Aman I Khas
in Ranthambhore National Park
peace that passeth understanding. Set amidst the rugged
Aravallis outside Ranthambhore National Park, Aman-i-Khas is in
its brisk, second season now. You will arrive at sundown, and
the retreat emerges gently from the shadows. At the camp's
center, the evening plays itself out over drinks around a
humongous uruli, in which a cheery log fire burns. You will be
led to your tent.
The first impression is of sheer space. As tents go, this is
huge, set on a raised concrete plinth measuring 12m x 12m. The
covered area totals 108 square meters- the size of a small
apartment. The layout of Tent's is simplicity itself, though it
has taken the genius of jean-Michel Gathy to conceive it. The
entry is through a screened area that contains a dining table
with chairs and an armchair. Beyond lies an oversized daybed at
the tent's center, the canopy soaring to a whopping six meters.
A soothing coffee and cream scheme runs through the
Three sections, for sleeping, bathing and dressing, lead off
from the center, separated by cotton drapes. The tent is well
outfitted yet uncluttered. The furniture, all cowhide and teak,
is minimal and minimalist, purportedly mimicking traveling camps
of an earlier time. Indeed it claims to emulate a rich 'MUGHAL'
style, though it's doubtful the sultans ever had it so good. The
biting cold, for one, has left behind. Central heating takes care of
that (the tents are cooled in summer).