We quickly ran out of superlatives to describe the Yab Yum resort, but in just a few it was tranquil, awesome, a refuge and just what we wanted after a crazy few days of travelling around on India’s trains.
Hidden away down a sharp turn on the main road of Ashwem in Goa, Yab Yum Huts is an eco retreat with a very visual difference. Each hut has a domed roof covered in what looks like hay. They’re dotted about over the two acre site with plenty of room between for privacy and quiet. The huts looked a bit like Doogal from Magic Roundabout, kind of, if you close one eye.
Yab Yum is the third of the excellent properties I stayed at in India from Tripzuki: the home of hipster hotels (they have the best price, guaranteed!).
As we were shown to reception down the hut-lined path we grinned wide with anticipation about the three nights we were due to spend there. This was my kind of hotel. On arrival we were given a choice of welcome drinks: my orange zinger was a needed touch after a hot morning in the Goan sun.
Our Yab Yum hut
They didn’t keep us waiting long in reception and quickly brought us back to our two-bedroom suite pod overlooking the sea. Our hut was nestled in the corner of the complex – stunning and so unique.
Outside the hut a hammock hung from the huge tree. I later bagged this for my office. The Wi-Fi here was so good, particularly in comparison to what I’d experienced in India so far. We had a table and chairs under a pagoda where breakfast was delivered every day at a time to suit us. All we had to do was order on the form before we went to bed, suggest an hour, and it would be there, included in the room price.
Food at Yab Yum
The food here was incredible. Over the three days between us we tried 35 of the 72 dishes on offer. Yep, we racked up quite the bill. Although at around £2 a dish it wasn’t all that bad. I’ve never tried so many foods off one menu in such a short amount of time before and I can’t imagine I’ll ever do it again – proving just how good the food at Yab Yum was.
Top recommendations include the muesli, curd and fruit for breakfast, the sharing platter for 2 with a side of chilli lime slaw for lunch and the tandoori paneer and Keralan prawn curry for dinner. Make sure you try the Yab Yum Thali special too. The food seemed healthier, purer and lighter than the rest of the sauce-laden foods we’d tried so far. I’ll never know how they could make tandoori tomato and tandoori cauliflower so damn delicious, but one day I’ll give making it a go.
Drink at Yab Yum
Fresh Indian organic coffee was included in the breakfast options, but we liked to top the buzz off of an afternoon with a 3pm dabble on the percolator too. Every day there was a sunset happy hour with two cocktails for 750 rupees (£7.50) wherever you wanted them in the resort. My favourite of the six I tried would definitely be the strawberry daiquiri, although the Moscow Mule came in a close second. They have import and local spirits, Champagne, beers and Sula wine to titillate your taste buds.
Yoga at Yab Yum
On both mornings we joined the yoga class at 8:30am – the perfect time for holidayers. Chrissy took us through our salutations, a few stretches and downward dogs and finished the two-hour class with the savasana corpse pose (lying on the ground with no tension in your body whatsoever) using essential oils on our ‘third eye’ before applying an eye mask to chill us out. Blocking off our visual sense just heightened the others and it was as if you could hear every wave and birdsong of the Ashwem Beach just over the fence.
Inside the Yab Yum Huts
It seems to me a lot of places claim to be ‘eco’ but Yab Yum actually is. There are no buffets, no excessive towel use, no unnecessary frills and no energy sucking pools.
Inside our suite pod we had everything we needed for a relaxing stay – two separate rooms each with double beds surrounded by a mosquito net. Both had wardrobe space to hang things, or to just tip them straight out of the bag upside down in the bottom, which is more my style, and bedside tables too.
There was a safety deposit box but I felt so safe there I didn’t actually even bother to use it. We had a lovely clean and stylish bathroom that proved its eco authenticity with our new froggy friends at night. I had to shoot at the ground near them with the bum gun at night to keep them away from the toilet bowl for fear of their jumpy personalities.
Anything negative to say?
Nothing in life is perfect, however close it may seem. But I can honestly say to find a negative at Yab Yum would be to become one of those people on hotel reviews where they say, “there weren’t any chips at the fresh seafood buffet” or that “when they turn the lights out it’s too dark” (I’ve seen them both).
But here we go; just to show I’m not all gushy love for Yab Yum, which I blatantly am.
- We were all excited for king fish souvlaki on our final night and it was only when they put four little pieces of fish fry in front of us that they told us they didn’t have any.
- They wouldn’t open the toilet for us at the bar because it was off-season. This meant we had to go back to our hut – a good two minutes walk away.
- The yoga class actually lasted two hours, rather than the 90 minutes advertised. This meant my friend had to have cold porridge when she came back on the first day.
I prefer to think about what we can all learn from this. If that’s the only issues in three days pretty much solidly at the resort, I’d say my friends, myself and Yab Yum were doing pretty well in life.
Yab Yum location
Yab Yum is right on the beach – just a minute walk through the complex from our front door and we were there, stood next to the sun loungers. As well as having any food and drink you wanted delivered to various spots around the resort, you could also have them delivered to the beach. We experienced two smorgasbord lunches and quite a few cocktails from the comfort of our sun loungers.
Yab Yum is in a perfect location. An oasis of calm within a few minutes walk of the craziness of Ashwem you’d associate with Goa. We went right at the end of the season and so missed the rumoured carnage by a few days and by the fact we spent all the time in the resort.
Our three evenings were spent in the bar area sampling the sunset cocktails and playing cards. In mid-April when we were there, we only saw three other couples, making it the perfect time for a peaceful getaway in the sun, with your every need catered for by Yab Yum.
Check out more pics, and details of pricing at Yab Yum on Tripzuki.com.
Fancy staying in a hut in Goa?