Pippa Small’s guide to the gems of Jaipur

The jeweller’s personal highlights in the city, from hotels with a wild side to the best Indian contemporary clothing stores

Jeweller Pippa Small at her home in London
Jeweller Pippa Small at her home in London | Image: Brijesh Patel

I adore this jewellery mecca, where I’ve spent so much time over the years. It feels like an old-school Silk Route city, with colourful and creative Indian and international designers continually passing through.

The Narain Niwas Palace hotel’s relaxing garden in Jaipur
The Narain Niwas Palace hotel’s relaxing garden in Jaipur

The Narain Niwas Palace hotel is one of my favourite places to stay. A highlight is its magical garden, which teems with peacocks and monkeys. Kanota Bagh, Narayan Singh Road, Rambagh (+91141-256 3448; hotelnarainniwas.com).

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For inspiration, I love the alleys full of gem dealers, markets of stonecutters and generations of goldsmiths, and Rajasthan Fabrics and Arts, owned by Subhash Sharma, is bursting with beautiful old textiles. Rajasthan Fabrics and Arts, +91141-260 1432.

Hot Pink offers colourful contemporary fashion by Indian designers
Hot Pink offers colourful contemporary fashion by Indian designers

I’ll head to Hot Pink for contemporary fashion by Indian designers, and to the Khadi shops for hand-woven shawls – I collect them, and am never without one – and for traditional wool shirts and Nehru jackets. Fab India is a great place for children’s clothes. Hot Pink, Narain Niwas Palace hotel , Narayan Singh Road, Rambagh (+91141-510 8932; hotpinkindia.com). Fab India, B4E, C-Scheme, Prithviraj Road, Central Park Gate 4 (+91141-401 5279; fabindia.com).

The Verandah Café at the Rambagh Palace hotel, which was once the Maharaja of Jaipur’s residence
The Verandah Café at the Rambagh Palace hotel, which was once the Maharaja of Jaipur’s residence

The Rambagh Palace hotel, which was once the Maharaja of Jaipur’s residence, does a lovely Sunday lunch in the garden. Bhawani Singh Road (+91141-238 5700; tajhotels.com).

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The Indian Coffee House on M1 Road, where the locals go, is my favourite spot to stop for iced coffee. Mirza Ismail Road, Jayanti Market.

I’ll also make sure to go to the Kerala Ayurveda centre for an amazing massage. F-34 Azad Marg-Jamnalal Bajaj Marg, Azad Marg, near the Raj Mahal Palace (+91141-510 6743; keralaayurvedakendra.com).

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