I was intrigued and entranced by the word ‘Tajness’. It suggested and promised so much. It was at once, an allure and an adventure. But what was it exactly? Could it be defined? Perhaps not. But I certainly got to experience it during my recent Goa trip. And I can absolutely say that it was best to experience it first-hand.
Although I wasn’t here to stay, I had an itinerary of treats prepared for me by Taj Holiday Village. My first stop was the renowned Banyan Tree restaurant, a gorgeous Thai restaurant beneath the shade of a 300-year-old banyan tree. Punctuated with friendly smiles, I am offered a hot towel and a pick-me-up welcome drink and city stresses are already drowned out! From the Tom yum soup to the Massaman curry, everything that will opt for absolutely manages to tantalizingly tease our taste buds. Leaving with a food coma, we are left raving over how freshness and craftsmanship takes center stage in every dish. This one serves us reams of reasons to keep coming back for!
The next stop is the Jiva spa that absolutely matches the splendour and fabulousness of the property. The signature Jiva aromas are enough to soothe my frayed nerves. Here, my therapeutic journey started off with a relaxing massage. My therapist methodically tackled my pain-points one after the other- the knotty back, the stony heels and the underworked arms. Just a few minutes into my massage and I could feel the weariness take flight.
As my therapist rubbed, kneaded and stretched my muscles, I felt a pleasurable tinge traverse. With my body cocooned and the mind relaxed in preparation for a luxurious head massage, I was completely nourished and relaxed. Coupled with the signature Jive music, I almost felt like I was floating away on a cloud.
Post my treatment was time for a rose-petal bath. Submerged and floating in another zone, I shut my eyes—savouring the faux Maharani moment. This was getting seriously dangerous! What if I got used to such pampering?
After sipping on my favourites Vishuddhi chai, I was whisked off for sundowners at SFX, Taj Fort Guards wherein I basked in some dreamy views while sipping on the perfectly done cocktails- some of the best I have had in a while.
I couldn’t stay the night at the property but the staff throughout my time here ensured that I felt like I was in a fantasy dreamt up by a fairy queen. By all means, Taj Holiday Village has been an iconic property. The General Manager-Mr Anmol Ahluwalia is leading it to scale even greater heights by ensuring it truly remains on the top of its hospitality and culinary game. The royal service traditions are so well-inculcated among the staff.
Moreover, the staff and the overall service makes me realize through my visit that hospitality is not just about the rose petals showers and foreheads anointment with tikkas but it’s about the warmth, assurance and love that Taj spoils you silly with. So oh, I challenge you to leave the property without the “oh-so-blissed-out” smile. Well, I still can’t stop beaming when I think over it.
Note– The critic was hosted by Taj Holiday Village but all the opinions expressed herewith are her own.
Where: Sinquerim, Candolim, Goa 403515
Phone: 0832 664 5858