For the second post in the series, I am looking at the wonderfully quaint hotel in Jaipur that will feature in my small group tour in October 2022. Jaipur is famous for it's creative craft industries and a haven for designers and brands looking to work with traditional artisans as well as seeking inspiration from the city's pink hues and astonishing architecture. Choosing somewhere to stay for the group was always going to be a hard choice as there are so many boutique places to stay, with new additions to the property scene opening up frequently.
As I very much value the experience of staying in small owner run properties, I knew one of the best places to stay would be the traditional and homely Dera Rawatsar. I have been visiting Jaipur for 12 years and have stayed in a variety of places - from budget guesthouses to the most opulent of hotels. I felt however there was no competition when it came to experiencing true Indian hospitality than at Dera Rawatsar. Owned and managed by Anirudh Rathore and his family, Dera Rawatsar is a true gem of a property that will make you fall in love with the charm of Jaipur.
Anirudh kindly chatted with me about the property and gave me some of his insights about a lesser known attraction in his city.
Swimming pool, Dera Rawatsar
Dera Rawatsar is a place I have loved staying in before as it is such a welcoming property that feels like a home away from home. Could you tell me a little more about yourself and your family and how you came to open your property to guests?
Starting Dera Rawatsar was a natural decision for my family as we had a heritage home with a lot of rooms. As Jaipur has always been a popular tourist attraction we felt that we could better utilise our home by welcoming guests from all over the world. Prior to opening our home to guests I had a career in the banking industry but always had the itch to start a commercial enterprise on my own. Once my family agreed then we dived into the opportunity wholeheartedly. My family traces our roots to a principality called Rawatsar founded in 1588 which is located in the northern part of Rajasthan. 15 generations lived there and after the Independence of India in 1947 we shifted to Jaipur.
Tell me a little more about the guestrooms and amenities at Dera Rawatsar.
The guest rooms have retained their original architecture but have been provided with all modern amenities such as study desk , mini bars, air conditioning and heating, hot and cold water showers, tea/coffee amenities, sitting area etc.
One of the advantages about staying in small owner run hotels is that guests often get the chance to try out unique activities during their stay. What special experiences do you offer at Dera Rawatsar?
A homely atmosphere with the host family living in the premises . We have a wonderful astrologer on call that can give you a glimpse of your future and experienced yoga instructor that can rejuvenate the mind and body.
I have been lucky to have enjoyed several delicious meals in your lovely quaint dining room. What signature Indian dishes are popular with your guests?
Murg Kasuri Methi (an aromatic chicken preparation cooked with fenugreek leaves and tomatoes), stuffed aubergine (a popular home preparation made by stuffing aubergine with onions, tomatoes and Indian herbs, spices and cooked in a thick gravy).
The Pink City of Jaipur is well known on most Rajasthan itineraries. As local residents of the city, what insider tips do you usually recommend to guests to make the most of their time?
Besides the tourist attractions we recommend if time permits the Jhalana Leopard safari . There are more than 25 leopards on last count which provide the wildlife flavor for the city.
Twin bedroom, Dera Rawatsar
Hawa Mahal, Jaipur
If you would like to experience the charm for Dera Rawatsar for yourself, feel free to contact me for further information about my small group tour for October 2022. The tour has been designed for first time visitors to India and return travellers alike, with a focus on textiles and traditional crafts alongside other exciting immersive experiences. firstname.lastname@example.org