History & Philosophy - Hill Fort-Kesroli - 14th Century

Alwar, Rajasthan

The 14th century Hill Fort-Kesroli is one of the oldest heritage sites in India where one can stay. Sited atop the rare, dark Hornstone Breccia rocks, it commands splendid agrarian views from its ramparts. Kesroli makes an ideal base to visit the neighbouring palaces, museums, natural sites and sanctuaries of Alwar and Sariska.

Hill Fort Kesroli 14th Century Alwar - drone shot of the property
Hill Fort Kesroli 14th Century Alwar - view of two adjoined round swimming pools with an illuminated building structure in the background

The origins of the seven-turreted Hill Fort-Kesroli are traced back to over seven centuries. It is believed to have been built by the Yaduvanshi Rajputs, who claim descent from Lord Krishna, but converted to Islam in the mid-14th century to be called Khanzadas. It subsequently changed hands, being conquered first by the Mughals and then the Jats, before reverting to the Rajputs in 1775 when the princely state of Alwar was founded. It saw its golden period under the Ranawat Thakur Bhawani Singh (1882-1934) who was renowned for his equestrian skills.   

The restoration process started in 1995 and our resort in Kesroli was opened to guests in 1998. Its interior gardens- both in the Mardana and the Zenana quarters are refreshing and intimate, framing the tent of the sky above.

A table-chair set rests on the rooftop overlooking the cloudy sky
A vibrant blue pool with the resort at the background - Hill Fort Kesroli Alwar Rajasthan

The Neemrana restoration philosophy of not overdoing the re-vamping exercise for use as a ‘non-hotel’ keeps its architecture as original and authentic as any film director would like. Between the exteriors and interiors of one of the Kesroli resorts, a host of patinas, furnishes and backdrops can be found, besides a variety of furniture both indigenous and colonial with authentic period props.