Tom Vater

Tom Vater

Eclectic crime fiction and informed, irreverent non-fiction from Asia and beyond

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Posts tagged Rajasthan

From the Archives: Once Upon A Time In Rajasthan

In 2005 and 2006, photographer Aroon Thaewchatturat and myself traveled across Rajasthan, India´s popular north western desert state to visit some thirty heritage hotels. The two trips led to the publication of a photo book in Germany by Reise Know How Verlag, naturally called Rajasthans Palasthotels. To finance this venture we published stories on the […]

From the Archives: Your Mother Cooks Socks in Hell – Balaji Mandir, India’s Exorcist Temple

This is a travel story from some years back about a visit to a rather peculiar temple. So take a ride to the Temple of the Possessed…. Ashok was a great driver. We are on our way to Balaji Mandir, a temple dedicated to the mighty monkey king Hanuman, who rescued Sita, Ram’s wife, from […]

Tom Vater on India’s Disappearing Havelis in The Wall Street Journal

Tom Vater’s feature on India’s disappearing Havelis and Their Fabled Frescoes has been published in The Wall Street Journal. SHEKHAWATI, India — It was the McMansion of its day. Built in 1900 for a wealthy trading family in a dusty outpost here in India’s Rajasthan state, the house was designed to be a bold statement […]

Jaipur’s Stones – Tom Vater talks to the Kasliwal family, jewelers to the stars

The Kasliwal family has for decades crafted jewellery for royalty, presidents and film stars from its Gem Palace in one of India’s most beautiful cities. Tom Vater reports from Jaipur, Rajsthan. Almost 300 years ago, Sawai Jai Singh II, a powerful Kachwaha Rajput ruler, scholar and patron of the arts, decided to build a magnificent […]

Palace Hotels of Rajasthan – Photobook by Aroon Thaewchatturat (Text: Tom Vater)

In August 2007, Aroon Thaewchatturat‘s new photo book, Palace Hotels of Rajasthan, was published by Reise Know How Verlag in Germany. I wrote the text. The book covers all sorts of heritage hotels with royal connections around Rajasthan, from modest but attractive mansions to gigantic palaces, from pure, sumptuous Raj nostalgia to bottomless kitsch.