Tag Archives: travel photography

Neemrana’s Tijara Fort Palace, where art meets history!

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View from the top floor of Rani Mahal

Not far from the capital is yet another awesome getaway destination by Neemrana Non Hotels ……. Tijara Fort Palace. A couple of hours of smooth drive from Delhi leads you here.

This luxurious break in mid August for me & my friend worked wonders for us in many ways. I had been debating on some other properties of Neemrana close by and was glad to have opted for Tijara this time around.

The road condition was good through out and traffic was thankfully not troublesome 😀

Our destination comes into view 🙂

Neemrana’s Tijara Fort-Palace
The quietude of the place calms the senses instantly. A huge property surrounded by acres and acres of farmland all around. The monsoon ensured we saw all possible shades of green. Last year Neemrana Fort-Palace was a wondeful surprise in summery June and this time around Tijara in the monsoon did not fail to charm us.

The greens beyond and around Tijara Fort-Palace

When you step out of the car at the huge fort gate (pol) you can sense the magnanimity. Once inside, we had a quick check in and headed straight to our gorgeous room (mahal).

The entrance pol / fort gate

We crossed the beautifully maintained, landscaped lawns and huge structures that the porter promptly guided us about. We stepped into Rani Mahal and up we went in the lift that had views of the field surrounding the fort.

View of our Mahal’s floor (Rani Mahal)

Here is an interesting trivia about the two major structures at Tijara – the Rani (Queen) Mahal & Mardana (King) Mahal. The interiors of each room (mahal) in the wings is named after and done up by an artist, architect, photographer or designer showcasing their art work and creativity (a mix of originals and prints). The rooms in the Mardana wing is done up by male artists and the Rani wing rooms by female artists. Our room was the creativity of Laila Tyabji*

Rani Mahal in the quietude of early morning. The sparkle depicts Laila Mahal

View of Mardana Mahal (marked by sparkle) from Rani Mahal

We had barely stepped inside our room, Laila Mahal, that there was a series of never ending wows from us ❤ The photo on their site does not do justice to its magnificence.

First view of Laila Mahal

Laila Mahal
The room was huge with two high queen size beds that needed stools to climb on them; a big bathroom that had a large window that overlooked the sun terrace and the swimming pool; a sitting space that had a 6 seater table-chair set and an octagonal covered turret with eight jharokha seating (window sit out) besides one in the main room.

Sleep like a queen 🙂

The room was in all possible shades of blue and green. Some color therapy trivia —- ” Blue is calming, relaxing and healing. Not as sedating as indigo. Also it is the color of communication. Green is the color of balance and harmony and can, therefore, be helpful in times of stress. If one has experienced a trauma, a green silk wrapped around the shoulders can have a very therapeutic effect.” No wonder it had magical effect on us. So much so that we wished we could stay on for days, without any incurring expense though hahahahha.

This time around a spa indulgence was high on the list and we both pampered ourselves with an hour long de-stressing Swedish massage.

The Tijara Spa in Rani Mahal, one of the major original structure.

I did my first round of exploration of the fort post this rejuvenation, followed by tea at another major structure, the Hawa Mahal. The first thing that struck me about the Fort-Palace was the openness of the place as well the structures and the greenery, both inside and outside. It was like breathing and living in freshness.

Seating along the archway with a view and fantastic breeze

Camels back to back with vines and creepers shouldered by them

A vibrant place to relax in Rani Mahal

Kaanch Mahal (center), Hawa Mahal (further beyond), a bit of Mardana Mahal (on the right)

Hawa Mahal at the crack of dawn

From the Hawa Mahal — landscaped gardens, Kaanch Mahal and the prominent Rani Mahal

View from the Hawa Mahal

The outside seating of Hawa Mahal with no barrier giving unending views of the field

The tea/coffee was just the way we like and yes we both love their in-house baked bites be it cookies, brownies and likes. We had our caffeine slowly, letting the lively spirit of the place; the tingling joy of our taste buds and the rejuvenating brew steep in our bloodstream and detoxify us further.

Tea, Dinner, Dessert, Breakfast (L-R clockwise)

Thereafter it was pool time for my friend & her daughter, and time for me to soak in the beauty of the sunset. I spent some time strolling on the sun terrace, above the swimming pool, admiring the soft hint of sunset.

The cool and blue ‘Pataal Kund’, Tijara’s sunken swimming pool

The sun preparing to bid adieu for the day. Photographed from the sun terrace above the pool.

Back in the coolness of our room we rested for sometime before leaving for dinner at Kaanch (glass) Mahal. The spread was lovely and with our happy tummy we called it a day. This is an added structure which is at an approachable distance from the original major structures namely; Rani Mahal, Hawa Mahal & Mardana Mahal.

Kaanch Mahal where dinner and breakfast were served

Back in the tranquility of our room, we friends chatted for a while before going off to sleep. I was just hoping to be up and about in time to catch the sunrise.

I was happy to experience the subtle presence and beauty of both, the sunrise and the sunset. Hopefully, in my next visit I shall get to witness the vivid, dramatic ones.

The subtle sunrise from Hawa Mahal

The soft glow at sunset as seen from the sun terrace

I explored the place further in the silence of the morning (all either still asleep or lazing in their rooms). The views from the top of the Rani Mahal were splendid.

Good Morning from atop Rani Mahal

After a slow paced, leisurely breakfast we took a stroll to the Mardana Mahal further up the hanging gardens.

One can feel the distinct difference between the Mardana & Rani Mahal. Here the huge Darbar Halls dominate the first look. The feel is virile! The Resident Manager was gracious enough to show us a couple of rooms of this wing which were unoccupied. My friend and I are already in agreement to revisit the place and experience the Mardana Mahal 😀

 

Stepping into the Mardana Mahal wing, one of the original major structure

There are massive Darbar Halls that dominate the first look of Mardana Mahal

A view of the Mardana Mahal

A good life is a collection of happy memories.  Glad to have made some here ❤ and hoping to make some more soon………

You can read about my Neemrana Fort-Palace experience here, 24-Hours of Grandeur @ Neemrana Fort -Palace!

While at Tijara Fort-Palace you will make new friends …… the swallows! Flitting all around with their characteristic swiftness and agility. Here’s a short AV on them at Tijara…..

History bites on Tijara
The construction of the Fort-Palace was done under the rule of Maharaja Balwant Singh way back in 1800s in memory of his mother Moosi Maharani. Unfortunately the untimely death of the king left the work incomplete. The unfinished complex comprised of the Mardana Mahal for the royal men; the Rani Mahal for the royal women and the Hawa Mahal  (Palace of winds) for pleasure pursuits. The architecture is of Rajput-Afghan style with early colonial influences.

Tijara Fort-Palace before retoration …… Image credits Neemrana Group

The Fort-Palace was painstakingly restored keeping the original structures while building up a beautiful complex around them. In 2016 this jewel of Neemrana Group of Non Hotels was opened to the public.

Tijara Fort-Palace after restoration …… Image credits Neemrana Group

 

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HAPPY  TRAVELLING!
Monika Ohson / TravelerInMe

 

* Laila Tyabji is an Indian social worker, designer, writer, and craft activist. She is one of the founders of Dastkar, a Delhi-based non governmental organization, working for the revival of traditional crafts in India.

++ To know about their rooms (mahals) and artists who have infused life in them with their creative touch, follow the links shared below:
http://www.neemranahotels.com/tijara-fort-palace-alwar-rajasthan/mardana-mahal.html
http://www.neemranahotels.com/tijara-fort-palace-alwar-rajasthan/rani-mahal.html

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