Made with the red and pink sandstone, the palace sits on the edge of the City Palace, Jaipur, and extends to the Zenana, or women’s chambers. The structure was built in 1799 by Maharaja Sawai Pratap Singh, the grandson of Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh, who was the founder of Jaipur.

It was designed by Lal Chand Ustad. Its unique five floors exterior is akin to the honeycomb of a beehive with its 953 small windows called Jharokhas decorated with intricate latticework. Many people see the Hawa Mahal from the street view and think it is the front of the palace, but in reality it is the back of that structure.

Detailed view of façade from the main road / Image source

The top three storeys are a single room thick, namely Vichitra Mandir, Prakash Mandir and Hawa Mandir. The Maharaja worshipped the Krishna at the Vichitra Mandir, while the Prakash Mandir provides an open terrace to both sides. Worth noting is that there are no steps to the upper floors but ramps.

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