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Rooms with a View from www.theaustralian.news.com.au
OBEROI'S Amarvilas at Agra, two hours by express train from New Delhi, offers a unique inducement: every room comes with a view of the Taj Mahal, framed like a precious cameo. The hotel has corridors running along its rear, so there's no chance of a bad room, and most have private terraces set with tables and chairs (perfect for room-service breakfast: would you like a Taj with that?).
It's a splendidly detailed hotel, lauded for its style and service; there are vast courtyards, terraced gardens and pool, and staff run guests 600m to the Taj Mahal by golf buggy and organise entry tickets.
Amarvilas is a member of Oberoi's Vilas collection and its sister property, Udaivilas at Udaipur in Rajasthan, recently was voted the world's best hotel by readers of Travel + Leisure magazine; Amarvilas came in at a notable No.10.
Checklist Amarvilas is one of 30 top properties in India represented on an invitation-only basis by Kiwi Collection, formed in 2001 as "a single trusted source for finest luxury experiences"; check its website for details of worldwide properties, best rates and room availability.