Thrissur, Cockroaches and All…
None of the guides had very much to say about Thrissur so we did not know what to expect except there would not be many tourists and there were, as there are everywhere, plenty of temples to see.
This is the main temple, thousands of years old, which sits on top of a mound in a large park area around which the city is built. Our first hotel was on ‘Round South’, the southernmost section of the road and overlooked the temple from the balcony. As usual, we were not allowed inside as non-Hindus.
Pathan’s Residential Hotel – ALERT!
We booked a place called Pathans Residential Hotel on the train as recommended by the Lonely Planet (which I have paid for on the iPad as a digital download) and arrived via another hairy rickshaw ride. The entrance was sort of underground and although it seemed grimy and very dated on arrival at reception, the size of the room and the balcony more than made up for it and we settled, unpacked and sat on each of the eight different chairs we had in the room. Hungry, we went to the decidedly chilly restaurant in the hotel and had a delicious and very cheap vegetarian meal (less than £2 for both of us and we could not finish it.) We explored the city in the evening and went to bed tired. The fun and games started at Pathans the following night. The following is the review I will be posting on Trip Advisor and emailing to the manager as soon as I have wifi again, it should explain it all and why we tried to get another place to stay at 2 am…. (Aunt Elaine be warned, you won’t like it!)
“Pathans Residential Hotel
Round South, Thrissur.
Do not stay here. The room was filthy in places ( see pictures) and although there was some lovely antique furniture in the room there were also many cockroaches hiding under the wardrobe. Staying here you are seriously in danger of not being able to escape from a fire.
Our troubles started when the receptionist phoned us at half past midnight, twice, waking us up (which he later lied about) so we had a really good view of the night time activities of the cockroaches. We went to complain about the calls and the infestation and eventually got them to understand it was not OK with us. At first there were no other rooms available for us to move to and the ‘room boy’ was called to spay some chemicals. He arrived empty handed as the spray had run out, he had finished it trying to clear other rooms. We looked around the hotel and found 15 empty rooms and tried to go downstairs again but the lift had been switched off and the middle staircase locked ( there are businesses on floors 2,3 and 4) If there was a fire we would have died. (when I mentioned this they said they would help us out of the window in case of a fire but could not explain how, from the 5th floor.)
Apparently none of the 15 empty rooms were a/c and when we said we did not mind that they were all booked for 4 am arrivals. At this point the receptionist seemed amused by us. We asked for the receptionist to phone the manager and eventually he complied. The manager gave permission for us to be moved and we were shown to an a/c double room (surprisingly empty and ready) similar to the one we had left, but with the addition of a cockroach on the bed!
Tired by the stress of it all and the fact it was now past 2am we decided to sleep in our first room with the lights on to deter the cockroaches coming out to play. In the morning we were unable to get any sort of discount on the R1350 we had already paid for the room. The manager was not yet available and the receptionist said it did not mater if we wrote a bad review, no discounts were available. We showed him some pictures of the dirt in the room and the cockroaches but it made no difference.
Only if you like cockroaches and the thought of burning to death in the night while trying to get though massive metal gates on the staircase should you stay here.
To be balanced, I should also say the hotel is in a good location, the rooms were big and the food in the vegetarian restaurant was very good value and tasty (we ate here before knowing about the cockroach infestation though).”
Henry came down with a bad cold while we were there so we spent one entire day not leaving the hotel which was a good rest actually. We ate in the restaurant which was notable for having the best service we have received so far. All our food was presented at the same time! We have found this rarely is the case, and waiting, to be polite, results in one person’s food going completely cold.
A snazzy rickshaw (no two are ever the same but they are quite quick so it is hard to get a good photo).