A bit more information regarding Ivon’s Holiday Calm (aka Ivon’s Guesthouse) is in order.
The phone number for Ivon’s is +91 832 229 2672. If you do call, try to call before 8pm (Indian time 5.5hrs ahead of GMT) as Martin tends to go to bed around then as he has to get up in the early hours to go fishing each night.
The guesthouse is named after Martin’s late brother, and opened in approx 1998, growing from a single building with three rooms to the current complex of 3 buildings totalling 19 rooms.
There are three blocks, the oldest consisting of 6 rooms over two floors with shared bathrooms. These are on the beach side of the family home, with views of the palm grove and of the sea (from the upper storey).
Next is the block that we’re in. This has eight rooms, again over two levels, each room having an attached bathroom (sink, toilet and shower). These rooms look over the family enclosure with it pigs, chickens, coconut palms and washing areas. Each room has a balcony area at the front, which is where we have hung our hammock.
Finally, there is a new block, opened on 1st December 2004. This is adjacent to the first block but consists of five rooms over three levels ( the ground floor only has one room). All of these have attached bathrooms.
All of the rooms are about the same size, and have basic facilities such as a variable-speed, ceiling-mounted fan, large double bed with typical rock-hard Indian mattress, and a small bedside table. The bed is provided with a large sheet, but no other bedsheets or towels are provided.
There is a single main light in each room, with a secondary smaller light, usually with a coloured bulb, and a light outside each room on the balcony.
Washing of clothes is done by the household, usually within a day or so, for Rs8 per item.
Music is banned, in an effort to retain the peace which comes with being away from the main guesthouse area of Arambol, and drugs are likewise prohibited.
Each room has a window (with security grille) and the door is secured using a padlock, making for a safe place to store your belongings.
There is no restaurant on site but there are loads within a few minutes walking distance, either along the beach or towards the main Beach Road.
Martin charges Rs300 per night for a room with attached bathroom, Rs250 for shared bathroom, though discounts can be negotiated if staying for a while.
There’s no hot water, but the water storage tank on the roof does warm up during the day so that showers taken in the afternoon could almost be described as warm. Occasionally the tank will run out over night, but the family will happily refill as soon as they know.
You need to bring (or buy) your own towels and toilet roll, and bed sheets if you need them can be bought for about Rs170 near the beach.