Kozhikode

A museum inside a hotel for Diego Maradona

Legend’s legacy: A Kannur hotel has preserved the room where superstar Maradona stayed during his visit.   | Photo Credit: AP

For a night’s stay at a hotel in Kannur, ₹8,000 is certainly on the higher side. But, Sumesh Varier doesn’t mind it a wee bit. For, he would be sleeping in the room where Diego Maradona stayed for two days in the north Kerala town.

Room No. 309 at Hotel Blue Nile is now a kind of museum for the Argentine football legend. It has retained just about everything Maradona used — including the plates on which he ate and even the shell of the giant tiger prawn, which was specially cooked for him by the chef — when he stayed there in 2012 during his visit for a private function in the city. There are also several pictures, in large frames, featuring Maradona.

This is the tribute to the 1986 World Cup winner by the hotel’s proprietor, V. Ravindran. “I have always been a huge fan of Maradona and the Argentine football team,” he says. “I consider it as my great fortune that he stayed in our hotel.”

Many fans of Maradona, and football in general, ask for the room, he adds. “The rate of the room is almost the same as the others, but the fact is that the revenue from it is far less, as we had to turn two rooms into one when Maradona's manager told us that the original space wasn’t enough,” he says. “I am not bothered at all about the financial viability. Maradona means so much to me.”

Sumesh echoes the sentiment. “When I recently came to know of the hotel, I decided to stay there for my next business trip to Kannur,” he says. “It is like a dream come true. Maradona is like a god to me.”

Sumesh could not have timed his visit to Kannur better. It is on the night the World Cup kicks off in Moscow.

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Printable version | Jan 25, 2021 8:12:31 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/kozhikode/a-museum-inside-a-hotel-for-diego-maradona/article24170498.ece

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