Hotel Review: ITC Jaipur
Dates: 4/21/2017 to 4/24/2017
Property: ITC Rajputana Jaipur
Nightly Rate: 3,333 SPG Points
After a few weeks in Kerala we headed up north to Rajasthan. Our first stop was Jaipur, and we were planning on spending three nights at the ITC Rajputana. While not well known to westerners, ITC is a luxury hotel chain in India with many unique properties. Luckily, they are also an SPG marketing partner. We were able to redeem 3,333 points per night, which also included a breakfast buffet and free flowing happy hour drinks by the pool as a platinum guest.
Check-In: From the airport we hopped out of our Uber and were warmly welcomed by the doormen. After our bags passed through security screen, and we walked through a metal detector the lobby staff received us with flower garlands, a tika on our foreheads (a tika is wet and a bindi is dry) and a local juice. As we were ushered to the check in desk, we found we had been upgraded to Thikana Suite.
The Room: While the room had a view of the highway across the street, it was large and tastefully decorated with Rajasthani art like the rest of the property. The door entered into a smoking room, with an entryway to a large bedroom. There was attention to all the little details in the room, for example toiletries for men and women with different scents were provided. In addition, during turndown service, the team would leave water in a copper cup and activated almonds to have in the morning, as suggested in Ayurveda and practiced by the Maharajas.
The Property: The property is large for a city hotel, and looks inward onto a courtyard pool surrounded by cabanas and loungers. There is a spa and well-equipped gym which we made good use of. The gym attendant keeps the gym orderly and was always kept the place well stocked with cold water bottles and towels. There were two restaurants on-site called the “Pavilion” and “Peshawari”. Peshawari comes highly rated, but we found it overpriced and underwhelming.
The Service: We loved the happy hour by the pool which included most mid-range beer, wine and spirits along with non-alcoholic drinks. Mahindra, part of the bar staff made sure to take good care of us every night and even ordered us small snacks like paneer tikka masala. They had live Rajasthani music every night and it was the perfect way to wind down a day of sightseeing. The breakfast spread was extensive, and included Indian treats like masala dosas and parathas made to order, along with omlettes, waffles etc. The chef was happy to take special requests to order and put my favorite paneer parathas on the breakfast menu for the next day.
Tsunami Says: From the service, to the room, to the food we had an amazing stay a the ITC Rajputana in Jaipur. For 3,333 SPG points per night (~$90 value according The Points Guy), we found it one of the best values in the SPG network. Breakfast and happy hour were worth a visit to the hotel in and of themselves. The hotel is very well decorated in a classic Rajasthani manner and the attention to detail does not go un-noticed.