Tucked away in the village of Siolim is a quite famous old mansion called Siolim House. It dates back to the 17th century and is one of the last surviving houses in Goa from that time. The landmark Siolim church everyone in Goa knows was built by the family of this home as a testament of their power and importance. Now, it’s a cute heritage hotel and you can come stay the night here!
It’s not a secret… this hotel has been mentioned in literally every important magazine and travel website. It’s kind of a North Goa staple. As I run around North Goa with season coming to a close, I’m reviewing hotels so that finally I can answer the question I get asked most, “where should I stay in North Goa?” I’ve got you covered. So, here’s a look at Siolim House.
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The house has 7 rooms, 2 of which are suites upstairs. It has an open floor plan with rooms on the outside, facing an open air courtyard, which I’ve grown to love. I am determined to build a house like it one day. When restoring the Siolim House, they kept everything authentic from the limestone to the tiles.
My favorite bit about the house is looking at all the décor. I loved the giant table books they have lying around (I have a collection of my own travel ones back in Ohio). The copper cups and pitcher next to the bed was a cute touch- they say drinking out of them is incredible for you, and I see these very often at homestays in India. Every unique table, lamp, artwork, and pillowcase has been thought out to bring the place together as a whole without looking overdone.
Rooms are all huge which is why there aren’t that many of them. The bathroom is really cool with stairs, something I have never seen but love! The windows of the home have the oyster shells still in place rather than glass, which is a very Portuguese-Goan style. You can’t do it to new homes as it’s become illegal to take shells.
The hotel has a restaurant, pool, A/C in rooms, WiFi, chill out area up top with couches, TV, and massive bookshelves. Siolim House can also hook you up with adventure activities or you can stay in for a cooking class, morning yoga, or massage set up outside by the pool. You can order whole cakes from their partner and popular dessert restaurant, Delicieux.
I spend my day by the pool drinking pineapple juice and cold coffee and reading Last Man in Tower, by the author of one of my favorite books The White Tiger. I got quite a nice tan! My friend Tia came later, probably to avoid my poolside music of great hits by the likes of Hall & Oates, Michael Jackson, and even Rihanna. I never have quite fit into that Goa music scene!
Tia had me prance around in some of her clothes from her fashion label I’ve told you about before and we spent our time doing our nails, drinking wine, doing exactly 25 squats, late night swims, and watching our downloaded TV shows. It was quite the girly day at Siolim House! And did I mention lots of wine?
With all hotels, there are always a few areas to improve. For me, the WiFi wasn’t strong enough although they use G Wave, a great company even I use at home. I got service near the reception office and later they switched out the router, but it won’t reach into the rooms. Also, lunch isn’t served (only breakfast, dinner, and snacks) so if you plan on being a hermit, you’ll at least have to leave the hotel for lunch.
For dinner you get an option of fish, chicken, or veg. I went for fish, and Tia went for the veg! It was delicious, but the photos just don’t do it justice (flash photos at night of food are NEVER any good, are they?) There was rice with fried onions, okra coconut curry, fish curry, fried fish, tamarind vegetables, and cream caramel for dessert. It was so tasty! The chef is really famous in the village and is the woman who will teach you at the cooking classes. I need to go back for that.
There was much more on offer for breakfast, but I wasn’t that hungry. You could get fruit, curd, tea, toast, and more. They have really tasty ham, so I got a ham and cheese omelet. That’s not something that is usually on offer in Indian hotels, as cold cuts are really pricey. It made my morning!
I live only 10 minutes from the hotel, so didn’t go exploring but you easily can. It’s in the middle of Ashwem and Anjuna, which are the two popular areas in Goa. It’s great to stay in places like Siolim to avoid crowds and experience the beauty of village life. Most expats choose to stay in the villages. Siolim House does stay open in monsoon and will soon have a bakery inside to stop in, so perhaps they’ll serve lunch soon as well.
Siolim House Contact Info:
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