Close to the entrance of the 40,000ha Ranthambore National Park, known for its tiger sightings, the Oberoi-run 25-tent Vanyavilas is a faux-adventurer's fantasy. Guests stay in plush canvas pavilions with tented and pointed tops; there are four-poster beds, clawfoot bathtubs, waterhens in the gardens and squirrels sliding on the sloped roofs. The canopied ceilings are printed in silver and gold with a pattern of elegant little tigers that could have been designed by Cartier. There is a swimming pool surrounded by orchards, day spa (a three-hour Safari Sanctuary of steam, thermal exfoliation, mud wrap, massage and bathing ritual, perchance), restaurant serving superlative northern Indian cuisine, and regular game-viewing drives to the park. Bedtime reading? The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling, naturally. At Vanyavilas, you are not within a whisker of roughing it.
This copy originally appeared as 'The fab four: luxury tented hideouts' on
www.theaustralian.com.au and is re-published here under license. Susan Kurosawa is a writer at The Australian and is not affiliated with Qantas.