Nizam’s palace turned Taj Hotel opens

Hyderabad, Nov 4 (IANS) Falaknuma Palace, one of the historical landmarks of Hyderabad and which was once owned by the erstwhile nizams, has been thrown open as luxury hotel.

After 10 years of extensive and sensitive restoration, the Taj Group of Hotels has opened the palace once owned by rulers of erstwhile Hyderabad State and located in the old city, about five km from the historic Charminar.

Built by Nawab Vikar-ul-Umra, the then prime minister of Hyderabad in 1893, it is the single most stunning example of the opulence of Hyderabad’s royalty.

Ranjit Philipose, General Manager, Taj Falaknuma Palace, told reporters Thursday after a walk through the palace that with 60 exquisite rooms and 15 suites, it offers guests a glimpse of the imperial lifestyle of the nizams.

Falaknuma or mirror of the sky in Urdu, was the residence of sixth nizam Mehboob Ali Khan.

King Edward VIII and the last Russian Tsar, Nicholas II, were among the guests who stayed here.

The tariff ranges from Rs.33,000 to Rs.500,000 for a night’s stay. The suites include the Nizam’s suite.

The seven-star hotel opened bookings from Oct 31 and it received a couple of guests during the last four days.

However, the formal inauguration will take place on Nov 13. The hotel officials said it will be a private party.

Mir Barkat Ali Khan Mukarram Jah Bahadur, the scion of the nizam family, his former wife princes Essra and Tata Group Chairman Ratan Tata will be among the guests.

A rare blend of Italian and Tudor architecture made entirely of Italian marble, the palace is famous for its opulent interiors.

The palace also has a dining table claimed to be the world’s largest that can seat 101 guests at a time.

The hotel offers nizam’s cuisine along with Italian and Mediterranean fare.

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