History of The Imperial


Re-live India’s Glorious Past

While in India, one must visit the Taj Mahal and stay at The Imperial

Built on an eight-acre estate, The Imperial offers a safe haven and refuge in the heart of India’s bustling capital. Ideally located on Janpath, the erstwhile Queensway, it is in the most prestigious cultural, entertainment and political district and is 30 minutes away from the International airport. The hotel has a priceless collection of over 5000 original artworks from the 17th and 18th centuries across common areas, floors and accommodations. Since its inception, The Imperial has hosted the city’s most important social gatherings, royalty and dignitaries from India and overseas, silver-screen celebrities from around the globe and many discerning guests alike.


The Imperial was built and run by S.B.S. Ranjit Singh, son of R.B.S. Narain Singh. Conceptualized in 1934 by Blomfield and inaugurated by Lord Willingdon in 1936, The Imperial is a fine confluence of a rich historical past and a slick international appeal. The 24 royal palms that lead up to the porch are an integral part of and witness to the very creation of New Delhi.

From the time The Imperial opened its doors in the 1930s, when India was beginning to write the last chapters of its saga on independence, there was little space in New Delhi for an Indo-British rubbing of shoulders. The Imperial provided such a space. Pandit Nehru, Mahatama Gandhi, Muhammad Ali Jinnah and Lord Mountbatten would meet at The Imperial under congenial conditions to discuss the partition.

The Imperial’s pillared verandahs, dining rooms, The Tea Lounge, The Royal Ballroom, and cool and spacious gardens became the venue of many celebrated encounters between the British and Indian aristocracy and gentry. If only walls could speak, here indeed was a repository of fascinating anecdotal material for authors of romantic and detective fiction.