Narendra Bhawan Bikaner-Salient features!

Narendra Bhawan was the residence of Maharaja Narendra Singh of Bikaner. This residence is now converted into a boutique hotel and is partially open to public. I was fortunate enough to be one of the first few to visit this property, on invitation from its owners to experience the campus first hand. In this post, I am detailing the uniqueness of Narendra Bhawan, Bikaner. Unlike the other commercial hotel chains I have experienced, the owners of Suryagarh & Narendra Bhawan have put in lots of thoughts behind every item in the property. There's lots of efforts gone into selecting the right set of artifacts, most of which are custom made, lots of effort made to retain original thoughts and feelings of the place now run as a hotel and every small item in the campus has a reason why it is there and attention to detail and strive for perfection from the management is appreciable.

Particularly in Narendra Bhawan, which was a former royal home, lots of thoughts have gone into ensure guests get an experience as close as possible to the life and times of the Maharajas who used to live here. Much of this credit goes to Karan Sign, MD of the group. He has an exquisite taste and lots of artefacts and experiences that you see in Suryagarh or Narendra Bhawan has been the result of his personal thought process, effort and selection. We learnt about these during our property tour and casual conversation. I have made an attempt in this post to explain them to you. Sometimes photos and words will not do the justice- you need to personally experience it to feel it.

Let us take a look at some of the unique elements of Narendra Bhawan:
1. Horse leg shaped sitting bench. At first look, this looks like any other bench, but pay little closer attention and you can see the legs resemble that of a horse. It looks as if the bench is galloping like a race horse.
2. The personal logo of Narendra Singh- What you see in below photograph is the personal logo of Raja Narendra Singh. Narendra Bhawan management got an artist to recreate it at various strategic places- such as the cup boards placed in the corridor, the welcome box in the rooms etc. It feels as if your stay is indeed endorsed by the king himself.
3. Red Piano- This red Piano at the end of the corridor is eye catching. It is fully functional- with my bare minimum harmonium knowledge I played a few lines on it. Didn’t see many guests using it, so ther e is no rush or waiting to play Piano- if you are into music, you will be able to try this while staying at Narendra Bhawan.

 
4. Private Dining area: The restaurant has a portion isolated as private dining area, rich with metal chairs, mirrors and chandeliers.

5. Queen’s Tea Party area: The corner opposite the Private Dining area is designed to suit a place where queen would have seated her guests and have tea with them
6. The judge’s chairs: A fine collection of four judge’s chairs makes for aristocratic seating in the restaurant.
7. Go Shala: The management is reportedly planning to set-up a small Go Shala (cow shed) in the campus with a few local breed cows. This goes well with India

8. The vintage cars: The Morris Mini vintage car and the Willys Jeeps at the entrance instantly take you back 50 years to the era how the people then used to travel.


9 The royal artifacts; A set of accessories and artefacts from the royal family are on display at strategic places

11. The table top and other interesting artifacts : I find them interesting 
12. Books: Karan Singh says he likes the books to be in a slightly disorganized manner with some dust on them, much to the dislike of the housekeeping staff. So the books near the reception are often found in a slightly misplaced manner, not neatly stacked- that is how they will be if one uses them regularly to read. 
13. Silk Texture Samples: Bikaner falls on the silk route, where ancient traders used to cross during their inter-continental trade expeditions, carrying valuables from one part of the world to another and selling them for profit. In memory of this, the lobby of Narendra Bhawan has two sets of silk textures displayed at both corners.

14. Mahavir Swami Miniature art gallery- Coming up soon, an art gallery with custom made miniature art exhibits from renowned miniature artists in Bikaner, Mahavir Swami

15. The art work in the corridor:

Another post reviewing my stay in Narendra Bhawan will be written separately... Meanwhile do not miss to check the beautiful photos of the corridors playing with morning light at Narendra Bhawan

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