The Oberoi Udaivilas
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Travel Blogs from Udaipur
We left dusty, foggy New Delhi and are now in the small, remote city of Udaipur. New Delhi is not very interesting, although it is the capitol city. The old part, Delhi, is terribly poor, overcrowded, and slummy. It is on one side of the wide boulevard. On the other side of the boulevard are beautiful parks that nobody goes to enjoy. New Delhi is …
Thursday 15th September [Word of the Day: I read that the Hindi word for "journey" is "suffer" - it's what I've been trying to say all along....] Jaipur - "The Pink City". Pink never was my colour, and the best part about Jaipur was leaving it. I felt approaching stomach issues as I left Bundi, so attempted to starve myself for the long bus trip. I …
... we stayed clear of. When we landed we took a stroll around the gardens and we came across the wharf where the guests for the Lake Palace Hotel board their boat to get to the hotel. There was a Rolls Royce sitting at the dock, so you get an idea of the clientele. We kept walking and got to within 50 metres of the exit when a guard spotted us and came running up and told us we had to go back, we were not allowed this way. 'But the exit is just there', we ...
we drove through the mountains for hours, all of it beautiful with sheep's goats and cows everywhere. We also drove past a huge landslide sight where you could see the massive boulders that had very nearly landed in the road.
We finally arrived in Udaipur and drove past one of the lakes that it is famous for and through the tiny streets that were packed with tourists and shops and arrived at our hotel, Govindam Palace. It wasn't bad, not the best by ...
... made our way to visit two other lakes. All three of the lakes are man-made and are about 3-4 meters deep, but they are enormous. Apparently the Maharajar got the people to dig them out. What I wanted to know is what they did with all the earth from inside the lake because the whole surrounding area was rocky mountains…
After a spot of lunch and a siesta back at the hotel we made our way back into town unescorted to take in the local (tourist) vibe and find ...
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Historical Traveler Reviews The Oberoi Udaivilas Udaipur
We've stayed in many hotels around the world but none have equalled this. Unsurpassed luxury created in a gentle and professional manner.
Died & gone to heaven
During a recent visit to India, we had the privilege to stay at several Oberoi hotels but this was by far, the greatest!
The hotel was built 4 years ago and looks brand new. It has views over Lake Pichola and the Lake Place. All rooms are spacious & have their own private patio - ours opened out onto the pool, which was incredible.
On our last day, we discovered another pool which actually overlooks the lake & there are beds that face the lake directly.
We ate at the outdoor restaurant both nights which serves Western & International food - there is entertainment during dinner.
The hotel also houses a wildlife park, heritage site and complimentary private taxi boat around the lake.
At all costs, avoid the Lake Palace for anything other than a drink. It is a mere shadow of what it once was - the service is appaling, the food is dreadful & the place is falling apart!!
Also disappointing was the Shivlivas Palace - nothing like it was in Octopussy!
Stick to Udai Villas.
Make sure you go to the Monsoon Palace to watch the sunset - it only takes 20 minutes by car (even though everyone says it takes 45 minutes). The view is incredible.
Simply the best, anywhere!
We have had the good fortune to stay in great hotels all over the world, The Peninsula in both HK and Bangkok. The Lost Palace in South Africa, Regent on Wilshire, Excelsior in Rome etc, so when I say that this is possibly the finest hotel I have ever stayed in I am not exagerating. It was simply stunning. You arrive at the hotel in a private launch over the lake. The hotel slowly appears on the horizon, like something out of an Arabian Nights story. We arrived just as the rain stopped and everything was wet and glowing in a soft light. Initial impressions are of an architectural masterpiece. Everywhere you look your eye is capivated. We had a pool room, which gave us an outlook over the horizonless pool, to the lake and the old Palace of Udaipur perched on the cliffs in the distance. Even the bathroom had this outlook, with the privacy of a walled courtyard. Private steps led into the pool. The pool was only shared by 8 or so rooms that had the palace view (make sure you request these rooms).
The gardens were spectacular as were all the internal courtyards. They even have their own wildlife sanctuary of sorts with deer and peacocks. The service was unbelievable. Nothing was too hard. The mark of a good hotel is when the staff all know you by name. This was the case here (as it was in all the Oberoi Hotels).
The room was large and well appointed, in the old Raj style. Excellent walk-in robe and large stylish bathroom, with an old style claw bath in the middle. (The hotel is only a few years old. even though it has the "old Raj fort feel")
The spa, run by the Banyan Tree group, was excellent, with a range of great therapies. Try their synchronised massage. Two masseurs working on you at the same time. Heavenly bliss. If you do have a therapy ask for the room with views over the lake. What a view.
The restaurants were excellent too. The head chef would come out and discuss your meal with you if you wanted anything special. Nothing is too hard for this hotel. Service is paramount. Staff were all brilliant. Run by a great manager.
And one last thing. Check out their websites. We went on their exotic vacations package. 12 nights, inc transfers, for $2,400 US. A great deal, by any standards.
Truly one of the great hotels, in a magical city. We stayed only 3 days and will go back for a week in another year.
One of the world's great destination hotels.
One last thought. Don't consider the Lake Palace hotel. It looks romantic, however even with refurbishment, its still 300 years old. Do as we did and go for breakfast to check it out. Good buffet. But not worth staying at in comparison to Udaivilas.
Oberoi has got it right again. This hotel has to be one of the best in the World.
We stayed for three nights in December 2004 as part of a trip to Rajasthan. It is the most stunningly beautiful hotel in one of the loveliest settings in the region. Service, food and facilities were flawless. Go. You will not regret it.
Have stayed at some great 5 star hotels in our time (around the world). This was by far the best. Awesome hotel, superb service, great food and a great location.
If there is a better hotel, please tell me
I have been lucky enough to have stayed at some of the top ranked hotels and resort in the world. From the Caribbean to the Far East and from America to Africa and Australia, but I have never stayed anywhere that got it as right as this place. The rooms, the food, the spa, the grounds, the pools... all fantastic. But what makes this hotel so much better is the service. Genuine smiles on everyone - not for the Indians that infuriatingly false 'Have A Nice Day' veneer of what passes for American service these days, no, these people smile like they mean it and when you say thank you they are happy that they have helped and are not simply waiting for the next tip. No bowing and scraping, just people doing what they have been trained to do. A beautiful, beautiful experience
We were looking for a new destination for our annual trip; India was the place to go. What a great country, the people kind and friendly and the food terrific. Our last leg of the trip was to be in Udaipur, when we arrived at the airpot our encounter with perfection began.... The perfect airport pick up, the unbelievable hotel greeting, the palatial grounds, the magnificent suite, the perfectly trained staff and the food, the food is so good it deserves it´s own review. This is one of the best, if not the best hotel in the world. If you expect the best, the Udaivilas is Perfect!
Probably the best in the World!
In the past I have written reviews on scores of hotels I have stayed at around the World, but am somewhat reluctant to write a review for this hotel for fear that hordes of tourists will descend upon it and ruin this special place. This is a magical hotel in an enchanting setting. The service is the best ever received and surpasses anything I have ever experienced anywhere else (and I have stayed in the best hotels in most parts of the world). The architecture and interior of the hotel is based on an Indian palace, down to the smallest detail. I was here for New Years eve and asked the hotel if I could have a small dinner party in my room instead of partaking in the festivities in the grand dining room. It turned out to be an amazing banquet laid out on my room terrace, surrounded by scattered rose petals and candles. You will not be disappointed with this hotel. I am already planning a return visit.
Udaivilas is magical. Stayed at the Four Seasons Chiang Mai for the first lag of the trip and it was no comparison to Udaivilas in terms of both the physical property and the software. Thanks Oberoi for the magic!
This is the place the rest have to beat! From start to finish we could not fault this hotel, from the welcome party on arrival (your driver phones ahead) to the farewell on departure we were enchanted. The place is an oasis of comfort, luxury and relaxation. We had a deluxe room which was like a small flat - everything with thoughtful touches. The decoration both inside the rooms and in the hotel generally is wonderful and there is a constant, but unobtrusive, cleaning crew who always greet you with a smile. Ate lovely meals in the restaurant and thoroughly enjoyed them.
Only there for 2 nights (unfortunately) but cannot wait to go back.