There's no better welcome to the Andaz Mayakoba Resort than a nighttime arrival. The spark of excitement is lit as you pass through the impressive gates to the Mayakoba master-planned complex. The fire is stoked along a dark, winding drive through jungle-covered paths, building to a blaze upon arrival at the open-air, cenote-inspired lobby, where a central pool projects the dancing reflection of the flickering flame at its center.
The only thing that topped the arrival experience was checking into my oceanfront suite (one of 41 suites on site) and scurrying over to the beach restaurant, Sotovento, for an understated and elegant dinner with my toes in the sand. Under a string of twinkle lights and to the sound of live music, I feasted on oysters and steak tartare while the waves crashed just a few feet away.
The Riviera Maya doesn't lack luxury options, but the Mayakoba resort complex is a cut above. One of the original master-planned communities in Mexico, Mayakoba is home to four luxury resorts, a golf course, residences and some of the best beachfront in the region. The 214-room Andaz Mayakoba is a playful, relaxed and approachable luxury resort within the complex and ideal for young (or young-at-heart) travelers who have not yet made their millions but still want an elevated experience.
A junior suite, one of 41 suites at the 214-room property.
The resort is a design dream. Fresh and fun on one hand but clearly sophisticated and chic on the other, it blends perfectly with the luxe vibe of Mayakoba but offers a breath of fresh, youthful air -- take, for example, the brilliantly colored, larger-than-life murals that are splashed across the exterior of its buildings.
In fact, the entire resort is all about pops of color, from the tile art in the rooms and restaurants to the accent furniture and pool towels. The oceanfront rooms are stunning, with plunge pools on the patio and massive showers in the bathroom. Being just a few steps from the beach doesn't hurt, either.
Other resort features include two outdoor pools and complimentary bicycle rental to explore the many nature trails and other resorts on property.
One of the best parts about staying at any of the resorts at Mayakoba is the proximity to the rest of the complex, which has several of the top restaurants on the Riviera Maya. While your clients can (and should) try all five of the restaurants at the Andaz Mayakoba, they would be remiss to not venture a few steps away to sample the ceviche tostadas at Rosewood's La Fondita. Banyan Tree's Saffron restaurant is a cut above for dinner, as well, especially if you dine at a table overlooking the mangroves and opt for the boat ride along the canals back to Andaz.
The Andaz Mayakoba reopened June 15 after updating its safety and cleanliness procedures in accordance with Hyatt's Global Care & Cleanliness Commitment. Spa treatments have been moved outdoors, and the property has increased its offering of outdoor activities, which include guacamole making, tequila tasting, nature trail bike tours and more.
Rates at the Andaz Mayakoba Resort Riviera Maya begin at $199 per night.