Luxurious Royal Weekend at Narendra Bhawan Bikaner

Opulence to the core, royalty at its best, sumptuous food, impeccable hospitality, and loads of pampering is what sums up my sweet and short trip to Bikaner.

On a sweltering sunny day, I landed at Jaipur with a very little research and jet lagged wondering was it a right decision to miss the invite of Royal Chariot Luxury Train for a trip to Bikaner. I landed in India on 14th and I had an early morning flight on 16th April. With no time on my hand, I tried to pack whatever I could as most of my stuff is on its way to Dublin sailing somewhere in the Cargo ship.

But to my dismay, this trip was no way close to a cookie-cutter familiarization trip but at the outset, it was one helluva relaxing trip with two super cool travel companions – Sheena & Rahul from lover.co. I met them at Jaipur airport and we drove all the way to Narendra Bhawan Bikaner. Even the six-hour road trip passed by in a jiffy as the conversation flowed starting from the love for travel, Games of Thrones, life as such and some serious discussion on the ever-changing blogosphere and social media. 😉

The sun was almost setting as we made our way to Narendra Bhawan, Bikaner passing by dunes, barren landscapes, and happily strolling camels.

Narendra Bhawan Bikaner is a new addition to the luxury hotel scene of Bikaner. The hotel which was once the residence of the last reigning King of Bikaner has been converted to an upscale luxury boutique hotel. The hotel is smack in the center of the city and is an eclectic mix of old and new, modern and traditional,  simple yet grand.

The hotel is built around the existing house of the king, which was renovated and two floors are extended keeping the original structure intact. The emphasis has been given to the interiors and the unique curated experiences that it offers its guest to step into a time capsule to the bygone era. I believe it to be a well thought out idea to intrigue the guests and keep them occupied in every nuance of the hotel then to look outside. Much of this credit goes to Karan Sign, MD of the group and of course the interior designer who gave life to his vision.

• • • Welcome  • • •

As you enter, the first thing you would notice is the infusion of color and creativity. Each and every nook is spectacular. The hotel from outside looks like any other heritage hotel of Rajasthan but the interior is what makes it unique. Rajasthani influence is pretty much detectable like open courtyards, jharokhas and lattice work to name a few.

If you have an inclination towards art and design, you cannot resist capturing pictures of every corner of the hotel and admiring the selection of each piece and the choices of colors. If there is one sentence that comes to my mind about the hotel that would be – “ A Hue Heaven with oodles of Character & History”.

Sprinkled with photographs of his highness Narendra Singh Ji & his family life, his dogs, paintings, books, and belongings. The hotel does all the justice to give you a glimpse of the royal life of the late Maharaja of Bikaner.

As our car entered the gate, there were two elderly moustached guards who came running to open the door and greeting us with JAI JAI.

The welcome at the hotel was pretty unusual, instead of a formal check in at the lobby area, we were ushered to the adjacent room which used to be the living area of the king. It was a small yet cozy room with a burst of colors and mismatched artifacts which did not look clinical. That was followed by drinks and wet towels. Post that we all headed to our rooms.

  

• • • Rooms  • • •

There are four categories of room at Narendra Bhawan. My room was quite spacious. It had a luxurious contemporary twist and decorated with hues of black, white and red exuberance that blended perfectly with the terrazzo floor and Portuguese tiles.

The room comes with a queen-size bed, colorful printed pillows, perfect lighting, pouf,  work desk and walls adorned with mirrors.

Be it the water bottle or extra paper napkins wrapped in pearl-studded holders. Each and every detail in the room has been taken care of. Obviously, every perfectly appointed room has to be complemented with an equally impressive bathroom.

The bathroom decor complements with granite counter top, a fusion of marble and brass stand and equipped with top-notch products.

• • • Food  • • •

More than pampering and interiors, food deserves a special mention. Everything that is served tastes so good that you cannot resist yourself wolfing down all the mouth-watering delicacies from the meticulously curated menu without a guilt.

 

Madhatter is perfect for sweet treats. If you have a sweet tooth and are craving for cakes, puddings or fudges then Madhatter is a place to be.

GoShala (cowshed)  is the outdoor sitting area perfect for dinner, snacking or drinks.

Pearls & Chiffons – It is for the royal dining experience with beautiful traditional style sitting area and interiors.

Diwali Chowk is the central courtyard or a meeting place for all the guests you can say. Perfect for coffee or ordering quick snacks sitting at one of the sitting areas and admiring the beautiful hotel.

• • • Amenities  • • •

The hotel also has a fully equipped gym to work on the food baby and swimming pool to cool yourself, sipping a sun downer and taking in the Bikaner skyline.

 

• • • Curated Experiences  • • •

Merchant Trail Experience

The merchant trail starts with weaving in and out of bylanes of Bikaner on a tonga ogling at the stunning Havelis and wrapping up the exploration with a Bikanari Jain Thali for lunch in a 19th century Haveli. The experience gives you an introduction to the rich history of Bikaner.

 

Lunch in a 19th Century Haveli

( Read: Merchant Trail with Narendra Bhawan, Bikaner )

Royal Exploration 

The royal exploration curated by Narendra Bhawan Bikaner starts with a visit to Bikaji ki Tekri followed by Jain temple, Junagarh Fort, Royal Cenotaphs, Lalgarh Museum and ends up with a luxurious lunch at Laxmi Niwas Palace. The experience gives you a sneak peek of the Royal Life.

( Read: PhotoStory – Lal Garh Museum )

( Read: Sneak Peek of Laxmi Niwas Palace )

Private Dining

I do regret of not being able to take a single good picture of the beautiful set up by the lake.

Pitch darkness punctuated by candle lit setting as far as eyes could see. Chef dishing out dishes one after other with utmost perfection and taste on the point, under the twinkling stars is an experience you don’t want to miss for sure.

• • • Overall  • • •

Stay at Bikaner is all about indulgence. The impeccable hospitality, chef leaving no stone unturned to take you on a gastronomical delight, interiors — a visual treat and painstakingly researched curated experience takes you to one of the chapters of history. It was a helluva relaxing vacation for sure with loads of pampering and free-flowing drinks 😉

Special Thanks to Siddharth for taking time out from his schedule and making sure we all had a good time at the property.

Must visit Places / Things to do in Bikaner:

  • Junagarh Fort
  • Jain Temple
  • Sadul Singh Museum
  • The Royal Cenotaphs
  • Lalgarh Palace and Museum
  • Karni Mata Temple ( Rat Temple)
  • Havelis of Bikaner
  • Shop for the famous Bikaner snacks
  • Devour on sweets and local cuisine
  • Shop for Minakari jewelry
  • Get lost in the bylanes of Bikaner

You can find more information about the property and tariff on their official website.

How to reach Bikaner

By air – There are two airports nearby, Jodhpur and Jaipur.

By train – Bikaner is well-connected to major cities.

By road – The city is well-connected by buses to all major cities. From Jaipur, it takes around 5 hours to reach Bikaner.

Best time to visit Bikaner

Winter is the best time to visit Rajasthan. Plan your visit between October and March.

December and January are the best months for sure.

 

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Special Thanks to Narendra Bhawan Bikaner for hosting us, opinion as always is our own.

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42 Comments

  • Reply
    Karlie
    April 4, 2017 at 1:31 am

    This hotel looks gorgeous! All of your photos look great (and I think the private dining ones still capture the fact it was very intimate).

    http://thetatteredpassport.wordpress.com

  • Reply
    Deepika
    April 4, 2017 at 3:33 am

    Absolute opulence and luxury. Looks like a great property! Lovely pictures 🙂

  • Reply
    Cupidtravellers
    April 4, 2017 at 4:10 am

    Its a Royal Royal hotel & everything is pure luxury.

  • Reply
    Huma jain
    April 4, 2017 at 5:20 am

    wow…! what a gorgeous location in Rajasthan, thank you for sharing the picture.

  • Reply
    rutavi mehta
    April 4, 2017 at 5:33 pm

    As always Swati, you write so beautifully about luxury hotel that one just feels like going immediately there to relax. A good compilation of must places to visit and Narendar Bhavan.. Loved your room which is so chic and the delicious food you had there 🙂 Great photos as always! Btw does the hotel have spa?

  • Reply
    Luca
    April 5, 2017 at 8:57 am

    That kind of architecture is way far from the usual places I visit, but I feel it as a cuddling structure, where you can relax and forget everything on the outside. I especially like that sort of windows with the geometrical motif instead of windows glasses (sorry, I have no idea on how to call them!) because light can still come inside, but keeping a soft mood.

  • Reply
    Melissa
    April 5, 2017 at 8:53 pm

    Wow, this hotel looks very luxurious! I think I could be pretty happy with that roof top pool, the gym, the beautiful rooms, etc…Also, love the private dining photos. That might be a new life goal for me 🙂

  • Reply
    Nicole Anderson
    April 6, 2017 at 2:56 am

    What an amazing experience it would have been to have stayed there! Just can’t get over the beauty of the hotel, not to mention all the fabulous attractions nearby that all go together to make what must be an unforgettable memory. This has to be at the top of my wishlist when I get to India.

  • Reply
    Zinara
    April 6, 2017 at 4:45 am

    Wow. Such royal. Such majestic. Such luxurious! Narendra Bhawan Bikaner is just so so beautiful. It’s amazing that you guys were ushered to a king’s living room before you were checked in and pampered with wet towels etc. Rajastan as a whole entity is just so majestic. Isn’t it? Vising India this October and I’m glad I found your blog!

  • Reply
    Jen Morrow
    April 6, 2017 at 1:03 pm

    How exciting to stay in a former King’s residence! That looks like a luxurious relaxing getaway, and beautiful architecture. Great video to capture the feel of the place.

  • Reply
    Bridget
    April 6, 2017 at 3:10 pm

    Your pictures are amazing and the hotel looks so luxurious and relaxing! I love that it has history to it as well, you don’t find that much anymore! Hoping to visit India in the future!

  • Reply
    Leah
    April 7, 2017 at 3:03 am

    This place really does seem like an unusual (but awesome!) place to stay. I’d love to get the chance to visit myself, it’s a perfect place for a photo shoot. I particularly loved the photo of what looks like a pool with an amazing view!

  • Reply
    The Travel Ninjas
    April 7, 2017 at 3:25 am

    This hotel is like a dream. The Narendra Bhawan Bikaner absolutely stunning. It definitely looks like the home of a king. We would love to stay here and live like royalty. Thanks for highlighting this amazing hotel.

  • Reply
    Only By Land
    April 7, 2017 at 3:33 am

    I’ve seen so many of your photos of the Narendra Bhawan in Bikaner and I had to check out your post! I would definitely stay here on any future trip to Bikaner, it must be like living as royalty. The food you photographed looks delicious and it’s good there are a few different locations to eat. The gym looks well equipped too, perfect!

  • Reply
    Rosie Benton
    April 7, 2017 at 3:34 am

    Wow wow wow this place looks absolutely incredible!! So luxurious and plush! Your photos look so inviting and I bet it looks even more regal and majestic in real life. We are massive foodies and I have a sweet tooth so would definitely want to try the ‘Madhatter’ it all looks so delicious.

  • Reply
    Rashmi and Chalukya
    April 7, 2017 at 5:06 am

    After having visited Rajasthan twice we are yet to make it to Bikaner. The palaces or Havelis of Rajasthan have a completely different charm exuding and the sumptuous artwork and architecture like impeccable. It’s definitely an experience of a lifetime to stay in such a location and experience all the luxury of the bygone royal era. We would for sure consider Narendra Bhawan on our visit to Bikaner. Thanks for this wonderful insight.

  • Reply
    Drew
    April 8, 2017 at 5:35 pm

    Wow, that is all I can say. It has to be one of the most visually stunning hotels I’ve ever seen. I love the architecture, the interior courtyard, and the fun and modern interior. I wouldn’t mind lounging by the pool, and sampling a wide array of regional Indian food. Sounds like an amazing way to spend a few days in India, that’s for sure!

  • Reply
    Jackie Sills-Dellegrazie
    April 9, 2017 at 12:05 am

    I agree with you that I’d I never put my camera away during my stay! The architecture and decor look incredible! That pool with the palace as the backdrop is stunning. I’d love to stay in such a luxurious place and experience life as a royal. The food looks amazing, too. I’d definitely enjoy spending a few days here on a trip to India. 🙂

  • Reply
    sophie
    April 9, 2017 at 12:23 pm

    This place certainly looks very royal and luxurious. I would love spend days there with my family . I think it would be so much fun just like you had! thanks for sharing! Cheers!

  • Reply
    Wanderlust Vegans
    April 9, 2017 at 6:20 pm

    It looks like a great area to stay in with many attractions around like the Jain Temple. The architecture of the hotel is incredible. I was impressed by the inside and how modern and stylish it is. It looks like you get well fed at the hotel as well.

  • Reply
    neha
    April 10, 2017 at 4:02 am

    So royal. Last time when I happened to visit Rajasthan, the only thing in my bucket list that I couldn’t do was to stay in a royal haveli like this one. Nevertheless, Bikaner is still on my list and the next time I visit here, I am definitely going to stay in one 🙂 Thanks for the virtual tour.

  • Reply
    Sandy N Vyjay
    April 10, 2017 at 5:39 am

    Narendra Bhawan truly looks to epitomize the royal spirit of Rajasthan. The ambience, the setting, the food and the service, all seem to echo the culture, heritage and the royal lineage of Rajasthan. I am sure staying here is a one of its kind experience.

  • Reply
    Suruchi
    April 10, 2017 at 11:03 am

    The Narendra Bhawan Bikaner is a perfect example of Luxury living in line with the heritage and traditions of Rajasthan. I loved the way you had covered the whole palace in your pictures and words. The pool in the palace is really stunning. I will love to spend some time here with my husband.

  • Reply
    Ami
    April 10, 2017 at 11:15 am

    Gorgeous holiday indeed. I envy you for having experienced this Royal flavor of Rajasthan. Such an amazing place… I bet you have to stop yourself from clicking it all

  • Reply
    Carol Perehudoff
    April 10, 2017 at 3:22 pm

    This is my kind of place! I love the luxury and the history and the cuisine sounds fantastic, too. It sounds as if it was a royal stay indeed. Bikaner sounds like an exotic and interesting destination.

  • Reply
    Melissa Jones
    April 11, 2017 at 9:03 pm

    Narendra Bhawan looks absolutely stunning! What a wonderful way to feel like royalty on a trip away 😉 The delicious food, the culture, the vibrant interiors and luxurious comforts, what more could you ask for? Plus! There are lots of cool things you’ve listed that are good to do here in case you want to venture out, so we have an awesome ready made list 🙂

  • Reply
    Rosemary
    April 12, 2017 at 2:14 am

    The hotel is simply stunning and architecturally intriguing. Great pictures and it sounds like a fantastic holiday. What a great way to experience royal Bikaner living!

  • Reply
    joanna
    April 12, 2017 at 12:31 pm

    I love to read about luxury hotels in Bikaner. It seems that there are a lot of beautiful hotels there. When I visited I stayed at another really impressive hotel, a heritage building which belonged to the royals of Bikaner in the past. I love the typical Indian architecture blended with the modern one in your spacious room.

  • Reply
    Vicky and Buddy
    April 12, 2017 at 12:37 pm

    Wow, the lattice work is so amazing. I’m pretty sure I’d be taking non stop photos and trying to get all different kinds of angles lol! The outside courtyard and the pool area are my favorite areas, I’d love to spend the evenings there eating some of the yummy food.

  • Reply
    Megan Jerrard
    April 13, 2017 at 6:58 am

    What an incredible experience – surely Narendra Bhawan has to be one of the top hotels of the world! It looks decadent, and I guess you wouldn’t expect anything else being the former residence of a King! Love that they include curated experiences on top of their wonderful property, service and food 🙂

  • Reply
    Carmen's Luxury Travel
    April 15, 2017 at 10:31 am

    This is definitely my kind of place! What a stunning and unique property. I absolutely love the colors and that pool looks so inviting. Thanks for sharing 🙂

  • Reply
    Chaitali Patel
    April 21, 2017 at 1:21 pm

    I love boutique properties. There’s a charm that you do not find in large hotels. This place looks just out of the world and I love the attention to detail. You have captured the essence of the hotel beautifully.

  • Reply
    Danik
    April 22, 2017 at 1:54 pm

    Omg! This place looks totally awazing and I would love to stay here. There is so much charm and glamour to this place and would love to check this out soon,.

  • Reply
    Mellissa Williams
    April 22, 2017 at 3:10 pm

    Wow, the Narendra Bhawan Bikaner is simply beautiful. I also adore the mix of modern and traditional, it’s the sort of place I would definitely stay, and the food looks perfection too

  • Reply
    Tamara Elliott
    April 22, 2017 at 3:27 pm

    What a royal weekend indeed! It looks like a great place not only to stay, but also for photography- those colours!

  • Reply
    Kelly
    April 22, 2017 at 3:35 pm

    Looks like you had an amazing time and got to experience so many wonderful things. That hotel looks amazing. What beautiful architecture!

  • Reply
    Rachael
    April 22, 2017 at 5:27 pm

    What a beautiful hotel and that food looks amazing! I love the brightness that is everywhere!

  • Reply
    Jenn and Ed Coleman
    April 22, 2017 at 6:38 pm

    What a beautiful property. I could imagine Humphrey Bogart cruising the grounds and smoking a cigar. The arches and architecture looks so beautifully foreign and iconic. I bet the food was absolutely amazing.

  • Reply
    Bilyana | OwlOverTheWorld
    April 23, 2017 at 10:21 am

    This place looks great! The pool and the view from there are amazing. I would love to stay there myself.

  • Reply
    sherianne
    April 23, 2017 at 3:59 pm

    Everything about this is perfect! I am pinning this for future travels for sure — thank you for sharing it!

  • Reply
    Fiona Maclean
    April 23, 2017 at 7:57 pm

    What a truly luxurious and wonderful hotel. I’d love to visit – it really does look special – and very traditional, despite the mod cons

  • Reply
    Kimberly Erin
    April 23, 2017 at 11:48 pm

    It is hard not to feel royal in a place as luxurious and detailed and magnificent as this. I would love to stay in something like this, its awesome

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