Colonial Luxury in Gondal
Gondal, a lovely town in the western Indian state of Gujarat, is steeped in history and bursting with architectural treasures. Three palaces stand out among its many riches for their magnificence and historical significance: Orchard Palace, Riverside Palace and Naulakha Palace.
The Orchard Palace
The Orchard Palace was built in the late nineteenth century as an annex of the royal palace, Huzoor Palace, to receive intimate guests of the Maharajas. It has been converted into a seven-room heritage hotel and is furnished with 1930s and 1940s art deco furniture, antiques and handicrafts.
This beautiful palace is set alongside the scenic Gondali River, affording stunning views of the flowing waters and verdant environs. It is an architectural masterpiece from the nineteenth century that mixes aspects of Indian and European style. The palace features magnificent domes, elaborate carvings and expansive courtyards. Riverside Palace, a former royal house, has likewise been turned into an eleven-room heritage hotel.
One of Gondal’s most recognizable monuments, the name “Naulakha” translates to “nine lakh,” a reference to the nine lakh rupees (a large quantity during its building period) that were spent on the construction. This majestic palace was erected in the late 17th century and features stunning Rajput architecture. The exquisite stone carvings, ornate jharokhas (balconies) and beautiful arches make it a work of art. Inside, you may examine a wide collection of antiquities, fabrics and mementos that provide a fascinating glimpse into the Gondal royal family’s long history.
(photo source: www.heritagepalacesgondal.com)