During our search for hotels in India we discovered The Oberoi. This Indian hotel group is known for its top locations, beautiful resorts, stylish rooms and a service that cannot be faulted. Besides 14 hotels in India, you can also find Oberoi Hotels & Resorts in Indonesia, UAE, Mauritius, Egypt and Saudi Arabia. They open their first hotel in Morocco (Marrakech) in 2018.
We stayed in 4 different hotels during our trip through Rajasthan - one even more spectacular than the other.
The Oberoi Amarvilas in Agra
.Our first acquaintance with Oberoi was an immediate success. Amarvilas is the only hotel in Agra that has a view of the Taj Mahal. We were warmly welcomed with a drink and ice cold towelettes. The luggage was immediately brought to the room and we were accompanied upstairs. At the Oberoi they don’t have you fill out all sorts of forms for half an hour at the front desk, but they bring you to your room and once there, they check you in, fast and efficiently.
We were speechless as soon as we entered the room. A gigantic window offered a front view of the Taj Mahal. Fabulous! After checking in we opened a bottle and enjoyed the best view ever from our terrace.
.Before visiting the Taj Mahal, we went for a bite to eat beside the beautifully designed pool. It is as though you’re in a Roman bathing house. The adjoining gardens are also a sight to behold. The service is perfect and the food is of a high standard.
As Oberoi Amarvilas is only 600m from the Taj Mahal, we were brought to the gate by golf cart (no motorised vehicles are allowed near the Taj Mahal). This was not an unnecessary luxury as it was over 40 degrees.
Things to do in Agra
Once in Agra, of course you visit the Taj Mahal, it is one of the seven wonders of the world! But the UNESCO World Heritage site of Fort Agra is also certainly worth a visit. 1 or 2 nights are plenty to explore Agra.
The Oberoi Vanyavilas in Ranthambore
The nature reserve of Ranthambore was the main destination of our trip, as tiger spotting had been on my wish list for a long time. Oberoi has another hotel at a top location here, right on the edge of the park. And it is not just a hotel, it is a tented camp. WorldWideWendy goes camping! Obviously not just any tent, because even describing the tents at Oberoi as “glamping” is an understatement.
Beautiful tents are spread out around the domain. They all have a small garden and are separated from others by lush greenery, so they are completely private. Of course, there is air conditioning, an enormous four-poster bed, TV, high speed internet, a beautiful free-standing bath tub, silk bath robes… and you have a butler at your disposal 24 hours a day.
The guide and driver for your safari will be waiting for you twice a day. As the morning safari starts at 6am, coffee and a small snack are prepared. The real breakfast follows the safari. Oberoi provides a cool box with ice cold beverages. After returning from a three-hour dusty, bumpy ride, someone is waiting for you in the lobby with a refreshing drink and an ice cold towelette. Of course, they want to hear about how many tigers you spotted as that is the goal of all visitors here.
After the safari it is time for a refreshing dive into the inviting pool, but you can of course also go to the spa for a relaxing massage. You’ve deserved it!
You can enjoy dinner in the small courtyard in the main building. They serve up the most wonderful Indian dishes here.
A note was left in the bedroom that it can be quite noisy at night because of all the nocturnal animals. The complimentary earplugs offered a solution.
On the 2nd day of our stay we were on our way to breakfast when one of the waiters stopped us and asked us to follow him. He brought us to an intimate corner of the garden where a table was set for us, completely surrounded by colourful flowers and sheltered by a parasol in the same colours. A bit further down was a flute player who played a mini-serenade for us. Our personal butler brought us whatever we desired. We’ve never had such a special, romantic breakfast. Apparently, Oberoi Vanyavilas has a similar surprise for all its guests, as we spotted another couple having an intimate dinner beside the pool later on that night.
During our last evening we were pleasantly surprised when we entered our room (tent). My husband’s birthday was 2 days later, and they had decorated our room beautifully with white and pink balloons. It is the small things that make all the difference!
Things to do in Ranthambore
You’re certain to go tiger spotting in Ranthambore, but Ranthambore Fort is definitely worth a visit too. We stayed three nights, so we could enjoy a safari five times. As we had seen tigers on our first three trips, we decided to visit Ranthambore Fort on our fourth. There is a good reason it is UNESCO World Heritage. If you want to know more about the tiger safari and Ranthambore Fort, you can read more here.
And if I have to add a small bit of criticism: The hotel has its own elephant, often waiting for guests at the entrance. I am sure they take good care of it, but I’m not a big fan of animals in captivity.
The Oberoi Rajvilas in Jaipur
This Oberoi is straight from the Tales of 1001 Arabian Nights. In front of the main entrance lies a small water feature, and they throw petals on you when you enter the hotel. A bit over the top, but kind of funny.
Oberoi Rajvilas has 70 rooms, and so a bit bigger than the previous, but it still feels intimate. It is built around an 18th-century Shiva temple, and is surrounded by a beautifully designed garden. The outside is the same pink colour as the historical centre of Jaipur. High ceilings, crystal chandeliers and frescos in gold leaf give it a chic but warm atmosphere.
Again, they did not forget my husband’s birthday. The room was beautifully decorated and a tasty cake was waiting for us. Every staff member we passed seemed to know who we were and wished him a happy birthday in advance. The next day, his actual birthday, he was surprised with a delicious dessert at breakfast.
The hotel director earns an extra compliment. I have never seen another director who is present throughout the hotel, and who knows the names of their guests immediately.
Here, too, the pool is a little gem. The squirrels who came to steal our peanuts made it extra charming.
Things to do in Jaipur
Oberoi Rajvilas is the perfect base for exploring the historical centre of Jaipur. This is done perfectly by bike. Read all about our cycling tour in Jaipur over here. And don’t miss Amber Fort and Jaigarh Fort! As we were limited in time, we only stayed one night, but I would suggest taking two or three nights so you can really relax en discover everything Jaipur has to offer.
The Oberoi Gurgaon Delhi
The night before flying back, we stayed at Oberoi Gurgaon. A completely different hotel from the previous one. Gurgaon is a lot bigger and more businesslike, but the friendliness, the warm welcome and the excellent service are of the same calibre as in the smaller hotels.
And guess what, they, too, didn’t forget about my husband’s birthday. Cake and flowers and a decorated room. And they had created a true work of art with the towels.
The Oberoi Hotels & Resorts
- Stylish architecture
- Lush gardens
- Top locations
- Efficient check-ins in the room
- A warm welcome
- All staff has at all times that charming Indian smile ready for you
Have you ever stayed in one of the Oberoi Hotels?