Hot List 2011

Ranvas, Nagaur, Rajasthan 

Gandhi Chowk

Nagaur, Rajasthan
India 341001

Tel: 91 11 4603 5500

This heritage hotel opened by the Maharaja of Jodhpur consists of the zenana (women's quarters) of the Garden Palace that dwells within the giant Nagaur Fort complex two hours north of Jodhpur. Ranvas's 33 rooms inhabit the ten havelis (residences built around courtyards) where the maharaja's queens lived in the eighteenth century. The zenana's restoration and decoration have been completed with scholarly care and exquisite taste. Subtle lighting enhances the carvings, sculptures, and traditional design—scalloped archways, delicate latticework, colonnaded courtyards. In guest rooms, fine antique beds and furniture are accented with perfectly chosen fabrics and accessories, while intelligent works of art and Sufi poetry line the bed stand. However, this is not a place for those unwilling to embrace simplicity—rooms lack TVs, phones, and tubs. Guests are encouraged to bathe Indian-style (seated on a stool, using a water-filled pitcher), though bathrooms do come with showers. Service is sensitively unobtrusive, as at dinner, when refined versions of North Indian dishes—including heavenly light vegetable pakoras—are served in the pillared baradari (pavilion) overlooking a swimming pool screened by pomegranate bushes. The lighting of innumerable candles and lanterns all over the property creates a fantastical setting.
Which room to book: A Royal Suite on the top floor of Haveli B, for the privacy, fine natural light, a rooftop terrace, and views of the zenana and surrounding fort.
Information may have changed since date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.

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