Laxmi Vilas Palace
Located in Gujarat, India, Laxmi Vilas Palace is the largest private dwelling, which is 4 times the size of Buckingham palace. Built in 1890, by Maharaja Sayaji rao the third, its named after his wife, Laxmi Bai. With 170 rooms, it took twelve years and 180 thousand Pounds to build it, making it the costliest palace of its times.
A good blend, of both local and foreign materials and workmanship, was used in the construction of the palace. Red sandstone from Agra, blue trapstone from Poona and marbles of Rajasthan and Italy.
The palace front & main porch is grand with several sculptures built in Bronze, Marble & terracotta made by famous Italian artist Fellici. The Carvings on the wall are fine, beautiful & a sight to behold. The palace compound occupies a spacious 700 acres and also houses Moti Baug palace and Maharaja Fateh singh museum.
The Palace has 3 sections – Ladies quarter in right, main wing for Maharaja in center and Public Area in Left side. The public area is open for visits and an audio guided tour is also available for tourists.
It’s surprising to see that even in those times the palace was built with all the modern amenities like elevators, western plumbing, electric bells, internal telephone systems.
Today the palace stands not only as the symbol of royalty and grandeur, but also as the amazing blend of heritage and futuristic thinking.