Chomu Palace, Chomu, Rajasthan – Review

The new New Honda City needed a long haul, probably a more honest statement would be that its driver was looking for a drive so when an opportunity came knocking, it was hard to refuse. We were to go to ‘Chomu Palace’, in Chomu, Rajasthan (near Jaipur) to see if its a good enough venue to host a big press conference. Apparently a bulk of shooting of Zee’s new serial, ‘Jhansi Ki Rani’ happened here so it would have made a perfect site to host the opening conference. It was an important thing to attend to and one should not refuse (I would have still gone, even if we had to go to find out whether its more of Pinkish-Red or Reddish-pink though). So we went and I thought that I would share a quick review and pics for any fellow Ghumakkar.

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Location

Its very close to Jaipur, the capital of Rajasthan. If you are driving from Delhi, you do not need to go all the way till Jaipur, take a right after Shahpur and its about an hour from there. Actually, depending on the vehicle, there are two options to reach. You may also take the Ajmer by-pass and follow the road that goes to Samode Bagh Palace. Very well laid tar, NH8 is boring but smooth, the inner roads though are a pleasure. It amazes me to see how even small towns have enough of royal litter spread all around. The name is pretty true to what the state offers. In terms of time, it wont take you long to reach this place from Delhi (4 hours max) provided you can avoid the morning rush. I usually start very early but for this one, we did a lazy start and found to our dismay that actually till Manesar and a little beyond, you need to constantly negotiate through almost-city-like traffic. Here’s the mandatory map for the initiated.


View Delhi – Chomu Palace in a larger map

Infrastructure

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Its an old heritage building which has changed many hands and the most recent owner has converted this into a Hotel. We were told that its as old as 300 years and on more probing, we learned that before it was converted into this lavish hotel, it was a flour mill. As with most of the heritage properties, every room has its own charm and probably no two rooms are same. There are 58 odd Suites with the ones which can hold only two people to ones which can hold a whole big Indian family.

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It can get truly pampering to stay in one of those big suites.

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Each room is very well equipped with some of the old world furniture, well thought royal artifacts, modern up-market toiletries and so on. You can imagine the detail from the fact that we could find a umbrella and a coat brush too, the usual dryer, room tea-maker-kit were definitely very conspicuous. We were on a ground level suite and it was fairly clear that the LCD was somehow squeezed in, it lied on the window stilt and the only way you could experience your stupid-box is by being on the bed. Difficult to blame but that placement did appear very tacky, more so since the rest were well designed. I was very impressed with the air conditioner which was very well concealed with a wooden Jaali, the jutting out Samsungs and Hitachis in a heritage room are always an eye sore.

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There are large manicured lawns and though Chomu gets its own share of heat, we were surprised to find enough balcony-greenery. There is a swimming pool which was incidentally not very clean but I could sense that it wont have taken more than a polite call to have it ready. Needless to say, that it should have been ready without the need for any request.

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The whole area is pretty big so if you take a good round-the-building stroll, it wont be over in a jiffy. A real test of a good palace is the sheer size and ‘Chomu Palace’ scores well there. The mix of stone and green keeps the whole eco-system fairly balanced. It has its share of nooks, a small temple, multiple narrow typical Rajasthan-palace stair-cases and what not. A good exploration of the property would keep you busy for a couple of hours.

The dining hall is not very big so I would imagine that when they are full, it would take some effort to re-arrange the setup to accommodate more people. Food was actually very nice. It lacked the usual cooked-by-the-book texture and tasted as something as if its especially customised for you. The staff is not stiff-lip and talks to you in your own lingo, very effective. Some literature on tables about the history of the palace might make the experience more engaging.

One thing which you would want to know that all rooms have single king size beds so that work well for a family or close friends but I guess if its a coporate do, and you want to put two people in a room than better to be informed. What else, well the mini-bar was somehow missing from our room. The thrifty variety like me prefer to carry their own stuff and use the in-house refrigeration to get that extra value of their money. Staff was more than willing to get me an ice bucket but a CFC driven machine would have helped better.

What to do
Well, nothing much. Just chill out, dream about kings, have a party. It seemed an ideal fit for a corporate outing. We did venture out to local market and were surprised to find that it was pretty big and well spread. It falls on Sikar-Jaipur connection so may be that makes it a good big stop.

All in all, it gets full marks for not only having a envious infrastructure but also keeping it pretty spic-n-span. The whole credit for the smooth, silent and warm operations should be awarded to Mr. Gurmeet Singh, the General Manager at the property. His warmth makes a big difference to the whole place – and the whole staff seems to follow his attitude down the line. Here’s a link to their website and other details from their website.

Chomu, District Jaipur (Rajasthan), INDIA – 303702
Ph.: 91-1423-300300 Fax: 91-1423-300400
E-mail: info@chomupalacehotel.com
Website : www.chomupalacehotel.com
General Manager: Gurmeet Singh,
E-mail: gm@chomupalacehotel.com

A weekend well spent. If you do choose to go, cite Ghumakkar and you might get a couple of drinks free during your stay.

20 Comments

  • Jerry Jaleel says:

    Nandan,

    Very informative post and brilliant photographs on Chomu Palace. Whoever took over it has done a fabulous job in restoring it to its original splendor. But is it affordable for an average family to stay there for three or four days, or is it exclusively designed to attract the foreign tourists and well to do Indian families?

    Despite the age of the heritage building, whether it is a palace or not, I think most people cannot think of staying a couple of nights in a place without TV or telephone these days.

    Thanks for writing about it. My only exposure to Rajasthan is through the books written by Colonel Kesri Singh, the late tiger hunter who worked for the Maharaja during the British rule.

    With best wishes,
    Jerry

  • Komal says:

    Hi

    I work for the publicity and marketing team for CHomu and would like to get in touch with you. Would request you to write to me as a test mail or share your contact information

    Thanks
    Komal

  • Nandan Jha says:

    Jerry – Thanks for all the appreciation. :-).

    You guessed it right, its not really a place for a budget-trip. And thats for more than the reason you sensed i.e. price tag. In my opinion, probably the value for that kind of outing is also around what else you can do (in terms of sight seeing etc) and the needs may be different. At the cost of sounding like a ‘haute bourgeoisie’, I guess the whole proposition for a budget-traveler would appear like a not-value-for-money whereas for the well-heeled (I was there by accident), the charm of being in a quiet pampering place far out-weighs the drudgery of carrying around tombstones/ruins/sight-seeing :-)

    May be a economy version (put tents) might bridge the gap. Something for Mr. Singh to ponder.

    Komal – I would send you a quick e-mail shortly. Thanks for visiting.

  • nayan says:

    i think bhool bhulaiya (akshay kumar ) also being shot here.

  • Patrick Jones says:

    Congrats on your new Wheels.

    Oh, well, Chomu’s a nice place :-)

  • Mahesh Semwal says:

    A detailed & very informative write-up with beautiful pictures.

    Is anything else to see near by Chomu Palace.

  • nandanjha says:

    Nayan – I doubt, else I am sure someone must have mentioned it to us. Probably someone from ‘Chomu Palace’ can confirm/deny.

    Patrick – Thanks. Yeah, I can imagine that in winters it would get even better.

    Mahesh – Thanks. I think Jaipur (40 Odd KM, an hour max) probably would be the closest big ticket item. We asked around and we were given some references to a local temple which is jutting out from a hillock and one other place. The place is mostly a chill-out/make-merry kinda joint.

  • Ram says:

    Thanks for sharing this “royal treat” at Chomu.

  • Indrani says:

    What treat for the eyes and wat a read… there goes my budget trip, yet again! Every time I travel to India, my non-Indian frnds think am on a budget trip but li’l do they realise luxury is best defined by Indian hospitality industry , costing us an arm and a leg & a lot more….
    Tx for building up my list Nandan…..

  • nandanjha says:

    Thanks Ram.

    Thanks Indrani. You are right about the part where an Indian-Holiday is bracketed as Budget-holiday, I guess its right to a great extent considering the exchange-rate, availability of good-budget options and the general ‘developing nation’ tag :-). But if at one hand India is full of budget/inexpensive high-value-for-money plans, there is a new breed of growing expensive options as well (from Spas to Royal treats as Ram says) which are hard to ignore.

    If you do plan to visit this place, do it in winters.

    • Indrani says:

      So true Nandan, new options are really enticing for us expats let alone foreigners! India visit for me is usually winters…never ever do I venture to India in summers, have become a real stereotyped NRE…not to proud abt it but such is reality!
      Will have to book real soon if we want to go this winter as am sure it’s a popular destination for all goras!

  • Deepak Behl says:

    Nandan,

    I agree Dittoo with ram ,

    “Royal” is the right word …describing rajasthan’s splendid pearls ..in forts and forts turned Hotels….

    reminds me of my visit to sariska palace last winter …wherin mere entry
    to that property you have to shell close to 1000 rupees per person

    a great post…. and wish you a Quick century…….

  • nice posting

    nice collection

  • ranand says:

    Chomu Palace sure is a wonderful place and gives tough competition to the more famous Samode Palace nearby. It’s easy accessibility also makes it an ideal weekend getaway from Delhi. Though if they can plan some weekend programmes for the guests like a Rajasthani folk dance etc. it will be nice.For more pics of the place you can see the following link
    http://north-india-resorts.blogspot.com/2009/12/chomu-palace-near-jaipur.html
    R.Anand

  • CA Shiv Gupta says:

    Nice place for stay and enjoy Heritage things.

  • ranand says:

    Chomu Palace, a reflection of the Royal Palaces of India, is a 300 year old elegant fortified palace hotel and one of the places to visit in Rajasthan. It revives the gracious lifestyles of the princes of Rajasthan and the heritage of India. It is an authentic and historic palace that discreetly blends with the modern amenities and facilities. This historic monument is designed according to the Indian Vastushastra philosophy.
    For more see http://arounddelhi.com/chomu_palace.htm

  • Chomu Palace sure is a wonderful place and gives tough competition to the more famous Samode Palace nearby. Its easy accessibility also makes it an ideal weekend getaway from Delhi. Though if they can plan some weekend programmes for the guests like a Rajasthani folk dance etc. it will be nice.For more pics of the place you can see the following link
    http://north-india-resorts.blogspot.com/2009/12/chomu-palace-near-jaipur.html

  • i think bhool bhulaiya (akshay kumar ) also being shot here.

  • RAJIV NAYAR says:

    I,RAJIV NAYAR,WITH MY WIFE AND CHILD STAYED HERE FROM 18TH MAY TO 20TH MAY,2014….THE HOTEL IS LIKE A HOME AWAY FROM HOME,,,THE ROOMS ARE SO SPACIOUS AND TASTEFULLY FURNISHED,,,I WAS IN MAHARANI SUITE,,ROOM NUMBER 222,,,THE STAFF IS VERY COURTEOUS,,EVERYBODY ,,,AT THE RECEPTION,,MISS.ANITA AND MR.RAJESH..GAVE ME A VERY GOOD PACKAGE WITH ALL 3 MEALS,,,IN THE RESTAURANT,,,SATVEER SINGH,MUKESH KUMAR,SUMAR,AND KEDAR MOSTLY SERVED US….THE FOOD 2WAS EXCELLENT.I WILL VISIT THIS PLACE EVERY MONTH….I HAVE NO WORDS TO SAY ,,,I AM SPEECHLESS,,,PERFECT PLACE TO SPEND WITH YOUR FAMILY

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