symbol of the rich cultural heritage of Rajasthan.
What goes behind the architecture?
Built with a view to providing work for the poor villagers, the Umaid Bhawan Palace is among the last royal constructions. Set amidst 26 acres of lush gardens, the palace is also one of the largest residences in the world. The palace was designed by the renowned Edwardian architect Henry Lanchester. It symbolizes a wonderful blend of eastern and western architectural influences. The splendid 105-foot high cupola is influenced by the Renaissance, while the towers represent the Rajput tradition. The interiors are lavishly decorated with gilt furniture and elegant artwork following the Art Deco style and complemented by the commendable and exotic wall paintings by the Polish artist Stefan Norblin.
What are the nearby attractions?
The foundation of the Mehrangarh Fort was laid by Rathore Rajputs in the 15th century. It was built when the Rathore Rajputs moved their capital from nearby Mandore to Jodhpur.
The Jaswant Thada is the traditional burial ground of the Jodhpur rulers. It is located halfway up the road that climbs onwards to the fort. Royal portraits and other possessions can be seen inside the main hall. The white-marble memorial to Jaswant Singh II was built in 1899. It is the most spectacular of all.
Mandore lies at a distance of 9 km north of Jodhpur. It was the erstwhile capital of Marwar before the foundation of Jodhpur. Founded in the 6th century, today it has the extensive Mandore Gardens with the cenotaphs of the Rathod rulers as the chief attraction.
Where to stay
Umaid Bhawan Palace has a luxury hotel managed by the Taj Group of Hotels. The hotel offers 64 well-appointed guest rooms and suites, each with its own unique character and decor. The rooms are equipped with modern amenities such as air-conditioning, flat-screen TVs, and mini-bars. The hotel also has a spa, a swimming pool, and multiple dining options, including a rooftop restaurant that offers stunning views of Jodhpur.
Staying at the Umaid Bhawan Palace hotel is a once-in-a-lifetime experience that combines luxury and heritage, and it is highly recommended for travelers who want to indulge in a royal experience. However, the hotel is relatively expensive, and may not be affordable for all travelers.
If you are looking for more affordable accommodation options in Jodhpur, there are many budget and mid-range hotels and guesthouses available in the city. You can also consider staying in a homestay or a hostel, which can be a great way to experience the local culture and lifestyle. Some popular areas for budget and mid-range accommodations in Jodhpur include the Old City, Sojati Gate, and Ratanada.