Avik's house is beautiful, among the best I could find in Kolkata on Airbnb and otherwise. It's situated in a peaceful neighbourhood, away from all the noise, and yet less than a kilometre away from the auto stand and metro station. The room is spacious and the ventilation is amazing. The best part about staying here is that you also get a kitchen (btw, you bring and cook your own food; no complimentary breakfast) furnished with utensils and a spacious roof where you can dry your washed clothes. Besides, the roof offers a beautiful view of lush greenery. The bathroom is shared (just fyi; no problem). It doesn't say so explicitly in the description, but Avik did let me know when I asked him before booking. The wifi is smooth. Overall, the house is a good deal. But it's the hosting that leaves much to be desired.
Avik is helpful and replies promptly, but he makes most things he does (which should have been taken care of without you asking for it, such as having a blanket for the guest) sound like a favour than his duty (which it is as a host). He was kind and polite but gave me way too many instructions (and yes, he used that word), right down to which light to switch on and which window to close. It's ok if you tell me once, but listening to the same thing 7-8 times is annoying.
The biggest con for me was the cleanliness charge of 750 rupees. Firstly, I don't get that concept. Any room by default has to be clean. Why should you charge a separate fee for it? Secondly, when you do charge that, at least ensure you get rid of the dust and spiderwebs in and behind the cupboards and the dead lizard under the fridge, and that your cleaner doesn't have issues with cleaning the bathroom. Ensure that your cutlery is clean and not rusting. Ensure that the bathroom's flush works perfectly (It's all the more crucial in case of a shared bathroom).
Yes, all of that happened. Some of you might think that I am a fussy guest (read the other reviews I have written, if need be), especially considering the other positive reviews.
Also, while Avik is available on the phone, there is no caretaker (just fyi) at the place to help out in case of a problem, which as mentioned above, there were aplenty. So I'll sum it up by saying that this a great house with amazing potential, but the host, though helpful and polite, could learn a little more about hospitality. I understand that a homestay is not the same as a hotel and certain things may not be as professionally done. That is all right. But the things I have mentioned above are basics which must be taken care of and were take care of in my previous experiences with Airbnb.