Umaid Bhawan in Jodhpur may be called as one of the largest private residences in the world! The palace was built by Maharaja Umaid Singh and is named after him. Currently, Maharaja Umaid Singh’s grandson Maharaja Gaj Singh’s family lives in this residence.
Umaid Bhawan was originally built to provide employment to several thousands of people who were struck with famine. While the foundation stone of the palace was laid in 1929, the construction began in 1943, and took over 16 years to complete and gain the current form. This luxurious residence has 347 rooms! Due to the recent build of the palace, it may be the only magnificent palace which was built in 20th century! The whole palace is now divided into three sections. The first one is the residence of current Maharaja. The second section is now a heritage hotel. And the third section now houses a museum. The museum has a collection of yesteryear’s specimens including glasses, trophies, kitchenware, gramophones, paintings etc.
Specimen of Umaid Bhawan
Specimen of Leopard 🙂
If you are a visitor to Umaid Bhawan, you are allowed to visit only the museum section. The museum has a good collection of artefacts from the yesteryears. It gives a feeling of the hobbies and interests of the royal families. Moreover, some of the collections like the furniture, clocks etc show how much the royal families of Jodhpur liked the artwork in each and everything they possess.
Royal tables and chairs 🙂
At the end of the museum, the path opens up to a huge open area, before you exit out of the museum. While the museum area is the only section that is open for general public, you can get a feeling of the size of the palace just by walking through that section.
If you thought you are done with the museum after walking out of the building, then you are wrong! As you exit out of the museum, on the exact opposite side, you can see a huge collection of vintage cars! Some of the locals said that the royal family had a passion towards cars, and it is their collection shown in the car museum!
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