By Akanksha Gupta Last Updated:
The Pataudi Palace, also known as Ibrahim Kothi, was passed on from the last ruling Nawab, Iftikhar Ali Khan to his son, Mansoor Ali Khan, who was the last recognized titular Nawab. The Pataudi Palace is now held by actor, Saif Ali Khan, son of Mansoor Ali Khan and Sharmila Tagore, as his ancestral property and it is situated in Pataudi town of Gurgaon district in Haryana. Although the Pataudi siblings, Saif Ali Khan and Soha Ali Khan live in Mumbai with their respective spouses and kids, they often visit the palace to spend quality time with their amma, Sharmila Tagore. The family home is spread across 10 acres with 150 rooms.
Do you remember the song, Main Yahaan Hoon and Hum Toh Bhayi Jaise Hai from the film, Veer Zaara, starring Shah Rukh Khan and Preity Zinta? Or have seen Saif Ali Khan’s one of the most controversial web series, Tandav? Or the Hollywood film, Eat Pray Love starring Julia Roberts, and Bollywood movies, Rang De Basanti and Mere Brother Ki Dulhan? Now, can you guess what's common in these movies and web series? Well, all these films and web series were shot at the magnificent Pataudi Palace, which is Saif, Saba Ali Khan and Soha Ali Khan's ancestral home.
From the Pataudi family, Saba Ali Khan, Soha Ali Khan, Kareena Kapoor Khan, Kunal Kemmu and Sara Ali Khan are ardent social media users and thanks to their Instagram feeds, we often get lovely glimpses of their family time at the Pataudi Palace. Be it the celebrations of Sharmila Tagore or Taimur Ali Khan's birthday, get-togethers to celebrate a festival or just spending quality family time, it is a delight to see the Khans posing at their favourite spots in the house.
Soha Ali Khan and Kunal Kemmu often take vacations to the Pataudi Palace with their daughter, Inaaya Naumi Kemmu, introduce her to the roots of her maternal ancestral place and let her enjoy the calmness of this magnificent house. From going on morning walks to the vast grounds and fields, taking a dip in the massive swimming pool, the hallways, living room of the mansion, a bonfire area to late Mansoor Ali Khan Pataudi's grave, Soha and Kunal never disappoint Pataudi fans as they always post pictures of their time at the palace. For Taimur Ali Khan's first birthday, Sharmila Tagore, Saif Ali Khan, Kareena Kapoor Khan and the Kapoors had hosted a celebration in the backyard of the Pataudi Palace.
The Pataudi Palace features large trees, immaculately manicured bushes, several classic stone fountains and a swimming pool. The luxurious palace comes with acres of greenery and the pristine white courtyards lead to green corridors and elegant outdoor seating. The palace has seven dressing rooms, seven bedrooms, seven billiard rooms, multipurpose rooms, play areas for Taimur Ali Khan and Inaaya Naumi Kemmu as well as palatial drawing rooms and dining rooms. When Saif Ali Khan had repossessed the Pataudi Palace, interior designer, Darshini Shah was given the duty to refurbish the family home and the aim was to get comfort and understated style rather than luxury and opulence.
Due to the 2020 pandemic, Soha Ali Khan and Kunal Kemmu vacationed at the Pataudi Palace after a gap of more than a year. Soha and Inaaya Naumi Kemmu were later joined by Kunal at the palace, where the trio had spent quality time with Sharmila Tagore. Recalling how it was a blissful time, Kunal had said in an interview with the ETimes:
"That was the very few times, since last year, where I got to travel with my family. It felt very good as we had access to the garden where Inaaya could play with the dogs. Also keeping her company were the rabbits and peacocks there. It’s great that she got to spend some time outdoors. It was a blessing. I, too, made the most of it. I enjoyed taking walks in the lush greens. Just lying down in the grass, listening to the sound of the birds and playing with my daughter felt so blissful."
In an interview with Forbes, when Saif Ali Khan was asked, “Which is your favourite space in the Pataudi Palace?” he had retorted:
“I do not feel more at home anywhere else than at the Pataudi Palace. Every place else, somehow, feels rented and temporary. We have had many events here when the entire family–all the parents and kids–have gotten together, and these are some of my fondest memories in the place. From the middle of the palace, from an open chhabutra, you can see the moon and that is my favourite spot to sit in and look at the moon and the stars. My second favourite space is the library. Sometime ago, I renovated the palace and added some personal touches to it."
Revealing his regret of not being able to spend more than ten days a year at the Palace, Saif Ali Khan had continued:
"Sadly though, I don’t end up spending more than ten days a year here and hence opened it for more shoots.”
Throwing some light on the history of Pataudi Palace and revealing that his amma, Sharmila Tagore has a cottage there, Saif Ali Khan had stated in an interview with the Filmfare:
"My grandparents and father are buried there, there’s security, serenity and a spiritual connection there for me. The land goes back by a few centuries, but the palace that my grandfather built for my grandmother is around a hundred years old. He was the ruling monarch then, but since then, privy purses and titles have been abolished. These are different times which is why my father leased it out and Francis (Wacziarg) and Aman (Nath), who ran a hotel in the palace, took good care of the property and were like family. My mother (Sharmila Tagore) has a cottage there and she was always comfortable."
Speaking of how his son, Taimur Ali Khan loves to spend time at the Pataudi Palace, Saif Ali Khan had said:
"It was fun watching Taimur play hide-and-seek among the trees, and feed squirrels biscuits. He’s developing country interests and is no longer scared of bugs, lizards, or the black ants, that he now watches run up his arm with wonder."
Saif Ali Khan is referred to as 'Nawab', inheritance-wise but he is a self-made actor as he moved to Bombay when he was 20, having taken nothing from his parents. Recalling how there has been no inheritance as he earned back the house, he was supposed to have 'inherited', with his hard-earned money, Saif had said in an interview with the Mid-Day:
"Yes, thank you. I've learnt that you cannot argue against narratives - whether or not they're true. People have a certain fixed notion. For that matter, even [with] Pataudi [palace], when my father [Mansoor Ali Khan Pataudi] died, it got rented to Neemrana Hotels. Aman [Nath] and Francis [Wacziarg] used to run [the hotel]. Francis passed away. He'd said that if I wanted [the palace] back, I could let him know. I said: I want it back. They held a conference, and said, okay, you have to give us lots of money! Which I then consequently earned. So, even the house I'm supposed to have inherited has been earned back through money from films. You can't live off the past. At least we can't in our family, because there was nothing. There is history, culture, beautiful photographs; and, of course, some land. It has been a privileged upbringing. But there's been no inheritance."
Let us know which celebrity's home you would want us to give you a glimpse of, next!