The Ahilya Fort Hotel, in the central Indian town of Maheshwar, sits high above the sacred river Narmada. Staying at the homely and beautifully restored Ahilya Fort in Maheshwar gives you wonderful access to an untouched corner of India as the guest of the erstwhile royal family of Indore. The majestic 400 year old Ahilya Fort sits on the edge of a cliff, high above the sacred Narmada River, surrounded by the beautiful and pristine town of Maheshwar. The views over the river and ghats are exceptional.
Replete with myth and legend, Ahilya Fort offers guests a rare chance to get off the tourist trail and experience a cultural integrity unmatched in India. Though there are plenty of fascinating places to visit within a day’s drive, with its ramparts reaching into the Narmada River, you may simply be content to stay put to watch all of Indian life unfold next to the holy waters below you; women bathe and beat laundry on the stone ghats, Hindu devotees chant and pray, children play and swim. With the fabulous, deserted city of Mandu nearby and the famed island temple of Omkareshwar even closer, this is a place to spend time and relax, but from which you can also explore the area, undisturbed by other tourists – an experience of 19th century India, alive and calm at the same time.
The Ahilya Fort Hotel introduces you to the unique experience of Maheshwar: its spiritual essence, its architecture, the life of the town and the river, its food, its handicrafts, the serenity of its people. On a hot day you can choose to loll under the shade of frangipani trees in the company of the family’s pug dogs or ramble about the fort – it’s huge, but the 4000 year old town of Maheshwar is also well worth exploring. However many days you spend here it will be a memorable time and you’re sure to want to return (not least of all to try and discover the secrets of your hosts delicious recipes).
About Swimming Pool
The pool is lovely; terraces and shady areas abound; meals are taken in different areas of the fort; the charming rooms and the tent have superb views, balconies & gardens; the hand-loom weaving center here is famous nationwide.
The al fresco meals are fabulous; many of the vegetables are freshly picked from the fort’s garden, and the owner, Prince Richard Holker, who lives in a private wing, is a real foodie. He oversees everything culinary from the preparation of home-made jams to a scrummy biriyani. A boat trip with tea at sundown is something you will never forget. Truly a memorable place where you could spend days or weeks!
There are 13 rooms with attached baths and 1 Luxury Arjun Royal tent scattered around the premises and the rates are all-inclusive, and all means ALL: never a chit to sign be it for a boat ride, a meal, or a wide variety of refreshments. The Arjun Royal tent is enclosed in a private garden with its own heated plunge pool and the best view of the river! A swimming pool and well-stocked library dotted about between courtyards where trees and flowers force their way through the stone. There are no phones or televisions in the rooms, no money changing facilities, and not even a restaurant; it’s more like staying with a friend in an old country mansion than a hotel.
Ahilya Fort is ideal for the relaxed guest who wishes to enjoy Maheshwar’s unique serenity. Boat trips on the river are unique – powered by silent paddles; bird watching, more than 50 resident species; swimming in the un-polluted Narmada, a blessing in itself. The ghats are India’s finest, and least visited.
Traditional Maheshwari Malish (Local Massage)
The best way to decompress, detoxify and let go of all stresses and tensions you may be carrying. Local Maheshwari masseurs and masseuses are brought in to help you unwind and relax in our tranquil massage room.
Our masseurs and masseuses come from a line of traditional specialists of the art; they did not attend a massage school! Because Maheshwar is a town with conservative traditions, masseurs will massage gentlemen and ladies will receive treatment from masseuses. However couples massages are possible.
CHARGES PER MALISH PER PERSON – Rs. 1,200/-
Please book your malish at least 5 hours in advance. These malishes may not be available on shorter notice, as masseurs are called in from the town to work.