After two hours at 30,000 ft., we landed in Cancun. Private transfer service Lomas Travel shuttled us the 30 minute drive to El Dorado Maroma where we spent the next five days. As we pulled up to the gate and presented our names, it wasn’t until seven minutes later (I timed the drive) that we actually arrived to the lobby of the hotel. I adore seclusion. So far so good.
Presidential Beachfront Villa
I like beachfront anything, and I love a spacious villa. Put ’em together and add not one but two butlers to make pure bliss! Our two story monstrosity of a villa was stunning, complete with living room, dining room, kitchen, downstairs washroom (sand can be pesky), huge master bed, bath, and outdoor shower. I’m not done. Also in our presence was the terrace, private pool and cabana. We spent more time here than anywhere else on property, but can you blame us?
A good view can turn even the most mundane days into pure magic, but unfortunately, magic didn’t follow us to Mexico. Seen over the water and directly in front of our villa was the eyesore of construction. Set to open in June of 2016 are Mexico’s first ever water bungalows on El Dorado Maroma’s property. Probably cool next June. Not cool this December.
What saved the day was our private pool found steps from our villa and just before the beach. Say hello to my little butler flamingos. You never know when you’re going to need another beverage.
The most obvious choice for activities at the beach…is anything on the beach. It’s with hesitation that I even bring this up, but El Dorado Maroma shores were inaccessible due to the sheer amount of seaweed piling up on the coast. I realize the resort can only do so much to combat this ever-growing problem, but it doesn’t take away from the fact that beautiful white sand was marred by mountains of rotting seaweed. Some researchers speculate global warming is to blame, but whatever the reason may be, locals armed with shovels and wheelbarrows shouldn’t be the background of anyone’s vacation photos.
As many holiday guests find themselves victims of the “sargassum” seaweed bloom, all is not lost! Karisma was able to arrange private tours and transports to explore other Mexico treasures.
- Chichen Itzá: This world famous Maya ruin is a two hour drive from Playa del Carmen on the Yucatán Peninsula. The 7 Wonder of the World has 91 steps on each of its four sides and one at the very top platform, totaling to 365 steps. Obviously, this pyramid was used as a calendar. I left feeling like a history major that day.
- Cenote Ik Kil: One of Mexico’s most popular cenotes, Ik Kil is only a ten minute drive from Chichen Itzá. This sinkhole made for a very refreshing morning as I floated on my back and watched the clouds overhead. Insider Tip: Arrive at 8:30am before the gates open at 9. Crowds will be in full force shortly after.
- Cenote Hubiku: This is one of Mexico’s biggest cenotes and only accessible for guests of Lomas Travel. Insider Tip: Get here around noon if you want light shining directly into the hole. We arrived at 3pm, but I think the lighting still makes for a beautiful photo.
After walking and swimming and walking a bit more, a massage in a private cabana didn’t sound too shabby back at the resort. Thanks to Naay Spa, we relaxed and escaped reality for a sweet, sweet 50 minutes.
Priding themselves as an Adults-Only, “Gourmet Inclusive” resort, El Dorado Maroma could afford to step up its game big time in the food department. Equipped with six restaurants of varying cuisine, an “upscale dining experience that encompasses the finest and freshest ingredients” as they claim to possess could only be found at Lima Limon, its Peruvian restaurant. The remaining establishments on site fell far below their description of “gourmet.” There was nothing gourmet about the experience, and I don’t accept all-you-can-eat guacamole as an apology.
Insider Tip: Pay a visit to Le Chique Restaurant at Azul Sensatori by Karisma. Named one of the Top 10 dining experiences in Mexico, the food is reimagined to resemble something else entirely. A hollowed-out book, a log, a cat’s play toy – nothing is off limits when it comes to Chef Jonatán Gómez Luna and his team.
During seaweed-less seasons, El Dorado Maroma offers a pretty backdrop for weddings. The Sky Wedding venue is a great option for a seated 50-person ceremony or an even bigger standing reception. Just be sure the beaches are accessible and the food is catered…