I cannot say enough good things about the Apsara boat and the affiliated Park Vembanad Hotel and facilities. I will be returning in November for my third three night stay on the Apsara. I am a relatively new but frequent holiday traveler to India. This upcoming trip will be #8 since October 2009, and I generally stay at Oberoi or Taj properties. But after a good bit of research, I decided to give the Apsara a try rather than the Oberoi boat (which docks less than a km from the Park). What an outstanding choice in hindsight! The staterooms on the Apsara are spectacular, large (actually huge for a boat), and fully modern with great views, a/c, satellite tv, wifi, mini bar fridge, lots of storage room, etc. Good bathroom as well. I think there are 8 total rooms on the boat. The common facilities on the boat are also great, including open air (but very private) massage rooms, shaded cruising deck, large dining area on board, as well as a restuarant on shore. Also on shore, where you dock every evening, there is a great pool, and also lots of places to walk, see the spice markets, etc. The food is the best I've had anywhere in India, perhaps because I love Kerala food, but the chef can cook anything, whether northern or traditional Indian, continental. Always good. The staff is perhaps the best part of the whole experience! They are highly professional and also a lot of fun and interesting. Mr. Karthik Gurudev has provided outstanding and creative, intelligent service on each of my prior trips, and Mr. Amose James is also wonderful. And of course the captain, who definitely knows this boat and the lake extremely well. Any review of the Apsara would not be complete without mentioning the location itself, Kerala and Vembanad Lake. It is one of the most peaceful, tranquil, relaxing places in India and, actually, the world that I have experienced so far in life. As far as the Park Hotel, I have not stayed in the hotel rooms, but have taken a look at them and they are very comfortable. The pool area and restaurant are all common to both the boat and hotel, and trips on the boat can be arranged. A true tropical oasis in India. Easy to get there, at least by air. Fly into Kochi airport and then a relatively short (90 minutes average) but most interesting drive.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Park on Vembanad Lake in Kumarakom West, Kerala Backwaters is the sophisticated docking station for the Apsara. With a total of ten luxury rooms and a deluxe room lake view room, the resort exudes elegance and style.The Resort offer very private stay offer complete serenity.In food we offer traditional Kerala cuisine along with complete range of Indian and International gourmet to choose from.Aura Spa keeps one relaxed and helps in rejuvenation.The M.V.Apsara Built on two levels, the Apsara consists of eight rooms, a crew cabin, a galley, saloon and dining area, a sundeck and a picturesque forward seating area. The interiors of this luxury cruiser have been designed keeping in mind the luxury and comfort that the well-heeled tourists and leisure travelers require.Apsara Backwaters Cruiser offers contemporary and modern amenities offering inspiring design, innovative dining, sensuous entertainment, instant connectivity and edgy art. The onshore gym and the tented spa offer Ayurvedic and international treatments.The dining area and salon, situated on level 1, with their grand décor create an ambience of luxury. The corner sofas with cushions and tables on level 2 provide ample space for guests to sit back and enjoy the panoramic view of the backwaters. The impeccable services extended to the guests combined with the enhanced display of sophistication makes the voyage memorable.Enjoy this unmatched abode in a perfect eco-setting - a pleasant escape to the lap of nature. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- The Park On Vembanad Lake Hotel Alappuzha
- The Park On Vembanad Lake Kerala/Alappuzha