Regal Escapes in the Mountains

ByAnshu Khanna & Ananya Menon

Jubbal Palace

Copying the British way of life was second skin to the Princely Indian rulers. They emulated their style of dressing, living, eating, holidaying. Even building summer palaces in accordance to the summer capitals where the British viceroys moved every hot, sweltering Indian summer. Many of these magnificent palaces are now resorts and hotels for Indians to enjoy.
India, known for its rich cultural heritage and diverse landscapes, is home to numerous magnificent mountain ranges. Nestled amidst these picturesque peaks are royal retreats that have stood the test of time, preserving the grandeur and opulence of a bygone era. These mountain based getaways offer a unique blend of natural beauty and regal charm, allowing visitors to experience the best of both worlds. Here are five royal Indian getaways located in the mountains that promise an unforgettable vacation.

Kasmanda Palace

MUSSOORIE:Kasmanda Palace
Kasmanda Palace that belonged to the rich talukdaars of Kasmanda in Oudh, Sitapur was originally built in 1835 by Captain Rennie Tailour of the Bengal Engineers. Taking many shapes it served both as a sanatorium and school under the British rule. Now with the family since 6 generations it is run as a heritage retreat by Rajkumar Dinraj Pratap Singh and his wife Rajkumari Yadunandini Singh, a princess of Jaisalmer. Over the years, it has been carefully restored and transformed into a luxury hotel, preserving its architectural grandeur and cultural heritage. The palace showcases a blend of British colonial and Indian architectural styles, with its elegant facade, ornate interiors, and sprawling gardens, making it a true gem in Mussoorie’s crown. This magnificent heritage property has captivated the hearts of visitors for decades, offering a glimpse into the regal past while providing a luxurious retreat in the lap of nature.

Kasmanda Palace

MUSSOORIE: Cloud’s End Palace
Tucked away at the westernmost point of Mussoorie, Cloud’s End Palace holds a significant place in the town’s history. Built by Major Swetenham, a British officer, in the early 19th century, this enchanting palace was initially a hunting lodge. With time, it evolved into a sprawling estate surrounded by lush greenery and mesmerising views. The palace showcases a fusion of colonial and Indian architectural styles, boasting high ceilings, wooden beams, and beautiful verandas. Today, Cloud’s End Palace serves as a luxurious resort, offering visitors an opportunity to experience the regal charm and tranquility it exudes.

SHIMLA: Chail Palace
Perched majestically amidst the serene hills of Himachal Pradesh, Chail Palace stands as a testament to regal grandeur and tranquility. Nestled in the charming town of Chail, this magnificent palace offers a unique blend of history, natural beauty, and luxurious hospitality, making it an idyllic retreat for those seeking a royal experience in the lap of nature. Built in 1891, Chail Palace holds the distinction of being one of the most exquisite heritage hotels in India. Originally conceived as a summer retreat for the Maharaja of Patiala, the palace offers a glimpse into the regal past, transporting guests back in time to an era of opulence and elegance. Its architecture reflects a seamless fusion of colonial and Indian styles, with its imposing structure, elegant interiors, and well-manicured gardens.

SHIMLA: Jubbal Palace
The Palace is the former summer residence of the Raja Rana of Jubbal, a pre-independence kingdom of the Simla Hill States. Placed amid deodar pine forest, Woodville Palace is now run by Raja Uday Singh Jubbal.. A jewel tucked away with a majestic view of the Himalayas in the background , the palace was first owned by William Rose Mansfield, Commander-in-chief of the Imperial British Army. Changing many hands, it finally came back the family and has been cherished ever since.
Step into Woodville Palace Hotel and be transported to a by gone era when Shimla was the summer capital of the Raj and British Socialites mingled atll tea parties and gala evenings with Indian Aristocracy.
The only Palace Hotel in Shimla, this heritage property is owned and managed privately by the decedents of the Jubbal Royal family who seek to give travelers an experience of Rajput hospitality.

Taragarh Palace

SHIMLA: Taragarh Palace
Found amidst the picturesque landscape of the Kangra Valley in Himachal Pradesh, India, Taragarh Palace stands as a testament to architectural grandeur and regal charm. Originally known as Alhilal, the palace was built in the early 20th century. Later bought by the royal family of Jammu & Kashmir for the dowager Maharani Taradevi
who hailed from Himachal to live in. This architectural gem became her summer retreat and also the home Dr. Karan Singh visited every summer. The palace witnessed the splendour and opulence of royal festivities, and, Taragarh Palace serves as a luxurious heritage hotel, offering visitors a chance to relish the royal lifestyle and immerse themselves in the palace’s rich history.

Balrampur Palace
Balrampur Palace

NAINITAL: Balrampur Palace
Balrampur House Resort and Hotel with its sprawling, green gardens, majestic Himalayan views and vintage appeal is a true gem nestled in the Talli Tal of Nainital. The summer Palace of the former Maharajas of Balrampur since 1890’s it was reconstructed and redesigned in 1930 by the renowned European Architect Mr Mortimer in the style of French Chateaus. The owners, Maharaja Dharmendra Pratap Singh who also runs industries in his state of Balrampur in UP ensures that guests get to relive the Princely era, maintaining the original appeal with vintage furniture, trophies and old crockery. The hotel offers a clear view of the Naina Peak & the
Ayarpata hill.