Everyone (or at least everyone in Mumbai) wants to own a holiday home in Goa. Conde Nast Traveller even did an article on how to pack your bags and shift to Goa for good. This beach town with an insatiable appetite for the good stuff (read food, drinks and parties) has obviously been on my travel radar as well. And I’ve tried them all – budget hotels with nothing in the room except a bed and a bathroom, beach shacks with not even that, luxury resorts that are like an island within themselves and the trustworthy GTDC which seems to teeter somewhere between them all. But the one thing I really want to try is a villa.
The word ‘villa’ inspires the same awe that a ‘condo’ or ‘holiday home’ does. It spells relaxation, luxury and space – lots of it. Imagine having an entire bungalow to yourself, freshly whitewashed and surrounded by a plush garden full of fragrant blooms and your very own jogging track. Imagine that there is a huge swimming pool in this villa with luxurious deck chairs where you can lie down and sunbathe or read your favourite novel over a mojito. Imagine that this bungalow is right on the beach and you wake up to the sound of crashing waves and the intoxicating scent of the sea. It takes your perspective of a Goan vacation several notches higher, doesn’t it?
Winter is approaching and it’s the best weather to hit the beaches. All the glittering beach shacks with hypnotising music have reopened and the cool sea breeze should save you from the sun during lazy afternoons. Now if you’re going to Goa for some serious trekking and exploring, a villa may not be the best bet. But if you’re going just to unwind and do nothing but stare at the azure sky and the endless ocean, you should consider booking a villa. I love my privacy and say what you will, but the isolation a villa provides can certainly not be compared to a resort milling with other tourists. And if you’re travelling in a large group, a villa will not only be cheaper than booking several rooms, you’ll also have more leeway for partying late into the night with near deafening music and raucous chatter.
The only problem with finding a good villa is that a Google search throws up so many of them! How are you to know whether the ‘beach palace’ in Candolim is a better bet than the ‘serene cottage’ in Colva? Allow an aggregator to do the job for you. For instance, thegoavilla.com has 416 verified private villas in its database and you can search for the perfect one according to your requirements and budget. You can also send across a direct query and the team will get in touch with you. Can it get simpler than that?
Top five beaches in Goa to rent a villa in
- Palolem: The queen of beaches in South Goa, Palolem offers stunning views of the sea and surrounding cliffs and foliage. Couples can stay at the cosy 1 bedroom Rose Cottage and larger groups can try the luxurious Alexandra Palace.
- Calangute: If you’re looking for the best party in Goa, look no further than Calangute. One of the best known beaches in North Goa, this one is where the action is. Villa Yasmine offers 5 star service while Vivienne Serene is family-friendly.
- Anjuna: Not only is this one of the best beaches for nightclubs, it’s also where you will find fantastic souvenirs at throwaway prices on Wednesdays at the flea market. Stay in a terrace room at the Grand Hill Villa or rent a cottage at The Fountain Court.
- Cavelossim: This one offers a quiet and serene stretch of the Goan sea and is strewn with luxury resorts and boutiques. Enjoy a honeymoon holiday at Vanessa or sample the modern architecture at The Pinnacle Montana.
- Baga: It is perhaps the oldest and best known beach in Goa and for good reason. Great food, nightclubs and shopping – you’ll find it all here. Johanna Garden and Bela Villa are good options for bringing in a friend’s birthday or bachelorette.
I’ve already been to Goa twice this year. And these villas might just convince me to do it a third time before we bid goodbye to 2015!
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