Gateway to the Makarpura Palace near Vadadora (Baroda), Gujarat - a brief note

 gateway to the Makarpura Palace near Baroda,

Above image:  Gateway to the Makarpura Palace near Baroda (Vadadora), Gujarat, from the Lee-Warner Collection: ' views and buildings, c.1890', taken by an unknown photographer........... 

Makarpura palace, Vadadora,

Above image: Old & new Palace, Makarpura, Baroda. Makarpura Palace was a Gaekwad's royal palace in the city of Vadodara, Gujarat state........................

The Makarpura palace complex south of Vadadora, Gujarat  still stands as a  legacy of the Gaekwad rulers of Baroda (Vadadora). Belonging  to  a rich ruling  dynasty of this place, the Gaekwads  were not only known for their flashy automobiles and  vast collection of fascinating jewelry but also for their fascinating buildings. Being good rulers, they were also known for their philanthropy. Particularly Sayajirao Gaekwad III was a ruler of charitable disposition.  

The Makarpura palace complex has two palaces and  the builders were the   Gaekwad Maharajas.  In the 19th century  the palaces served as  a summer residence and hunting resort for the Royal Family and their guests. The forest nearby had lots of wild animals to hunt. The old and new places were connected by a corridor at the ground and first floor levels. This three  story structure has a  series of classical styled arches  decreasing in size from bottom  to top floor.

 In the past  in the 2000s the  palace was used as a training school by the Indian Air Force for many years and in the  later years there was proposal  for conservation and re-adoptive use of he old palace. It included cleaning, structural strengthening, redesigning of the interior space of the art deco Indo-Saracenic structure. As of today, it seems nothing has happened.  

Malhar Rao Gaekwad  (reign  1856 to 1870),  brother of Khanderao II Gaekwad, destroyed a portion of the original palace for unknown reason and it was  rebuilt and extended by  Maharajah Sayajirao Gaekwad III (reign.1875-1939) between 1883 and 1890. The architect was none other than   Robert Fellowes Chisholm (1840-1915), an expert in Indo-Saracenic style of design which he popularized in Madras (Chennai). Here, he who chose  Italian Renaissance style for the palace complex. 

The  impressive entrance gateway to the grounds was  built in the same style as the New Palace. The tall structure has an arcade of semi-circular arches above the central archway and a balustraded parapet crowning the cornice all around. The main arch is tall and wide and during the peak of the ruling dynasty, this arch would have silently seen  lots of foreign dignitaries and occasional parades of soldiers accompanying the royal members passing through the simple, but majestic  portal.