Turiya Villa and Spa: Location and Setting
Turiya Villa and Spa is located in a quiet corner of Chaudi (Canacona) village, which is conveniently close to Patnem and Palolem beaches. If you hire a scooter, it will take you less than five minutes to reach Patnem beach. Palolem beach is less than 10 minutes away, and peaceful Agonda beach is around 20 minutes. You can take your pick of which beaches you want to spend time at -- just one, or all three!
In creating Turiya, owner Sandesh Prabhu, a Goan local who is now a sought-after architect and interior decorator in Mumbai, aims to give guests a "holistic experience beyond the physical". The villa is Sandy's passion and dream, and the dedicated way in which he's brought it to life definitely reflects that.
The name "Turiya" is a Sanskrit term that describes pure awareness. In keeping with this, the villa has been designed along Vedic principles and balances all five elements of Earth, Water, Fire, Air and Space.
Many of the furnishings and decorations are lovingly crafted from recycled items. Organic food is available on request, there's a meditation room, and an Ayurvedic spa as well. However, it's the small things that really make an impression and add to the ambiance. The heady smell of wafting incense is a divine morning greeting. In the evening, candles flicker invitingly on the patio. Jasmine, frangipani, and bougainvillea flowers envelop the villa. Statues of various gods are strategically placed to provide blessings. These things all contribute to make Turiya a gentle and uplifting place that you can truly retreat to.
Turiya Villa and Spa: Accommodations
There are four unique rooms at Turiya, each with its own name derived from different Nakshatra constellations from Vedic Astrology. Three of the four rooms have wooden doors that fold out onto the delightful patio, which is where you'll want to spend most of your time relaxing.
Room rates start from 4,500 rupees per night, including gourmet breakfast and a 10% discount on spa treatments.
Rohini, the powerful seed of lunar energy, is the most opulent room. Situated at the front of the house, what makes it special is that as well as the patio, it also has access to the front porch and formal living room. The rate is 5,500 rupees a night.
When restoring the villa, Sandy chose to preserve its original structure, which means that he didn't add cramped attached bathrooms to the rooms. Instead guests get their own private and spacious architecturally designed bathrooms in the house. The largest has a huge bathtub shower with steps leading down into it, whilst another has an open air shower that adds to the feeling of being at one with nature. Granted, the bathrooms are not in the bedrooms, which may be discouraging for some. However, they are close by, and there's a separate bathroom assigned to each bedroom so they are not shared with other guests.
Turiya is especially well suited to friends and families traveling together, as it's possible to book the whole villa (special rates are offered). It's also the perfect venue to hold a small garden wedding, with the added bonus of Sandy's expert decoration skills.
Xavier, the resident manager at Turiya, is attentive to guests' needs without being intrusive. While staying there, I was surprised and impressed to find that he put a laundry hamper in my room, upon noticing my dirty clothes piled up on the floor. He also materialized a holder for my toothbrush and toothpaste, without any prompting from me, after I'd left them laying on the bench in the bathroom. These gestures really made me feel taken care of.
Turiya Villa and Spa: Food and Dining
The food at Turiya features Goan cuisine and organic produce. This starts with a welcome drink of coconut water, directly out of fresh organic coconuts from Sandy's parents' farm.
Breakfast is served during set times, while lunch and dinner are available on request with veg and non-veg options. The meals can be served in the formal dining room or on the patio. Or, if you're in the mood for romance, the spa area can readily be converted into an intimate dining area, complete with billowing curtains and candles.
My non-veg thali came with a huge selection of dishes, including three types of seafood. The kitchen staff were absent during my stay, so Sandy cooked my meal himself, including the chapatis (can this guy possibly be any more talented?). It was restaurant quality and simply delicious.
When it comes to eating, another attraction at Turiya is the outdoor barbecue area, which adjoins the indoor bar area. It's a fabulous place for lazy sunny days with loved ones.
Turiya Villa and Spa: Hastha the Spa
Named Hastha after the Nakshatra that has "hands" as its symbol, the spa at Turiya is headed by Sandy's sister who is an Ayurvedic doctor.
It's located in a separate pavilion that once was the garage, to the side of the garden. Again, the design here is remarkable, using wood that's been rescued from scrap heaps and given a new lease of life.
A wide variety of reasonably priced treatments are offered, ranging from traditional Ayurvedic practices (starting from 450 rupees for 30 minutes) to modern Swedish massage, and hot and cold stone therapy (1,000 rupees for 60 minutes). Other shorter therapies, such as reflexology and head massages, are also available (400 rupees for 30 minutes).
Upon the urging of some English visitors who had returned to the spa for the third time, I chose a 60 minute deep tissue massage. It certainly didn't disappoint, and went deep into my muscles to release built up tensions and toxins.
The great thing about the spa is that it's open to everyone, not just those staying at Turiya. While I was there, numerous people came for treatments and enjoyed the serene surroundings.Of further interest, yoga and cooking classes are expected to be added in the near future.
My Overall Experience at Turiya:
Honestly, I'm a beach person and prefer to be as close to it as possible. Yet, given the choice, I'd much rather stay at Turiya. Coming back to the oasis of the villa after a day out really feels like coming home, and the longer you stay there, the more impossible it becomes to leave. Many people (including myself) have fantasized about living in a characterful Goan villa. At Turiya, it actually becomes a reality -- and with the added benefit of the nurturing of wellness. It's utterly memorable, and is a place you'll want to return to again and again.
See more photos of Turiya Villa and Spa in my Facebook album.