Umaid Bhawan Palace Wins the 2016 Top Spot Globally in Tripadvisor Travelers Choice Award

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Tripadvisor recently announced its Travelers Choice Awards for 2016 and Umaid Bhawan Palace, Jodhpur won the best hotel in the world award based on user reviews! Umaid Bhawan Palace is managed by Taj Hotels, Resorts and Palaces.

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HH Maharaja Gaj Singh ji with the Award

I attended the award ceremony and the invite came in a very curious way! They had to invite media/bloggers to the function without revealing the name of the hotel till the award was formally announced! The young PR lady asked me if I would like to visit a very exclusive property somewhere in India? My answer was yes but when asked for more she told me, “Ma’am I can’t tell you anything more at the moment.” I still said yes to the trip and I am glad I did.

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Princess Shivranjani, HH Maharaja Gaj Singh ji, Nikhil Ganju and Vincent Ramos at the Tripadvisor Travelers Choice Award Ceremony

The award ceremony took place at the sprawling lawns of the Umaid Bhawan Palace. H.H. Maharaja Gaj Singh ji along with his daughter Shivranjini accepted the award. Nikhil Ganju, country head, Tripadvisor India was there to present the award. Media from Rajasthan and other parts of India were invited to attend the ceremony. Yours truly was present as a travel blogger.

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Princess Shivranjani Rajye at the Tripadvisor Award Ceremony

Vincent Ramos, the general manager of the property, introduced me to the Maharaja. He said, “Bapji this is Mridula, she is a travel blogger.” I folded my hands, not sure if I was supposed to shake hands with a Maharaja or not. He offered his hand for a handshake! And then he asked, “So what is a travel blogger?” I tried my best to explain but I am sure he was not impressed!

During the question answer session I asked Nikhil about their methodology for calculating the awards. He said they were completely based on user reviews, there was no editorial element involved in it. They have an algorithm which calculated it. Then I asked if there was a huge difference in the scores, say between first and second place, to which he said no, the scores were quite close to each-other!

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An Occasion to Celebrate!

The award ceremony was followed by a sumptuous Rajasthani Dinner for the media. Vincent was our host for the evening. Champagne was the choice of the drink! I regulate my alcohol consumption quite closely and I stop by the third glass absolutely, but this party was an exception! I would be busy talking to Nikhil, Suhasini (from Taj), Angad (Forbes India) or Vincent and suddenly I would realize my 1/4 full glass was completely full again without me ever knowing it!

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There was excitement in the air, both Vincent and Nikhil were thrilled at the award! Vincent was narrating the phone calls he was getting from the global media and the kind of questions that came up. Someone wanted to know the number of the peacocks within the property whereas another person needed convincing that Jaipur and Jodhpur were two separate places!

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The Media Dinner for Tripadvisor Travelers Choice Award at the Umaid Bhawan Palace, Jodhpur

For me it was a blessed evening, to sit in the courtyard with the fabulous food, wine and company to enjoy the glorious view of the Umaid Bhawan Palace!

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24 thoughts on “Umaid Bhawan Palace Wins the 2016 Top Spot Globally in Tripadvisor Travelers Choice Award”

  1. You know I have seen one episode of Umaid Bhawan Palace, on TV, I think that was an Food Channel and you were there to taste the that food…wow superb 🙂

  2. I know about Maharaja . I have read a lot about him . you are in a great field Mridula ji . Here you can meet celebrities as well as can write about your journeys . Nice post and thnx for sharing lovely faces here.

    1. Thank you Charu. I was also supposed to be on a foreign FAM but for once I was happy that it didn’t work out! 😀

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Mridula Dwivedi

I started my India travel blog, Travel Tales from India in 2005. In 2016 I realized Travel Tales from India and Abroad better reflected my writings. I love to walk and ride in metros around the world. I have not been everywhere, I am not even close, but it is on my list. I also quit my job as a professor in 2015, it was a happening year! I did a Ph.D. from IIT Kanpur ages ago!

If you wish to collaborate with me, please check out my media kit. You can write to me at mridulablog@gmail.com

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