Santana Beach Resort – Extensive grounds, a beachside position, and a Mediterranean vibe; also great value.
The Santana is far larger and more likable than the 1960’s-style exterior would indicate. The narrow resort grounds stretch from the main road to as close to the beach as authorities allow. The fetching blue-and-white buildings, some named after colonial forts and castles, are among gardens blooming with ferns and lilies. The bright and airy suites are huge and feature balconies, separate living areas, and three sets of windows. (Some cheaper rooms do face the side street, however, so choose carefully.) The bathroom fittings and cupboards need updating, but all this adds to the charm. A short and lovely garden path from the second pool leads to the glorious beach. What’s more, the resort offers terrific value for money (and the rates include breakfast).
Santana Beach Resort – The Location
- Address: Along a side street off the main road through the southern part of Candolim, a major tourist region in a southern part of North Goa. (Most places in Goa don’t have an address.) The resort stretches from the main road for about 300m down the side street. The reception is close to the beach.
- Area: Less developed, and therefore, less traffic than the northern parts of Candolim and anywhere in Calangute. Yet, more nightclubs and bars with live music nearby than elsewhere in the region. As close as possible (150m) to Dando Beach, part of what is more commonly known as Candolim Beach.
- How to Get There: From the airport (35 km, 70-minute drive), there is little choice except overpriced pre-paid taxis. The nearest major train station is at Vasco da Gama, 40 km away (75-minute drive).
- Handy to: Facilities and beaches at Candolim.
Santana Beach Resort – The Basics
- Guests: Mostly Indian tourists, many with families.
- Views: All rooms and suites feature balconies/patios, but views vary, so choose wisely. Some face the side street, which is fairly quiet. Some overlook one of the 2 pools (which are often noisy). Others face inwards to the meandering garden path. These are the quietest.
- Private Pools/Jacuzzis: Not expected (or provided) at this sort of mid-range resort in Goa.
- Parking: Nowhere on-site. Dedicated area near the beach and close to the reception, but safety is not guaranteed.
- How to Book: Booking.com will have the best rates.
- Phone: +91 (0)832 247 9556
- Email: [email protected]
- Website: santana-goa.com
Santana Beach Resort – Amenities
- Pool: Two pools. The main one is smallish and often crowded. A sunken poolside bar and some tipping buckets that splash water from above. The second pool is smaller and near the café, but it’s often ignored and therefore, quieter.
- Spa & Fitness Center: None, but not really expected at this sort of mid-range holiday resort catering mostly to Indian families.
- For Families: Cots.
- Other Facilities: Book exchange/Library. Tours. Laundry.
Santana Beach Resort – Food and Drink
- Restaurant & Bar: Olegario’s Restaurant provides a casual setting undercover or on the lawns beside the second pool. Wide-ranging menu including salads, soups, seafood, and Goan cuisine. The separate Olegario’s Bar is about 50m away. Also, a sunken bar alongside the main pool.
- Breakfast: Decent buffet breakfast is included in all rates.
- Room Service: Available from 8 am to 10.30 pm.
Santana Beach Resort – Rooms
- Room Types: Standard Rooms • Suites • List of all Rooms
- Smoking Rooms: No smoking in the rooms, but OK elsewhere around the resort grounds.
- Best Room: The suites are substantially larger than the rooms. The quietest ones are those furthest from the pools and not facing the street.
- For Families: The management is used to catering for families. Suites have space for 2 extra single beds and feature small living areas and kitchens (but no cooking facilities).
Santana Beach Resort – Local Transport
- Walking: The main road is decent enough for walking and even provides a few sidewalks (mainly used for illegal parking, however). Strolling is nicer along the side streets to the beach.
- Public Transport: Local buses are convenient and frequent. They travel up and down – and stop anywhere along – the main road through Candolim and Calangute. Some detour to Panaji (Panjim), the state capital and regional transport hub, via a stop opposite the Acacia hotel (1 km north). No metro or any local trains of use to tourists.
- Taxis & Auto-rickshaws: No auto-rickshaws or metered taxis in the immediate area. Uber/Ola don’t operate anywhere in Goa, but app-based rides can be arranged through Goa Miles. The only option for longer trips are unmetered private ‘taxis’ which can be arranged at the resort or with drivers hanging about the streets.
- 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 resort. Rides on the back of a motorbike (called a ‘pilot’) are possible; ask around.
Santana Beach Resort – What’s Nearby?
Best Nearby Restaurants & Bars
- Calamari Bathe & Binge +91 73500 75105 – Unique name and the classiest place on the beach anywhere in Candolim. Huge number of tables in different sections inside or on the sand. At the end of the path from the resort. A few other beach cafés nearby as well.
These 4 places are north along the main road and within 400m of the resort.
- Bomra’s – Rare and authentic Burmese restaurant. Popular for its shady terrace, attentive service, and intriguing menu.
- Adelaide Bar and Restaurant – Quaint and shady, with an extensive menu featuring tempting daily specials. Ideal for people-watching.
- The Stone House – Always busy because of the shady courtyard, delicious seafood, and live music nightly (mostly blues and jazz). Opposite Adelaide.
- Café Candolim +91 88797 89992 – Charming Mediterranean-style café with wrought iron tables and friendly staff. Come for the tasty cakes, coffee, and sandwiches.
- Less developed area than northern Candolim and Calangute, but enough places to spend money along the main road, including moneychangers. The closest supermarket is Delfino’s, 1 km further north.
- The wide and clean beach is accessible along a shady path (150m) from within the resort grounds – or via the dusty side street. A few cafés (but not as many as further north), and plenty of sunbeds and umbrellas for rent; some for free. Always swim between the flags. Lifeguards are on duty between about 10 am and sunset.
Santana Beach Resort – The Hotel
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