Quaint and inviting
Papa Pippo is the last beachside restaurant and guesthouse on Otres 1, with nine bungalows from which you can step from your bed straight out to the soft sand outside. The fan-cooled, thatch-roofed and clapboard-walled bungalows are rustic or romantic depending on your point of view, and each has a small terrace out front where you can enjoy your own outdoor space. French doors open straight out, giving a clear view of the beach from your bed, and an airing when needed (the rooms have a slight whiff of damp, so airing may be needed).
Like most wooden/thatched bungalows, the interiors are a little dark and the bathrooms a little dingy, but this is not substantially different from anywhere else you’ll find along the strip, except that they actually do have their own bathrooms, which is not always the case elsewhere.
The open-air restaurant outside excels in Italian food and this is one of the few places on Otres One where you can get a decent coffee (Lavazza). The pizzas and pastas cost around $5-7 and fruit shakes are $2. The Italian dishes, while not flashy, have an authentic home-cooked feel and modestly priced from around $3.50 for a piadina, made with house-made pita and filled with real mozzarella cheese and your choice of other fillings, to $7.00 for a pizza with everything; and it’s all served with a smile.
They also keep the pizza oven firing until 02:00, for those afflicted by late-night munchies. The tranquil atmosphere and laid-back music makes this a great place to spend a day reading a book or enjoying some idle chatter with other travellers. There is a real family feeling here somehow, no doubt fuelled by the owner and his son, and the friendly, helpful staff.
They hold pub quizzes here every Tuesday evening, and live music on Thursdays.
By Nicky Sullivan
Last updated on 16th May, 2015.
The Travelfish newsletter is sent out every Monday and is jammed full of free advice for travel in Southeast Asia. You can see past issues here.