Asia & Australasia

A luxury weekend in Jaipur, India


After a fabulous taste of Mumbai, which we really really enjoyed, we hopped on a short flight (under 2 hours) to Jaipur, also known as India’s ‘Pink City’.

We flew with Jet Airways on its premiere class, which was very comfortable, as per our international experience. The main difference was of course, the type of plane and seat, and the fact that there was no alcohol served on board – which of course, didn’t make a difference.

jet airways domestic business class mumbai to jaipur

I must say that this domestic flight experience with Jetairways was better than many European ones we have. The seats were comfortable and there was *plenty* of legroom in its business class or ‘premiere’ cabin.

As we landed, we were met by our driver from Tamarind Tours, a company that organised all our local transfers and activities, and as per our experience in Mumbai, the service was faultless. In under 40 minutes, we arrived at one of the most special hotels I have ever stayed at: the stunning Oberoi Rajvillas, located outside the city of Jaipur.

Oberoi Rajvillas Jaipur India mrs o around the world

The stunning Oberoi Rajvillas in Jaipur

We also had one of the most beautiful welcomes ever – as we walked towards the front of the hotel, all I remember were the candles, and someone throwing rose petals from the top of the building. Obviously we don’t have any photographs – but it was a moment I will never forget.

As we got to the hotel, we couldn’t help but be impressed with our surroundings – the hotel was stunning and quite grand, just what was needed for a location like Jaipur. We were escorted to our Royal Tent, which was made up of two separate tents and a large private garden area.

Rajvillas Jaipur India Luxury Villa 1

Villa 220 at the Oberoi Rajvillas

One of the tents had our beautiful bedroom and bathroom – a bath had been prepared for us and it was still hot as we got there. It was a very thoughtful touch.

Oberoi Rajvillas Jaipur India Luxury Villa bedroom

A lovely room 😉

And then on the other tent, we had a living room and a waiting bottle of Indian sparkling wine, which was actually a very pleasant surprise (we had tried other wines from the same brand in Mumbai and they were very good!).

Oberoi Rajvillas Jaipur India Luxury Villa 2

The second tent

We spent the rest of the evening at the hotel, where we had a very interesting dinner, as the chef prepared us a tasting menu of the local cuisine – it was outstanding.

The next morning, we had breakfast at the hotel (I must confess I did not indulge in local specialties, choosing to have fruit and a continental breakfast), before we were met by our driver and guide, who were there on the dot.

Oberoi Rajvillas Jaipur India breakfast

I loved the fresh fruit and juices in India (obviously in the safety of the hotel).

We made our way to the first monument of the day: the one and only Amber Fort, which is a UNESCO World Heritage site, and by far, the most visited attraction in the area. As we went early, we beat some of the queues – and that was a great idea. The palace is located 10 kms from Jaipur, and a must visit.

amber fort jaipur india

The Amber Fort and Palace in Jaipur

Our driver dropped us off at the bottom entrance and for a second I did not quite understand how we were going to get all the way up – and before I knew it, we were riding an elephant. If there is one thing I regret from this whole trip – was this very moment. I felt incredibly guilty for doing this, it was uncomfortable and not particularly hygienic and the elephant was so tired (or looked like he was), I actually thought we were going to fall. It is not my place to tell others not to do something, but your driver can take you actually to the very top of the fort by car (which is where we were picked up at the end).

Oberoi Rajvillas Jaipur India amber fort1

Mrs. O was not smiling. I really did not enjoy this part of the trip.

The fort itself was incredible – actually it was the set of two of the Bollywood films I had watched on the plane and I almost felt like I knew it. As we were early, it wasn’t crazy busy – and we were even able to take some photos without others in sight. Our guide was knowledgeable and quite relaxed which was good – there was a lot to see and we spent quite few hours here.

Oberoi Rajvillas Jaipur India amber fort2 mrs o around the world

Smiling again – and enjoying the views

It was really quite hot and humid – and the obvious downside is that you need to drink water. And if you need to drink water, you can imagine what one might need to do later. I can report that the loo facilities at this venue are actually quite good – namely the paid ones, of course, so this is one less thing to worry. I was really worried, and all for nothing.

Oberoi Rajvillas Jaipur India amber fort2

What a place!

From the palace, we made our way to the city, and visited the Jantar Mantar Observatory, which has a lot of time measuring instruments (not exactly our cup of tea). We also visited the Albert Hall and the City Palace, which were way more interesting and worth the time.

Oberoi Rajvillas Jaipur India Pink city 1

The beautiful Hawa Mahal, also known as the “Palace of the Winds.” Below, the other buildings we have visited.

Lunch was a very quick affair and took place at a local hotel and in the afternoon, I was a woman on a mission: shopping of course! I had visions of buying beautiful beach dresses, tunics and sandals and spent quite a few hours looking at the local stalls. Jewellery was also on the cards – but somehow I wasn’t 100% sure of what I would be buying if we think about diamonds, but in terms of gold, I actually didn’t find anything simple enough. After wasting a few hours (I really was disappointed in that sense), our guide took us to one of ‘his friend’s’ shop, which was actually quite interesting.

We enjoyed learning how rugs were made and most importantly, I discovered that they had a tailor. I also learned about the traditional block printing – which is a way of ‘decorating’ fabrics and I even had a little go at it. If they charged us double for what we bought, it did not matter – we actually had a fantastic time. And more importantly, I got to order 4 made-to-measure beach dresses, choosing the model, variety of fabrics and extras, which would be delivered to our hotel the following day (amazing!!). For the record, the dresses were an average of £20 each – which I found to be outstanding value for money. AND they fit.

Oberoi Rajvillas Jaipur India Pink city 2

A city of contrasts, of course. And I still couldn’t get used to having cows everywhere – but they were where they should be.

We spent the rest of the afternoon at the hotel, where we enjoyed a spa treatment and a little walk around the grounds. It was lovely and quite relaxing – it was interesting the contrast of the city noise (and the chaos and the smell), and the hotel, which was so quiet, you could hear the birds. It was perfect.

Oberoi Rajvillas Jaipur India luxury hotel details

Some details from our stay at the Oberoi Rajvillas. And my dresses!

For dinner, we went outside the hotel – and visited another hotel! A local landmark, Rambagh Palace by Taj was also spectacular, yet completely different from where we were staying. We had cocktails at its polo bar (which was a lot of fun) and an epic 3-hour meal at Suvarna Mahal, its fine dining restaurant. Again, we asked the chef to prepare whatever he wanted as we weren’t sure what to choose – and it was phenomenal.

suvarna mahal taj rambaugh palace fine dining cakebread wine jaipur india

An epic meal at a very special hotel.

Dinner costs around £35-50 per person excluding drinks – we were incredibly surprised to see one of our favourite American wines, Cakebread on the menu (and we had done so at the Oberoi), and had to have it again – even if it was to boost their local sales. Funnily enough, it wasn’t an accident – it pairs wonderfully well with the food and all the waiters love the name of the wine. Word of warning, try not to eat for at least 6 hours before this meal.

On our final day, we took it very easy. Very very easy – we stayed by the pool and enjoyed a little bit of sun. Our tasting trip to India was quite non-stop, and it was just what we needed. And it was so quiet, it was perfect.

Oberoi Rajvillas Jaipur India swimming pool

Not too shabby for Mr. and Mrs. O – and the hotel provided travel-sized sunscreen.

Before we left, the hotel surprised with with a little blessing at its temple – I must confess I didn’t understand what was said, but it was lovely.

Oberoi Rajvillas Jaipur India wedding ceremony blessing

Something different!

And leaving the hotel, was actually really quite hard – we had a quick meal as it would be a few hours before we could eat again (we were flying to Mumbai and then on to London). But what I will never forget was what happened when we got to the car and drove off – as we did, 6 or 7 members of staff were strategically placed by the driveway, waving goodbye in a very synchronised manner. As I got to number 4, I was in tears.

I know that going to India and visit both Mumbai and Jaipur in 5 and a bit days was crazy. REALLY crazy. But it was one of the most special trips we have been on. We loved the people, the food, the hotels and will certainly go back and explore more of this incredible country again.

xo

Mrs. O

 

Disclaimer and Fact Box: We were guests of Jet AirwaysOberoi Rajvillas and Tamarind Tours. Our trip was nothing short of perfect, and opinions are, as always, my own.

Fly: with Jet Airways from London Heathrow to Jaipur with a stopover in Mumbai in business class from £1800. Read my flight review here.

Sleep: at the Oberoi Mumbai, where a deluxe room costs from £300/night and tents from £600. Exceptional service and decor. Mrs. O approved indeed.

Get Around: with Tamarind Tours, who provided exceptional service both in Mumbai and Jaipur. Our 5-day trip, complete with driver and guides, and airport transfers cost £250.

Take photos: with the Leica V-Lux. With its long wide-angle to super-telephoto and macro zoom range, the Leica V-Lux succeeds in doing justice to the beauty of the world in all its facets. For photographic memories in excellent picture quality. Its extremely fast autofocus ensures that spontaneous shots are only a breath away. A camera for people who see life as a great adventure with countless things to discover as they travel through it. Cost: £925.


Article was posted on
View Comments (15)

15 Comments

  1. Sue Ramos

    December 3, 2016 at 2:26 am

    Loved reliving our stay in Jaipur through your eyes. The elephant ride was bittersweet. The sights and sounds were incredible. We did a lot of shopping and did have a small marble table shipped home successfully. I frequently use the block print tablecloths and treasure the rug in front of our fireplace. Seeing the artisans working showed the craftsmanship that goes into each item. My husband’s most memorable experience was receiving the third eye at a temple. India was a grand experience. Thanks for your colorful account.

  2. Victoria@ The British Berliner

    November 30, 2015 at 8:03 pm

    ‘Love this post. I have actually been to India and I also went to Jaipur. I tried to buy books there and it took quite an age as my rickshaw driver didn’t really understand what I was after, and didn’t tell me lol! I too went to the fort but thankfully, we weren’t forced to ride the elephants as there had been an accident the day before! I’m not against riding elephants per se, as long as they are in a conservation environmental home and there are no “seats,” painting, dancing, or circus activities!

    India isn’t easy but once you’ve been. And survived. You’ll be absolutely fine. I spent 30 days in Rajasthan but I’d like to go to Mumbai, Goa & Kerela the next time around, but how to convince my German husband…!
    Victoria@ The British Berliner recently posted..10 amazing reasons why you should visit Bristol.My Profile

    • @mrsoaroundworld

      December 1, 2015 at 5:00 pm

      There are so many more places we want to visit there – this was just a little taster, and we liked it. A lot!

  3. Natalie @ In Natalie's Shoes

    November 13, 2015 at 10:30 pm

    Wow! I’m always impressed with your trips! Now I’m desperate to visit Jaipur.
    Natalie @ In Natalie’s Shoes recently posted..Celebrating Fall at Apple HillMy Profile

  4. Suze - Luxury Columnist

    November 12, 2015 at 8:49 pm

    I’ve yet to visit India but your photos certainly make me want to do so, Ana. The Oberoi looks like a magical place and how nice that they gave you a blessing before you left
    Suze – Luxury Columnist recently posted..Eagle Brae – Your Luxury Highlands RetreatMy Profile

  5. Catherine

    November 11, 2015 at 10:15 am

    What an absolutely magical experience! I’d love to visit India one day, mostly for the luxury hotels 😉

    I had a similar experience when I stayed at the Palm Island Resort in The Grenadines last month, when we left there were members of staff lined up on the jetty to wave us off – we hugged all of them! The service was out of this world, I’ve never experienced anything like it before.

    C x | Lux Life
    Catherine recently posted..Waitrose #MakesChristmas Dinner.My Profile

  6. Andi

    November 11, 2015 at 1:28 am

    This post makes me miss the Pink City sooo badly! I loved my time there!!!
    Andi recently posted..Top Tips For A Family Ski HolidayMy Profile

  7. Suzanne - Travelbunny

    November 10, 2015 at 7:49 pm

    What a fabulous trip and the hotels look fab – love the tents. We stayed at Rambagh Palace and had a very good G&T in the Polo Bar 😉
    Suzanne – Travelbunny recently posted..Road Trip Itinerary – South West USAMy Profile

  8. Miguel

    November 10, 2015 at 7:22 pm

    Que maravilha e que bem que estão os dois!
    Já temos saudades vossas.
    bj e abraço
    Miguel

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge

More in Asia & Australasia

w maldives starwood spg luxury hotel cover

My hOtel: a review of W Maldives

@mrsoaroundworldMarch 8, 2017

A hotel to remember: Baros Maldives

@mrsoaroundworldJanuary 12, 2017
velassaru-maldives-slh-hotels-sovereign-luxury-holiday-main-pool

A hotel to remember: Velassaru Maldives

@mrsoaroundworldOctober 6, 2016
ritz carlton reserve mandapa bali ubud luxury hotel cover

Travelling to prepare for a special moment

@mrsoaroundworldAugust 30, 2016
strand cruise myanmar

The Strand Cruise – a boutique luxury cruise journey from Bagan to Mandalay, Myanmar

@mrsoaroundworldFebruary 16, 2016
Coco Bodu Hithi Maldives Sovereign Luxury Travel welcome

A luxury holiday at the Coco Bodhu Hithi in the Maldives

@mrsoaroundworldAugust 10, 2015
%d bloggers like this: