Prithvi Raj Singh Oberoi Age, Death, Wife, Children, Family, Biography & More

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Death Date: 14/11/2023
Age: 94 Years
Wife: Goodie Oberoi

Prithvi Raj Singh Oberoi picture

Name EarnedMr. Hospitality [1]Forbes India
Nickname(s)Biki Oberoi [2]Forbes India, PRS Oberoi [3]The Times of India
Profession(s)Hotelier, Businessman
Famous forRedefining the Indian hotel industry and for being the patron of the Oberoi Group
Physical Stats & More
Height (approx.)in centimeters- 172 cm
in meters- 1.72 m
in feet & inches- 5’ 8”
Eye ColourBrown
Hair ColourGrey
Awards & Honours• Lifetime Achievement Award by the 6th International Hotels Investment Forum in Berlin in recognition of his exceptional leadership and vision (2003)
• Lifetime Achievement Award by the Hotel Investment Conference Asia Pacific (HICAP) at its annual Conference in Hong Kong in recognition of his contribution to the hospitality industry and his pioneering leadership in making The Oberoi Group a global brand by taking the concept of luxury to a new paradigm (2005)
• Lifetime Achievement Award at the CNBC TV 18 India Business Leader Awards for building a world-class hotel chain that caters to both luxury and business travellers and for shaping the hospitality industry of the country (2007)
• Businessman of the Year Award by Business India Magazine for building a world-class premium hospitality brand (2008)
• Lifetime Achievement Award at the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Awards for redefining design standards in luxury hotels (2008)
• Padma Vibushan, India’s second-highest civilian honour by the Government of India in recognition of his exceptional service to the country (2008)
Prithvi Raj Singh Oberoi receiving the Padma Vibhushan Smt. Pratibha Devisingh Patil at an Investiture-I Ceremony, at Rashtrapati Bhavan, in New Delhi on 5 May 2008
• Recognised as the “Corporate Hotelier of the World” by Hotels Magazine, USA
• Lifetime Achievement Award by the International Luxury Travel Market (ILTM) in Cannes as a global recognition of his exceptional leadership, vision, and contribution to developing The Oberoi Group as one of the world’s leading luxury hotel chains (2012)
• Lifetime Achievement Award by the Economic Times Awards for Corporate Excellence for his outstanding contribution to the Indian Hospitality Industry (2012)
• Lifetime Achievement Award for Management by the All India Management Association (AIMA) (2013)
• Lifetime Achievement Award by the Forbes India Leadership Awards (2014)
• Voted among CNBC TV18’s Top 15 Indian Business Icons (2015)
• Recognised as one of the 100 Most Powerful People in Global Hospitality by the International Hospitality Institute on the Global 100 in Hospitality (2022)
Personal Life
Date of Birth3 February 1929 (Sunday)
BirthplaceNew Delhi, India
Date of Death14 November 2023
Place of DeathOberoi Farm house-cum-office on the outskirts of Delhi
Age (at the time of death)94 Years
Death CauseNatural [4]English Jagran
Zodiac signAquarius
HometownBhaun (now in Punjab, Pakistan)
SchoolSt. Paul’s School in Darjeeling, West Bengal
College/UniversityHe attended a College in Lausanne, Switzerland.
Educational Qualification(s)• Chartered Accountancy Course (Drop Out)
• A course in Law (Drop Out)
• Graduation in Hotel Management from a college in Lausanne, Switzerland
ReligionSikhism [5]The Global Sikh Trail
AddressOberoi Farm house-cum-office on the outskirts of Delhi
Relationships & More
Marital Status (at the time of death)Widower
Marriage DateYear, 1959
Wife/SpouseGoldie Oberoi
Prithvi Raj Singh Oberoi's wife, Goodie Oberoi
ChildrenSon- Vikram S. Oberoi (Joint Managing Director of The Oberoi Group)
Prithvi Raj Singh Oberoi's son, Vikram S. Oberoi
Daughter(s)- Natasha, Anastasia Mirjana Jojic Oberoi
ParentsFather- Rai Bahadur Mohan Singh Oberoi (hotelier, founding chairman of Oberoi Hotels & Resorts; died on 3 May 2002)
Mother- Ishran Devi
Prithvi Raj Singh Oberoi with his father
SiblingsBrother- Raj Tilak Singh Oberoi aka Tikki Oberoi (hotelier; died in 1984)
Prithvi Raj Singh Oberoi's elder brother, Raj Tilak Singh Oberoi, with his family
Sister(s)- Swaraj (got married to Gautam Khanna in 1950), Prem (got married to Captain KK Mehra in 1957)
Prithvi Raj Singh Oberoi with his parents and siblings after their return to New Delhi from Europe
Other RelativesGrandfather: Attar Singh (contractor who passed away when Prithvi’s father was just 18 months old)
Grandmother: Bhagwanti
Nephew: Arjun Singh Oberoi (son of his brother Raj Tilak Singh Oberoi; Executive Chairman of EIH Limited)
Prithvi Raj Singh Oberoi's nephew, Arjun Singh Oberoi
Money Factor
Net Worth (approx.)$ 460 Million (in 2012) [6]Forbes India

 Prithvi Raj Singh Oberoi

Some Lesser Known Facts About Prithvi Raj Singh Oberoi

  • Prithvi Raj Singh Oberoi (1929-2023) was an Indian business magnate and hotelier who was the Executive Chairman of the Oberoi Group, which runs a chain of luxury hotels, The Trident Hotels and Oberoi Hotels & Resorts. He is known for redefining the hotel industry in India.
  • Before his birth, his parents relocated to Muree (a hill station in Pakistan) from their native place Bhaun (now in Punjab, Pakistan) to save their infant daughter from the outbreak of plague. While staying in Muree, his father did several odd jobs to support his family.
  • Later, his parents moved to Shimla and then to Delhi, where his father began working in the hotel industry.
  • Prithvi Raj spent his childhood in various cities of India and Pakistan like Shimla, Bhaun, Lahore, and Delhi.
  • In an interview, PRS Oberoi revealed that growing up he didn’t know what home looked like. He said,

    We didn’t have a place we could call home as we lived in hotels throughout our early life. I didn’t know any other life. In Shimla it used to be either Cecil or Clarkes, in Calcutta it was the Grand, in Delhi, the Imperial and in Lahore, the Falleti.”

  • As his father wanted him to pursue chartered accountancy and a law course, he moved to London to pursue the courses. However, he didn’t find the courses interesting and left them midway to pursue a degree in hotel management.
  • After obtaining a degree in Hotel Management, Prithvi Raj travelled across Europe, gaining experience in world-class luxury hotels.
  • In 1955, Oberoi returned to India and joined his family business The Oberoi Group. The first project that his father handled him was taking charge of the Grand Hotel in Calcutta (now, Kolkata).
  • Soon, he took the responsibility for four hotels in Pakistan that came as a part of the AHI acquisition. However, after the 1965 war, those hotels were taken over by the Pakistan government.
  • Prithvi Raj, along with his father Rai Bahadur Mohan Singh Oberoi, and brother, Raj Tilak Singh Oberoi, worked hard to expand the group across India and overseas.
  • In the 70’s and 80’s, Prithvi Raj travelled across the Indian cities where his family didn’t own a hotel. He brought along world-class cooks from some renowned hotels.
  • In 1988, he opened a five-star hotel in Chennai that was not very luxury, he named the hotel Trident and launched a new brand.
  • Prithvi Raj purchased 28 acres of land in the outskirts of Jaipur in mid-1990s. In 1998, he built The Oberoi Rajvilas over it. The hotel was ranked among the best in the world, within a year of its opening. Soon, he built a number of iconic properties like Udaivilas in Udaipur, Amarvilas in Agra, Vanyavilas in Ranthambhore, and Wildflower Hall in Shimla.

    (L to R) S.S.Mukherji, Executive Vice Chairman, EIH Limited, P.R.S. Oberoi, Executive Chairman, EIH Limited, and Vikram Oberoi, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, EIH Limited at the Sixty-seventh Annual General Meeting of EIH Limited held in Kolkata

    (L to R) S.S.Mukherji, Executive Vice Chairman, EIH Limited, P.R.S. Oberoi, Executive Chairman, EIH Limited, and Vikram Oberoi, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, EIH Limited at the Sixty-seventh Annual General Meeting of EIH Limited held in Kolkata

  • It was after the opening of several luxury hotels in the renowned cities of India that the Oberoi Group was placed on the International luxury travellers map.
  • He was appointed as the Chairman of EIH Limited in 2002, after the death of his father Mohan Singh Oberoi. He held the position until 2013.
  • Prithvi Raj started serving as the Director of Jet Airways (India) Limited on 29 March 2004.
  • Oberoi resigned from the position of Chairman and Director of EIH Limited on 3 May 2022. Later, his nephew Arjun Singh Oberoi occupied the position.
  • Apart from leading the management of luxury hotels in various countries, Prithvi Raj, played an important role in the development of Oberoi Hotels and Resorts.

    Prithvi Raj Singh Oberoi during a meeting

    Prithvi Raj Singh Oberoi during a meeting

  • He served as the Executive Chairman of The Oberoi Group until his death in 2023.
  • At the time of his death, he served as the director in many companies including Oberoi Properties Pvt Ltd (Construction Company), Oberoi Hotels Private Limited (Hotels and Restaurants), Bombay Plaza Private Limited (Financial Intermediation Company), Oberoi Plaza Private Limited (Activities Auxiliary to Financial Intermediation), Oberoi Leasing And Finance Co Pvt Ltd (Activities Auxiliary to Financial Intermediation), Oberoi Investments Pvt Ltd (Real Estate Activities), Oberoi Buildings & Investments Pvt Ltd (Real Estate Activities), and Oberoi Holdings Pvt Ltd (Real Estate Activities).
  • In his spare time, he loved to rear the horses.
  • He frequently smoked Cuban Cigars. [7]Forbes India
  • Prithvi Raj’s father mainly grew his business through acquisitions. However, Prithvi Raj followed an all different approach of building new hotels. In his lifetime, he acquired just one property- Trident, Chennai.

    Prithvi Raj Singh Oberoi addressing the stakeholders of Trident

    Prithvi Raj Singh Oberoi addressing the stakeholders of Trident

  • In 2008, when the terrorists attacked the Oberoi Hotel in Mumbai, Prithvi Raj Singh was attending an awards function at the Taj Lands End Hotel in Bandra, Mumbai. An associate informed him about the attacks after which he himself camped in the city and oversaw the rescue operations.

    Prithvi Raj Singh Oberoi at The Oberoi Hotel in Mumbai

    Prithvi Raj Singh Oberoi at The Oberoi Hotel in Mumbai

  • He lived by the mantra-

    We want to be the best, not the biggest.”

  • Oberoi owned a chain of hotels and luxury yachts in different countries.
  • Reportedly, Prithvi Raj used to wake up at 8:30 in the morning and go to sleep at 12:30 at night.

    A day in Prithvi Raj Singh Oberoi's life

    A day in Prithvi Raj Singh Oberoi’s life

  • In November 2010, the Hotels Magazine, USA, described him as the founder father of modern luxury hospitality in India” in their cover story. In the story, he was also credited for growing the company “into one of the world’s most prestigious luxury hotel groups.”
  • In 2012, when the Oberoi Group’s competitor ITC bought a stake in EIH, Prithvi Raj faced a huge backlash from a group of people. Around the same time, Mukesh Ambani, the chairman of the Reliance Industries also made some investments in EIH.
  • In an interview, when asked how he defined Luxury? He said,

    Luxury is all about having everything exactly the way they should be — whether it’s the degree of lighting, the placing of switches, the height of the bathtub or the colour of the curtain.”

  • In an interview, Prithvi Raj Singh Oberoi shared that he did not actually work until he turned 32.
  • Prithvi Raj Singh Oberoi was the only Indian member (except for the odd maharaja) of the global jet set for many years.
  • Prithvi Raj Singh Oberoi died peacefully in the morning of 14 November 2023. Informing about his death, his son Vikram S. Oberoi released a statement that read,

    It is with profound grief and sorrow that we wish to inform you of the peaceful passing of our beloved leader, Mr. P.R.S. Oberoi, Chairman Emeritus earlier today. His passing is a significant loss for The Oberoi Group and the hospitality industry in India and overseas.”

    His funeral took place at the Bhagwanti Oberoi Charitable Trust, Oberoi Farm, Kapashera, at 4 pm on the same day.