Several hundred agents and preferred partners flocked to the Riviera Maya last week for Karisma's 10th annual Gourmet Inclusive Vacation Consultant (GIVC) Awards. Each year the ceremony honors the hotel group's top agent partners with networking opportunities, educational seminars, a marketing forum, parties and an all-out gala dinner, where awards and prizes are given out to the best producing travel agents for the year.
As part of the week, Karisma executives hosted a marketing forum to discuss the latest happenings under the Karisma umbrella. For Mexico, 2018 and 2019 are shaping up to be a year of exciting openings. And 2017 brought a host of enhancements to the existing properties.
At El Dorado Royale in Riviera Maya, the resort expanded its ballroom to accommodate an additional 400 seats. The resort's two-bedroom Presidential Suites also underwent a refurbishment, and the famous Rick's Bar was moved above the spa to a new oceanfront location.
Azul Beach Resort The Fives has officially opened Villa 19, adding more swim-up suites, more Skydeck suites, and one-, two- and three-bedroom suites. The resort also opened a brand-new adults-only section, with its own Natura Day Club, Bar & Grill, a private portion of the pool, and a restaurant.
A guestroom in the Essence section of Azul Beach Resort The Fives.
A brand new villa has been added to the Villa collection: Villa Casa Del Mar, located next to Azul Beach Resort, is a new six-bedroom villa that can accommodate up to 12 people.
Karisma is full steam ahead with its expansion programs looking to the future. The much-chatted-about resort in Huatulco will be ready to break ground in 2019. This expansive resort complex will have three different resorts: El Dorado, Generations and a Nickelodeon hotel. It will open in 2020.
Riviera Maya will see new additions in the form of Xolumado Inspiration Village. Opening next door to Generations Riviera Maya, this jungle retreat will be tucked between the forest and the mangroves. There will be 15 cottages and the space will be bookable to yoga groups, spiritual retreats, Hindu weddings and more. The vibe swings calm and peaceful, like a jungle retreat. The village will share privileges with El Dorado Royale, Casitas and Generations Riviera Maya.
In 2019, Karisma will open a Nickelodeon hotel in Riviera Maya, which will open next door to Generations Riviera Maya. All rooms will be oceanfront, and there will be eight restaurants, as well as the largest water park in the region.
Mexico's first Margaritaville hotel will open in 2019, next to Azul Sensatori. This will be the first all-inclusive hotel for Margaritaville and will feature 355 suites, as well as a Landshark Brewery within the resort.
For something completely different, Karisma is opening a hotel in the Valle de Guadalupe within a vineyard and winery. The El Cielo vineyard will be the site of the new El Cielo hotel, with state of the art vineyards and access to the 15 different wines produced on the premises.