Image of Taj Lake Palace showing white marble building behind a colourful garden

A country known for its opulence, elegance and impeccable service, when you travel to India you’ll be transported back to a bygone era. Hand in hand with this go its incredible hotels. From private beaches to architectural marvels, take a look at five luxury retreats in India that will make you never want to leave.

For travel inspiration: India destination guide

InterContinental Chennai Mahabalipuram Resort

InterContinental Chennai Mahabalipuram Resort courtyard lit up with lamps at night, with the sea in the background


On the serene shores of the Bay of Bengal, the InterContinental Chennai Mahabalipuram Resort just oozes luxury and tranquility. In this exquisite coastal retreat, every element has been meticulously crafted to create an extraordinary escape.

The resort’s location is nothing short of enchanting, embraced by the picturesque beauty of Mahabalipuram, a UNESCO World Heritage site renowned for its ancient temples and rock-cut sculptures. Panoramic views of the Coromandel Coast, landscaped gardens and a private beach provide an idyllic sanctuary away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

As you sip an evening cocktail with the central courtyard lotus pond all lit up with lamps, you’ll never want to go anywhere else.

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The Leela Palace hotel, New Delhi

Infinity pool at The Leela Palace hotel New Delhi glistening in the sun with ornate golden buildings in the background


From the moment you enter the lobby of the Leela Palace, adorned with intricate Rajasthani artwork and sparkling crystal chandeliers, you’re enveloped in a world of regal charm. Located in the heart of India’s bustling capital city, Delhi, every inch of the Leela Palace hotel is a masterpiece.

As a symbol of its commitment to celebrate India’s finest artists, the hotel even has an exclusive ‘art walk’ that allows you to discover its rare and diverse collection of contemporary Indian art.

Thekri, a Mewari art form that uses intricately chiselled mirrors on plaster, is the main theme of the palace interiors. Contemporary décor blends seamlessly with traditional architecture. Outside, you’re treated to lush gardens, and panoramic lake and mountain views. The hotel, one of the finest luxury retreats in India, also overlooks the iconic Rashtrapati Bhavan, the official residence of the President of India.

For the ultimate taste of India, the hotel’s Jamavar signature fine dining restaurant offers a spectacular menu. Specialty Indian cuisine delivers ‘royal dishes’ including Dhaniya Murgh, boneless drums of chicken cooked with pounded coriander, and Gosht ki Nihari, an Awadhi lamb delicacy lightly flavored with saffron.

Stay here on: Essence of India

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Taj Lake Palace, Udaipur

white marble terrace of the Taj Lake Palace hotel, Udaipur one of the finest luxury retreats in India, set on the shimmering lake


Imagine resting you head in a majestic palace in the middle of a lake. With breathtaking views of the surrounding hillsides and palaces, you’ll feel like royalty at the famous Taj Lake Palace hotel. This 18th century white marble marvel situated in the enchanting city of Udaipur, is undeniably one of the best luxury retreats in India.

Originally built as a summer retreat for the royal dynasty of Mewar, the Taj Lake Palace is a testament to the grandeur of Rajput architecture. Intricate marble carvings, ornate balconies and majestic domes are reminiscent of a bygone era, transporting you to a time of royal splendor.

Enjoy a candlelit dinner on the rooftop terrace, overlooking the shimmering lake, or indulge in a traditional Rajasthani thali in the elegant dining room. The fine dining restaurants at the Taj Lake Palace are exclusive to guests, adding to the allure of this spectacular hotel. From the grand welcome with a rose petal shower to the city tour in a vintage car, they have everything in place for an ethereal experience.

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Hyatt Regency Jaipur Mansarovar

intricately carved columns flank marble walkways at the Hyatt Regency Jaipur Mansarovar hotel


Jaipur’s flamboyance is celebrated in full at the architectural marvel that is the Hyatt Regency Jaipur Mansarovar. Located near to city center and historic sites, the hotel represents a breathtaking marriage of classic architecture and contemporary décor.

Upon entering the hotel, guests are greeted by a grand lobby with soaring ceilings and chandeliers, intricate marble flooring and opulent finishes. The exterior is also a visual feast, its sleek façade exuding a sense of elegance, while subtle nods to local architecture, such as intricate jali work and ornate balconies, pay homage to the rich cultural heritage of Jaipur.

Each guest room and suite seamlessly blends contemporary design with Rajasthani motifs, featuring vibrant colors, locally sourced artwork and rich fabrics.

Situated in the heart of the Mansarovar neighborhood, the hotel enjoys a prime location offering both convenience and tranquility. One of the finest luxury hotels in India, it is the perfect base from which to visit the Amer Fort, the bustling Jaipur markets and to immerse yourself in the rich cultural heritage of the Pink City.

Despite being a city center hotel close to all the sights, the open courtyards and landscaped gardens serve as tranquil retreats. The interplay of water features, lush greenery and sculptural elements creates a serene ambiance for guests to unwind and connect with nature.

Stay here on: Imperial Rajasthan

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Andana in the Himalayas

Image of chairs and table on a terrace, overlooking mountain and sea views in the evening light


As you approach The Andana, a sense of awe washes over you, and time seems to slow down. One of the most famous luxury retreats in India, the elegant, traditional Himalayan design blends harmoniously with the breathtaking landscape, creating an enchanting ambiance. With only a handful of exquisitely appointed villas, privacy reigns supreme, allowing guests to immerse themselves in the tranquility and seclusion of this idyllic haven.

Set amidst the majestic Himalayan foothills of North India in the former palace estate of the Maharaja of Tehri-Garhwal, Ananda is one of the best luxury wellness retreats in India and is world renowned. Sprawling 100-acre grounds, gardens and surrounding forests, and boasting world-class wellness facilities, it is the ultimate chance to return to the peaceful solitude of nature.

This spiritual location, is the birthplace of Ayurveda, yoga and meditation, the perfect reason to engage in yoga sessions, and rejuvenate mind, body, and soul amidst awe-inspiring surroundings. Or simply surrender to the healing touch of the spa, where ancient wellness traditions are seamlessly blended with modern techniques.

To experience some of the best luxury retreats in India for yourself take a look at our limited-edition luxury small group journeys and make memories for a lifetime.