Thursday, June 28, 2007

A Spa Vacation in Goa

Goa is India's premier beach destination . The peak season is usually during the winter months when most of the foreign tourists visit India. But even the summer months are crowded with the local tourists, who tend to time their vacations with their kids' summer holidays. So, if you like Goa but not the crowds, the monsoon season is the time to go there.

Park Hyatt GoaYou can't indulge in the usual beach activities of water-sports and lazing around in the sun, with the rather cold and windy weather during these months. However, the excellent resorts in Goa make for a rather nice spa vacation. And you pay less too! I began visiting Goa when I and my family moved to Pune. Before that, when we were in Delhi, we would usually head for the mountains.

Park Hyatt GoaWe last vacationed in Goa in October 2006, at the Radisson White Sands, but that was during the peak winter season. It was the year before that, in June 2005, when we enjoyed the rains at the Park Hyatt Resort and Spa. And that was so much fun!

Park Hyatt GoaThe resort is spread over 45 acres of lush, beach-front gardens in South Goa, about 15 minutes from the airport. Designed like a village, the resort features an extensive spa facility. I loved the way the rooms were designed with balconies overlooking the turquoise blue lagoons, outdoor showers, sunken bathtub, and a variety of flowering trees and plants all over the place.

We mostly ate at the buffets during breakfast, lunch and dinner. The service was excellent and the food (a mix of Indian, Italian and continental) was pretty good. We would spend most of the day in the large (and I mean really, really large!) swimming pool, periodically wading to the pool bar for cocktails.

Park Hyatt GoaThe resort has multiple restaurants, bars and lounges. Sambar specializes in South Indian fare, while da Luigi serves excellent Italian pizzas, pastas and salads complimented by an elaborate wine list. You can also try the Market Grill, the Masala for local Goan food, or the beachside BBQ. Please note, all these restaurants are not open during off-season (which is usually during the monsoon season).

But where you want to be (at least for a few hours) is the excellent spa. Spread over 28,000 ft., Sereno Spa at the Park Hyatt offers an elaborate menu including the usual Ayurvedic treatments and scrubs. BTW, this spa was awarded the Best Spa in Asia by Conde Nast Traveller in 2006.


Anonymous said...

Goa rocks..Spa or not :)

JamyTan said...

Wow, beautiful !
Jamy from sunshine florida.

mind-rambler said...

Every place must be having its own charm in every season of the year. Still your description of the resorts sound interesting somehow.

Shantanu said...

@yuri: Sure does. The place as well a the people :)

@kayatan: Yup, the resorts in Goa are world-class.

@mind-rambler: Seasons in India are not very demarcated (like they do in the US where the colors of the seasons are so different); however, the rains does bring character to many places in Western India.

Unknown said...

Shantanu, I finally visitied your blog and read few of your postings. BTW one of you the bloggers here 'Anil Purohit' - Windy Skies, was my class mate at the Goa University.

Shantanu said...

@consti: Welcome to my blog! Really? Small (blog) world...