Lifestyle Awards 2013
Wellness & Relationship
The Charms of Chettinad
Magic of Rawla Narlai
Amrita Gandhi (ROYAL RESERVATION)
I remember the day when we drove up the pebbly driveway of Wankaner palace. I had a funny feeling in my stomach right away, thinking...where have I come?
I had seen a picture of this mysterious looking, baroque palace in a book about Gujarat’s royal families and had wanted more than anything else to see it.
But as we approached the Gothic-inspired structure, I had a sinking feeling.
Why did I go off and so enthusiastically plan this trip in the middle of nowhere, when I could have so easily done something easier.
We were a good five hours from Ahmedabad and were hot and dusty, a tiny crew of three - Me, Siva and Damini.
If there ever was a story of faded glory this was it. As the days went by we got to know the palace well.
Outside was a clock tower that had fallen during an earthquake with the clock stuck at the precise minute of the tremor.
The grand Darbar Hall had the most beautiful Italian chandeliers, furnishings and a grandfather clock which still chimed and literally dozens of wild animal busts including tigers and bisons.
The spiral marble staircase led to the private room of the late maharajah much loved by his
His things had been preserved, untouched. All of it, from his bedroom slippers to his hairbrush…
But in the middle of all this genteel decay was the surprisingly fresh and promising zenana.
Maharani Vibha had created a little haven for lady travellers in the women’s wing of the palace.
Sweet little ladies in waiting brought us cooled drinks under a shaded balcony. She coaxed them gently with tips on how to bring things in with a tray.
Maharani Vibha has even converted some of the rooms into suites in shades of pink and blue - this would be the Wankaner of the future.
Of all the places I have visited, grand and opulent, small and large while shooting
, Wankaner has become the most legendary.
Saw the show on NDTV Good Times today. We live in New Jersey. People in America die to see old h...
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