The omphalos of architectural marvels in the city bursting at the seams with a spectrum of edifices, City Palace of Jaipur has its genesis contemporary to the city itself. Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh II consecrated the land surrounded by the Aravalli on three sides, keeping at bay not just the enemies of the kingdom but the desert itself. A massive and ambitious construction project, the city of Jaipur, was no less than the modern equivalent of a smart city. As mentioned before, the cynosure of this wonderful city, the City Palace of Jaipur, should unequivocally figure out your things to do in Jaipur.
Sharing the fate of modern India, Jaipur too, notwithstanding its charm and attractiveness, has become homogenised in elements that have come to define most Indian cities – overcrowding, traffic congestion and the likes. Tree of Life Resort in Jaipur is a fresh take and a journey back in time at once. Located amidst undulating farmlands, lush green with crops, the Aravallis encircling on all sides, opening up an expansive vista of the verdant valley, sitting on a ridge in such a heavenly landscape, Tree of Life Resort in Jaipur is closer to the world-famous Amer Fort, that once claimed the honour of protecting this great city.
City Palace of Jaipur can be experienced as a day visit from Tree of Life Resort in Jaipur, a rather comfortable and recommended thing to do in Jaipur, immersing yourself in the best of both worlds, the rustic heart of rural India and the chic charm of royal India.
Now, coming to the palace itself, words rarely do justice to such labour of love. Yet, we will attempt to entice you enough to make sure the City Palace visit, although cliched, figures on your things to do in Jaipur.
The year 1727 witnessed the transfer of the ceremonial and administrative seat of Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh II from the famed Amber to Jaipur, which he envisioned and commissioned to perfect completion. City Palace of Jaipur served with this honour from 1727 to 1949, when Jaipur joined the Republic of India.
City Palace of Jaipur served many purposes and functions apart from being the ceremonial and administrative seat. The Palace was also the location of religious and cultural events and a patron of arts, commerce, and industry. Today, all this glory is seen frozen in time at the mesmerising Maharaja Sawai Man Singh II Museum.
The City Palace regales at the Central North-East zone of Jaipur city. City Palace of Jaipur is a maze of unique complexes of several courtyards, buildings, pavilions, gardens, and temples. The most prominent and must-visit edifices here are the Chandra Mahal, Mubarak Mahal, Shri Govind Dev Temple, and the City Palace Museum.
Before you even enter the palace complex, the signature features of much of Rajasthani royal architecture make their presence felt. The three entrances or gates to Jaipur City Palace Complex are Udai Pol near Jaleb chowk, the Virendra Pol near Jantar Mantar allow access for commoners into the palace complex while the Tripolia (three pols or gates) is reserved for the entry of the royal family into the palace.
As you enter the palace, a single-storeyed structure that catches your attention is the Sarvato Bhadra or Diwan-e-Khas, an aesthetic hall meant for private audiences for the royal family. The biggest attraction for everyone here is the two large sterling silver vessels, each with a mind-boggling 4000-litre capacity! Made out of 14,000 thousand silver coins, melted and cast into shape without soldering, these urns hold the Guinness World Record for being the largest sterling silver vessels in the world. If you wonder why these were made, think of them as rather large water bottles, carried for Maharaja Sawai Madho Singh II who commissioned them for his trip to England. Yes, you guessed it right, to carry Ganga Jal, giving them the names Gangajalis. A lesson for us today is to carry our own bottles and not use single-use plastic bottles. That brings us to the sustainable practices at our boutique resort in Jaipur, Tree of Life Chhota Mahal Amer. We have minimised the use of plastic in general and negated single-use plastic completely.
Tree of Life, Amer
Moving on, you will come across a beautiful structure with four gates or pols, known as Ridhi-Sidhi Pol, representing the four seasons. Pritam Niwas Chowk connects to Chandra Mahal. One of the oldest and grandest buildings in the City Palace complex, Chandra Mahal, stands tall on seven floors, an auspicious number for royals of Rajasthan. Little wonder Chandra Mahal is the residence of the Maharaja. Each floor of Chandra Mahal has deep significance, with the top floor, Mukut Mandir, literally the crowning glory pavilion of City Palace Jaipur. Many museums are found within the palace complex, each educating and enlightening us about a dimension of India’s illustrious history that made her so enticing to the world.
The architecture of City Palace Jaipur is echoed in the many smaller palaces and structures found all around the city and beyond. But none are parallel to its glory and magnificence. Tree of Life Chhota Mahal, Amer, our resort in Jaipur too is inspired by the royal styles and motifs, creating a luxury boutique experience in the idyllic settings of rural Jaipur, with its own set of things to do in Jaipur!