I’m not going to lie— I loved this hotel, but theres a good chance a lot of people could have hated this place. It was a bit more rustic than the other hotels we stayed in— ‘charming’ if you will. But really, besides the early morning and evening swarming of mosquitos, I call this place absolutely perfect. Okay, I mean, the showers weren’t perfect either– you either froze or burned, but they were fine, once you got the hang of it— but really, who needs showers anyway? 😉
So, you can guess by the title of the post, this hotel was our stay in Nawalgarh, one of my favorite places, if not my favorite place, in the whole two week trip. Lisa and I shared the pink room— a huge bed for us to share, a pink fabrics everywhere— yet, of course, I failed to take a photo of our room. The was never silence– between the music, the birds, and whatever else— there was a constant buzz— but this was the norm throughout india really, not just at this hotel. It was just interesting, because this place seemed so much more secluded than anywhere else we ventured, but still you would hear drifting sound of music throughout the night. I loved it.
The food was awesome. I was a bit worried to see “food at hotel” on the itinerary– I mean, hotel food can be so…. blegh sometimes, but no, this was more like a prepared meal specifically for our group— mostly vegan, some veg, and maybe (I don’t remember) one meat item? Maybe not though. The night we arrived there was one other large group at the hotel with us– an older group from Belgium, but they left the next morning, and besides our group of women, there were only a few other people staying, this one “leave me alone” type artsy writer dude— from who knows where, because he never spoke, an adorable Indian family with their small daughter, and a group of three older Indian women, who seemed pretty badass if you ask me. It was like our own personal place— where we could spend quiet time, get to know each other, wander, sneak in back to find camels (I did) and more. I wandered aimlessly through and around this hotel often— I loved just drifting away.
One of the afternoons was spent in the front lounge, having mend (henna) applied to us. We spent many hours together here. In the day time eating lunch of finding quiet time, and in the evening in front of the fire pit they would build us— drinking cocktails or tonics– or cocktails made with tonic 😉
Sometimes your hair decides to dread itself— but you find yourself lucky enough to have two very important women in your life, fix your mess. Thanks ladies, I owe you a hairdo— a two hour long hairdo.
I’m staring at the food wanting to cry now— I want it so bad. As soon as my stomach heals, I’m eating all the spicy food that I can find. I ate SO much fried bread. It was AMAZING. Another thing I really enjoyed were the little meatball looking things on the right. Raha and I double and tripled checked what they were– we were a bit concerned by the appearance and texture, but were very excited and a bit in awe to learn they were chickpea based ‘meat’balls– in a tomato gravy. SO fun.
We stayed up late into the evening. The staff of the hotel could not have been more amazing— it’s safe to say that it’s one of the things most of us will miss most about India. I’d visit back just to reunite with the staff again. They heard that many of the ladies loved music and dancing so every night, after they could light the fire pits and set up the bar, they would come out with instruments to play for us– and dance with us. Words and photos will never describe how magical these moments were— chilly air, a sky full of stars, gin and tonics, drums, bells, and yes, one of the men, dressed as a woman, teaching us to dance– but this was only after he came out in a horse costume. It was A-M-A-Z-I-N-G.
And bright and early, every morning, we had tea and pre-yoga snacks waiting in the lobby and breakfast waiting for us in the dining room.
Initially we had planned our yoga sessions to be in the outside garden area, but the surprising chilly mornings brought us here—- aka my dream tent.
Us, done with laughing yoga— packing up, but still laughing. I need more of this.
I love you Roop Niwas, thank you for the kindness, the food, the music, and all the magic. I’ll be back again one day soon.