The Golden Eye was recommended to me by fellow VTer Justin, as we were looking for something "close to the action", but still quiet enough to have some relaxing tanning-time. (I guess the James Bond-image in my head also helped...haha!)
Located in Calangute as close to the beach as you can get, we found it to be the perfect location: central, yet quietly tucked away from the main road, with plenty of shacks, restaurants & bars within walking distance.
The rooms are basic: the 3 of us shared a double room with an extra mattress on the floor, a small yet sufficient sea-facing balcony and a bathroom, which simultaniously serves as your shower cabin.
The bed was a bit hard, and we sometimes had to remind the staff of fresh towles, toilet paper, etc. but they were always friendly, helpful and clean enough for our simple and fun beach-holiday.
The rooms come with a small refrigerator and a television with plenty of movie & music channels. You can opt for a room with airconditioning, or (as we did) simply with a fan during the cooler season.
We saw guests ranging from singles, couples and families of all ages, with and without children: this hotel is definitely not only for the budget trance-addict or backpacker - it suits everyone that is not too fussy and doesn't want to over-spend.
This is not a fancy place, but in my opinion: if you want a cheap, cheerful holiday near the beach, how much time will you be spending in your room anyway? And why would you want to pay more than necessary? I would definitely stay there again.
The manager's name is Michael, and the receptionist is Lucy.
Both really made sure that we felt welcome, comfortable and safe - thank you!
One of the loveliest bars in Calangute - actually, it's an insult to call the Flying Dolphin merely a "beach shack" as it was recently rebuilt with a proper roof, new bar, lovely seating area & serves as the stage for many live bands. The chef is Greek but there's also a small selection of nice non-fussy snacks & international dishes on the menu... and don't forget to sample the huge cocktail list, of course! ;-)
The Seafood restaurant of the hotel makes a fantastic Fish Caldeen, a Goan speciality (green chillies and coconut; mild enough for even me!). You can sit under the roof with fans, or on the outside terrace. Most of the waiting staff are very knowledgeable & the prices were (as with the whole of Goa) great value for money.
Huts on the beach are typical for this area and other beach destinations in India. The stay was comfortable up to a point.
There was no room-service, but, to compensate, all you had to do was just look out and you could see for yourself if the restaurant was open or not.
While I was there, the breakfast service started at 7.30 AM and dinner service stopped after 10.00 PM. There were very few options in the area earlier than 7.30 AM - but , this was a BIG plus, I could swim at 6.00 AM till 9.00 PM and no one to bother me, did not need any body guards either
Great view of the beach, fishing boats, surf and sunset. You hear the gentle lapping of the surf and nothing else during the night.
Warning - some of these hut hotels do not open till the season has started in earnest.
When I got there, December 3, 2007, I was literally the first guest at Hi-Tide. The rooms started filling up in a matter of days. Additional hotels and restaurants were still being erected, so I inquired, seems Dec 15 thru Jan 15 is peak season.
Despite the name, this is a hotel – a fairly basic but pleasant two star one in a good location a couple of minutes’ stroll from the beach (don’t believe the hotel’s own publicity which claims it is right on the beach, but to be honest it’s more than close enough!) The hotel is also very near Tito’s Road, the centre of Baga’s nightlife, but far enough from the action to be largely peaceful – check out the location on the useful JohntheMap website.
We booked through a package company, Jewel in the Crown, and were happy with the price (which I now can’t remember) and with the quality of the accommodation for what we paid. Our first floor room was simply furnished and overlooked the pool. We paid a small extra daily fee to get air-conditioning, which was well worth it in that heat. The bathroom was large but very basic, with a shower-head at one end of the room – an unscrupulous estate agent in this country might try to pass it off as a wet room, but that would suggest a level of luxury that it didn’t possess. However it was more than adequate for our needs, and the erratic nature of the hot water supply also didn’t bother us as cool water was fine in those temperatures.
The staff were friendly and we appreciated the currency exchange service offered for an hour or so each morning. There’s a restaurant on site – we ate dinner there the first evening, which was fine, but chose to eat elsewhere on the other evenings, though we had a simple breakfast (included in the price) each morning.
The electricity supply is like the hot water a little erratic, but that’s common all over Baga. I recommend that you take a torch for power cuts, and also because the road to the town, though short, is unlit. Ask someone to point out the short cut from the back of the hotel if you want to go straight to where the bars and restaurants are rather than via the beach. And when you want to go further afield there are always taxis parked right outside the front gate and the hotel staff will make sure you’re not ripped off.
The history of the cottages is interesting. They were created by a priest, Father Mario Pires, about 40 years ago and are now run by his niece Nalini. The family still give a portion of their profits to local charities, just as Father Pires did, and if you ask the staff will show you a binder with information about the good works supported in this way.
By the way, the short video on the website below gives an accurate picture of the hotel, including the standard of the rooms.
While in Baga we took an overnight trip to a "Backwoods camp" several hours inland. It was a good opportunity to see another side of Goa. The camp is run by a local who was born and grew up in Goa Town but is passionate about his state's countryside and wildlife, and keen to share it with tourists. During the two days of the trip we visited local villages, bathed with elephants, toured a nature reserve and swam in waterfalls. I’ve described some of these activities in my Things to Do section.
The accommodation at the camp is in fixed tents, each with a toilet and cold water shower. It’s basic but comfortable enough. In the evening we had a wonderful dinner of vegetable curry, and drank local beers and a honey brandy sitting round a camp fire. Because it was Diwali we had the bonus of a visit by a drummer from a nearby village, who played traditional music and then attempted to join in with our renditions of campfire favourites (and even Blaydon Races, the Newcastle United anthem LOL).
Just one warning though – perhaps you shouldn't choose this trip if you hate spiders. They're BIG! [see photo 3, if you dare]
The Hotel Angelina, all of 2 minutes from Baga's breathtaking shores, is a quaint little gem. My friends and I found this to be the perfect recluse - helpful staff, clean interiors and pleasant surroundings.
"You can check out anytime you like,
But you can never leave..."
• Wonderful location - you can almost hear the ocean through the ornate white windows
• Non-interfering staff - Angelina is very much a family-run enterprise, with an elderly Goan matriarch lording it over the Portuguese-styled mansion. Her sons (Peter & Michael, if I remember correctly) will help you with whatever you need
• Cheep, Cheep! - at less than Rs. 500/ night for three people (ok, it was off season), this one's a real steal
In most Goan Hotels your room will be cleaned every day. Normally the chap that takes your luggage to your room is your roomboy. To get off to a good start tip him on your first day...tell him theres a good tip awaiting at the end of your stay...if the room is kept clean. Its amazing what a difference this makes to the service!
Unless you opt to stay in one of Goa's 5* Hotels don't expect too much. Most of the Hotels are farly basic...and usually look fairly tired due to the hot weather and the monsoon rains in the summer. A Hotel that was built five years ago may look like its been around for fifty!
What tends to make a Hotel stand out is the staff...most of whom are very welcoming and and work hard to please you.
So relax a bit...let the Hotel grow on you...
Marys Holiday Home
C/o Mrs June Noronha
House 655, Anjuna Beach,
Ph :- 0091-832-5613118 (Intl Dial Format)
Cell:- 0091-9822155914 (Intl Dial Format)
When calling from Any Part of india
STD Landline :0832-5613118
STD Cell :0-9822155914
When In Goa: 5613118
When In Goa: 9822155914
It has Two categories of rooms, One is a basic room and The other is a well furnished room with Marble and Granite Flooring. They also provide a laundry service.
NOTE:- THERES A TIP THAT SAYS ALL NEGATIVE THINGS ABOUT MARYS HOLIDAY HOME WHICH IS TOTALLY BASELESS. WHOEVER HAS WRITTEN IT, MAYBE HE/SHE HAS SOME PERSONAL ISSUES.
Other than the above
Omkar Guest House (Basic Listing) - Pay and Add Email/Website Address
Anjuna Beach Anjuna Goa-403509
GRANDPA'S INN HOTEL,Anjuna
WHITE NEGRO GUEST HOUSE
NEAR ST. ANTHONY'S CHAPEL
Top Shop & Guest House, Govekar Vaddo, Middle beach, Anjuna. Tel # 0091-832-2250354.
I loved this hotel, The service was brilliant, the waiters took a shine to our kids and gave them 5 star service! It had a great pool, quite a bit of entertainment in the evening by the pool. Our room was not air con but we had a ceiling fan. I do beleive some of the rooms did have air con though. There is a barbers / beauty /massage salon in the hotel. The hotel also puts on a really cool shuttle bus to Baga beach
The Pool here is great, and really clean and is over looked by huge banana trees. The food was out of this world, we didnt have one bad meal there it was outstanding, none of us suffered with bad stomachs . The surrounding area is very interesting, a little village with a very eye catching "health tent" where you can get oils and potions for anything, and I mean anything, we steered clear of that one! Some great mango trees nearby and a small internet cafe with some shops.
Many beaches in Goa (but not all of them) have cocohuts to stay in. We decided to try it and to make our mind whether we could use them for accommodation in our future trips to Goa. The ones we spent a night in are in the Agonda Beach. In every cocohut there you have a queen size bed with a sheet, two pillows, two thin blankets and a mosquito net. There is electricity, a ceiling fan, two wicker chairs, a tiny bedside table, a small mirror on a wall and a bench made of a couple of bricks and a board. There is a shared shower and toilet, one for 8 or 10 cocohuts. There is also a large bucket of water near every cocohut, so you can wash your face and hands without going to the shared facilities every time.
Even if you are not that fond of camping and prefer better equipped accommodation, you can stay a night at such a place, just for the sake of an exotic experience. It's fun to sleep and hear the whisper of the ocean in your sleep and breath the fresh night ocean air.
There are things that you better have with you, because, most probably, they will not be provided in cocohuts. These include a towel and a sheet to put between you and the blanket. You also need plastic slippers to go to the shower.
The cocohuts we stayed in cost 250 rupees per night (USD 5.8). The price can differ depending on the beach, facilities and distance from the sea.
Villa Tivai is an Old Portuguese style house situated in the seaside village of Calangute in North Goa. Large villages in Goa are divided into Wards, and the Villa stands in the ward of Tivai a short 4 to 5 minute stroll to a quieter part of Calangute beach.
The Villa has 6 bedrooms and four bathrooms, and is situated in a quiet off road area surrounded by palm and mango trees. Built in the traditional Portuguese style, the single story house has high ceilings with the roof rafters and tiles showing, the reason for houses being built like this was to enable cool air to circulate. A short walk away is the bustling main road with its shops and restaurants serving dishes from around the world.
All the rooms are furnished to a high standard with four poster beds, dressing tables and wardrobes built out of Indian carved wood, they also have a personal safety deposit box and ceiling fan. Although the rooms are not en-suite, bath robes are in each room, and the shower rooms are fully tiled and have western style toilets and wash basins.
The villa only has 6 rooms for guests, one of which “The Taj” is a superior room with its own area of veranda, and exclusive use of one of the shower rooms. "The Darjeeling" a new room for the 2006 season, has en-suite facilities and is furnished to the same high standard as the other rooms in the villa. The prime objective of Villa “Tivai” is to offer our guests a relaxing and informal holiday with a colonial feel and service.
The Taj Fort Aguada Beach Resort is one of the nicest hotels in North Goa. The hotel is surrounded by tropical trees and flowers and overlooks the Arabian Sea. Although there is no direct access to the beach, it is only a short walk. The pool area is particularly nice with an outdoor bar and and an outdoor restaurant on the water (great for snacks, sandwiches, and drinks).
Acommodations range from hotel rooms to cottages to magnificent villas. We have stayed in the hotel which was nice and also in the villas, which is a real treat! Standard in all rooms: central air conditioning, overhead fans, and electronic safe, comfortable bathtubs. Color TV, coffee plungers, wi-fi, direct dial telephones, tea and coffee maker, stocked minibar & hairdryer. You have a choice of garden or sea view.
From the website, this is a description of the 1 bedroom villa: The Private Villa 1 Bedroom – Sea View, of 700-800 sq. ft, is nestled on a hillock behind the main building. It is a very spacious, luxuriously appointed, stand alone one bedroom villa with a private lawn, verandah and a view of the sea. Some villas have an attached dining room. All villas are equipped with central air conditioning, overhead fans, and electronic safe, comfortable bathtubs. Color TV, coffee plungers, wi-fi, direct dial telephones, tea and coffee maker, stocked minibar & hairdryer. Ours had a dining room and it was really wonderful.
A breakfast buffet is served in the Latitude restaurant. We have also had dinner in Latitude on nights with live entertainment, which was very noisy! The spa has a nice variety of massages but is expensive. They also offer salon services (haircuts, etc.).
The Taj's sister propery - Taj Holiday Village - is a short distance down the road and as nice as this property is, I like the Holiday Village better. Book early, especially during the holiday season, when prices really go up.
Check the website for additional Leisure, Business, and General Services available at this hotel.
This is the Sodders hotel in Arpora...directly opposite Abalone Hotel. Its an ok place...your typical Goan rooms...all situated around a pool. Staff are not too bad...and it even has a weird kareoke bar!
I've stayed here a few times. More or less opposite Sun Village. Small pool but the whole hotel has been renovated by the new owners from Birmingham. Average rooms..ie bedroom, bathroom, and lounge. Looks over a large lake with a sports bar in the middle!
The accommodation is basic. Some rooms are air conditioned, which you pay extra for. We found the ceiling fans adequate.
If you want a fridge, you have to pay extra for. But I really appreciated ice cold water and ice cold AFTER SUN
The safety deposit boxes are free, you just have to provide your own padlock.
The hotel will exchange your money for you, and offer a good exchange rate.
There is a waiter who also doubles up as a masseur. He will give you a great massage for about 450 rupees for a full hour. He can do this around the pool, or do it on your balcony or terrace. It is very good.
Some residnents booked him several times during their stay as he was so good.
Father Pires, the original owner of the complex is a great character. He must be in his 70's or 80's and is an old catholic priest. He runs a local church, charity and old folks home. He always says good morning to you and is eager to get your local parish priest or nuns to come over to India and stay here for free. Please note his photocopied brochure of charity events is not a request for money, just evidence on what the profits of this accommodation goes to.
The Nepalese chef is fantastic, go to their barbecure night if they run one, and you wont be disappointed. His seafood is cooked to perfection, and at a cheap price, cheaper than the local beach shacks
The pool bar man is also a character. Buy his drinks rather than at the main bar, and you will keep this little man happy.
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