I’ve at last taken some of Nils’s lovely shots he took on Honeymoon off his iPhone, I had a few good ones on my camera, but they didn’t really capture how great the places we went to were. He’s scanning some really amazing stuff now so I’ll post them once he’s finished with that.
The first week was spent in Playa Del Carmen and Tulum, we had 3 nights in Playa, a more built up area than the deserted beaches of Tulum, it’s like a fishing village that has become a popular place with young people to go, the party scene here is probably amazing in high season, we came in low season so it was thankfully really chilled and pretty quiet while we were there. The hotel BASICO was pretty much off the scale design wise, I was blown away, every little thing in that place was cool from the flippers and rubber ring in every room to the ‘Life Aquatic’ style pools which were old oil tanks and the ‘decompression tank’ funnels next to them. The contemporary design was accented brilliantly with used objects and re-cycled things like an old saw handle for a toilet door handle and some amazing light fixtures using old metal cabinets with red bulbs, everything in this place is an experience, a brilliant one. The evenings were spent strolling around town and drinking martini’s in the rooftop BASICO bar, some evenings they projected old wrestling movies onto a wall, where the ‘Nacho Libre’ classic mexican wrestling masks are heavily portrayed, hehe.
The days were a dream, it was lovely and hot, most of the time we headed to this amazing beach club Cannibal Royal, where we had free use of their loungers and a waitress on call to bring freshly mixed juices and guacamole on demand, the food and drink in mexico is sooooo good, I could drink those juices all day and ‘death by avocado’ is a real possibility, the nacho’s are unlike any I’ve tasted anywhere else, so good. So, beach wise, it’s pretty much the Caribbean so turquoise sea ‘check’ white sand ‘check’! -I’ve never been anywhere like this so I was utterly blown away, it’s something I’ve only dreamed of.
So, when our 3 nights in Playa Del Carmen were over I was pretty gutted to leave, that is until our receptionist heard we were heading to the BeTulum and said we were off to the ”best hotel in the area, it’s amazing there” which was all I needed to be stoked to begin the next adventure!
In Tulum there’s an ancient Maya Temple and around that area of the coast a lot of luxury and eco hotels have set up along the deserted white beaches and next to the jungle. The Be Tulum is one of the only in the area to have a generator and so use of lights and air conditioning is possible 24 hours a day. The other hotels along the drive to the Be hotel looked amazing, but once we were there we could see we’d made the right decision. Our room was a ‘Jungle Suite’ …..this is not because it’s got a few tropical tree’s around, it’s because it’s actually REAL jungle RIGHT next to the beach! my god, I’ve never seen such a perfect place for a hotel. We had our own private pool and swinging hammocks outside the suite. In the morning after a bit of yoga by our pool we would walk a few steps out to the beach restaurant for breakfast, then walk a few more steps onto the beach beds: literally mattresses under a palm shelter, where we would sleep and swim and read and drink juices and sigh with contentment…alot! If I was a writer I’d have been able to write my first book here, it was so inspirational. Pelicans were swooping into the water for fish 20 meters away, Eagle Rays were jumping around less than 50 meters away and we saw a Sting Ray and a Barracuda when we were snorkelling only about 30 meters off the shore! it’s a natural paradise, no two ways about it. We were stoked to see loads of sea turtle tracks in the sand, but unlucky (not patient enough) to see any on the beach during the evenings.
The thing that struck me the most about this place was the fact that we were in a Hotel that was at the cutting edge of design and luxury with a choice of indoor and outdoor showers in your room and designer furnature everywhere (Eames chair legs getting rusty up in the outside bar!) but at the same time it was so perfectly connected with the nature around it that there was this harmony between the jungle, the designer infinity pool by the bar and the beach with it’s sea turtle tracks and endless jungle and palm trees. Nature seems to have somehow been left unaffected by any development around there, the buidings are made to compliment it rather than overwhelm it. Right by our sunbed is a little area marked with sticks to show a turtle egg-laying site and the palm tree fruit falls from the trees onto the beach and stays there, small trees shooting out of them all around the base of their parent trees. Candles light the bar and restaurant at night and solar panels power the kitchen. I don’t know if this is eco-design at it’s best, but it certainly feels like it!
If you fancy a look at the places we stayed, here’s some links-