Sheesh Mahal

Punjab, the smiling soul of India has been aptly nicknamed the city of gardens and palaces. The imperial palaces of Punjab accentuate the beauty of the rambling farmlands and majestic temples. Sheesh Mahal is one such exquisite palace in Patiala that flaunts the flamboyant grandeur of the erstwhile maharajahs.

Built under the generous patronage of the former Maharaja of Patiala, Narendra Singh, an aficionado of beauty, in the year 1847, the sprawling three-storied Sheesh Mahal is a fine blend of the modern Occidental and the traditional Mughal architecture. Set in a picturesque backdrop amidst sprawling, landscaped gardens glowing with seasonal blooms that are modeled after the legendary Shalimar Bagh, the estate is a sight to behold. A pretty as a picture suspension bridge that resembles the Laxman Jhoola at Rishikesh completes the picture.

The palace boasts of elegant and lavishly decorated interiors. Ornate mirror works and pretty floral motifs adorn the vibrantly painted walls. Exquisite murals depict scenes from Indian mythology, religious teaches or even illustrate works from the celebrated Indian literature like the masterpieces of Surdas, Keshav Das and Bihari Lal.

Deft and dexterous craftsmen from Rajashthan and Hiamhal's Kangra Valley were responsible for the aesthetic ambience of the palace. The miniatures from Kangra that depict Jaidev's legendary Geet Govind forms the magnum opus of the palace's collection of antique artifacts ranging from royal apparel to jewelry to portraits.

The palace also houses a medal gallery that showcases nearly 3000 medals from all corners of the globe that date back to the 12th century.

Patiala is a modern city with a domestic airport, a railway station and several good roads. The city has several comfortable and reasonable priced hotels that are mainly frequented by myriad of tourists who flock to see the Sheesh Mahal, resplendent in its royal grandeur, in the pleasant North Indian winters.

Last Updated on : 28/06/2013