I was chatting with the manager at the reception in Hawa Mahal. Not the Hawa Mahal in Jaipur, but one of the 3 restored palaces at Tijara. He said, “Neemrana team took up the restoration work for the place way back in 1991.”
“Really. Wasn’t Taj Mahal made in 18 years?”, I exclaimed in surprise.
“It is easier perhaps to build something new than restore it back to the original state “, was his response.
And when I saw the before-and-after photos of the property, put up all over the site, I couldn’t help but agree with his opinion. The steep path that covers the last mile from the road to the property would have made it difficult to transport stones and other building material. It definitely was a massive restoration project – Hawa Mahal, Mardana Mahal, Rani Mahal and the gardens in between.
The result is outstanding. A heritage site painstakingly restored and brought to life by Neemrana to have a slice of royal life.
Tijara Fort-Palace is located in Alwar, Rajasthan. This 19th-century palace is located atop a small hill overlooking farmlands. It is a 2-2.5 hour road trip from Delhi and is suitable for a weekend getaway.
The location of the palace hotel provides several vantage points for breathtaking views and vistas. There isn’t much to do in the vicinity and you could be forgiven to not step out of the vast property grounds if you are only going for a short stay.
Stay at Tijara Fort-Palace
There are 71 suites and rooms in all. Tijara Fort-Palace complex has 3 main structures – Mardana Mahal where the rooms are around a large garden, Rani Mahal which has balconies/small terraces with superb views, and Hawa Mahal, which is used as a reception and breakfast area. If you arrive in a large group and want a private space to yourself, there are options like Khajur Mahal – 3 spacious rooms away from the main structures.
In all, there are more than 60 rooms and suites, named after India’s leading artists. Rani Mahal has larger suites with modern bathroom facilities. The suites are on the first and second floors and give you stunning views of the property and the surroundings. This structure also has a lift built in to access the higher floors of the heritage property. Mardana Mahal has a choice of both rooms and suites, and the ones on the ground floor offer direct access to a spacious garden. These may appeal to the elderly and families with children.
We stayed at a suite on the first floor of Rani Mahal. This suite had a corner octagonal turret with colorful windows remodeled as a cozy area to sit with friends or to read by yourself. The terrace made for a nice space to sit under the sky in the evening.
Food at Tijara Fort-Palace
I found the food a notch above other Neemrana properties. This could also be because this property is a relatively newer addition to the Neemrana collection.
Breakfast is a pleasant fare served at the Hawa Mahal, aptly named for the wind one can enjoy here. Standard breakfast would include eggs of your choice, some Indian option like idli or paratha, fresh fruit, and juice. All other meals are served at Kanch Mahal (Palace of Glass), a centrally located structure next to the vast gardens. Meal options were largely North Indian with the addition of Rajasthani dishes and a couple of continental options.
During our stay, there was a Rajasthani folk dance and music show on a Saturday evening with an alfresco dining option.
Activities at and around Tijara Fort-Palace
Relax, rejuvenate, breathe in deeply and spend time with yourself, friends and family.
Exploring the vast grounds and seeing the stunning views the 3 mahals offer took a lot of our time. The kids loved jumping around and playing at the terraced gardens in the central part. There is an open swimming pool that is perfect for warm afternoons. We also spent a lot of time hanging around with friends on the terrace outside our suite.
Although we didn’t step out of the property during our weekend getaway, Tijara does make for a good base to explore some nearby attractions like the Jain temples and City Palace in Alwar, Jaisamand lake near Alwar, the ruins of Bhangarh, Sariska wildlife sanctuary and Bala Qila.
What puts a smile 🙂
The outstanding views, I would say.
As I mentioned earlier, the location of the Fort-Palace over a hill provides panoramic views all around. There are so many nooks and corners and ramparts and terraces to explore that provide a vantage point. We went in the monsoon season and soaked in the greenery all around.
Recommended for families?
This property is not level, so could be difficult to navigate for the elderly in parts. There are stairs to climb and except for Rani Mahal, there isn’t a lift in any of the main structures. The kids, on the other hand, would love to play and explore unhindered. They only need to be watched on the roofs that don’t have a high wall.
Website: Neemrana Hotels, Tijara Fort-Palace
Telephone: +91 9587885003
Disclaimer: This post is not sponsored. We paid for our stay at Tijara Fort-Palace in full. As always, all opinions are my own.
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