Praya Villas, A multisensory getaway dressed in old Goan charm with its own private stretch of beach

NOV 29, 2023 | By Krupakshi Mehta
Mainzu Tiles and a custom-made Bar, surrounded by Rattan bar stools from Advent International; Photography Courtesy - Talib Chitalwala
A tent by the sea to enjoy the view while dining and Tall Hurricane Lights from Jain Exports. Styling by Samir Wadekar, Photography Courtesy - Talib Chitalwala
Old repurposed antique doors, a wall antique Part of an old Jharokha from Jain Exports, Stone & metal side table from Decor Harvest, Exposed laterite stone pathway, Tiles from Bharat Flooring, Palm tree prints by Etsy. Styling by Samir Wadekar, Photography Courtesy - Talib Chitalwala
Cane back bed from Savana Living, Wooden globe light from Uma Exim, Incidental chairs from Decor harvest, Bedside lights from Homestyle Industries, Bed linen from Ikea, Woolen Carpet from Bhadohi Carpets; Styling by Samir Wadekar, Photography Courtesy - Talib Chitalwala
Rattan Sun bed by Advent International, Ikea Blue side table; Photography Courtesy - Talib Chitalwala
Lush greenery surrounding the property, with places to relax and enjoy the view
Dainty bench from Decor Harvest, Peg table in sea grey & white finish from Savana Living, Cotton Dhurries from Decor Harvest, Sea grey finish Mirror from Savana Living, Pergola from Furnish studio by Sanglani Furniture, Wooden wall lights from Umaexim; Styling by Samir Wadekar, Photography Courtesy - Talib Chitalwala

Who would have thought that a humble boat, journeying from the shores of Portugal would wield such a profound influence on the food, architecture and way of life in a far-off coastal town – Goa? Known for its lively nightlife and roads lined with Palm trees, Goa holds a serene charm amidst those colourful facades, patterned streets and tiled rooftops. Here, a hidden gem awaits discovery — Praya Villas

This sanctuary, ensconced along one of North Goa’s less crowded beaches, Morjim Beach — a nesting ground for Olive Ridley Turtles — stands as a testament to the passion and dedication of Neesha and Fritz Dsilva, the globetrotting duo from Mumbai, who have designed and curated Praya as a soporific destination of design, aesthetics and views galore. With fourteen idyllic villas, Praya Villas beckons souls seeking respite from the rigours of a hectic work week.

Coffee table & incidental cane back chairs from Decor Harvest, Chesterfield sofa by Pradeep Lalchand, Distressed Chandeliers from Terra Trading, Curtains & upholstery by Chunilal Mulchand, Artifacts from Koch Thailand; Styling by Samir Wadekar, Photography Courtesy – Talib Chitalwala


Black turtle on the walls, to spread the message about environment responsibility, found all over the property and Standing nickel finish lamps from, Homestyle International

The old Goan charm

A self-contained ecosystem in its own, the property encapsulates one with its old Goan charm. As we walked down the carefully cobbled street we were introduced to the villas, adorned with facades painted in hues of yellow, blue, white and green, each colour thoughtfully inspired by the sun, sea and everything in between.

The layout is meticulously devised to foster an ongoing dialogue between indoor and outdoor spaces, categorising the villas into distinct spatial configurations: sea view villas, garden villas, courtyard villas and the Concha (meaning shells in Portugal).

Every villa comprises four bedrooms, four bathrooms, a fully equipped kitchen, a spacious living room, a dining area and a private pool. Some of these villas even offer terraces, perfect to relish the vistas of the serene sea and the verdant landscape that stretches beyond. 

Wrought Iron + Mango Wood Console from Decor Harvest, Carved mirror from Savana Living, Old Burma Teak reclaimed Door, Striped cotton dhurrie from Decor Harvest. Photography Courtesy – Suleiman Merchant


Photography Courtesy – Talib Chitalwala


Art, flavours and the profound impact of chance

Every minute detail, from the floor tiles to the curtains, have been chosen by Neesha, who was involved in every step of the process from inception to completion. “We have collected artefacts from various corners of the world. During our holiday in Thailand, we sourced many of these unique pieces. I have dedicated many years to this project even before it officially began. For instance, the doors are all made of exquisite Burma teak, and the inward-facing doors have been reclaimed and repurposed here,” shares Neesha as she guides us through the rooms of Concha, one of Praya’s premium villas.

Photography Courtesy – Talib Chitalwala


Photography Courtesy – Talib Chitalwala


The bathroom, consisting of Mainzu Tiles, a Custom Made Vanity from Jain Exports, Distressed finish Mirror from Savana Living, Wash basin from Kohler and Edison Bulb – Antique lights from Vista lights; Styling by Samir Wadekar, Photography Courtesy – Suleiman Merchant

Within the walls of this holiday haven, one also stumbles upon an impressive array of art pieces, including paintings by renowned artists and vintage maps depicting the historic Bombay port, framed to perfection. Be it the garden villa or the Concha, one is sure to spot a black turtle on one of those walls. From white sheer curtains in the verandah to the patterned tiles on the floor and from casual sit outs in the gardens to the wooden zarukhas on the facade, every sight in this serene expanse is an art to behold.

Praya is dedicated to environmental responsibility, given its proximity to the turtle conservatory. Villas were designed carefully to minimise impact, using local laterite stones and efficient UPVC doors/windows. 

Blue Mosaic swimming pool system by JD Pools, surrounded by Kota stone deck and Exposed Laterite Stone, leading up to the Gazebo – Furnish Studio by Sanglani Furniture and Rattan Furniture by Advent International. Photography Courtesy – Talib Chitalwala


Hammocks suspended from coconut trees and looking over at the lawn spread across the property, a perfect way to relax and rejuvenate. Photography Courtesy – Talib Chitalwala

Art, stars and delectable delights

At Baracca, the “guests only” restaurant on the property, beneath the canopy of stars, as fireworks punctuated the night sky at every other minute, our conversation embraced the world of art.

With Neesha and Fritz’s delightful company, we savoured lobsters and spring rolls while our discussions ranged from emerging artists to Mumbai’s art deco heritage. In that moment, the passage of time became an afterthought. We lost ourselves to art, flavours and the warm camaraderie. 

Whether it is seafood that you are craving or your commitment to a vegan feast – they cater to all. Explore diverse culinary choices, or take charge in your villa’s kitchen for a personalised culinary adventure.

Pathway leading to the “only-guests” restaurant, Barraca, where once can enjoy scrumptious food under a beautiful sky. Barraca sign, custom made Mosaic sign by Pritesh Desai. Photography Courtesy – Talib Chitalwala

As we made our way back to our villa, a compelling thought lingered in my mind — What if that boat had never found its way to this shore? It’s a question that forces us to consider the profound impact of chance and circumstance. From the moment that boat set sail to Goa’s rise as a tourist spot and the birth of Praya Villas, it underscores the incredible journey that has shaped this place.

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