W Goa’s Design Brings Culture, Colors and Coastal Vibes

Design In Focus W Goa’s Design Brings Culture, Colors and Coastal Vibes

In the electric city of Goa, every turn excites the senses. Colorful markets filled with spices and textiles from around India. Portuguese architecture that holds the stories of the city. Smells of foods and sounds of nightlife that pulse through the streets at night. And fashion that takes on the relaxed essence of the beautiful white sand beach. This Indian city has a unique way of blending cultures into a vibrant whirl of sights, smells and sounds, and W Goa’s modern design perfectly synthesizes all the city’s most mesmerizing elements into one, breathtaking coastal escape.


Explore the cultural and creative inspirations behind the interior design of W Goa, proving that when you bring the surrounding life of the city inside, a space will come alive.



Design Element: Red chili sculptures and Indigo blue artworks


What it’s made out of: Fiberglass


Where it’s from: Goa.


Who designed it: Subodh Kerkar


Why it fits at W Goa: 

No other commodity imported into India has affected the life of Indians as much as chillies have.  Indian cuisine used pepper and other spices until chillies arrived in Goa on a Portuguese caravel coming from South America sometime in the early 16th century and the country has been defined by their vibrant taste and hue ever since.

Indigo, along with chilis, was also an important cargo on the caravels that sailed to the West through the blue waters of the Indian Ocean. As both the color of the ocean around Goa and the blue paints the many Portuguese houses,  Indigo is a perfect accent and calming addition to the spicy red of the chilis.


Chilis are everywhere when you go to the Goan markets.
W GOA Postproduction 13 April2017
This larger than life sculpture shows off the importance of the spice.
These indigo fruit and veggie molds put a contemporary twist on market culture.

Enter the fort


Design Element: Front door to W Goa.


What it’s made out of: Iron material for the doors. Artwork with clay and shells.


Where it’s from: Goa.


Who designed it: Door sourced in India by Jeffery Wilkes and the Phases of Moon artwork by Subodh Kerkar.


Why it fits at W Goa: Giant fortress doors with seashell medallions is a nod to the neighboring fort, but ours is always open as it is welcoming to the Living Room. The seashells are from the local beach.

Local doors give Goa a unique look where ever you go.
Doors are always open here!

An Artful Welcome


Design Element: Shell desk and hand painted mural.


What it’s made out of: Desk is made from capiz shells while the mural is hand painted without brushes using acrylic paint.


Where it’s from: Capiz shells are sourced from Goan beaches.


Who designed it: Mural painted by local artist Narayanappa Muniyappa. The desk was sourced by Jeffery Wilkes.


Why it fits at W Goa: The capiz shells are collected from the beach as a symbol for the chill coastal lifestyle in Goa. These shells are often used in wind chimes or jewelry worn by the local beach bums.

For the mural, each color seen here is picked up one by one, blended vigorously by hand until picture is complete. The images show the diversity of cultures that co-exist within Goa inspired by carnival culture and different festivals that bring so many cultures together.

Carnival attracts vibrant colors and costumes from around the city.
The mural takes on the life of the festival with masks, abstract objects, and bright jewel tones.
Capiz shells are also used to give a special shine to doors around the city.
Inspiration for the desk came from local markets selling the shell in many forms.



Design Element: Bead hangings at The Kitchen Table, Rope hanging in The Living Room.


What it’s made out of: Crystal beads and ropes out of natural nylon fiber and wire.


Where it’s from: Goa.


Who designed it:  Local handicrafts.


Why it fits at W Goa: Both ceiling dressings nod to the craft element of Goa, from hippy inspired colorful beads to ropes crafted after the celebratory flower garlands used in local festivals, weddings and parties, but done with Marine Rope inspired to the local ship building sculpture of the city.

Beads are everywhere in Goa and come is many sizes and colors.
The beads hanging over The Kitchen Table resturant are multicolored glass and take on the laid back vibe of beach culture.
A modern twist on the age of culture of flower garlands.
Available at local markets, no party or celebration is complete with out a bright flower chain.

Home sweet home


Design Element: Spice Traders dining area lamps and plates.


What it’s made out of: Copper and brass lights, ceramic plates.


Where it’s from: India.


Who designed it:  Sourced by Jeffery Wilkes.


Why it fits at W Goa: Both the lamps and plates are prominent elements found in old Portuguese houses in Goa. The lamps, with their brass cutouts, is a connection of sun on the Arabian Sea, giving off  the light like a reflection into the sparkle of the sea when they look up. The plates are an heirloom design from the Portuguese culture of India, showing intricate designs on dainty china. Since Spice Traders is an Asian restaurant, the designer wanted to incorporate some elements of Asian culture in with Portuguese technique.

These lights come alive when paired together, reflecting on all surfaces.
Both Asian and Portuguese plates have highly detailed etching pairing a bold color with white china.