Bundi Vilas

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Hotel class: 4 stars
Opposite Moti Mahal Palace Bheru darwaja, Bundi, India

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Bundi Vilas Reviews

Toonsarah Toonsarah
379 reviews
Friendly and full of historical character Oct 30, 2015
This is a small family-run heritage hotel in a 300 year old haveli in Bundi's old town, located immediately below the palace. It is a lovely, characterful place to stay, although not for anyone with walking difficulties – access is via a steep alleyway (don't worry, hotel staff will carry your bags from the main road) and several flights of equally steep stairs. It is worth it however! There are just seven rooms and I imagine they would all have the historic atmosphere that ours did - old stone pillars, carved screens and niches, attractive old wooden doors. You can really feel the history that seeps out of these old stones.

But that history does not necessitate the sacrifice of modern comforts. We had an en-suite with large shower, wet-room style, and air conditioning. OK you have to wait five minutes when you shower before the hot water comes through (a quirk of the solar energy used) but you have a selection of toiletries, large thick towels, and a hair-dryer. Don't expect a TV or mini-bar though, although there is reasonable free wifi.

Our room overlooked an internal courtyard so had no real view, although we could see the palace ramparts to our right. Be warned - this courtyard (and probably most of the buildings in Bundi) seems to be a regular thoroughfare for the resident monkeys, who woke us early as they scampered through in search of food, sending a metal pot tumbling noisily to the ground and calling to each other!

If you choose to eat dinner here, and you should, this will be served on the rooftop (weather permitting) at a time to suit you. It is a set vegetarian meal, and judging by what we had, delicious. You will be asked in advance if you like spicy food or not, so there's no need to worry on that score – we said that we did, yet found it less spicy than some dishes we eat regularly at home.

We were welcomed onto the rooftop with an offer of drinks - beer, wine, gin and tonic. We enjoyed these while taking in the fabulous view of the illuminated palace and watching the bats flit overhead. To accompany the drinks we were given tasty vegetable pakoras. The dinner itself consisted of a fresh vegetable soup, followed by a selection of dishes - crispy vegetables, paneer cooked in a spicy tomato and garlic sauce, potatoes with peas, a yellow lentil dahl and Basmati rice. There was also sesame naan bread. Desert was a single ball of Gulab Jamon, rich and syrupy. Service was friendly and attentive and the cost very reasonable - just 700IR per person for all that food (extra for drinks of course).

Our breakfast was served one floor below this, on an open-sided terrace with views of the town. There is cereal and fresh fruit (we had banana and papaya), juice, tea or coffee, eggs cooked to order, toast and home-made jams. We had a busy day planned, with a visit to the palace to be followed by our drive to Ranthambore and a safari booked for the afternoon, so we couldn’t linger over this as much as we would have liked. Our host ensured we were served promptly and later saw us off with a friendly gesture of free postcards of Bundi, as well as making sure we had help to carry our bags back down those stairs and down the narrow lane to the car. A stay here is highly recommended as providing a great combination of historic character and good value.
Terrace and door to our room
Our lovely room
Entrance to the haveli
Looking back down the stairs
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Bundi Vilas Overview

Bundi Vilas is a charming, new boutique property which opened in September 2008. Built against the rampart walls of Bundi Garh Palace, which rise majestically above the town, this 300 year old haveli is reachable on foot via a twisting alleyway leading up from the maze of streets, and is entered through the original magnificent 40ft -stone archway.

Bundi Vilas Amenities

  • Room Service
  • Parking
  • En suite
  • Free Parking

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photo by: chrisrae