When you visit India, you discover a country of extraordinary experiences, luxury resorts, romantic destinations, amazing people and some of the best small hotels in exotic locales that one can imagine. I can think of a few small hotels at exotic locales in India. But one of the best that I can think of is the Lake Palace in Udaipur that has attained a certain mythical status by its own right. Udaipur by itself is a very interesting and pretty destination also known as the City of Lakes or the Romantic capital of Rajasthan in India.
When you visit Rajasthan in India, you need to visit Udaipur. There are multiple small and large lakes in the city of Udaipur that reflect the shimmering lights at night producing quite a beautiful effect. And in the middle of all this is the famous Lake Pichola in the centre of which stands the 18th century luxury palace that is the Lake Palace Hotel today. There is no pretense about this hotel. Even from a distance one can make out that this is exclusivity personified.
Just from it’s location, it is evident that the Lake Palace Hotel is accessible to the discerning few and the rich and famous who like to be incognito and isolated. Which is why you go to an island! Understandably they have a limited inventory that complements their business position of luxury exclusivity. Being in the trade and doing what I do, I have had the enviable possibility of testing the Lake Palace on several occasions and checking out their services. And I must say that I was not disappointed. Their position in luxury romantic escapes is justified.
Firstly, the arrival in a boat at the red carpet jetty is quite royal. Before you get to the reception, you already have your suite allocation ready. But hey, you are here to explore your palace. You are not in a hurry to get to your room. Take your time at the amazing lounge, go to the wonderful garden; just ask someone to show you around the property and you take your pick. Sit at the lovely bar and celebrate your arrival with a drink!
When I am at the Lake Palace, usually I would saunter my way to my suite. The rooms here really attract me. Just the pleasure of being in my suite is quite unique. The decor is very royal. And the view across the lake, opening up on the majestic façade of the City Palace across the lake is truly unparalleled. If I were on vacation, I can spend hours contemplating in my room, looking at the view or simply reading my book. Fortunately or unfortunately, I am on work here.
There are four exquisite restaurants here; Asian, Indian, contemporary Western and Italian. They are all fantastic. The chefs are world class. I have met some of them personally. The way they made their foie gras was quite extraordinary, better than most that I have had in some of the best restaurants in France! And I am being conservative here.
They organised a special dinner for us on the rooftop. It was quite mesmerising with the City Palace lit up in the backdrop reflected on the waters of the Lake Pichola. The setting is prettier than you can imagine. You are in the middle of the lake on one of the finest small luxury palaces of the world. The lake is surrounded by the small Aravali Hills where you see the sun going down in a flash of colour. And at their bar, they have some of the finest wines on the planet.
Honestly, the Lake Palace is not for everyone. If you look around, you will probably meet nobody who has spent a night there. But if you look at the list of people who have been there, it is not surprising. Starting from Roger Moore (James Bond, during Octopussy) to Queen Elizabeth to Nicole Kidman to Julia Roberts… the list gets pretty interesting. This is not your regular hotel that you will check up on Trip Advisor before deciding to come. You will come here because you want to and because you can afford it.
If you like travelling and you wish to enjoy some luxury, this definitely should be on your bucket list.
Review courtesy Maavalan Travels.
All logistics, bookings and travel services with the Lake Palace handled by Maavalan Travels for Journeyman Chronicles.