About this listing
Our unique 5-bedroom villa gives you Kerala with a difference! A creatively designed space where you don't have to step outdoors to enjoy nature, it comes right into your home. Located in the heart of the Kumarakom tourist belt.
The Lily Pad, as its name suggests, is a hidden gem in the backwaters of Kerala, India. There is water everywhere – swimming pool, canal and lake – you can take your pick!
Surrounded by a one-acre plot which has swaying coconut palms and mango trees and located on the banks of Lake Vembanad, this luxurious villa is the perfect place for a relaxed get-away-from-it-all holiday with family and friends.
The Villa has been lovingly designed by renowned architect Gautam Bhatia, an authority on the work of Laurie Baker (who pioneered wire-cut brick finish architecture in Kerala). It is a beautiful blend of antique and modern, indoors and outdoors. Old wooden doors, windows and pillars from old Kerala homes have been juxtaposed on its clean-cut lines and nature is absolutely everywhere.
ABOUT THE HOUSE AND THE AMENITIES
• 5 Bedrooms with attached bathrooms (2 guests per room, Rs 1000/- per night for an extra mattress)
• Beautiful, outdoor swimming pool
• Open-air showers (Kerala style!)
• Fully equipped kitchen with 5-ring hob, oven, microwave, fridge-freezer (Pots and pans and crockery, cutlery also available for self-catering)
• An organic vegetable garden to the rear of the kitchen provides fresh vegetables
• Curry Meen (a popular local fish variety) abound in the canal on the property
• Colonial-style furniture
• Solar power-run lights and fans
• Solar-run water heaters in kitchen and bathroom
• Auto-switch on generator for full back-up (in case the electricity goes out)
• COOK INCLUDED IN THE PRICE -- makes up to 3 meals a day, you just pay for groceries
• Car and driver available for hire
• Yoga, massage and houseboat tours can be arranged separately
Guests will have access to the full villa during their stay, including a beautiful swimming pool, verandah area, living and dining room, and a quiet reading room at the top of a tower overlooking the lake.
Interaction with Guests
We, the owners, are not present on the property at all. We do have two full-time staff on site for cleaning and maintenance. They live in separate servant quarters. We also have a property manager who lives in the area and is available to answer all your questions on the ground.
Our villa is located in the very heart of the Kumarakom tourist belt (near Taj Vivanta and Kumarakom Lake Resort hotels).
You can visit the nearby bird sanctuaries and wildlife resorts to see a part of India that Indians lovingly refer to as “God’s own Country”. Have the complete backwater experience and take a houseboat cruise on the lake. If that isn’t all the relaxation you need, try some yoga or an ayurvedic massage with special herbal oils.
Nearby and along the lakeshore there are many renowned 5-star hotels serving food and drink and the seafood specially has to be tried.
You can also visit the charming town of Kottayam and shop for silks, spices and sarees, explore Arundhati Roy's home town of Alleppey, or do a day-trip to Thekkady to see the spice plantations.
Car and driver pick up available from nearest airport Kochi (COK) for Rs 2400/-. A comfortable 2-hour drive. (Larger cars cost more, inquire for details).
There is no public transportation but you can easily hire a car and driver to take you around to tour local attractions, and rates are charged according to mileage and number of hours.
Other Things to Note
We've enlisted the services of a cook, and this is included in the price of accommodation (you just have to pay for the cost of groceries). The cook can prepare up to 3 meals for your group. For groups over 10 people, the cook will need to hire an assistant for an additional charge of Rs. 500 a day.
You give the cook money to go shopping, and he will prepare delicious Kerala specialties (appams and stew, idilis, Curry Meen) in the kitchen for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
We will welcome you with fresh coconuts from trees on the property :)
:: Please shower before using the pool
:: Please be aware the pool is shallow but can be dangerous for young children, and we are not liable for any accidents
:: Please let the staff know when you need a change of towel or bedsheets: we strive to be eco-friendly, and change linens upon request
:: The 2 staff will work to serve you until 10 pm or so, please be mindful that they wake up early to prepare for you and don't keep them awake too late!
:: Cook and driver are to be paid directly
:: Please note that hosts are not responsible for local factors beyond their control, including but not limited to electricity outages, insects on the property, etc. Guests should be aware that the hosts will go to great extents to ensure their comfort during their stay, but will not be responsible or offer refunds for these variables.
Gorgeous place with a great view. Perfect for our family get together. Like having a entire hotel to yourself! Great to have your own private chef make meals for you! Very relaxing and great family time! Hosts were easy to communicate with and were very accommodating to our needs. Thanks again!
The lily pad is a fabulous property. There could b no better place to unwind and soak in the beauty of the backwaters. Mahira was very quick in every response.
We got to the house on a bad weekend when they were short staffed and the pool wasn't cleaned and so we couldn't use it. Mahima gave us a discount because of that. Our trip would've been fantastic with the pool but was still a lot of fun.
The home cooked meals were splendid throughout our stay. We hope to go back to the lily pad but this time with a well kept pool
We felt completely cared for. It was a little strange, arriving in Cochin close to midnight, a family of 10 which included 4 young children, but our drivers, arranged by hosts were waiting, and our host also called us while we were in the car on the drive back, just to make sure all was OK. On arrival the live-in staff members were waiting and welcoming and we were delighted by the feeling that we had arrived at an up-market boutique hotel, with wonderfully spacious rooms, air-con in all bedrooms. Next morning we met the chef arranged for us by our host and breakfast was served. The swimming pool was perfect, nestled right up against the house it ensured 4 very happy children, and contented adults lounging on the beautifully cool and breezy central patio.
Mahima (the owner) and Lisha (the manager) made us very welcome. Mahima sent a bunch of emails both before and right after we'd checked in; and Lisha made sure that everything was set right for our welcome. The place was exactly as described, and is a really beautiful villa. Fantastic rooms, pool, and a cook who makes great food. Couple of service issues that can be improved upon. Overall a great family experience.
This is a fabulous property and it far exceeded our expectations. It is right on the backwaters and after visiting other 5-star properties in the area, I can confidently say that this is far superior to any of those. We were about 9 people (mostly adults) and the house was more than comfortable and in fact we did not use 2 of the bedrooms! The bedrooms are huge and the views stunning!
The Lily Pad is a dream destination! Mahima (owner) was extremely easy to communicate with and made sure all our questions were answered. She followed up on our reservation prior to our arrival date which felt great.
Mahima also put us in touch with Lisha (property manager) who was extremely helpful and made sure we had the most comfortable stay. I strongly recommend that you book your houseboat and taxi accommodations through Lisha. Both were amazing!
A special thank you for the great service provided by the two on-site attendants, especially Mani Ram. They were always available if we needed anything and took great care of everyone. Even the cook (Ajith) was fantastic! Local cuisines prepared daily - one can't ask for better hospitality!
Talking about the lakeside property, I can only rave about the place. Rooms were huge and clean, great open air showers, fantastic (almost an infinity) pool by the verandah, lakeside views all form a perfect amalgam for one of the best stays.
Getting to the Lily pad was a little difficult as the directions were not the easiest to follow - but worry not. Lisha and her husband really helped us navigate and get there.
I highly recommend staying at the Lily Pad for a quiet and peaceful getaway! I'm definitely coming back here. Cheers!
Mahima and Lisha were a great team. Even before we got there, we had a driver settled, a cook and our plans for the next few days ready to be enjoyed.
Lisha (Property Manager) really took care of us. Her english is perfect, so that was a great start. She understood what we wanted to do and gave us options based on the time and price we had available.
The property itself is just amazing. It's on the lake, something not shown on previous photographs. And the view is truly one in a million. I've been all over the world and i cannot think of a single more serene location in all my travels... I have a really hard time relaxing and honestly, just hanging out and doing nothing is not something i'm very good at. But this property really got me to just hang loose and have fun.
Here is a day in the life on this property. Wake up early, watch all the houseboats and fisherman go by on the lake. Then, we had tea service, and just hung out on the veranda. In the morning the kids would play in the pool (Perfect for kids, 3-4' deep max graded) and then we'd have lunch, prepared by a cook we hired. After lunch a few drinks and then we'd play some games and go out in Kumarakon for a little shopping and come back. Dinner and watch the sunset. Rinse, repeat.
The house has several huge bedrooms with large beds. Modern western restrooms and plenty of space for large groups of people. I don't know the maximum it can sleep, but this property worked great for us separate 3 families. There is enough space to really congregate or separate as desired.
You can easily walk out to the main road and take a peek around the local neighborhood. And lastly, the Kumarakom Lake resort nearby offers ayurvedic massage among other things. Lots of wildlife going on here as well, we saw all sorts of birds, fish, turtles, and i think even a monitor lizard! Awesome.
We will definitely come back to this amazing place, thank you so much Lisha and Mahima, you've really got something special here.
About the Host, Mahima
Hi! I'm an innovation consultant, nature lover, avid traveler and scuba diver. I belong to a family of global nomads (currently living across New York and London), but we have a special place in our hearts for this beautiful home on the banks of Lake Vembanad.
We've been lucky to have stayed in some wonderful Airbnb homes across the world, and thought it only fitting that we put our villa up on here so that the Airbnb community can experience our little piece of paradise as well.
Do get in touch if you're interested!