24 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
Our holiday photos in a beautiful hotel dona sylvia
"Our holiday photos in a beautiful hotel dona sylvia:
The hotel is situated in a very quiet area, you can safely rest, the hotel generally clean, we stayed in a house on the ground floor, and unfortunately we had ants, which were very troublesome, I would recommend rooms in houses located on the first floor, the food very tasty, very wide beach, sandy, poor animations , garden and hotel infrastructure fabulous, exotic feel. I recommend Ayurvedic massage spa, great experience.
- Travel date: Thu 6th of September 2012
dona sylvia, the best place to go
"We stayed from 7th to 22nd jan 2009 and 2010.
We are so glad we have found this wonderful place to go. The staff are very friendly and helpful.
It was my birthday while we we're there and i had the best time ever. Cake and flowers in our room.
The rooms are lovely with a huge kingsize bed with lovely fresh white bedding.
Added bonus this year of tea and coffee facilities in your room.
Would deffinately reccomned this holiday to my friends."
- Travel date: Thu 27th of January 2011
Dona Silvia dont go
"If you want a holiday in the real india go to the Dona Silvia Most of the customers are from india on three day breaks.
We had new indian neighbours FOUR times during our two weeks holiday in the next apartment and all of them liked to spend their holiday watching full volume television twenty four seven it was the noisiest holiday we have ever had and we were glad to leave.
The staff were first class and did their best but didnt realy control it.
The evening entertainment was drowned out with extremely loud indian music laid on for the indian guests in another part of the hotel.
Noise round pool was equaly as bad.
The beach was the only redeeming feature it was the best.
- Travel date: Wed 25th of March 2009
Idyllic Holiday Resort
"We returned to the Dona Sylvia this year, after staying there last year, and we feel that the food was if anything even better than last year. We were a party of six (one of whom has had problems with upset stomachs in many other parts of the world) and although we ate in the hotel for the whole holiday, and ate the many and varied Indian dishes on offer, none of us suffered with any problems whatsoever (apart from putting on weight of course!). The two a-la-carte restaurants, Mama Mias and Kebabs & Curries (which you have one "free" visit to each per week) were both excellent, and the snacks available during the day (which we all tried several times during our stay) were tasty and well cooked. Probably our highlight, however, was the "Haystacks" evenings, when the tables and chairs are all moved outdoors, so you can eat under the stars. The food is again buffet style, with plenty of variety, and available from 7.30pm until at least 10.00pm. They have entertainment, some to our taste and some less so, but then we are all different, and it is of course impossible to please everyone all of the time!.
With regards to sunbeds, it is true that those in more favoured positions will be snapped up early, but there were still beds available right through to late morning, and there are plenty of sunbeds down at the beach, as previously mentioned. We have travelled extensively throughout the world, and unless you are staying in an expensive 5 star hotel we have always found that many sunbeds are booked very early, or pre-booked by pool boys earning a little extra cash, and this is hardly a major issue.
Incidentally, if anyone is going to stay there, it is worth talking to the beach shack owners about arranging trips. We have always done this in Goa, and have never been disappointed. They are also considerably cheaper, even cheaper than Jack's boats, who sells his cruises within Dona Sylvia.
To summarise, we believe that this hotel could not be bettered for the price paid. The service and friendliness from the staff is first class, and we all enjoyed it so much we have booked again already for January 2010!"
- Travel date: Tue 17th of March 2009
"although the staff were so friendly and helpful and the place was as beautiful as last year the food was a complete let down, I had the runs with in 2 days... cos of uncooked meat especially at the snack bar,where the boys who ran it were often confused and in a tizzy. I wont be going back, even though it's a beautiful place...I also noticed the lighting was a let down...gone are the candles on the tables upstairs where at least you could see peoples faces and eating outside in the haystack was awful and regimented..with no atmosphere at all..sorry to put a damper on it but this is my feelings...also the people who go there regularly seem to think they have a right to the sunbeds round the pool
it's well worth a visit but I am sorry to say the food compared to last year was a complete let down"
- Travel date: Fri 6th of March 2009
i absoloutly loved this holiday its the...
"i absoloutly loved this holiday its the best one i have ever been on.
this hotel is so ideal let alone beautiful. it is in a perfect place right on the lovely beach where you can relax and sunbathe and there are also plenty of beach shacks that do amazing food!! i have to recommend doms beach shack all the staff are really friendly and they will cook you whatever you ask for even if it is isnt on the menu!
the hotel is amazing really great rooms with really good air conditioning which is obviously handy and relaxing to come back to at the end of the day after soaking up the sun.
the food is brilliant i found there was plenty of choice and even if you didnt like the hotels food which i doubt very much there are plenty of excellent resturants outside the hotel i recomend fishermans veiw (chicken tikka masala was awsum!)
i will definitly be returning and i hope you love it as much as i did!"
- Travel date: Sat 21st of June 2008
After having a holiday to Hurghada cance...
"After having a holiday to Hurghada cancelled 22 hours before departure we booked the Dona Sylvia the next day, spent the following day at the Consulate getting visas and flew out the next day. We had no idea what to expect but we found that we had landed on our feet when we were shown to a seaview deluxe room.
The staff were delightful, the food excellent and the overall holiday was one of our best. The food in the buffet restaurant gave a wide choice of meals - curries, pasta and 'English'. The food was cooked in mineral water and the hot dishes were constantly being replaced even before all the food had gone. We had no tummy upsets at all during our stay and we sampled most of the local food.
The only minor problem was the lack of umbrellas round the pool. There are only 12 available and it took us several days to discover that if you 'bribed' the right people you would be allocated an umbrella for the length of your stay. This meant that at times there were umbrellas not being used as the people had gone to the beach or elsewhere. Comments to Maria who appeared to be in charge of the pool area fell on deaf ears. The management obviously condone this practice in ourder to give extra pay to poolboys. We prefer not to bribe but to reward good service with a tip. Although we didn't get an umbrella during the whole of our stay the poolboys were delightful and amusing especially during the cricket test match so received a hefty tip from us.
Our disappointment caused by the cancellation of our holiday to Egypt was soon turned to gratitude that we had arrived at the Dona Sylvia. We are hoping to take the Golden Triangle tour in the future and we will finish off back at the Dona Sylvia and we would recommend it to our friends and family."
- Travel date: Mon 24th of March 2008
just had two fantastic weeks at dona syl...
"just had two fantastic weeks at dona sylvia hotel. stayed in a lovely bungalow in hotel grounds with the beach two minutes walk away. staff very pleasant and always smiling. hotel food good and plentiful but would only go half board next time as do not miss eating at beach shacks.weather in the nineties each day with beautiful warm evenings and good entertainment. thompson representative and flights excellent, as were the hotel massages. ladies have all your waxing , hair and nails etc at hotel beauty parlour half the price of uk. booking again for next february 2009 as was the most relaxing holiday ever and far better than the north of goa. the swimming pool was lovely, very clean and good exercise."
- Travel date: Mon 3rd of March 2008
We went to goa with an open mind, a cult...
"We went to goa with an open mind, a culture shock when you land but it was the best holiday we have ever been on, the hotel was very clean and relaxed, alway people tending to the gardens and cleaning. Hotel Food was lovely, was also able to find something to eat everyday which was a main worry for me. Hotel Staff all very helpful and polite would always try and help. Even thought all inclusive we did eat out at Bettys Place which was really enjoyable and attended a Beach Shack party where the fish Platter was amazin!!! Loved it so much booking to go back for christmas 2008 and cant wait!!!!!!!!!!"
- Travel date: Fri 29th of February 2008
A truly first class experience, welcomin...
"A truly first class experience, welcoming staff, beautiful location. Immaculate gardens and 28k of beach on the doorstep - try to get one of the beach view bungalows, there is probably a waiting list! But all rooms good size and standard. One small niggle the main restaurant could get a little warm.
We took a boat trip up the river -thoroughly recommended great wildlife spotting - the guide really knew his stuff and it was a lovely peaceful way to see the area.
Hire a taxi for a day much cheaper than tours through reps. The Royal tent trip that is advertised in all hotels is a great 2 day escape - you go as far south as the road allows and sleep in a luxury tent on the beach - locals catch and cook fresh fish for the evening barbecue - a lovely experience.
If you have to hire a motorbike avoid all major towns - it is the worst traffic chaos imaginable - you are so vulnerable on a bike. We had so many near misses -let someone else drive!"
- Travel date: Thu 18th of October 2007
We were due to stay in Candolim, but Fir...
"We were due to stay in Candolim, but First Choice changed the hotel at the last minute.
Not a problem, as the Dona Sylvia was superb, and on the best beach in Goa. We have been to Goa, and Kerala, several times previously, and would not dream of booking All Inclusive, as the food in the beach shacks is wonderful.
However, the Dona Sylvia's food was also superb, with plenty of choice, and the holiday was so cheap that we could eat out if we wanted to, and not feel we were wasting our money.
The pool at the hotel was very large, and very clean, and there were plenty of sun beds and towels provided.
The rooms were also a good size, and the A/C very efficient.
The beach at Cavellossim is magnificent, almost 28km long and almost deserted. One or two locals trying to make a living, but no hassle if you said no, and all very friendly.
The beach shacks were all very cheap, and provided sun beds and umbrellas for free if you had a drink and a snack at their restaurant.
Overall, a fantastic way to avoid the Christmas shopping, and watching them put up the decorations and the Xmas tree in 35 degrees was bizarre."
- Travel date: Tue 23rd of January 2007
Absolutely brilliant in every way possib...
"Absolutely brilliant in every way possible!
I cannot think of anything bad about Dona Sylvia or indeed of Goa. It is like being in paradise and after English grey skies was a real boost to the system.
All the staff at Dona Sylvia are brilliant and so helpful at all times. The massages in the Treatment Centre are wonderful and so relaxing.
We went out several times with a local taxi driver we met - Glorio - he was marvellous. We have now washed and fed an elephant, seen the second highest waterfall in India, fed monkeys bananas from our hands.
Been blessed in a Hindu temple by a holy man, seen eagles and kingfishers catching fish in the river and have had a Chinese meal for 6 in a restaurant in town for less than Â£10 (including starters, main course and drinks!).
We will definitely go back to Dona Sylvia and feel totally indebted to them for making our stay so wonderful!"
- Travel date: Mon 25th of December 2006