Destinations | Mexico

Mexico: a blissful stay at the Belmond Maroma

6 September 2017

After taking a refreshing dip into a cenote at San Lorenzo Oxman, we reached the third and last hotel of our week long Mexican trip: the Belmond Maroma Resort & Spa.

We had decided to keep the beach/relaxing part of our vacation for the end, in order to really unwind and let go before flying back home. And we had decided to go for the best.

Initially, I wanted to book a boutique hotel in Tulum, as I was told to stay away from Playa del Carmen and Cancùn. However, Monsieur Chéri, in his infinite wisdom, suggested the Belmond Maroma. Needless to say that I am very glad that he did.

Over the past few years, we have become quite familiar with the Belmond chain and its luxury and refined hotels scattered all over the world. We absolutely love these hotels. In fact, the Maroma was our third Belmond, after the Belmond Jimbaran in Bali (fabulous) and the incredible Belmond Caruso in Ravello, in southern Italy. I promise I’ll tell you all about these two wonderful places soon.

It wasn’t our first Belmond and it certainly won’t be our last. We are going to Capetown in December and have already added the Belmond Mount Nelson to our list.  

 

Our arrival

 

The Belmond Maroma Resort & Spa is located just a few minutes north of Playa del Carmen. Unlike other resorts, the entrance is very discreet and we almost missed it. After going through the gate, we drove for a few minutes and reached the entrance, where we were met by a friendly (yet gigantic) iguana.  

To make the check-in process as pleasant as possible, we were greeted with a “Belmond” margarita (the traditional recipe mixed with Xtabentùn, a local mayan liquor).  Then, we were given a tour of the property and of the many amenities the hotel offers. 

The spirit of the Belmond Maroma is to create an atmosphere to relax and let go. Therefore, rooms are not equipped with a TV (although there is a screening room available for those who cannot live without it). Don’t freak out though, they do have wifi and it works very well. 

I almost forgot to mention the best part… Indeed, we had the very pleasant surprise of being upgraded. “We thought you might enjoy the ocean view room more”. You bet we did! 

 

Meeting Adelita, our hostess.

The hotel

 

Better than a long speech, see for yourself… However, I’d like to point out that the pictures really don’t do justice to the place, which is truly exceptional. Everything looked ten times better in real life! 

 

 

At night, the hotel is lit with thousands of candles, inside and outside. It’s really magical and creates a unique atmosphere. 

 

 

For those who do not fancy the beach, the resort has three different pools, including one that is adult-only for a quieter environment. 

 

 

Room with a view

 

The room was great. Decent size, with a beautiful bathtub, a balcony with a stunning view of the ocean, a huge comfortable bed etc. Every morning, coffee is delivered at a time of your choosing. It allows you to sip a cup of coffee in the room or on the balcony before going down for breakfast. The caffeine addicts that we are really appreciated it. At night, the turndown service includes aromatherapy, delivery of complimentary delicacies, suggestions of things to do for the next day and I could go on and on. The devil might be in the details. But so is luxury.  

 

 

The beach

 

 

Dining at the Belmond Maroma

 

The Belmond has two restaurants and we tried both. To be honest, there aren’t many options around unless you feel like driving to Playa del Carmen, which we didn’t feel like doing. 

El Sol is the “fancy” restaurant. We had a lovely dinner, overlooking the beach. The food was good (but no coup de coeur) and the staff was really accommodating and thoughtful. For instance, they went out of their ways to adapt the dishes in light of my allergies, which was very nice. Impeccable service and overall it was a positive experience. My favorite dish? La sopa fría de pepino.

 

 

El restaurante has a menu that is a bit more international (and a little less pricey). As a French girl, I am ashamed to say that I really liked the Mexican brie with guava sauce and hibiscus jelly. I would probably be sued in my country for even associating Brie cheese – from Meaux, France – with the adjective Mexican, but honestly compels me to admit that I liked it very much. I also had lobster pasta, perfectly al dente and very tasty.

 

 

As for the breakfast, it could feed a normal person for an entire day. Great options and everything is super fresh. And let’s not forget to mention the very nice lady who makes yummy quesadillas upon request. I really liked the juice that contained chaya, a sort of spinach used a lot by the Mayas. Hence the green in the glass in the picture below.

 

 

Tequila tasting

 

If you happen to find yourself at the Belmond on a day where the distillates tasting is offered, then my advice is to go for it. Major coup de coeur. The barman – Manuel – was passionate and fascinating. I think he understood that we were not there just to drink shots but rather to learn about tequila, its “grandfather” Mezcal and all the related liquors, made from agave. And since we were very interested, he really took the time. He told us all about the history of tequila, the production process and characteristics of each alcohol. Truly an amazing experience. 

 

 

Verdict

 

Would we go back? 

Oh yes, and in a heartbeat. Just for a few days (no more), to relax and do nothing.

 

We loved:

  • Belmond Maroma’s idyllic setting and quiet environment. It makes Belmond the perfect place to relax
  • The quality and level of service
  • The comfort of the room and the incredible view from the balcony
  • All the special attentions throughout the stay
  • The white-sand beach, the beach beds and the service (fresh complimentary bottle of water kept magically appearing in our ice bucket) 
  • The tasting with Manuel

 

What wasn’t so great

  • Water sports. The guy in charge not only stood us up but also refused to apologize for canceling the sailing lesson and making us lose several hours. So disrespectful! This is really uncommon as the rest of the staff was absolutely nice and competent. 

 

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