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“Wonderful welcome and lovely stay”
Review of Marari Villas

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Marari Villas
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed September 10, 2013

We are a family of four (two kids aged 7 and 5) and were traveling for 10 days around Kerala with Globetotting (specialists in adventurous, off-the-beaten-path travel with small children - highly recommended!). After six days on the go we had four nights at Marari Villas. Olga gave us a fantastic welcome and showed us our beautiful, hundred year old cottage. We loved the outdoor bathroom, and the extra bedroom for the kids was fantastic as we had been sharing a room with them the rest of the trip. The garden was verdant and lush and the hammock and pool were excellent for relaxing. There were loads of butterflies every day (though also mosquitoes as it was just after monsoon), and lots of wildlife in general. Rupert was so helpful, and helped my daughter catch and release a tiny pink frog that she found in the bathroom. The food was outstanding, and Rajesh's cooking was delicious - he really looked after us and the kids. The whole crew made us feel incredibly welcome and were so smiley! I don't normally write reviews but we had such a relaxing, restful time at Marari Villas that I was compelled to write this one! Many thanks to Olga, Rupert, Shan and the team.

Room Tip: We loved Hibiscus Cottage
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  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled with family
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Thank Camillefeuille
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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164 - 170 of 293 reviews

Reviewed September 3, 2013

We stayed in Orchid Villa for 3 nights as part of our honeymoon. After a hectic couple of nights in Mumbai, the first thing we noticed was the peace and tranquility of the place! The villas are surrounded by woodland and a short walk takes you down to the beach. And wow - what a beach it is!! Despite there still being a few sandbags (which Olga kindly warned us about in advance) which had been used as defences during the worst monsoon season the region had seen in years, the beach was still stunning! Mile after mile of beautiful, mostly deserted golded sand with only a few fisherman, crabs and friendly beach dogs for company!

The villa itself was really well equipped, everything you could want from mosquito coils to A DVD player with selection of films! The bed was huge and very comfortable. The pool was fabulous, private and always kept immaculate by Benjamin. The open air bathroom was just wonderful - having an outdoor shower at dusk by candle light was the most awesome experience!!

ALL the team that Olga and Rupert have at the villas could not have been more helpful and friendly. They do a great job of balancing attentiveness with privacy. They are always a tinkle of a bell away should you need anything and nothing was ever too much trouble!

The food was consistently excellent. We went on to stay in top end 5* hotels and resorts for the rest of our stay in India and we both agreed that none of these gave as good a breakfast as Marari Villas!!

Overall our stay at the villas was just what we wanted from our honeymoon. We were given plenty of privacy but knew there was always someone on hand should we need them.

On the last morning, whilst having a chat with Olga over breakfast, she heard a noise so told us to quickly get round the front. The noise belonged to the bell of a beautiful Indian elephant who was on his way to work at a local sawmill. His owner and rider (a young lad who looked proud as punch to be astride the magestical creature) stopped to let us feed him. This amazing experience of seeing, feeding and just spending a few minutes with this incredible animal really did just top off what was a magical stay, one we will never forget at Marari Villas!

I could go on and on, but I think anyone reading this should get the picture of just how fab we thought this place was. If you are looking for somewhere private, intamate and tranquile with exceptional hospitality - this is the place for you! Thank you to all the team!!

  • Stayed: August 2013
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3  Thank spange18
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 15, 2013

The best thing about this place is the location. We stayed in the Palm Villa bang opposite to the beach. Amazing experience. The owner - Olga is a wonderful lady and she as well as her entire team were very courteous and made us feel very welcome.

That said, the rest of the experience was only average or above average at best. Firstly, the breakfast spread is very drab and too little! There is a set menu available and we are expected to pick our choice. That done, the servings are very little, and the housekeeper looks us like we committed a crime whenever we ask for an extra serving. One egg Omlette / Two Dosas are not enough breakfast, at least for me. The coffee tastes terrible, tea is ok.

It is just a matter of getting your expectations right. Go to this place imagining a 5 star luxury resort (the pictures in the website indicate so, the prices definitely so!) and you will be badly let down. Go to the place expecting a 3 star property, and you should be ok. The bill will definitely burn a hole in your pocket though :)

Word of caution - DONT go to the beach before 10am in the morning. Not unless you want to watch people doing....well, their morning things!!!

Room Tip: Choose the Palm Villas if you want to be bang in front of the beach. It is an amazing experience!!!
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  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled with family
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4  Thank Vijayraghavan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MarariVillas, Owner at Marari Villas, responded to this reviewResponded August 29, 2013

Namaste!
Thank you for your positive comments about the fantastic location, warm welcome and courteous staff.

However, we are very disappointed to hear that you did not consider your stay at the Palm Villa to be good value for money. We offered you a discounted rate inclusive of taxes of Rs. 24,600 per night for 3 bedrooms (6 adults + 4 children). That is equivalent to $40 per person per night. We also agreed to 2 extra friends and their child to stay at the last minute for an additional Rs.2,000 and charged only half the normal rate for all kids’ dinners. and we are sorry to hear you did not recognize this as good value for money, considering the quality of accommodation and facilities we provide.

We are sorry to hear that you considered breakfasts were insufficient. Our portions are usually very generous with fruit juice/tea/coffee, fruit platter and a choice of 14 continental/south Indian options. We normally find 2 Dosas are enough for the majority of guests and we ALWAYS provide 2 egg omelettes, unless the guest specifically asks for less. We have limitations in the kitchen as we don’t generally cater for 10+ people at a time. The chef tried his best and made more than 30 dosas one morning, but apologies if we could not fully meet your demands. Also, most guests are very positive about our coffee, as we use fresh ground pure Arabica beans from Kerala (the tea is whole leaf export quality from Munnar).

Finally, please understand that we are not a 5 star hotel/resort (though we are pleased to hear that you consider the décor to be so). We do not promote ourselves (or charge rates) as such and do not attempt to provide ‘luxury’ accommodation, so guests should not have those expectations. We provide ‘Boutique Serviced Villas’ that offer a unique, high quality, ‘home from home’ experience with personal staff that cater to your individual needs.

Sorry if it was not the right style of property for you, but hopefully this review will help future guests understand the difference between our property and a luxury 5 star resort and to chose the option that best suits their requirements and expectations.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 7, 2013

My husband and I stayed here as our last destination of our honeymoon. We had traveled for 8 weeks all through London, paris, rome, china and finally India. Of all the places we visited we LOVED this place and actually shed a few tears at having to leave. Olga was away when we arrived but Shan greeted us so warmly. Our stay here was just before Monsoon and we are so happy that this is when we decided to visit. Our whole honeymoon we wanted to find something that really felt like home that left us grateful , excited and this was the place. For new travellers to India New Delhi, Japar and Agra can seem so daunting but Marari Beach was like a little piece of paradise with warm friendly people where we always felt safe and they welcomed us in to share their lives for a while. Benjamin was so amazing taking us on our little tours , he was great . Such a character. The chief was always happy to cook meals which suited our needs . I can't thank him enough for this as half way through our trip on india I became quite sick and it wasn't until he cooked for us that I got better almost immediately !!! ( overnight )
Shan had everything so organised and even arranged at our request a meeting with the local school. Amazing children , amazing people.
Our room was always clean and the fridge was stocked up with many refreshments.
I just can't reccomend this place enough to anyone who is looking for a lovely stay in an amazing location with wonderful people. I miss them all dearly and think of them often and can't wait to go again. MY NUMBER ONE HOLIDAY DESTINATION !

Room Tip: We stayed in the orchid pool cottage . Just brilliant .
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  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Xxangelx
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 27, 2013

I have been traveling in India for 1 month and wanted to find a relaxing and shanti place where I can spend my last 5 days before the departure from India. And I am so happy have made the decission to stay here at Marari Villas! It is my 6-th time in India and I can say for sure - you hardly can find places like that in South India. The service, thr food and the accomadation was exellent.

I arrived on a taxi from Cochin during the havey rain. The villa's host Shan met me with a big red umbrella and welcomed me into the Orchaid villa.He then left and in 3 minutes he offered me a very cooking and delicious fresh mint and lime drink. Next 5 days I really felt like in paradise. I enjoyed the delicious south Indian food (wich I usually don't really like but here it was something very special), a nice lady everyday cleaned my villa and decorated my bed and the bathroom with real flowers - that was so beautiful!

One day I went on a bycycle to explore the villages and was amazed by the nature of the village people - they all were waving me, smiling and greeting me.

I didn't swim in th sea because now it is a raining seoson and the sea is not safe, but I was walking along the beach and sitting there, watching the waves. The beach was nice and clean, and there were a lot of bags with the sand which the local people are piling up to protect the land from the sea (only that time of the season).

I don't watch TV but it is there, in the room, also wi fi is available and the connection was very good. The little garden with the swiming pool was so much calming and relaxing for my eyes that I could sit there at the back of my villa and just watch all the greenary around for an hour or more))) The place is very private and you can hide here and enjoy your pravicy which is quite rare in India. Also I liked that all the villa workers were very well behaved, polite and very attentive to all my needs. Honestly I felt like a Queen here))) Thank you. I didn't meet Olga and Rupert - the managers of the villa because that time they were out of India. But that was very kind of them to contact me via e-mail and to make sure that I am fully satisfied with my stay.

I am leaving tomorrow in the morning, happy and fully rested.I will come back!

  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled solo
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2  Thank Buslova
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 18, 2013

Olga met us from the taxi and showed us a warm welcome. We were shown around orchid cottage and everything was fully explained to us (e.g safe, towels, housekeeping, drinks). There is a kitchen area with a fridge, tea/coffee facilities, the bedroom is large & the cottage has an outside bathroom. The pool area is quite spacious but a bit shabby (plant pots rotten, damp around the walls, lots of sand in the tiles) and everything feels a bit run down and in need of a lick of paint & good clean.
There was a big ant problem in the kitchen but staff sorted this straight away when we raised it.

We stopped at a liquor shop on the way so stocked the fridge up - highly recommended as we paid 65 per beer from the shop and the villa price was 175.

The beach was really dirty and although there's a 'patch of sand' with 2 sunbeds on dedicated to guests from Marari we chose not to use it as the beach was so disappointing.

We stayed around the pool for the afternoon but felt quite caged in, there was nothing to look at other than 4 white walls. It wasnt very relaxing as It was quite loud as we were next to the kitchen area and could hear lots of goings on from there.

All meals are served outside and service was always excellent. breakfast the next was good with lots of choice. We paid 1000 to have a cooking lesson from the chef (meal is 1000 extra). He basically comes into your garden, explains all the ingredients and method so you can write it down then cooks the food in front f you. We both really enjoyed this and was the best part of our stay. The next day we walked to the local village and bought all the spices.

The villa host Shan was brilliant & couldn't do enough for us. He brought us Mosquitoes net, showed us to the beach, asked what time we wanted lunch & dinner etc and was a true gentleman throughout the stay.

The internet connection was on and off throughout the stay which was really annoying as wed purposely chosen somewhere with wifi as we needed to stay in regular contact with home. Olga was lovely and would pop in to check everything was ok throughout the stay.

The service was 5* but Overall we feel the price we paid £100 is too expensive considering its low season and the villa needs a bit of an update.

  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank EE1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 31, 2013

After a pretty hectic couple of weeks in the north, my girlfriend and I wanted somewhere far from the madding crowds. Good food, the odd sunset, not too many other people, somewhere to read a few books, totally relax and learn a bit about life in Kerala.

We got that and a whole lot more !

Greeted by the lovely Olga and Super cool Rupert, we felt instantly at home and welcomed. 6 nights turned into plenty more as we couldn't bring ourselves to leave. We stayed in pretty much every room and loved the lot. Before arriving we wondered if eating in the same place every day would get dull ( normally avoid that sort of set up like the plague and consider food a crucial part of a holiday ). Not so ! Fantastic and varied food every day. And lots of it. Paramount for this reviewer.

Beautiful sunsets every night, warm sea and miles of white sand to walk along with your iPod on shuffle.

Wonderful, caring staff: Suresh, Benjamin on the beach and everyone else really helped to make us feel at home. Nothing was too much trouble and it felt like a place unsullied by too much tourism.

Awesome house boat recommended for a backwater cruise. Cooking class in the villa. Early morning yoga on the beach. Books about life in India recommended. Shall I carry on???

And finally, a magical night organized for Diwali. Oil lamps on the beach. Sparklers. Fireworks. A feast. And great company. Plus guided visit to local temples to witness traditional celebrations first hand and meet the local residents.

I don't write many reviews, and sorry this one has taken so long, but Marari Villas deserve all the positive publicity they get and more. Thank you Olga, Rupert and the team !!

Go go go go go go go.

Love Hannah and Ben

Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
1  Thank Travelling_Renard
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Marari Villas

Address: | Vadkethayil House, Pollathai, Allapuzha, Mararikulam 688567, India
Location: India > Kerala > Alappuzha District > Mararikulam
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 28 Specialty Lodging in Mararikulam
Price Range: $179 - $338 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 7
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Marari Villas offer boutiques serviced villas on beautiful Marari Beach in Alleppey district, Kerala and has properties in 2 locations: 'Orchid' & 'Hibiscus' are adjacent to each other, have private pools and are 300m from the beach. 'Palm' & 'Bougainvillea' do not have pools, but they are on the beach and are 2km south of 'Orchid' & 'Hibiscus'. Each of our villas is serviced by a team of villa host, chef, housekeeper and caretaker/security. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Marari Villas Kerala/Mararikulam, India

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