Mansingh Palace Hotel in Agra, India

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by Santorini Dave • Updated: October 8, 2019

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Review of Hotel Mansingh Palace in Agra, India.

Mansingh Palace – Small and unfussy, with some old-fashioned charm and traditional décor.

The hotel’s design and layout are far classier than its neighboring rivals, as is evidenced by the turbaned doorman and Mughal-inspired gardens. It is set back a little from the main road, thus sheltering the rooms from the relentless traffic noise. Rooms are functional – better than a motel, with wood-paneling and Indian prints – but not as luxurious as a multi-star resort. However, rates are considerably less, too. Added attractions are the sizeable pool and stylish restaurants/bars on-site. The general area is either vibrant or chaotic, depending on your feelings about typical Indian city life. There are several Western-style eateries very close by, and it’s only a short ride by auto-rickshaw from the Taj Mahal.

Mansingh Palace – The Location

  • Address: Along Fatehabad Road, a main thoroughfare through downtown. The hotel is about 50m back from the road.
  • Area: Really fascinating or absolutely frenetic, depending on your point of view. With a plethora of hotels in the vicinity, there are abundant shops, cafés, and money-changers, but facilities are mostly for Indian tourists. And the anarchic traffic makes crossing the road potentially dangerous.
  • How to Get There: About 1.7km from the Taj Mahal (8-minute drive); 5km from the Agra Cantonment Railway Station, which has most services to/from Delhi and Jaipur (10-minute drive); and 11km from the new airport (27-minute drive). All are accessible by taxi or auto-rickshaw.

Mansingh Palace – The Basics

  • Guests: Interesting combination of Indian tourists, foreign visitors on packaged trips, and Indian business people.
  • Views: Rooms at the front offer the most interesting – but potentially noisy – views of the road, which is 50m away. Those to the back face a neighboring building but are far quieter. The name of the ‘Taj View Rooms’ is misleading. The Taj Mahal is an obstructed 1.3km+ away.
  • Private Pools/Jacuzzis: Not expected or provided at this sort of mid-range hotel in Agra.

  • Extras: Newspaper delivered daily to each room.
  • Wi-Fi: Should be included free for all guests, but double-check when booking because they may want to charge in the standard rooms.
  • How to Book: Booking.com will have the best rates.
  • Phone: +91 (0)562 233 1771
  • Email: [email protected]
  • Website: mansinghhotels.com

Mansingh Palace – Amenities

  • Pool: Reasonable size, offering some shade and lounge chairs in a quiet area at the back of the hotel.
  • Spa: Undersized, offering little more than massages.
  • Fitness Center: Also rather small and underwhelming.
  • Other Facilities: Money-changer.

Mansingh Palace – Food and Drink

  • Restaurants & Bars: Sheesh Mahal Restaurant – Surprisingly grand, overlooking the gardens and pool. Mostly Indian cuisine and live music nightly. • Ripples – Near the reception. All-day snacks and sumptuous buffets for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. • The Tequila Bar – Quite sophisticated, offering a range of wines and spirits from across the globe.
  • Breakfast: Inclusion of breakfast depends on the type of room and how it was booked. If not, ask about a special ‘guest discount’ in the morning.
  • Room Service: Available during restaurant hours of about 7 am to 9 pm.

Mansingh Palace – Rooms

  • Room Types: Standard Rooms • Deluxe Rooms • Taj View Rooms
  • Smoking Rooms: Smoking is allowed in some rooms; check when booking.
  • Best Room: The Taj View Rooms are the most spacious and feature more contemporary décor, but do not be fooled about claims (and photos) on the hotel website about ‘enthralling Taj views’.
  • For Families: Most Deluxe Rooms and Taj View Rooms have 2 double beds, easily accommodating 3-member families. Ask about squeezing in an extra single bed for a group of 4.

Mansingh Palace – Local Transport

  • Walking: Streets around the hotel are not that pleasant for walking: noisy, crowded, and potholed, so take an auto-rickshaw whenever possible. But plenty of cafés, bars, shops, and other facilities nearby.
  • Public Transport: Nothing of any use to tourists.
  • Taxis & Auto-rickshaws: Taxis (unmetered) are hard to find because they’re rarely needed in this area. If required, arrange through the hotel reception, or book an Ola cab. A few cycle-rickshaws and automated versions can be found along the road outside.

Mansingh Palace – What’s Nearby?

Restaurants & Bars

  • Café Coffee Day – Bright, cheery, and opens early for coffee and light meals all day. Turn right at the hotel gates. 1-minute walk (75m).
  • The Signature Restaurant +91 99170 33955 – Renowned across Agra for its exquisite Indian food and flamboyant setting. Just past Café Coffee Day. 2-minute walk (130m).
  • Hotel Amar Yatri Niwas – Great-value thalis (platters with several dishes). Virtually alongside the hotel gates. 2-minute walk (130m).
  • Costa Coffee +91 (0)562 403 3309 – Outlet of the international chain for light meals and world-class coffee. Turn left at the hotel gates. 2-minute walk (140m).
  • Pizza Hut – Familiar and reassuring to some. Usual menu, and sells beer. Just past Costa Coffee. 2-minute walk (180m).
  • Howard Plaza – The Fern – This hotel offers 2 excellent options: Rendezvous (tasty meals and bar with pleasing prices) and Glassy (elegant café on the rooftop). Turn right at the hotel gates. Opposite the tiny park. 3-minute walk (260m).

Shops

  • A more vibrant area of Agra with plenty of facilities for tourists, i.e. Indians, but foreigners are always welcome. Oversupply of shops all over selling carpets and handicrafts.

Attractions

  • The Taj Mahal is certainly Agra’s, and possibly India’s, number one attraction. The ticket office at the West Gate is only 1.7km away. Head north past the Howard Plaza hotel or take an auto-rickshaw (8-minute drive). Separate entries for men and women. Open from sunrise to sunset, but closed on Fridays.
  • Agra Fort – The grand Red Fort (Lal Qila) symbolizes power and resilience. Partly occupied by the Indian Army, tourists can still see multiple mosques, palaces, and other structures inside this vast monument located close to the city center. Open from 6 am to 6 pm on all days. 8-minute drive (3km).
  • Itimad-ud-Daula – Popularly thought of as the first draft of the Taj Mahal, and often known as “Baby Taj”. The tomb is the first marble structure built by the Mughals and features intricate lattice work. Open from sunrise to sunset. 17-minute drive (6km).
  • Soor Sarovar Bird Sanctuary – A haven for several species of birds and a must-visit for wildlife photographers. Apart from birds, it also houses pythons and Wildlife SOS, the largest bear rescue center in India, as well as the only elephant hospital in the country. 45-minute drive (24km).
  • Fatehpur Sikri – This majestic red sandstone fort is known for the Buland Darwaza, Jama Masjid, Tomb of Salim Chishti, Diwan-i-Aam, Diwani-i-Khas, and several other monuments on-site. Built in the 16th-century by Emperor Akbar to celebrate the birth of his son, Jahangir, in Sikri. Open daily from 6 am to 6 pm. Tickets can be bought online from various travel portals or at the fort entrance. 55-minute drive (39km).

Mansingh Palace – The Hotel

The hotel is located on a main road in downtown Agra.

The hotel is in a convenient position along a main road through downtown Agra.

The hotel has a more appealing design than its immediate rivals.

The Mansingh Palace is considerably more appealing than almost all others in the immediate area.

The entrance features a traditionally-dressed doorman with a handlebar mustache.

A doorman with traditional attire and handlebar mustache awaits all guests.

The overall design of the hotel is colorful and pleasant.

The overall design, especially in the lobby and guest lounge, is colorful and welcoming.

Ripples café in the lobby offers buffets for all 3 meals.

Ripples café at the lobby level is brightly lit and offers buffets for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

The Tequila Bar is sophisticated.

The Tequila Bar at the hotel is surprisingly sophisticated.

Sheesh Mahal Restaurant features a lovely decor and live music every night.

Also within the hotel, the Sheesh Mahal Restaurant features a tasteful décor and live music nightly.

The hotel gardens and nicely landscaped.

Adding to the appeal of the hotel are the small but nicely-landscaped gardens.

The ground-level pool is large enough for the guests.

The ground-level pool is substantial (and like most, was undergoing maintenance during the winter months).

The pool deck has plenty of shade.

There is enough shade around the pool, if only from the surrounding walls.

The spacious rooms have an understated charm.

Rooms are pleasingly spacious, with an understated charm.

The rooms feature a very pleasant decor.

The décor within all rooms is more pleasant than almost all rivals in the immediate vicinity.

Costa Coffee close by also serves light meals.

About 100m from the hotel gates is an outlet of the international chain, Costa Coffee, which also serves light meals.

Another international brand, Pizza Hut, too has an outlet nearby.

Familiar to many foreign tourists is Pizza Hut, also very close to the hotel.

Hotel Amar Yatri Niwas nearby serves good value thalis.

One of dozens of hotels in the immediate area, this one – next to the Mansingh Palace – offers great-value thalis (set meals in steel plates).

The Signature Restaurant is popular for its excellent food and decor.

Only 150m from the Mansingh Palace, The Signature Restaurant is renowned across Agra for its exquisite food and vibrant décor.

Café Coffee Day nearby is also great for a coffee or a light meal.

Another delightful place for a coffee or light meal is Café Coffee Day, less than 100m from the hotel gates.

Bicycle and auto-rickshaws are a convenient mode of transport.

The general area is not that pleasant for walking, so take a cycle-rickshaw or an automated version whenever possible.

The hotel neighborhood has several souvenir shops.

The area around the hotel is packed with souvenir shops, mostly for Indian tourists.

The Taj Mahal entrance and ticket office are not too far away.

The ticket office and gate to the Taj Mahal is only a few minutes by auto-rickshaw.

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