When it comes to red maximalist hotels, Villa Palladio in Jaipur, India, takes the crown.
Formerly a haveli on the outskirts of the municipality, AD100 designer Marie-Anne Oudejans envisioned this jewel box of a boutique hotel as a sanctuary from Jaipur’s calamity. And away from the honking horns of Jaipur it is — the hotel is 30 minutes outside of the city, making it more of a countryside estate.
Oudejans recounts how the building was “in remarkable condition” when she bought it, and not many changes to its original blueprint had to take place.
The maximalist wonderland draws inspiration from the vitality of India’s storied Maharajas, all the while instilling a hyper-rococo fantasy with heady Italian fare. Yes, you read that correctly — Italy, a country thousands of miles away from India, was put at the forefront of the design ethos: The red interiors reflect the attire cardinals wear in Rome. We aren’t exaggerating when we say that just about every spot here is a shade of red (and if it isn’t red, it’s a scheme of white that complements the red).
After entering the main gate, you look to the right: It’s a one-story reception room plus onsite boutique. To the left, you see the hotel’s resplendent two-story façade. In front of it, a fountain serves as a centerpiece to expansive black- and white-checkered flooring. Four seating vignettes comprise punchy red furniture: two on one side and two on the other; they appear symmetrical. Red awnings jolt out at a 180-degree angle above open-air multifoil arches on both the ground and second levels; a downward-chevron, crimson-white pattern serves as the base for each one on the main floor.
You walk into the high-ceilinged lobby, and your jaw drops: Red and pink tones dress walls adorned with sinuous motifs and botanic patterns. Now, the flooring is red-, black-, and white-checkered. Local artisan-crafted furnishings offer comfort after a day of touring, inviting guests to sit back, relax, and order a drink from the bar. Villa Palladio’s Italian-style restaurant occupies the back of the lobby, opening up barrier-less to the hotel’s backyard garden via an open-air porch equipped with tables.
Ambling to the pool allows guests to walk among the plants: pink laurels, sweet hibiscus, and pomegranate are three crops of many that populate the hotel’s manicured garden. Walk a minute away from the main building and Villa Palladio’s orthogonal lido lined with crimson-white striped lounge chairs greets you; this pattern matches the motif of the resident pool house.
Regarding accommodations, with only nine guestrooms, Villa Palladio feels intimate. Unsurprisingly, rooms wear red and pink hues while imbuing purposeful mismatching patterns that differ in design in each room.
Other facilities at the hotel include Il Eremo: a meditation and yoga room peering out at the garden and equipped with cushions and mats to optimize guests’ practice. Those feeling studious can hit the library and admire its collection of global reads. And those who need a break can rejuvenate at the hotel’s spa.
Location: Jaipur, India (a 30-minute car ride from the main city)
Amenities: Pool, Wi-Fi, restaurant, spa, library
Food + Drink: The hotel has a restaurant serving Italian cuisine.
Our favorite thing about the hotel: It’s a red maximalist wonderland. We’ve never seen anything like it — truly, the shades of red and the different rococo patterns embedded within it are inimitable. It’s the perfect place for an Instagram, if you ask us.
Any neighborhood recs? The hotel is 30 minutes from Jaipur. It’s in the countryside so there’s not much around the hotel — when going to the town, make sure the hotel arranges to/from transportation for you as it can be difficult to get a cab on your own.
Pricing: Rates start around $430
Closest Airport: Jaipur International Airport
Other articles you may like: