The Grand Terrace, Six Senses Fort Barwara

Six Senses Fort Barwara: Night in a Rajput Palace

Set within the 700-year-old walls, Six Senses Fort Barwara is a resort of extraordinary. It is not only a place to spend the night but a meticulous conversion project that took nearly 11 years to complete.

After an arduous drive battling endless traffic and bumpy road, I breathed a sigh of relief when our car pulled up at a massive stone wall that guards a cobbled, narrow path. Google Maps (plus some help from the locals) brought us to this hilltop fort which looks as though it has stood there for centuries.

Indeed, many parts of Six Senses Fort Barwara dates back to 700 years ago. The rampart, for example, is held together with the original lime plaster and jaggery molasses. As I wandered the premise, passing by corridors, domed pavilions, and lush gardens, I felt like I’d stumbled out of a time machine: back to the golden age of Maharaja and Maharani.

The gate to Fort Barwara
Welcome to Six Senses Fort Barwara

The Architecture

Dominating a hilltop in rural Rajasthan, Six Senses Fort Bawara is a meticulous conversion project that has taken place for over a decade. The resort is built around a historic core that occupies about 30 percent of the total area. This part originates from the 14th century and is owned by a Rajasthani royal family. It features two temples and two palaces that once belonged to regal men and women. All have been sensitively preserved and restored using traditional building techniques. Like Jaipur forts and palaces, Mughal-Rajput architectural elements are evident here. A few European touches are also noticeable, reflecting on the buildings’ facades.

To accommodate hotel guests, a new wing was added in the late 2010s. The construction was helmed by Nimish Patel and his wife Parul Zaveri, both famous for designing contemporary architecture with the use of traditional crafts. Consequently, a Rajput-style palace that incorporates 48 luxury suites, two pools, and lush gardens, was erected. All of which have views of either the countryside or Barwara village. Yet the most stunning vista is at the Grand Terrace. Through the lofty arches, I peered at the lake below. And behind it, on a majestic rocky outcrop of the Aravalli ranges stands the sacred white temple of Chauth ka Barawara Mandir.

The historic core of Six Senses Fort Barwara
A corner of the stone wall
The new wing and lush gardens

The Suite

After receiving blessings at the reception (which is thoughtfully converted from the male palace), I was guided to my suite by Ankita, my Guest Experience Maker (GEM). A Rajput descent herself, she keenly explained to me about the fort’s rich history and the ambitious project that is taking place at Six Senses Fort Barwara. As we passed the light-filled corridors, I couldn’t keep myself taking a peek at the emerald-colored pools framed by frangipani and native trees.

Minutes later, we arrived at my accommodation, the Aravalli Suite which is positioned by the centuries-old wall. True to its name, this spacious suite offers a spectacular view of the Aravalli ranges. It has an enclosed garden complete with a daybed and line of leafy plants – for a sense of serenity. Inside, the room is designed in a contemporary style, featuring floor-to-ceiling windows, neutral-toned furniture, and state-of-the-art amenities. Yet one can easily realize the past regal ambiance through the arch doorway, the beautiful frescoes, and the intricate lattice works.

Aravalli Suite

The Spa

Six Senses is knowns for its emphasis on wellness, so it’s no surprise that the spa and fitness wing gets the royal treatment. 2,800 square meters of the former Zenana Mahal (or Women’s Palace) was transformed into a sanctuary of well-being. It has a delightful courtyard, two historic temples, and several treatment rooms. Interestingly, the original features of the old palace are still intact, including the exquisite facade, the vestibule, and the Shekhawati-style frescoes.

There is a wide range of treatments from extensive ayurvedic therapies and meditation to yoga. After days of exploring Jaipur, I opted for a foot massage. Within one hour, Naomi and her team were able to relieve the soreness and tiredness in my feet. The treatment ended with the sound and vibration of the singing bowl, allowing my body to also experience the healing effect.

The spa of Six Senses Fort Barwara


Apart from restoring the fort, a lot of effort is put into preserving the lake and rewilding the hills. Together with horticulturists and landscape designers, the resort aims to remove invasive species, enabling native floral and fauna to thrive again. By doing so harmony between humans and nature can be maintained.

Six Senses Fort Barwara also supports the local community by cooperating with artisans and farmers living nearby. From crafts and fresh milk to organic vegetables, there are platforms to showcase these products which have been passed on for generations.

The next phase of the conversion project: rewilding the hills.


This post is written based on my personal experience. It was neither sponsored nor solicited by Six Senses Fort Barwara or any third party. All texts and pictures reflect my own opinions and are provided solely for informational purposes. I will not be liable for any errors or damages by using this information.


5 thoughts on “Six Senses Fort Barwara: Night in a Rajput Palace”

  1. Alison and Don – Occupation: being/living/experiencing/travelling In our sixties, with apparently no other authentic option, my husband Don and I sold our apartment and car, sold or gave away all our stuff and set off to discover the world. And ourselves. We started in Italy in 2011 and from there have travelled to Spain, India, Bali, Australia, New Zealand, SE Asia, South America, Egypt, Japan, etc. - you can see the blog archive. We travelled full-time for nearly six years, and then re-established a home in Vancouver. We now travel 2-3 months per year. We are interested in how the world works, how life works, how the creation of experience works, how the mind works. As we travel and both "choose" our course, and at the same time just let it unfold, we discover the "mechanics" of life, the astounding creativity of life, and a continual need to return to trust and presence. Opening the heart, and acceptance of what is, as it is, are keystones for us both. Interests: In no particular order: travel, photography, figure skating (as a fan), acceptance, authenticity, walking/hiking, joy, creativity, being human, adventure, presence, NOW. Same for Don except replace figure skating with Formula One motor racing.
    Alison and Don says:

    What an absolutely exquisite place. I would love to go there one day. Beautiful photos Len. They are lucky to have your review.

  2. Image Earth Travel – Global – Global travel writer/photographer capturing the globe with words and lens. Travelled to over 60 countries across 6 continents in 30-plus years of adventure!
    Image Earth Travel says:

    Lovely photos and great write-up!

  3. Having read so much from my work about this place, it is wonderful to see a firsthand review and pictures taken by an actual guest! And it takes real dedication to go on a big detour just to stay at the Six Senses. From your photos, we can all see that the palace fort’s transformation into a luxury hotel was a labor of love. Clearly no expense was paid on the interiors in the restored heritage buildings and the newly built wing.

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