Maharaja Umed Singh II, ruling king of Kota in the early 1900s, who resided in the medieval fort within the city of Kota, decided that he wanted a modern palace for his personal use. He commissioned Sir Swinton Jacob, an officer of the Royal Engineers in the British Army to undertake the conception and implementation of this project and in 1905, the Umed Bhawan Palace, built in the prevalent Indo-Sarcenic style with pink sandstone, white khimach and imported Italian marble, was constructed. This Indo-Sarcenic, early 20th century palace has retained all the clean-cut solidity of the Victorian influence mingled with subtle Rajasthani trends as well as the trappings of royal comfort and aplomb. While the decorated ceilings and the marble corridors speak of its regal origins, the heirlooms and hunting trophies speak of the royal glories and lifestyles of the time. The Umed Bhawan Palace is today a regal heritage hotel and is located amidst sprawling gardens in Kota. The architecture of the Palace combines Rajput and Victorian designs in the Indo-Sarcenic style and the walls and ceilings are decorated with traditional Rajasthani paintings, hunting trophies and regal artifacts. The Umed Bhawan Palace has an Edwardian Drawing Room, Banquet Hall, Durbar Hall, Zenana and Clock Tower. The Heritage Palace Hotel offers 25 air-conditioned rooms and suites equipped with satellite channels, direct dial phone lines, cable television and attached bathrooms with running hot and cold water. The city of Kota, on the east bank of the Chambal river, is best known for its finely woven Kota Doria saris or alternatively for its miniature paintings where the subject matter was predominantly the hunts in the once thickly wooded forests of the area.
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