India is perceived as an exotic destination and rightfully so. The diversity in topography, culture, cuisine, climate and language as you traverse the length and breadth of the country, combined with the rich heritage, has truly resulted in an enchanting potpourri of exoticism. The many faces of this beautiful land entice tourists to explore its various facets.
The royalty of Rajasthan (aptly called the land of the Kings) lived life King size and the various forts and palaces within the state serve as reminders of a truly magnificent past. Today, most of these opulent palaces and awe-inspiring forts have been converted into heritage hotels and resorts, enabling guests to experience the rich cultural heritage of the state as well as take a peek into the regal lifestyle of the erstwhile rulers. There are quite a few entrepreneurs (including big groups) in the business of heritage hotels – giving a face-lift to beautiful palaces and forts, encasing them in modern day luxury without taking away from the traditional beauty of the structure and the essence of the place.
Welcome Heritage Hotels – a joint venture of ITC Ltd and Jodhana Heritage, enables guests to experience the rich cultural heritage of India and has over 40 exclusive heritage destinations to enthrall the discerning traveler. They support and assist the restoration of heritage properties, thereby presenting a slice of history, something that is unique and enchanting to the guests. Bal Samand Lake palace is one such property in Jodhpur, Rajasthan. Jodhpur Hotel
Away from the city of Jodhpur, yet not too far, Bal Samand Lake Palace, the erstwhile summer retreat of the Maharajas of Jodhpur, stands regal – the red sandstone structure showcasing traditional Rajputana architecture in all its glory. Carved sandstone pillars, ornate windows and doors, beautiful arches and furniture that is carved and/or embellished, enhances the beauty of this palace. Located on the banks of the Bal Samand Lake and set amidst 300 acres of manicured lawns and gardens, the palace is grand! Well, considering the fact that this is where royalty resided, it comes as no surprise.
The Bal Samand Lake is a manmade lake (13th century). 36 plush rooms and suites, restored and renovated with all modern comforts, without taking away from the glorious history and traditional appeal of the place, gives the guests a truly royal experience at Bal Samand Palace.
The limited number of rooms and suites adds to the charm and heightened privacy enjoyed by guests. Acres and acres of green space (well, are we really at the edge of the Thar Desert?!) – gardens, lawns, vegetable garden and orchards, enables a one to one experience with nature which is both refreshing and rejuvenating.
Awaken to the shrill call of peacocks or chirping of other winged beauties and a magnificent view of the lake. The beauty of the property is magnified tenfold by the flora and fauna. Deer, monkeys, jackals, huge fruit bats – all are residents here and add to the charm.
The suites and rooms are located in the main palace building and the stables converted into the garden retreat, all with beautiful carved furniture.
The interiors are furnished in rich fabrics, exquisite rugs and stunning artefacts, ushering in the essence of a glorious past.
Carved screens in wood and stone and beautiful archways add to the timeless elegance.
The opulence and grandeur of yesteryear is present in every nook and cranny. The ambience is such that you step back into a bygone era with effortless ease. Modern luxuries are evident as well, ensuring utmost comfort to the guests.
The Maharaja suite, true to its name, is fit for an Emperor! Here, indulgence has many faces – a Jacuzzi overlooking the lake and the terrace with lake view being the most enduring among them!
One restaurant in the palace and the other in the garden wing churn out lip smacking culinary delights. Chinese, Continental or Indian – take your pick. Savour Rajasthani fare and experience the rich culinary saga which is part of the state’s heritage.
Enjoy outdoor barbecues – wood fires and braziers keeping you warm during cold winter evenings as you sample the delicious kebab platter and other treats.
Enjoy a vigorous swim in the beautiful swimming pool, the beauty of the cool blue pool enhanced by red sandstone colonnade around the pool.
Explore the property on foot or in a horse drawn buggy. Horse riding, cycling, obstacle golf, croquet – there are many activities to choose from. For nature lovers, this place is truly a paradise!
Get pampered to the hilt at the aroma and ayurvedic spa – the idyllic locale adding to the experience! The peace and quiet coupled with the beautiful surroundings is ideal for practicing yoga and meditation.
If you desire to step out and explore places in the city of Jodhpur, arrangements are made courteously. Umaid Bhavan Palace, Mandore gardens, Mehrangarh Fort, Maha Mandir, Jaswant Thada, Guda Bishnoi Village, Ossianji temples – there are quite a few attractions for tourists in Jodhpur.
Bal Samand Lake Palace promises an unforgettable experience – one that gives you an insight into the heritage of Rajasthan – from the moment you step in through the grand portals to the time you leave!
Bal Samand Lake Palace was constructed in 1114 AD as a summer retreat for the royal family.
The Palace is east facing – to enable the inhabitants to worship the rising sun.
Bal Samand Lake Palace is situated on Mandore Road and is 11 kms away from Jodhpur airport and 8 kms away from the railway station.
Jodhpur is the second largest city in the state of Rajasthan and is also called the Blue City.
The city has soaring temperatures during the summers and extremely cold nights during winters. However, pleasant evenings during summers and bright sunshine during the daytime in winters are plus points.