‘The most boutique of boutiques’ is how Selective Asia’s Karl described this hotel after a 3-night stay with his family. It’s a beautiful property, with just a handful of rooms spread over three elegant Balinese and Goan fusion-style villas. Sister to the well-known Ahilya Fort in Maheshwar, it has the same high standards and depth of character which always get the high-end travel press waxing lyrical. Originally home to an eminent local family, it made its transition to bohemian seaside retreat in 2015 and has, along with the more established Ahilya Fort, become a destination of choice among the jetset.
It’s a place of rest and luxury overlooking a working fishing beach, and you can spend hours watching the various comings and goings throughout the day. The 3 villas each have their own character, with delightful common areas packed full of antiques and works of art, and huge guest rooms that are all totally individual. Though you can’t really swim in the sea from here, there’s plenty of opportunity to make use of the gorgeous infinity pool instead.
Set on a scenic working fishing beach an hour from Goa International airport, with the popular town of Candolim just 10 minutes’ drive away, this is a great spot for connection and relaxation.
Three outdoor pools
Kids’ splash pool
Al fresco dining
Very bohemian and cool but genuinely so, and doesn’t feel forced. It isn’t just about the décor. We loved it and will be back.
Discover what to expect from staying at Ahilya by the Sea
Alihiya by the Sea is a picturesque, exclusive hotel sought out by those who like travelling in comfort. There are many aspects to Goa, and this hotel exemplifies the state’s chicest side. It’s peaceful and serene, discerning without being pretentious, and it doesn’t break the bank either. It’s like staying in a stylish friend’s house for the weekend - just the kind of experience we love when it’s done right.
The staff are amazing. Polite, efficient, dedicated and always going out of their way to keep everyone happy, especially children.
There are several fascinating places within an hour’s drive of the hotel, and we can arrange some great excursions. The beach in front of the hotel is not really suitable for swimming, but if you speak to the staff they will point you in the direction of a few better spots. The delights of old Goa are nearby for those who can’t resist the charms of the antique Portuguese architecture, including the venerated Basilica of Bom Jesus where the globetrotting, 14th-century St Francis Xavier is laid to rest.
The hotel is welcoming to all, though in general it’s probably more suited to couples, friends or those with older children. Selective Asia’s Karl says, ‘We took our 10 and 11 year olds and all had a great time.’
Go tiger spotting in three of India’s national parks.