THE INSIDERS I JAIPUR
STAY: Loharu House A centrally located guesthouse famed for its gracious hospitality. It is the Jaipur residence of the Nawab of Loharu and his wife, Begum Fauzia Ahmad Khan, who presides over fabulous meals in the formal dining room. Its three suites and 11 rooms are set amid landscaped gardens. My favourite is suite 10, with lovely views, separate dressing-room and a bathtub, a rare treat in India; Civil Lines, 302001; email@example.com. EAT: Saba Haveli hotel This small dining room is one of the best-kept secrets in the city. Chef Puskai Giri makes wonderful thalis for about 600 rupees ($11); sabahaveli.com. DRINK: Chukkers This members’ bar at the polo ground is where players congregate post-match. Decorated with photos of triumphant teams, it’s a good place to taste the local beer, Golden Peacock. Same-day membership is available for tourists; tajhotels.com. PARTY: The Recycle Pub & Club Oxygen An eclectic live-gig venue hosting international and Indian acts. At the rear is Club Oxygen, where guest DJs play dance music until late. Excellent cocktails; Hotel Dodas Palace (basement), Lane 2, Raja Park. WALK: Jaipur Walks Vineet Sharma offers five themed walks covering religion, architecture, bazaars, cuisine and arts and crafts. My favourite is the arts and crafts walk, which takes you to what Jaipur is really famous for — its artisans, jewellers, carvers and tie-dyers; Vineet (mobile: + 91 982 907 1784); firstname.lastname@example.org. SAFARI: Sky Waltz A world-class balloon safari operation adhering to international safety standards. Our flight took off from a cricket pitch near Amber and as we ascended the full majesty of Rajasthan was revealed; skywaltz.com. SHOP: Nayika by Meenu Tholia Meenu and her son Vikas work with artisans to create timeless fashion. The signature item is the voile and silk quilted jacket, which can be made to order. Also recommended are cool cotton shirts and dresses, handbags and shawls. Meenu’s husband, Romi, runs Tholia’s Kuber, one of the most highly rated jewellers in Jaipur, just across the courtyard; nayika-jaipur.com.
The third edition of Fiona Caulfield’s Love Jaipur, Rajasthan is out now. More: lovetravelguides.com.