Friday, March 28, 2008


Loutolim, Goa, India.
phone: 91 - 832 - 777034

ANCESTRAL GOA, a miniature village depicting traditional Goan lifestyle and heritage and preserving Goa's fading past, situated at Loutolim, Goa, India.

From the dream of an artist to becoming a major tourist attraction, the project has come along way since 1995 when it was opened to the public. Today hundreds of tourists - national and international visit the place. Besides artists, students, teachers, nature lovers, environmentalists and others frequent the site often.

The artist Maendra Jocelino Araujo Alvares who is a son of the village of Loutolim has catapulted this idyllic village of rural Goa on the international tourism map. The entire project is fully owned by him. This private enterprise, is managed by his own trained staff who are natives of the village itself.

The Govt. of Goa has acknowledged the project as the "Most Innovative and Unique Project in India's Tourism Industry". The Education Dept. has also recommended it as a "Very Educative Centre" for students.

Also at ancestral Goa is SANT MIRABAI

This National Landmark captures Sant Mirabai singing devoutly to the almighty strumming on her ektara and measuring 14 metres by 5 metres.

This monolith was single-handedly chiseled by the artist Maendra Jocelino Araujo Alavres . Sculpted in Greco-Roman style from a vast expanse of laterite stone in August 1994 at Loutolim, Goa, in a record time of 30 days.

In the halo around devout Mirabai's head, one sees a tinge of Buddhist's influence but the kumkum on the forehead, the anklet, the patti on her wrists and the paizona around her ankles give the sculpture a characteristic Indian appeal. One also notices a particular type of ornament called fullam (flowers of gold) worn by the Goan Hindu women distinctly adorning Mirabai's head. A lotus and half sun on the ektara adds to the mystic of Sant Mirabai.

This work has been cited in the Limca Book of Records as the Longest Laterite Sculpture in India.

Next to Ancestral Goa is

Casa Araujo Alvares stands testimony to 200 years of adaptation of colonialism to the main traditional structure. A wide stairway leads to a pillared portico "Balcao", where long cement seats recline in restful splendour.

Entrance of the Casa Araujo Alvares at Loutolim The wide, crested doorway leads to a short, wide corridor replete with a mirrored hat stand and a huge glazed jar. Two such jars adorn the household and are supposed to have been imported from China with sugar.

A study combined with a general sitting room pays homage to the renowned advocate Dr. Salvador Eufemiano Araujo Alvares. A bedroom with a canopied bed, dressers and the usual assorted pieces fill a room which is continued in mode everywhere.

A wide, low beamed room akin to an attic is led up to by a huge metal door. This room has gun holes strategically placed in defence against the dacoity of the Rane clan.

Study of advocate Dr. Salvador Eufemiano Araujo Alvares A wide, but small, room houses a beautifully painted altar. Clay angels guard the carved doorway to it.

The whole household has walls in painted design - modified to accommodate the need of colour and the age in which the work was done.

The grand hall has a floor of slatted wood, carved furniture and knick knacks lining the walls. A gilded mirror and carved chandelier vie for place of pride amongst the paned windows which overlook an open, lush garden.

View of the alter of Casa Araujo Alvares at Loutolim The stately dining room with its long dining table is flanked by buffets and walled pantries that store edibles for the table and the cutlery & crockery. An unusual sink fitted in the window still serves admirably for those who wish to avail of it.

A vast kitchen with huge firewood stoves, wide shelves and a huge store room, aside, leads to the 'Angonn' which was a very traditional little square built into the main frame. This is a small square garden which is surrounded on all four sides by the house. Fruit and vegetable trees abound here.

Flanking the kitchen, is a quaint bathroom with a niche built into the wall for firewood to be placed therein to heat the water for bath. This water was boiled in a huge copper vessel 'Tosta'. The adjoining toilet is typically goan as it used to be 'Au Naturel'. Raised platforms provided seats with outlets for the porcine livestock to clear the waste ! An oddity for sure but very common and very accepted.

The corridor adjoining the kitchen leads to a kitchen, bath, toilet and living accommodations for the hired help.

This house is open to visitors from 10.00am to 6.00pm - everday. For details contact the reception at "Ancestral Goa".

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