The centuries-old city of Jaipur, known as the Pink City of India, delights groups with the living palaces and forts that make up this exotic location. Since colorful festivals are commonplace through the year, meeting planners can tap such Jaipur festivals as the Camel Festival in January and the Elephant Festival in March to give groups a royal, cultural welcome, or provide an extraordinary choice for group activities or spouse programs. Groups can then decamp to the many Jaipur event venues that will continue to amaze them.
Driving into Jaipur through a narrow pass in the hills, it is the honey-colored Amber fort-palace perched above, circled by protective hills, that first catches the eye. For groups that want to arrive sooner, the Jaipur International Airport is served by Air Arabia, Air India, GoAir, IndiGo, Jet Airways, Kingfisher Airlines, Oman Air and SpiceJet.
From luxury resorts such as the Oberoi Rajvilas, a venue for smaller, high-level corporate retreats and incentives; to centrally located historic properties such as Naila Bagh Palace, Jaipur is becoming a destination for both small meetings and large international conferences. Among 5 Star hotels in Jaipur, the newly opened Jaipur Marriott has 11 meeting rooms, with the largest having 8,396 square feet, with a seating capacity for 1,500. The current number of hotel venues in Jaipur accounts for approximately 3,000 hotel rooms, but that is growing: Fairmont Hotels & Resorts has recently opened the Fairmont Jaipur with 255 rooms, nine villas and a presidential suite. The hotel offers 60,000 square feet of meeting and convention space, the largest meeting and convention space in North India.
The largest of convention venues in Jaipur is the B.M. Birla Auditorium and Convention Center, which has an indoor exhibition space indoor of 3,600 square meters, outdoor, 4,200 square meters; there is also seating for 1,350, along with conference rooms for 40 to 400 persons. In addition, the SMS Convention Center is close to the SMS Hotel of the Taj Group, and can accommodate 1,000 delegates.
Heritage hotels and forts that have become cultural venues in Jaipur give groups a true royal experience. Tours can include heritage sites such as the 18th-century Hawa Mahal palace (or Palace of the Winds) and the City Palace—also an event location—with its heavy crested gates and over 1,500 lavender, pink and white rooms with carpets of rose-gold. Jaipur's piece de resistance is Jantar Mantar, a tremendous futuristic-looking stone observatory.
For a small meeting, Jaipur's Amber Fort recreates the splendor of the maharaja's court. The plates are real silver and groups are surrounded by antiques. Diwaan E Khaas, a private courtyard with seating for up to 16 individuals, may serve as a meeting or dining place with a royal ambience.