A very long, outsized full-length double-decker houseboat lies anchored on a hot and dry January day somewhere in Alappuzha on the most houseboat-travelled route in Kerala. The Vembanad lake lies still while the coconut trees stand in contrast to the perfectly blue sky. The houseboat here named the “Royal Palace” and classified as “Conference Houseboat” is probably the largest on Kerala backwaters, featuring a large dining hall, full kitchen and a conference room in addition to the usual bedrooms and toilets. She was hired by a marriage party that day. A beauty, isn’t she?