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Which is your favourite hotel in the world?
The most special hotel that I have stayed in is the UmaidBhavan Palace (from Rs 20,000; tajhotels.com) in Jodhpur. I was there recently and was really stunned by the beauty of the entire property, including the part that is managed and run as a hotel by the Taj Group. Mired in history, it transports you to a different world altogether, to the days of maharajas.
Favourite thing about the hotel?
Well, besides the stunning façade and décor, it is the warmth of the staff that completely won me over. For me, the staff of a hotel is very important as they can take a stay from humdrum to extraordinary by making you feel special. Next come the ambience and the location.
Any unusual features?
I’d say that a special feature of UmaidBhavan Palace is the seamless way they have managed to juxtapose the absolute grandeur of a palace and the warm intimacy that only a truly fabulous boutique hotel offers. To tone down the enormousness of the place and to prevent it from making you feel lost, what they have done is that they have created these warm and cosy nooks all over, which comfort you and make you feel at home...They have managed this beautiful balance incredibly well.
What did you eat there?
I simply loved the Indian food over there: it was superlative without a doubt. I am not really your quintessential ‘foodie’ but even then I was simply floored by whatever I ate there. I had a lot of local Rajasthani delicacies too, which the hotel offers. Must say it is an amazing cuisine.
Plans to return?
I was totally at home there, which is why I would love to go back there sometime soon.
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