Hospedaria Abrigo de Botelho Hotel in Goa, India

by Santorini Dave • Updated: August 5, 2019

Review of Hospedaria Abrigo de Botelho Hotel in Goa, India.

Hospedaria Abrigo de Botelho – Quaint family-run guesthouse in a tranquil and convenient old-city location.

This bright-blue, 150-year-old guesthouse is in the quietest part of the old quarter in Panaji (Panjim), the state capital. It offers a handful of adorably renovated and admirably spacious rooms, each with lofty ceilings, high beds, and a mix of old-style furniture. Those on the upper floor feature private sections of the terraced balcony, while rooms at ground level feature porches. Very well-maintained, and with friendly staff and manager, this is certainly a cut above nearby rivals. Only a short stroll from the rivers, churches, shops, and other attractions around the old city.

Hospedaria Abrigo de Botelho – The Location

  • Address: Rua de Natal street, in the suburb of Fontainhas, in the old part of Panaji (Panjim), the state capital. In a bright-blue building at the end of a 100m lane branching off the main street, Rua 31 de Janeiro (31st January Road).
  • Area: Delightful section of the old city with winding lanes and narrow streets of brightly-colored heritage-listed buildings. About 100m west of the secondary river, Ourém, and 500m south of the main river, Mandovi.
  • How to Get There: From the airport (26km, 60-minute drive), there is little choice except overpriced pre-paid taxis. The hotel is 1.5km from the Panaji KTC bus stand (5-minute drive), which has connections all over Goa. The train station at Margao (Madgaon) is 37km (90-minute drive) and at Vasco da Gama is 29km (60-minute drive) away.
  • Handy to: Old city of Panaji (Panjim)

Hospedaria Abrigo de Botelho – The Basics

  • Guests: Budget-minded travelers of all ages.
  • Views: Rooms at the front overlook the quiet lane, while those to the side face nearby buildings. Views are better than expected.
  • Private Pools/Jacuzzis: Certainly not expected (or provided) at this historic inner-city guesthouse.
  • 
Wi-Fi: Available free throughout for all guests.
  • Parking: No parking is possible on-site, but there are enough spots along the lane just outside the front.
  • How to Book: Booking.com will have the best rates.
  • Phone: +91 952 777 8884
  • Email: [email protected]
  • Website: hadbgoa.com

Hospedaria Abrigo de Botelho – Amenities

  • Pool, Spa & Fitness Center: Not expected or provided.
  • Other Facilities: Laundry.

Hospedaria Abrigo de Botelho – Food and Drink

  • Restaurant & Bar: Nowhere to eat or drink on-site.
  • Breakfast: Decent cooked breakfast included in all rates.
  • Room Service: With no café on-site, room service is not offered.

Hospedaria Abrigo de Botelho – Rooms

  • Room Types: Deluxe Rooms • Executive Rooms • Premium Rooms
  • Smoking Rooms: An old wooden building, so no smoking is allowed on the premises.
  • Best Room: The finest room is on the upper floor, with a wrap-around balcony and 3 windows.
  • For Families: The Premium Rooms already have an extra single bed and plenty of space for another. Also, a substantial sitting area.

Hospedaria Abrigo de Botelho – Local Transport

  • Walking: Fantastic area to wander about, but sidewalks along the narrow streets can be awkward at times.
  • Public Transport: No metro or any local trains of use to tourists. To reach the beaches, take a public bus from the Panaji KTC bus stand to the regional hubs of Mapusa for the north or Margao (Madgaon) for the south.
  • Taxis & Auto-rickshaws: The few black-and-yellow taxis have meters, but drivers won’t use them. These are best arranged through reception. App-based rides, Uber and Ola, don’t operate anywhere in Goa, but the local alternative – Goa Miles – is worth trying. A few auto-rickshaws are available for local trips, but of course, they also refuse to use their meters.
  • Cars & Motorbikes: Goa is the only place in India where renting a car or motorbike is feasible. No internationally-recognized agencies are present, so renting at a local shop presents obvious risks. Best to organize through the hotel. Rides on the back of a motorbike (called a ‘pilot’) are possible; ask around.

Hospedaria Abrigo de Botelho – What’s Nearby?

Restaurants & Bars

  • Mamaramma – Limited menu but delightfully cozy setting. Light meals, daily specials, and world-class coffee. Adjacent to the lovely old St. Sebastian’s chapel. 100m down the lane from the guesthouse. 1-minute walk.
  • Viva Panjim – Easy to miss down an alley, the setting is serene and the décor, fascinating. Focus on Goan cuisine. 130m south down the main street, Rua 31 de Janeiro. 1-minute walk.
  • Desbue – Unique menu of tempting ‘European fusion’ meals. Gorgeous décor and excellent service add to the appeal. Bright-green building on a corner, just meters past the turn-off to Viva Panjim. 2-minute walk (160m).
  • Bombay Coffee Roasters – Unassuming corner position, but far larger than imagined. Popular hangout on 2 levels for drinks, sandwiches, light meals, and free Wi-Fi. 200m past Viva Panjim. 4-minute walk (300m).
  • Venite Bar & Restaurant – Charming upstairs location. Fascinating décor and tiniest possible balconies hovering over the sidewalk. Easy to miss in the guesthouse of the same name, 350m north up the main street. 4-minute walk.
  • Down the Road & Riverfront Restaurant – Overlooking the old bridge, the views and food at the Riverfront are excellent. Down the Road bar/nightclub is on a lower floor. Head directly east to Ourém River and then turn left. 5-minute walk (400m).

Shops

  • The streets and narrow alleys of the old city are lined with all sorts of interesting shops, but they’re mostly for locals, not tourists.

Attractions

  • The fascinating old city has some of the finest examples of colonial-era buildings anywhere in India. Beautifully renovated or delightfully crumbling, and often painted bright blue or yellow, these are dotted all over the streets near the hotel. But note: this is not Old Goa, which is about 10km east.

Hospedaria Abrigo de Botelho – The Hotel

The guesthouse is located in a history building.

This guesthouse is located in a 150-year-old building in the quietest part of the old city.

The guesthouse sports a brightly-painted exterior.

Many buildings in the old part of the state capital are brightly painted, and the guesthouse is no exception.

Views from the guesthouse are better than those from nearby rivals.

Some separation between neighboring buildings offers more space and better views from this guesthouse than at most rivals.

The guesthouse is located in a quiet lane.

The guesthouse is at the end of a dead-end lane, so it’s very quiet.

The reception and guest lounge are located in the front room.

The front room serves as the reception area and guest lounge.

Rooms feature simple decor and furnishings.

The décor and furnishings are simple, but it’s mostly about the historic building and convenient location.

The large Premium Rooms have large sitting areas.

The Premium Rooms are the largest and feature substantial sitting areas.

Bathrooms are pleasantly old-fashioned.

The bathrooms are also delightfully old-fashioned.

Premium Rooms are ideal for families.

Each Premium Room features an extra single bed and space for another, so they are ideal for families.

Ground-floor rooms have porches but no views.

Ground-floor rooms have porches but views are limited to nearby buildings.

The upper-floor balcony stretches around the building.

Rooms on the upper floor feature a section of the balcony that wraps around the whole building.

The front balcony overlooks Rua de Natal.

Views from the front balcony extend down the lane, Rua de Natal.

Mamaramma is a cute cafe nearby.

Mamaramma is a cute little eatery just down the lane past the chapel from the guesthouse.

Mamaramma is run by an expat and uses organic ingredients.

Run by an expat, the food at Mamaramma is delicious and often made with organic ingredients.

Viva Panjim nearby is a casual but smart-looking bistro.

Featuring a few tables inside and out is the charming Viva Panjim café, barely 100m from the guesthouse.

Bombay Coffee Roasters nearby is quite spacious.

Easy to miss on a corner 300m down the main street from the guesthouse is Bombay Coffee Roasters.

The sophisticated Desbue bistro serves upmarket European cuisine.

Desbue is a sophisticated bistro serving upmarket European cuisine. It’s just south past Viva Panjim.

Venite Bar & Restaurant nearby is charming and spacious.

A couple of minutes’ walk north of the guesthouse is the adorable Venite Bar & Restaurant.

The superb Riverfront Restaurant serves great meals and drinks.

For views of the Ourém River, street, and old bridge, as well as fabulous food, head to the Riverfront Restaurant, only 400m from the guesthouse.

The neighborhood is bright and colorful.

The area around the hotel is so likably bright and cheerful.

The neighborhood has several colonial-era buildings.

Streets near the hotel are packed with delightful reminders of the colonial past. This is the view down Rua de Natal between the guesthouse and Mamaramma café.

The magnificent Church of Our Lady of Immaculate Conception is within walking distance.

The magnificent Church of Our Lady of Immaculate Conception is less than 500m around the corner from the guesthouse.

The city has a lot of colorful buildings.

Streets around the old city are filled with brightly-colored buildings.

The guesthouse is located near 2 rivers.

The guesthouse is in the older and quieter part of the old city that is flanked by 2 rivers.

There are a few auto-rickshaws around Panjim.

Unlike most beach regions, some auto-rickshaws are available around Panaji (Panjim).

The Viva Panjim lane houses a classy boutique.

A few stylish boutiques can be found in this part of the old city. This one is on the corner of the alley to the Viva Panjim café.

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