When the 2018 World Cup football is becoming a global celebration across the globe, football lovers of Nepal are certainly not untouchable from the hype that every-four year tournament has brought. After office, the very first thing every football lovers think about is the world cup matches scheduled in the evening. And of course, from the cafeteria to the office desk, if something everyone is talking about these days is football.
Some people stay with the family to watch the football while others visit the nearest sports hive or a lounge bar where the football is live on a big screen—and a glass of beer by their side is not bad though.
Apart from these high standard sports bars with space for hundreds of fans and unbeatable footballing atmosphere, a small hotel located at the border of Kathmandu and Bhaktapur is creating a different environment. Every day about a hundred fans gathers here to watch the 32-day tournament.
“It is good to see the football lovers gather at the hotel and enjoying the tournament,” said the hotel owner Tilak Ale.
Ale set up the 32-inch HD television set at the wall just ahead of the World Cup. He said the TV is for football lovers.
Well, it’s not just the World Cup that’s attracting the visitors at the Ale Khaja Ghar, located in Lokanthali. Frankly, it’s the local taste of food the hotel offers to its customers.
Comparing to many other restaurants in the capital, Ale Khaja Ghar looks less fancy. It is small and has traditional furniture. No waiter will come to serve you any food there. Or, one will not think of choosing it for a date with a sweetheart. Despite this, the hotel has remained successful to attract many customers. The reason: the taste of food is much fancier here and the price is much cheaper.
“Once you come here and eat a lunch set, you will stop thinking about going to another hotel,” said a customer.
“The taste of food here is too good to skip,” he added.
The hotel offers sekuwa, bhutun, mutton, chicken and fried fish. Sekuwa and Bhutun are the most popular food items here. And definitely, they are famous in the local area.
“I have been coming to this hotel for five or six years. The foods are cooked in fire and which gives it a different taste, a local taste,” said another customer.
“When you eat here, you feel like you are eating at your home, especially the rice,” he added.
“Also the price here is so much cheaper than other hotels,” he said.
And local beer and drinks go along with the lunch set perfectly. Ale said that he has been running the hotel for 12 years and has always focused on the quality of food rather than earning money.
“I have run this hotel for years and no one has ever questioned the quality of food,” said Ale. “If you greed for money and cannot give quality food with quality taste, you cannot attract the same customer again and again,” he added.
Around this time of the World Cup, every evening about a hundred fans gather in the hotel, order their likes and watch football.
“They support a team, they cheer and they drink and eat. It’s entertainment and business both,” he added.