The Alila Diwa in Goa near the Majorda beach is a very stylish hotel. Despite using elements of traditional Indian architecture like Mangalore tiles and columns, the place has a very formal look about it - it does not look like a let-your-hair-down kind of place but it is gorgeous. The hotel website makes people fall head over heels over it, and it is 90 per cent as it looks on the web. So you should ideally not be disappointed.
I visited this resort in November this year along with my wife and six-year old son. The experience starts the moment you land at the airport and the Toyota Innova draws up to take you to the hotel - no minibus, mind you, but a well-maintained personal vehicle. There is an iPad you can play with till the 20 minutes dash to the hotel gets over. And the driver helpfully passes some locally made cookies around too in beautiful glass jars. I am impressed already.
The porch is beautiful, dominated by a large banyan tree. The lobby area is also pretty, and it looks beautiful and traditional. Check-in is efficiently done - sip on a chilled drink while they finish their formalities. Coincidentally, Sunita at the desk was someone who had checked us in at the Holiday Inn in South Goa at the same time last year! So she took care to show us the property and explain it to us before taking us to our rooms.
We had a lovely ground floor Terrace room and we didn't bother staying in the more expensive Diwa rooms. The walk through the corridors is in itself beautiful, as on one side is the pretty Spice Studio restaurant with gurgling water around and on the other is a large courtyard dominated by more lovely trees. The room was decent, not exceptional. The bathroom area had sliding wooden doors which you can keep shut or open - which makes it rather unique. There is a bathtub and a shower cubicle while the potty is tucked away in a corner.
Since we were on the ground floor, we had a terrace leading to the lawns in front, with access to the pool to our right. The terrace had two settees to lounge around and each one of them has a tree growing in the corner as well. Very pretty, very peaceful, you could just sit here all day either sipping beer or coffee and reading a book. But there's more to the Alila Diwa.
There is an activity area for the kids and a massive kiddie pool too. The infinity swimming pool as well as the kiddie pool are fantastic, as spread out in front are green fields and flocks of white birds. It's extremely picturesque. There is also a play area for kids in the lawns.
The Vivo all-day restaurant is also beautiful - in fact you can sit outside and have your meals. Vivo is something else - the spread is lavish and there are live counters as well. The food tends to be slightly bland so as to keep foreign tourists happy as well. But the choice is staggering and it is tasty too.
We had taken a modified American plan which suited us very well - breakfast and one meal in a day. That way it was flexible for us and we could just hop across to the famous Martins Corner restaurant which is a hop, skip and a jump away.
So far, so good, right? There is only one weakness to the Alila Diwa, and that is access to the beach. It's not bang on the water. There are shuttles that ferry you to the beach (barely a few minutes' drive), but there is no waiting area near the beach to ferry you back to the hotel. And I usually called the hotel from the beach to ask the shuttle to come and fetch us. It is not a long walk, provided the weather is cool. If it's evening, it is a pleasant walk through the countryside. Conversely there are no beach chairs or umbrellas organised by the hotel - you have to pay to the others who run them. Barring this, the Alila Diwa is really a fantastic hotel.
The costs are a little above other hotels but you do stay in a property that really looks the part. It is gorgeous, the staff is friendly, helpful and genuinely warm. The facilities are all there and you will enjoy it for sure. I would love to go back there again.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Alila Diwa Goa is situated in South Goa along the coast of the beautiful Majorda Beach with panoramic views of vast verdant paddy fields leading out to the Arabian Sea. The resort is also perfectly located just 20 minutes from Goa’s Dabolim International Airport. Alila Diwa Goa blends contemporary Goan architecture with the magic of Goa’s cultural richness to create a stylish and relaxing environment that remains true to the destination. At the heart of the resort is an endless infinity pool that extends out into the paddy terraces. Its 153 rooms and suites are designed for quiet indulgence with an amazing bath experience, luxury bedding and a private terrace to take in the picturesque setting. The resort is complemented by a family entertainment zone that includes a theatre and children’s activity centre, and a comprehensive event centre that can accommodate your need for a versatile and ‘surprisingly different’ venue equipped with a ballroom, meeting rooms and a large outdoor lawn that can accommodate up to 300 persons. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Alila Diwa Goa Hotel Salcette
- Alila Diwa Goa India