In March, I joined A-list decorator Grant Gibson and an intrepid group of lady-creatives for a whirlwind trip through Jaipur and Dehli, India.
The far-flung country delivered inspiration beyond any expectation I could have imagined - the colors and the chaos, the joy of the people, combined with the intensity of life and the mind-boggling rhythm of the city were intoxicating.
India's like a wave, and it's best to check your anxieties at the gate and just ride it, rather than swim against what seems so unknown. I promise you make it back to shore - I did, and I am so excited to share with you the treasures I brought back!
India is a haul from North Carolina, so it's best to split the trip up if you can. London or Paris make practical stops for a couple of days - you can adjust to the time change, and break up the long flights. Once you get to Dehli, Jaipur is just a quick jump on an Air India commuter flight.
47 Jobner Bagh is an intimate guesthouse right off the main thoroughfare in Jaipur's old city. Tucked away from the hustle bustle of the Pink City, stylists, designers, and creatives snap reservations up a year in advance. The guesthouse was once part of the Maharaja of Jobner’s Haveli gardens. A insta-worthy rooftop terrace offers views of the Aravalli Hills and Nahargarh Fort. A lovely family runs the hotel, and are the consumate hosts, overseeing the comfort of every guest. There's a fabulous curated boutique at the hotel filled with antiques, scarfs, jewelry, and vintage pieces. John, the chef, runs the kitchen and makes a mean omelette served always with an infectious smile.
Caffé Palladio - fanciful chinoiserie murals of palm trees and
strutting fowl frame views of 18th-century topiary gardens. You'll instantly recognized the insta-famous palette of peppy pinks, pale corals, soft blues,
and spicy yellows.
Laxmi Misthan Bhandar - a Jaipur institution in the heart of the bustling Johari Bazaar, serving Authentic Rajasthani vegetarian fare. Great shopping at the local market stands surrounding the restuarant.
Bar Palladio - a very chic spot for sunset cocktails, where you may get lucky and catch a wedding party parading by or a show-off peacock strutting his stuff.
Hot Pink - a great boutique with a very chic POV. I picked up an amazing long dinner jacket lined in orange silk.
The Gem Palace is a jewelry paradise -- a treasure trove filled with gold, precious stones, and antique jewelry.
The wedding market on the weekends! Families are shopping together for the bride's sari, and you'll see mom, dad, grandma and grandpa all sifting through piles of neon pinks and rolls of golden ribbon.
Parampara - this is Virginia Borrero de Castro's boutique and it's full of bespoke of-the-moment long breezy dresses sewn on site from cotton ikat and blockprints. Very Mark Sikes meets Madeline Weinrib
MAKE SURE YOU SEE
The city by rickshaw!
Panna Meen Ka Kund, a local stepwell and architectural delight
Rescue elephants at the EleJaipur Preservation Camp
Hawa Mahal, the Wind Palace, and most famously photographed landmark in the city
Chhavi Nivas (blue and white) room at the City Palace
The colorful and chaotic flower and milk markets, with shopping galore!
a flowy skirt with a button-up blouse, comfy sneaks, a belt bag worn as a crossbody, sunglasses and a wide brimmed hat were my everyday essentials. At night you can switch to sandals and add a shawl or sweater because it gets chilly!