Laxmi Vilas Palace, Baroda

Laxmi Villas Palace is the Official residence of the Maharaja Of Baroda.The royal family still resides in this magnificent palace built in 1889.
It is reputed to have been the largest private dwelling built till date and four times the size of Buckingham Palace. At the time of construction it boasted the most modern amenities such as elevators and the interior is reminiscent of a large European country house. It remains the residence of the Royal Family, who continue to be held in high esteem by the residents of Baroda.

Laxmi Vilas Palace Baroda

Named after the wife of Maharaja Sayaji Rao III, Laxmi vilas Palace combines the architecture of 4 religions – Hinduism, Sikh, Christianity and Islam – as you can see on the front façade itself! The clock tower of the ‘church’ is visible from long and far across Baroda. The tower, though, built for a clock, didn’t end up having it as the architect thought that the tick-tock of the clock will be very irritating for the royal family living in the palace. It has a red light which is lit up when the royal family is in the residence letting the people of Baroda know that the king is in town!

Laxmi Vilas Palace Baroda

It is an extravagant building of the Indo-Saracenic school, was built by Maharaja Sayajirao Gaekwad III in 1890 at a cost of GBP180,000. Major Charles Mant was the architect.

Laxmi Vilas Palace Baroda

Paintings of Raja Ravi Varma, who was specially commissioned by the then Maharaja of Baroda. The collection includes portraits of the Royal family in addition to the paintings based on Hindu mythology for which Raja Ravi Varma was famous.

Laxmi Vilas Palace Baroda

Laxmi Vilas Palace Baroda

Beautiful Kiwads..Doors

Laxmi Vilas Palace Baroda

The Verandas

The grounds were landscaped by William Goldring, a specialist from Kew Gardens. Huge, sprawling garden which is also the Baroda Golf Course.

The Palace “compound” covers over 700 acres (2.8 km2) and houses a number of buildings, particularly the Moti Baug Palace and the Maharaja Fateh Singh Museum building. Packs of langoors & peacocks can also be spotted around the palace compound.

Laxmi Vilas Palace Baroda

Laxmi Vilas Palace Baroda

Very rich architecture and heritage.

Laxmi Vilas Palace Baroda

The ticket for the palace is a bit expensive at Rs. 150 per person but then you get a free audio guide and a postcard along with it! The audio guide is very helpful. I have tried both English and Marathi and I would recommend the Marathi as it’s more beautiful to hear about the palace in it. The guide is timed well, guiding you from one room to another with all the stories about the palace and the royal family

Laxmi Vilas Palace Baroda

Laxmi Vilas Palace Baroda

The Royal Mark

During the construction, modern amenities like elevators were added. One can see multi-coloured marbles, tiles, opulent designs and various art works in the interior of the palace.

During the construction, modern amenities like elevators were added. One can see multi-coloured marbles, tiles, opulent designs and various art works in the interior of the palace.

The interior of the palace was designed as per the European style.

Laxmi Vilas Palace Baroda

Darbar Hall

Its ornate Darbar Hall, which is sometimes the venue of music concerts and other cultural events, has a Venetian mosaic floor, Belgium stained glass windows and walls with intricate mosaic decorations

The most impressive Raj-era palace in Gujarat, its elaborate interiors boast well-maintained mosaics, chandeliers and artworks.

Laxmi Vilas Palace Baroda

The Darbar Hall (Assembly room) is the most beautiful of all in the palace. 98 ft long room with mosaic tiled floor; 7 ft long stained glass windows; statues of past rules and wall reliefs

Outside of the Darbar Hall is an Italinate courtyard of water fountains

Outside of the Darbar Hall is an Italinate courtyard of water fountains

Laxmi Vilas Palace Baroda

Not just the pillars and balconies; all the windows glasses are also beautifully etched with MSR’s signage and scenes from hindu mythology.

IMG_7077 IMG_7079 IMG_7081

Laxmi Vilas Palace Baroda

Every room of the palace is oozing in royalty and richness. Even the Hathi Room, the room from where the Maharaja alighted his elephant!

 

Laxmi Vilas Palace Baroda

Laxmi Vilas Palace Baroda

Laxmi Vilas Palace Baroda

Laxmi Vilas Palace Baroda

Laxmi Vilas Palace Baroda

Laxmi Vilas Palace Baroda

Laxmi Vilas Palace Baroda

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Laxmi Vilas Palace Baroda

 

 

 

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Laxmi Vilas Palace Baroda

Laxmi Vilas Palace, Baroda