Super Deluxe Room With Breakfast & Dinner
Price for 1 Night
2 Rooms Left!
Super Deluxe Room
Tue, 04 Apr – Wed, 05 Apr (1 Night) | 1 Room | 1 Guest
Super Deluxe Room
(based on 63 reviews)
If there would have been a rating below terrible then I would have opted for that. I had never stayed in a houseboat before so my expectations were really high as I had heard a lot. However I was very disappointed. The houseboat was very smelly and you feel like puking. Food was pathetic to say the least and service was even worst. We checked in around 3 pm in the afternoon and It was freezing cold. However the care taker Hamid refused to turn the heater on. For the entire night the heater was not working and we were freeing in sub zero temperatures. Breakfast was also pathetic. And the surprising thing was that they were more interested in serving the Thai group which was sharing the houseboat with us. Thai group got all the attention and they completely ignored us. Please do not visit Wangnoo Sheraton Group of Houseboats. Please don't.
We stayed two nights in a Wangnoo houseboat, No. 4, to be exact. We were part of a tour group. Accommodations were alright, albeit a little dated. However, as previous posters have mentioned, electricity tends to go off intermittently all day. The biggest issue for us, though, was the heat. Generators were turned on 1/2 hour before our wake-up call, and then shut off midway through breakfast. They were not turned back on till 6:00 pm, and then shut off at around 9:30 pm. To keep us warm, hot bottles were put in our beds by the boat captain. One day we had to return to the boat for lunch and then had to wait 3 hours till our next outing. Those 3 hours were so cold for us, even after we kept our heavy coats on and covered ourselves in a thick blanket in the living room. Brrrrr! Hot water was a precious commodity, had to let the water run for about 5 minutes before it got warm, and then it fluctuated back and forth, scalding hot and freezing cold. For that reason, all bathtubs had a bucket so we could mix the water to the right temps and then use that to bathe with. The good - our boat captain, Javeed, was the friendlists, most accommodating person. He saw to our every need and was helpful in explaining Kashmirian history and customs. Food was alright, especially the fresh vegetables served to us. What became annoying was having vendors board the boat and set up shop in the living room. I suppose if we had complained to Javeed they would have been sent on their way, but we did not, seeing that they needed the business. But after a while it got tiring, and we lost use of the living room the last evening and morning we were there. I have to add, though, that some tour members did enjoy the bargaining and haggling back and forth.
This was my first visit to Habib and family aboard their exquisite houseboats on Nageen lake. My spouse has visited 2 time previous and said I would not be disappointed and she was right on all counts. The food and service are impeccable, the views from the front deck are stunning and the rooms and beds are comfortable and welcoming. Habib and sons cater to your every request, while we were there they booked flights, arranged tours and taxis, and shikara boats for touring the lakes. They have many ideas for your time in Kashmir from skiing, trekking, fishing and cultural tours, which I am sure they would happily organize for anyone interested.
Overall it was generally a good experience on the houseboat. The boat captain was accommodating and attentive, the food provided on board was excellent (I like Northern Indian food). We had a clean room and toilet but the heater was shut off in the middle of the night. It felt like the generator capacity was deliberately reduced to provide minimal light in the room and toilet. Even though there were 4 layers of covers/blanket and a hot bag was given, it was cold once the heater was turned off.
Wangnoo Sheraton was an experience suggested by our guide and now family, Aijaz anchari of explore harmukh. We love the quaint houseboat, the surroundings, our personal houseboy Javeed, the food...the only thing we did not enjoy was the cold..especially in the morning. I believe they tried their best in providing us warmth but electricity was a luxury in Kashmir. Heat was turned on sparingly since there were power cuts throughout the day. That aside, you should never miss the experience of staying in a houseboat and I believe Wangnoo Sheraton group of houseboat is one of the best. I am glad to be at Nigeen Lake since Dal lake looks busy and slightly touristy. We took the shikara to and from the houseboat everyday and seeing Javeed waiting for us at the steps of the houseboat brings a smile after our daily sightseeing trips. He will be waiting with a thermos of Chai , ready to warm us up. There's always an abundance of warm, delicious food and Mr. Habib will make sure you are fed well. Wake up early and just sit outside listening to the various prayer calls from the nearby mosques..It's an experience you will cherish for the rest of your life.
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