For every traveler in Mumbai, the itinerary generally consists of a trip to Gateway of India, Colaba, Marine Drive and others. However, if you are a keen traveler and not just a tourist visiting the city, there is a special experience the city has to offer. Move over homestays for there is now an upgrade, slum-stay. For Rs 1500 a night, you will get to sleep and eat where 60% of Mumbai’s population lives, the slum.
Picture courtesy: Facebook/ Slum Homestay
The offer being made by Ravi Sansi, a former street vendor living in suburban Khar East, will invite you to his home and live with 14 other members of his family to sleep and dine. The guests will live with Sansi’s family in their tiny apartment. Visitors will however share a public bathroom with the rest of the residents of the slum. It is all part of the hospitality package being offered by Sansi.
"We would be very happy if they eat with us, but we can also direct them to a nearby restaurant,” Sansi told Times of India. Inspired by an idea shared with him by an NGO worker, David Bijl from Netherlands, David has already created a Facebook page called Slum Homestay Mumbai to invite interested people. Though this will mark the world’s first slum homestay, its organizer, David and Sansi want to dismiss it as poverty tourism. "Here, you are actually staying with Ravi's family, you are learning about their lives. You're not just passing by and taking a selfie for your Facebook page,” says David.
Picture courtesy: Facebook/ Slum Homestay Mumbai
The guests who Sansi primarily believe will be foreigners will stay in his newly acquired loft humbly decorated with mattress, clean sheets and cushions. While the guests may miss out on fanciness, this unique experience wants those visiting the city to open their eyes to a different side altogether.