There are romantic places in the world. And then there is Lake Palace Hotel in Udaipur. Emerging from the Pichola Lake like a ghostly apparition, the brilliantly white summer palace for the rulers of the Mewar dynasty is sumptuous in its offering. To add to the mystique, the hotel is only accessible by boats. It is built on a natural island, which is now entirely covered by the palace. From afar, it looks like the the palace is just floating in the Lake.
We went there on a really dark moonless wet night. There rain was like a fine mist in the air and the lake was brimming with water. As we approached the Palace on the boat, palace seemed to emerge from the dark waters of Lake Pichola. Flowing curtains in the window, subdued light in the courtyard and a restrained sense of opulence. Rivulets snaking along the walls of the palace refreshing in the usually oppressive desert heat of Rajasthan.
The palace was restored and converted into a luxury hotel in 1971. The Taj group runs a really exclusive hotel in the palace now. The hotel is as luxurious on the inside as beautiful it is on the outside. There are two restaurants, one for Indian cuisine and the other for multi-cuisine. The food is not exceptional but the ambience is fantastic. We ate at Jharokha, the multi-cuisine restaurants with a fantastic view of the lake. The service was polite and the food well presented.
In terms of ambience, it is very difficult to beat the Lake Palace Hotel. As one would expect, it is expensive. But, I think it is worth an occasional splurge.