Spread across many verdant acres of land on Utorda beach in south Goa, the Planet Hollywood Beach Resort is one of Goa’s top wedding destinations. This is their first property outside of Las Vegas. Situated in Goa, it is also the first property in India and Asia under this brand. The Planet Hollywood Beach Resorts, Goa is owned by the JMJ group, currently headed by Sachin Joshi, a well-known name in business and Bollywood in India.
This Internationally popular name in hospitality came into existence when Robert Earl, who owns this brand and Sachin Joshi merged their vision to provide a world-class experience of hospitality in Goa. Interestingly, unlike the Planet Hollywood Las Vegas, this property is a family resort that is also pet-friendly, an increasingly important attribute when it comes to choosing a destination for a family vacation.
The Goa property has created enough of a stir with its positive impact that in the next few properties of Planet Bollywood in Mexico, Cambodia, and Costa Rica, the Goa model has been replicated, a fact proudly confirmed by Anand Chatterjee, General Manager and Director of the Goa Property. “We have been in operation for about eight years and I can confidently say that we have captured a big chunk of the market share in the hospitality sector of Goa,”. He also states that Planet Hollywood Goa comes neither under a luxury hotel nor just a five-star hotel, “We come under the five-stars plus category of hotels. We are at the par with any International five-star luxury hotel in the staff quality and service approach.”
Due to this, the positioning of the hotel has been extremely successful as the guests realise that they get more bang for their buck! “We offer something that any luxurious five-star property would do but at a reasonable price,” said Mr Chatterjee adding that positive feedback from his guests on the various online platforms is what makes him feel good. “When the guest writes a positive feedback on the online and social media platforms saying they were pleasantly surprised with the quality of rooms and service, it makes me feel that is the key to the success of this property.”
The Rooms and Amenities
The Planet Hollywood Beach Resorts, Goa has 200 rooms including the sea-facing chalets situated on the seashore which come under the ecologically sensitive zone and are the most luxurious sea-facing accommodations available in the entire state of Goa. Planet Hollywood also has a 3 Bedroom Presidential Villa with large living rooms, and a kitchen with butler service available. The property also has pool view rooms and garden view rooms, “We have a couple of partial sea view rooms and we also have the one-bedroom suites.” adds Mr Chatterjee The cost of the rooms starts with the base category Garden Rooms which is in the range of ten to fifteen thousand per night.
Planet Hollywood Beach Resort boasts three excellent restaurants, Poseidon’s Cove which is a beach grill, a pool-facing restaurant called The Fame which has Indo ( is it indoor or Indo?) dining and Planet Dailies, an all-day dining restaurant with an alfresco seating arrangement. “ For guests who want room service, we don’t just push in a trolley of food but we create a memorable dining experience inside the room itself that they will cherish,” he says with pride in the hospitality standards of the property. Planet Hollywood Beach Resort, Goa also has a large Ballroom that can accommodate up to 300 guests in theatre-style seating. “We have the largest pool in Goa, and we also provide the service of Spa and Ayurveda Treatments,” adds Mr Chatterjee.
In the Shadow of the Pandemic
The pandemic was one of the most challenging phases that every hotel had to face and Planet Hollywood did not escape the gloom either. “We did not lay off single staff during the pandemic, although we adjusted the remuneration and working hours according to the needs.” Mr Chatterjee added, “Except for a couple of days when we had no guests, we did have days that were not great but we never had to close down the hotel completely. Instead, we worked very closely with the State Government and transformed the entire hotel into a luxury quarantine facility for travellers coming down to Goa during the Covid.”
He also disclosed how working closely with the state government, Planet Hollywood managed to provide food to around 1200 to 1500 people daily which included breakfast, lunch, and dinner, during the first lockdown. “We did it for over 6 months and also donated the oxygen concentrator to GMC and we also provided the entire air-conditioning of the new ward at GMC (Covid Ward). In fact, many of our employees were later felicitated by the Chief Minister of Goa. So through some tough times, we also had moments that gave us pride and hope ” he adds.
The Bollywood Connection
The Planet Hollywood Resort Goa was launched in the year 2015 in the presence of some well-known Bollywood celebrities such as Shah Ruk Khan & Gauri Khan, Chunky Pandey & Bhavna Pandey, Varun Dhawan, Anusha Dandekar, Sophia, and Ashish Chaudhary, Dino Mourya, Daboo and Manisha Ratnani, Sohail Khan, R Madhavan, Pratik Babbar, Kirti Sanon, Genelia, and Ritesh Deshmukh and Nilam Kothari.
According to Mr Chatterjee, the star celebrity presence at the launch was a result of owner Sachin Joshi’s close connection to Bollywood. “Mr Sachin Joshi himself is a celebrity and an actor who worked in many films in Bollywood and Tollywood and he is close to a number of actors and members of the film fraternity,” adding that Mr Robert Earl and Sachin Joshi both are connected to Hollywood and Bollywood respectively and that is also a reason for a shared vision. “Most of the celebrities who stay here frequently are friends and though Hollywood or Bollywood as a name may be a reason they choose this property, it is also because of the close camaraderie they share with the owners. Hence celebrity spotting is common on our premises”, he says with a smile.
The Expansion Plans
Speaking about the expansion plans of the Planet Hollywood brand in India under the flagship of Mr Sachin Joshi. Mr Chatterjee says “We are now expanding the Planet Hollywood Base in India,” adding that they are opening a second Planet Hollywood in India / Asia at Hiranandani Estates situated in Thane suburbs in Mumbai and it will be followed by the Hotels in Delhi, and Jaipur. “Besides the five stars, we have also entered into the 4 star plus segment of hotels with the branding of “Beatle” which is a boutique property situated in the Hiranandani at Pawai, with these two brands and assets we will have the base of 4 hotels in five star plus segment and one hotel in Budget 4 star plus segment.“
According to him, there are also plans of entering into the management sector too with taking over the properties in various cities under the brand management of Viking Ventures. “We are also opening up the avenues of management and operations contract with other keen real estate owners and then perhaps go public,” he informs, adding that Viking Ventures will be more of a management company than the asset owners in the future, “That is the way forward we are trying to position ourselves with the strong sales and revenue network.”
The Top Wedding Destination in Goa
The Planet Hollywood Beach Resorts, Goa is invariably a top-notch wedding destination in Goa for big fat Indian weddings. “Weddings is one of the largest revenue streams in Goa for the hospitality industry, second only to MICE (Meetings Incentives, Conferences, and Events or Exhibitions) It is our top priority and hence we made sure that weddings remain our strong source of revenue,” said Mr Chatterjee adding that the property is doing extremely well in that segment. “The size of this property is perfect for weddings and guests can do the total buyout we are also the largest property in Goa with 12 acres of land. At Indian weddings, there are many elderly guests and they never have complained about walking on the land spread across as we ensure guests’ convenience in every aspect.”
The Pet-Friendly Hotel
The Planet Hollywood Beach Resorts, Goa is one of the first properties in Goa to start the Pet-Friendly concept of the property, which means that guests can walk into the hotels with their pets for which no permission is required. “There are many hotels who followed suit later on, but we were the first hotel to start the Pet-Friendly concept in Goa,” said Mr Anand adding that this move was so well timed to meet such a demand, that their hotel is known as Pet-Friendly Hotel now in the market. “In 365 days of the year, daily we have at least one guest staying in the hotel with the pets. This all started with love and compassion towards animals, the environment, and society at large. We also look after the stray dogs around the beach and neighbourhood, we have sterilised them so that they don’t rise in population. We don’t do this from any commercial angle but a humane one that reflects our brand’s belief and value system.”
Poseidon’s Cove is a luxury beach grill restaurant located at The Planet Hollywood Beach Resorts, Goa and it serves the choicest seafood, meats, and vegetarian meals along with handcrafted cocktails. It is believed that food tastes best with a side of sea breeze – ‘Poseidon’s Cove is the chic new addition to Planet Hollywood Beach Resort, Goa’s culinary offering.
Poseidon’s Cove’s relaxed and cheerful approach to dining combines the best seasonal produce with breathtaking ocean views. You can sit here and enjoy the waves over their signature cocktails or spend an evening with speciality dishes prepared by the Chef. The restaurant is open for lunch and dinner and accessible via the resort premises or the beach directly.
The Fame is situated near the pool and it is a hot spot at Restro Lounge featuring Western and Asian Cuisine. The Lounge area is recommended as a perfect place for spending time with your loved ones. It is open for lunch and its eclectic music and lounge area are a perfect place for an evening outing.
There is a variety of choices on the food menu starting from a Platter of Grilled Seafood, Choice of Meat Cuts and Fresh Vegetables, along with Asian Stir-Fries. All the ingredients and vegetables are handpicked by the Chef from the Hotel Garden.
This place serves right from delicious Japanese bigiris to Thai curries, sashimis, and teppanyaki to bento lunches. There is also an option of a wide selection of Wine from various geographical spheres.
One of the most famous locations on the property as most of the guests prefer savouring the multi-cuisine dining here in this restaurant. The buffet in this restaurant features international cuisine such as Far East Asian, and Indian over breakfast, lunch, and dinner and this is a focal point of this restaurant. This restaurant also has an interactive kitchen for the guests to experience food making.
Besides the buffet lunch and dinner, this restaurant also serves an Ala Carte Menu such as fresh garden salads, gourmet sandwiches, wraps, and local curries. The restaurant’s al fresco dining is a great place to enjoy a late breakfast or a laid-back lunch over fruit cocktails.