This was my fourth trip to India; my first visit to Maheshwar. Ahilya Fort is the first Heritage Hotel I have booked. My wife and I booked a spacious, well-appointed standard room for two nights as a Christmas present to each other. The hotel is luxe in a very charming and understated way. The service is excellent without being intrusive or obsequious, the multi-course meals were some of the best I've had in India, made from family recipes with ingredients grown on the grounds. The location of the fort/palace/hotel on a bluff above the beautiful - and swimmable! - Narmada River is outstanding. The view from the patio at sunset brought tears to my wife's eyes when first viewed the evening of our arrival.
Meals, alcohol, tea included in the tariff. No tipping during the visit. You are encouraged to leave a tip for the entire staff on departure. Am eminently reasonable and congenial policy.
In summary a great place to chill, well worth the expense, and the travel to and from Indore. Not a lot to do in Maheshwar other than chill. Day trips can be arranged to a nearby temple town, which I'm told is terribly crowded, and to Mandu, though there is enough to see in Mandu to warrant spending the evening there. Given the hassle and adventure of travel in India, I found Ahilya Fort to be a welcome respite and would gladly have spent an extra day.
Prince Richard Holkar is a surviving member of the royal family who owns and operates the hotel. His taste is evident. He is also actively involved in the well-being of his former subjects as evidenced by the school he has established and the handloom factory which employs women from the town. The fabric is exquisite and garments can be tailored to your specs.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The majestic 250 years old Ahilya Fort sits on the edge of a cliff, high above the sacred Narmada River, surrounded by the beautiful and unexploited town of Maheshwar. The views over the river and ghats are exceptional. Replete with myths and legend, Ahilya Fort offers guests a rare chance to get off the tourist trail and an abundance of things to see and do. With the fabulous, deserted city of Mandu nearby and the famed island temple of Omkareshwar even closer, this is a place at which to spend time and relax but from which you can also explore the area, undisturbed by the other tourists – a stroll down through the town to the ghats is a must. The food is delicious and it’s all-inclusive so, once here, you pay for nothing – be it food, excursions or e-mail! The pool is lovely; terraces and shady areas abound; meals are taken in different areas of the fort; the charming rooms and tents have superb views, balconies & gardens; the weaving center here is famous nationwide. A boat trip at sundown is something you will never forget. Truly a memorable place where you could spend days or weeks!There are 10 bedrooms scattered around the premises and the rates include full board and all excursions. It is the most perfect base for visiting Mandu (1 hour away) and is just a 2-hour drive from Indore. It makes the perfect place to end or start a holiday, as there is so much to do. From here you may also visit Dhar, Baneshwar and Omkareshwar. Being a gourmet himself, your host Prince Richard Holkar has the highest standards and the food here is delicious. Staying here is like a time wrap as the village is still enclosed within the fort itself and is truly wonderful to explore in your own time. ... more less
- Also Known As:
- Ahilya Fort Hotel Maheshwar
- Ahilya Fort Madhya Pradesh