We had been contemplating Jaisalmer during the new year time for several years now. Each time we could not get the booking. For 2012 new year eve, I began early and booked Hotel Victoria in end August 2011. Pankaj (the owner) was in touch throughout, calling every month and in December every week or so, confirming the plan.
Finally we were there on the 30th after an 12 hours long drive. On arrival, after the mandatory “Keseriya – Padharo Mare Desh” ( Welcome song) we were shown the rooms. The room on the ground floor was a disappointment due to the size but the other room (no 7 I think) made up for the other room. After settling in we went to the rooftop for a sumptuous dinner. The décor was great and after a grueling drive it was relaxing to just sit on the roof looking at the magnificent fort.
Next day was Sam sand dunes and desert national park , where we saw Desert buzzards, black buck and a variety of other birds. Pankaj had arranged a complementary dinner at another restaurant which was a very pleasant surprise. Even though he does not pay for Non veg and alcoholic drinks (and I respect him for that), it was the gesture that mattered. Later we just sat on the rooftop and welcomed 2012. It was a very unique experience just sitting on the rooftop and looking at the fort and ushering in 2012 listening to music from an assortment of cellphones and ipads.
Day 3, was supposed to be desert safari towards khuri. The sand dunes was a great disappointment as there were camel dung everywhere and the dunes were full of green plants. We stayed in swiss tent and were the only inhabitant at the Mama’s resort. The Rajathani folk dance and song team had more than 10 members playing for five of us. We enjoyed the stay but it was certainly not the worth what we had paid.
On return to Hotel Victoria, I shared my disappointment with Pankaj, (he had arranged Mama;s resort also as part of the package) who immediately gave us a fitting discount. I was glad & impressed by the distance he is willing to travel, to ensure that the guests depart with a great feeling.
Since we still wanted to see some REAL sand dunes, we drove towards the border and after about a 100 km past Ramgarh towards Tanot saw some mind blowing sand dunes for miles around. The best part is it takes a little over an hour to drive 100 kms on those roads.
Good work Pankaj Purohit. Keep this attitude. We will definitely return. and yes, your mother cooks delicious food!!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Hotel Victoria is located inside the fort and this old haveli. It used to be my house before and I started the hotel 18years ago. We provide Rajasthani hospitality and rooftop has sunset and city view. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Victoria Hotel Jaisalmer
- Hotel Victoria Jaisalmer, Rajasthan