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“AMAZING! Skip the houseboats and do this instead!!”

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Emerald Isle - The Heritage Villa
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed January 25, 2010

The Emerald Isle was the absolute best part of our (my mother and I) trip to India. We just loved everything about it. The food, the hospitality, and the lovely and friendly Island on which it is situated is just amazing, amazing, amazing. I could not review this place more highly. It really is one of those special places that combines the warmth of a family home with the services and comfort of a hotel. The communal meals give you a chance to get to know other travels, and the grounds are just beautiful. We were so, so impressed with the kindness and hospitality of our hosts, Vinod and his wife. They really went above and beyond to make our stay wonderful. I've been recommending this to all my friends over staying in a houseboat- it's really so much better to have the freedom to walk (or bicycle, which you can rent) through the canals of the village. Go visit the Emerald Isle, you won't regret it!!

  • Stayed: January 2010
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1  Thank CLS3000
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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180 - 186 of 253 reviews

Reviewed January 24, 2010

This is a homestay, rather than a hotel. That means a small, family run place where the family also live. The family cooks the delicious food and looks after its guests most attentively.

The house is a horseshoe consisting of four rooms and a dining room. Each room has some seats outside that face into the front garden. That description does not do justice to the beautiful 150 year old farmhouse and the sociable arrangement of seats outside.

The homestay is run by two brothers and the family has lived in the house since it was built. Vinod and Vijo and their family cook meals (which are at set times) and which showcase great Keralan vegetarian and sea-food dishes. Each evening, after dinner, there was a performance of local music. The a capella toddy tappers were impressive and had rustic charm, the crooning local sitar player was a bit less welcome. A strong Kingfisher was always on hand however.

I would recommend this if you want to see a bit a of the Keralan backwaters. The homestay is on an island and ferries its guests across in a canoe paddled by a diminutive boatman, as old as Charon and with superhuman strength.

It would be a lovely place to chill out, if one brother relaxed a bit and spent less energy on enquiring about whether the guests were happy or needed anything: the house is lovely and the rooms are beautiful, full of old dark wood furnishings; the outdoor bathroom was amazing and we would have been extremely happy if they had been slightly less over-attentive. The arrangement of the rooms and the seats outside made it an easy place to meet and get chatting with other guests, although the evening entertainment (near compulsory with a lot of social pressure to tip) disrupted each evening's social energy somewhat.

Mainly a pleasant experience though. The waterways are beautiful and the hotel is clean and the rooms are lovely.

  • Stayed: January 2010, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank A_Flying_Scotsman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 16, 2009

Emerald Isle was our last stop on a short tour of southern India. It was quite amazing to arrive, after dark and enjoy the boat crossing under the stars.

The welcome was lovely, food delicious and non-stop and service 10/10. We enjoyed our walks, bike rides, boat tours and entertainment laid on by the homestay.

The rooms have outdoor showers which are delightful. Our room was however very dark with very little natural light. A new cottage annexe has just been completed which we were shown which was just magic - it would definitely be worth the splurge!

  • Stayed: December 2009, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Scorchy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 6, 2009

Stayed in Emerald Isle at the end of October. Had a lovely relaxing 2 nights there. It's serene and peaceful and the owners Vinod and Vijay were most helpful and looked after us so well. They gave us so much information about their home and family, about the area and Kerala. We had beautiful meals cooked by Ani. Sam our guide showed us around the island and we even were invited in to a Hindu wedding to meet the bride and goom and take photographs! Sam told us so much about the people and how they live. We went out in a canoe one evening on the canals and had quite an adventure when we were caught in a monsoon but Sam looked after us. Would highly recommend Emerald Isle for a relaxing stay with lovely friendly people, very good food and very comfortable surroundings. Try it! From Mary and Danny (Dublin).

  • Stayed: October 2009, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank LagosOct
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 21, 2009

Its a Retreat in a serene atmosphere.
Lot of Activities.

Only 4 rooms and Large Garden, so nice place to relax.

Very Good food and Hosts.

  • Stayed: March 2009, traveled with friends
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Thank arujj321
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 12, 2009

I don't often give hotels top marks but this place really deserves it. It's located on a backwater (literally) and is approached by rowing boat. It's the owners' ancestral home, and is beautifully preserved and very well maintained. There are only 4 rooms, but all are very big, have AC, big beds, and two showers, one indoors and one outdoors. Having an outdoor shower in the rain was a pleasant experience.
The gardens are well kept, and have a wide range of local plants, as well as fish and ducks in the ponds at the back.
The food is all home made, traditional Keralan stuff, and is plentiful and top quality.
The staff treat you like their personal guests, and couldn't be more helpful. At the same time, they leave you in peace if you want it.
This place isn't for everyone, but if you fancy escaping from the hustle and bustle of India for a few days, you can't beat it.
We really didn't want to leave.

  • Stayed: March 2008, traveled as a couple
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Thank anonym0us
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 19, 2009

Lovely 150 year old building reached by canoe.. difficult to find.
Beautiful garden lovely people, interesting to walk around and our back water cruise picked us up from the dock.
Lovely,lovely place. great food.

  • Stayed: April 2009, traveled with family
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Thank calabango
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Emerald Isle - The Heritage Villa

Address: Manimalathara | Chathurthiakary, Alappuzha 688511, India
Location: India > Kerala > Alappuzha District > Alappuzha
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 172 Specialty Lodging in Alappuzha
Price Range: $107 - $178 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 5
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
In the beautiful waterways and backwaters of the Kuttanad region of Central Kerala lies Emerald Isle, an exotic haven of tranquility, seemingly remote from city life, yet barely 10 kilometers from Alleppey Town. Tucked away on this delightful island lies the Emerald Isle Heritage Villa, an ancestral Country House set in 9 acres of secluded grounds – your Retreat into a Paradise of Peace. Emerald Isle Heritage Home is situated in an island resplendent with exotic flora, breathtaking flowers, myriad birds and butterflies to make for a memorable holiday, affordable and unforgettable. A truly wonderful way to spend your time on the banks of the backwaters of Kerala! Our house, dating back 150 years, retains its original architectural features, mostly in teak, with splendid wood carvings. There is also a fine Ara, the timber storeroom used in former times for the golden harvest of rice – golden because the island’s lush green paddy fields turn gold at the time of the harvest. Our property stretches across 9 acres including lush green paddy fields and fish ponds. All meals are served in dining room. Please ask us if you want to have any special facilities like Ayurvedic treatments or houseboat rides. Emerald Isle is ideal for those wanting to relax, sun themselves or getting away from it all. The tranquil air here is salve to frayed nerves and everyday tensions. Read a book or taste the locally harvested ’toddy’ fresh from the coconut trees ! When you tire of lazing in a hammock, or sunbathing in the courtyard garden, you can take a walk around the island, go fishing or have a swim. Emerald Isle Heritage Villa offers peace, privacy and pure relaxation. There are only 5 rooms (All Air-conditioned) for guests and each has its own en-suite Open-Shower bathroom with all modern facilities. The en-suite bathrooms have been tastefully done and open to the sky above to give you a feel of being truly closer to nature at Emerald Isle! ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Emerald Isle - The Heritage Villa Hotel Alappuzha
Emerald Isle - The Heritage Villa Kerala/Alappuzha, India

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