Amanbagh, Rajasthan

Contributor/ Woody Anderson

Best Known For

Amanbagh, which means Peaceful Garden, is a modern day Mughal Palace nestled in the rural valley of Ajabgarh, Rajasthan, near to the Sariska Tiger Reserve. A true oasis in the desert, this purpose built boutique resort hasn’t been out of the top 20 Indian hotel list since it opened. It’s also recently been awarded a gold standard award from Condé Nast Traveller.

The Good Stuff

We had the pleasure of staying in the one of the 15 pool pavilions which came equipped, quite naturally, with its own pool. But, being a keen swimmer I was drawn to the magnificent 33m sea-green marble pool, at the heart of the property, allowing me to put in a few lengths whilst taking in the exquisite surroundings. As it was nearing the end of the season, (the hotel is closed June to July because of the sweltering heat) we nearly had the place to ourselves and were welcomed as King and Queen on arrival. The whole experience was almost surreal; the highlight being a private candlelit dinner on the roof terrace overlooking the entire complex, true romance. Oh how it must be to live this regal life for real.

The Vibe

If you want seclusion then you’ve come to the right place as Amanbagh is uninterrupted by the outside world. There are no televisions in any of its 39 suites, but, you wouldn’t come here if you wanted to watch television, you come here to be pampered in the world class spa, to rejuvenate via the complimentary yoga classes, and to realign your chi with rural walks.

Inside the Hotel – 8/10

We were very impressed with our two-winged accommodation; the huge one-piece Udiapurian marble bathtub in the center of the west-wing was exceptional, as was the service we received from the staff. Each day a wildlife safari unfolded before our eyes and would be any birdwatchers dream. A small army of staff are constantly on hand; they even have a team of four ‘monkey men’ dressed in camo and armed with catapults to keep the pesky food thieves away.

Outside the Hotel – 2/10

There is only one real ‘must see’ excursion and thats the little visited World Heritage site known as Bhangarh of Ghosts; founded in 1631 the haunted fort was deserted overnight after being cursed by an evil Court Magician named Selu Sewra. There is a healthy list of activities to experience at the Amanbagh, with an even more impressive list of transport options; elephant, camel, bicycle, helicopter, jeep, car, quad, I’m sure they’d even pull out a Segway if you asked… but thats not the point of this place, you come here to relax and unwind in luxurious seclusion, something that Amanbagh certainly delivers on.