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All reviews three rooms real homestay lali kerala alleppey backwaters arrangements birds boats
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Reviewed 28 April 2010

From the first moment we knew Motty and Lali would be great hosts. They were so willing to share their knowledge and their home, even showing us how to cook delicious Keralan food. Their house is delightful, and set in a pretty garden. We had our own verandah outside our little cottage and cool drinks were brought out. Motty arranged trips to temples, churches, and backwaters, and Ayurvedic massage. The food was sublime, lots of fresh fruit, and every meal was different - we especially liked the masala dosa. I can only wish we had stayed more than 5 days.
(Sleep quality was only affected by the all-night temple festival, nothing we could do about that!)

  • Stayed: March 2010, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank fairtrader
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 April 2010

We spent 3 days in Alleppey at the end of Feb, including an overnight backwater boat cruise and very much enjoyed it all. The boat trip was one of the hi-lights of our holiday! Motty and Lali were very welcoming and extremely generous with their time and advice. Nothing was too much trouble for them and Motty went out of his way to take us to the station extremely early to make sure we got the right bus!

We stayed in the ground floor double room in the new block and it was wonderful...very stylish and airy with an open (though totally private) outside bathroom. There was no AC, but the fans worked well and the authentic Keralan bed was big and very comfortable. Motty suggested an excellent walking tour that took in all the places of interest in Allppey and was an endless source of knowledge about the town and the surroundig area. On his recommendation we ate at Kreme Korner, which was so good that we went back!

We booked an overnight rice boat cruise through Motty and would absolutely recommend it! We left at about 11am, stopping for lunch, then moored for the night at around 5.30, setting off again at 8ish and were back by 9.30 the next day. We wanted to go from Alleppey to Kottoyam, but weren't able to, so did a round trip instead. Because of the size of the rice barges, it restricts you to larger waterways and lakes, which we very much enjoyed. But later in our holiday, whilst at Vembanad Lake Villas (see other review), we did a canoe trip through small canals which gives you a very different experience. Another advantage of the boat trip is that it gets you out of the humidity of the town. The boat was stunning and we were extremely well looked after by Sabu and Sebastian, who were always ready with a smile. Sebastian's cooking was some of the best of our holiday! We chose not to have the AC and although it was warm it wasn't unbearable. At dusk a mosquito net was drawn across the deck, so we had no problem with insects.

When we were at Motty's we were his only guests. He was planning to take a week off, but fortunately for us decided to accept our booking. Perhaps because of this, we didn't get quite the communal 'family' experience we'd expected from reading other reviews. Although we ate breakfast in the dining room, the rest of the time the screne to the house was kept shut and they would come out rather than invite us in. Dinner was not included, but I had read so much about Lali's wonderful food that I asked if we might eat with them (obviously expecting to pay). The food was indeed wonderful, but you have to have a huge appetite! Although Motty sat with us, he ate little and Lali didn't eat with us at all, so it was a rather different experience to the normal family meal we'd expected and read about.

Price wise, by UK standards it's not unreasnable, but compared to other places we stayed in Kerala it was relatively pricy.

Finally, when trying to research this homestay before our holiday I became very confused by the online information. I initially read about it on www.sawdays.com, where there is a link to www.alleppeybeach.com. This site talks about 'staying with the host', which is referring to Motty's Homestay. The Marari Beach Homes (converted fishermen's cottages), also mentioned on this site, is another of Motty's ventures, established with and run by another couple, which is on the beach further up the coast from Alleppey. Just to further confuse things, I gather this is now called A Beach Symphony (www.abeachsymphony.com).

  • Stayed: February 2010, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank daisylou26
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 April 2010

i have just come home from 5 days with Motty and Lali. I cannot recommend them both enough as the most welcoming and attentive hosts. Nothing is too much trouble for either of them. The food that Lali makes is wondeful, we even had a few fun cooking lessons with her!
Motty arranged two wondeful trips on the back waters including lunch with a local family. He arranged airport transfers and a driver to take us to temples and Ammas Ashram. Lali heard of a festival taking place and called the driver to make sure we could fit it in, just one example of the personal touch they offer. We had private Yoga lessons in the mornings....all arranged by Motty. If you want to get to know and understand the Kerelan way of life and not just be in any old hotel then this really is the place to come. It was a wonderful experience one I shall treaure til the next time !

  • Stayed: April 2010, travelled with friends
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1  Thank tktraveller45
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 April 2010

After a long drive down from Periyar, we were warmly greeted by Motty and his wife, Lali. We’d booked in for 1 night at the homestay and 2 nights on one of Motty’s houseboats. Sitting on their verandah enjoying the peace and tranquillity, you wouldn’t know that the main street of Alleppey was only a 5 min walk away. Their home is lovely. We stayed in one double room (with a princess and the pea style bed) and one twin room at the front of the house. Both were spacious, immaculately clean and decorated in Keralan style. We had dinner with Motty and Lali cooked the most amazing food - fish and vegetable curries, along with pancakes served with coconut milk. The next day we moved onto the Backwaters. We were aware that the guides say to check out the houseboat before you pay, but we actually arrived too late in the day to see them. As his home was so lovely, we didn't feel worried and we weren't disappointed. The Backwaters are breathtakingly beautiful and so relaxing. The crew (Sebastian, Sabu and Biju) were brilliant. Sabu’s cooking was amazing. The boat was immaculately clean, we were very well looked after and the Backwaters is probably one of the highlights of our trip. We would definitely recommend staying at Motty’s and also booking your houseboat experience through him.

  • Stayed: March 2010, travelled with friends
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2  Thank twoweeksinKerala
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 March 2010

The homestay is a comfortable place to stay but as per other reviews the newer rooms are definitely more airy and, by definition, have more modern facilities than the room attached to the main house. However the rooms are large, clean with adequate bathroom facilities. I have not compared this homestay to others in Alleppey but compared to other places we have stayed in Kerala and other parts of India it is expensive for the facilities on offer.

To a large extent this is compensated for by the very friendly and personal welcome provided by Motty and Lali - you very much feel like a guest in their house and they do a lot to help with your travel plans and arrangements. Lali also does a superb Indian breakfast and is always there to welcome you with a cool drink or cup of tea after a hot day of sightseeing.

We organised our trip on the backwaters via Motty (there is no pressure from him to do so) and it was a pleasant and comfortable boat with excellent food and staff (Moni is the guy /owner and the company Cruisor). However, the boat sails from 11.30 - 1pm, stops until 3pm and then again from 3pm - 5.30 pm - leaving again at 8am. So not much sailing time - at 7,500 INR (for a/c, 5,500 without but includes all food).

Personally, as I am an insect phobe, the night on the boat was okay but I think you can get the same experience by doing the small canoe trips around the backwaters for half a day. It is probably more authentic and you can spend the night onshore without the mosquitoes and insects! We had seen a lot of the backwaters just by taking the ferry to Kottayam but clearly this has a different feel which is why I would recommend the canoe trip.

Overall, the charm of staying at Motty's is Motty and Lali themselves and their very personal touch to your holiday.

  • Stayed: March 2010, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank tinkers234
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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