Archive for the ‘Riviera Maya’ Category

posted by colin on Oct 9

In May of 2011, President Felipe Calderon (president ofMexico) reassured travel executives attending a global tourism summit in Las Vegas that “Mexico is a safe place to visit”.

Despite Calderon’s comforting words, various news programsand magazine articles have left some of us asking whether or not we should go.

Mexico is a large country, and so any attempt to answer that question should probably focus on those places that are safest for travelers.  On April 22nd, the US Department of State issued a Travel Warning to inform US citizens aboutsecurity situation in Mexico.  In the Travel Warning, the Dept. of State specified that “resort areas and tourist destinations in Mexico are generally do notsee the levels of drug related violence and crime reported in the border region
and in areas along major trafficking routes

Anecdotally, I can report that my wife and I spent two weeksin and around Cancun in May.   We took taxis into town and buses to attractions outside of the populated areas and never had any problems or felt uneasy at all.   The locals were always friendly and very helpful.  Most are very proficient in English.  We are heading to Playa del Carmen in December without giving it a second doubt!

And what about our guests?  Are they concerned about venturing to Mexico?  We have had a few inquiries about this
topic.  Safety questions do arise once in a while.  To questions such as “how safe is it? and Is the media blowing it out of proportion?”  I insist that you should use common sense.  Be alert, stay in populated areas, don’t wear expensive jewelry away from the resort, late night activities away from your resort should be curtailed, be respectful of your surroundings.  The same advice that I would give if traveling to NYC, Washington DC or LosAngles.   Use your head,  contact KokoTravel for your next Mexico vacation and you’ll have a great time!!!


posted by colin on Feb 5

Grand Luxxe today announced the grand openings of two new resorts of its high-end luxury brand in the vacation destinations of Nuevo Vallarta and Riviera Maya.

Grand Luxxe continues its distinction of offering the most prestigious travel experience bar none.  Both locations debut an architectural philosophy that distinguishes Grand Luxxe from other brands, along with the commitment to the pinnacle of personalized service the brand has become famous for.

A world of privilege and opulence awaits the discriminating traveler which holds in high regard a resort catering to their every need; Grand Luxxe brings a travel experience unlike any other.

Sumptuous suites and villas provide between 2,300 and 3,000 square feet of room, among the largest in the resort industry. Twelve-foot ceilings and Italian design bathroom amenities exude an air of refined magnificence.

First opening in February of 2010, Grand Luxxe in Nuevo Vallarta set the bar for personalized luxury travel with private butlers for each floor. The new tower of 144 suites became a remarkable feat for the affluent vacation segment. Spectacular lakes dot the surroundings, beckoning visitors to take advantage of the various water activities. The vast expanse of the glimmering ocean and beaches of Nuevo Vallarta are an invitation to unwind.

The new Grand Luxxe resort in Riviera Maya is every bit as decadent as its sister property in Nuevo Vallarta and is located on Mexico’s most desired coastline. The low-slung resort harmoniously blends in with the surrounding tropics. Pristine white sand beaches and cabanas with glamorous, shimmering pools, privately tucked into the landscape greet guests.

Joining the ranks of the finest vacation properties in the world, Grand Luxxe blends stunning architecture with sleek, modern interior finishes. Rooms blend richly appointed details including marble flooring, fine accents, rich wood furnishings and luxurious upholstery. Bathrooms exude an air of luxury befitting a spa and offer guests a place to unwind in the free standing tubs. Guests can enjoy the scenery of the river and mountains along with the city and the distant horizon.

Modern amenities abound including private plunge pools in the balcony, private butler service for each floor, 50-inch flat panel televisions, Wi-Fi Internet access, in-room Jacuzzi and 24-hour room service, taxi and medical service. Grand Luxxe will pamper its visitors with full health spa and fitness centers, a unique Kid’s Club camp experience and a world-class Nicklaus-design 18-hole golf course that is a delight for pros and casual players alike.

“The Riviera Maya is known around the world as an area of incredible beauty and history,” says Arturo Hernandez, Grupo Vidanta Chief Architect. “We designed Grand Luxxe’s newest location to integrate the architectural development between the rich jungle environment and distinct local Mayan culture.

posted by colin on Feb 25

Few places on earth cause as much amazement as the Riviera Maya. This is a 125-mile-Iong coastline that extends along the incredible turquoise blue waters of the Mexican Caribbean, on the eastern shores of the State of Quintana Roo on the Yucatan Peninsula.

What makes the Riviera Maya so different from other coast­lines around the world? It has a large quantity of beaches with glistening white sand and mild surf. Near the shore, a low-ele­vation jungle, typical of the tropics, acts as a wall to the sea.

Practically impenetrable, it’s a habitat for a rich variety of flora and fauna and for geological formations. Here are the “cenotes”-deposits of capricious shapes and different sizes, produced by the subterranean rivers that emerged to the surface over the course of millions of years. Facing the Riviera Maya’s coast is the world’s second-largest coral reef, making it an ideal place for scuba diving and snorkeling.

The starting point of the Riviera Maya is Puerto Morelos. Just south is Playa Maroma, a 370-acre eco-park of tropical jungle, mangroves and cenotes, where travelers can enjoy biking, canoeing, kayaking, trekking and horseback riding. Playa del Carmen, the largest town in the Riviera Maya, offers the flavor of a small fishing village mixed with a cosmopolitan atmosphere. Shopping, restaurants and nightlife center around Playa del Carmen’s Fifth Avenue (Quinta Avenida). The resort area of Playacar is home to a number of upscale and all-inclusive resorts, more than 100 small archeological sites, the Xaman-Ha Aviary (home to more than 200 bird species)and Cavernas Sacbe, a rock cavern.

Xcaret is an eco-archaeological park offering a unique glimpse into the region’s natural surroundings and inter­active activities like snorkeling in under­ground rivers, swimming with dolphins, horseback riding and scuba diving. There’s also a natural aquarium, museum, botanical garden, Mayan village and unique folkloric shows at night.

Continuing south, visitors will note Xpu-Ha, a large beautiful bay and beach with calm waters and great visibility, as well as Kantenah, another secluded beach area. Xpu-Ha is home to the Cenote Manatee, one of the largest cenotes in the region, and the Xpu-Ha Lagoon. Kantun Chi is a remarkable eco-park in the heart of the Riviera Maya that is excellent for snorkel­ing in freshwater cenotes and exploring the underground caverns. Its name means “yellow stone mouth” in Mayan. Aktun­Chen features three caves filled with stalac­tite and stalagmite rocks, cenotes and an opportunity to see the Riviera Maya’s diverse wildlife.

The small town of Akumal, known as “the place of turtles,” is a favorite place of the endangered marine turtles, as well as for divers. It’s also well known for its eco­logical center, Ukana-I, which is used for both research and as a community center. Just north of Akumal is YaIku Lagoon, ideal for swimming and snorkeling.

The beaches of Soliman Bay and Tankah are favorites for both locals and tourists. Further south is Xel-Ha (“the place where water was born”), a l50-acre eco-archeological park. An incredible nat­ural aquarium where the ocean combines with the freshwater springs and under­ground rivers, Xel-Ha is ideal for tubing, snorkeling and swimming. Xel-Ha is also home to macaws and is surrounded by a thick jungle, caves and cenotes. Archeological sites containing altars dedi­cated to Yum Chac are located nearby.

The archeological site of Tulum (“walled city”) offers some of the most impressive Mayan ruins anywhere. Built on a cliff overlooking the Caribbean Sea, this site contains more than 60 well-pre­served structures. Tulum also offers beauti­ful beaches and cenotes, including the well known Calavera, the Grand cenote and the Car Wash. Located inland, Coba is one of the most important archeological sites in the Riviera Maya. The main pyramid, Nohuch Mul, is 138 feet tall, the highest on the west side of the Peninsula.

To the extreme south of the Riviera Maya on a small peninsula is Sian Ka’ an Biosphere Reserve, which offers an oppor­tunity to explore mangroves, ancient Mayan canals and the almost untouched wilderness of the jungle. Only a limited part of the reserve, a large protected area of 1.5 million acres with more than 62 miles of the Great Maya Reef, is open to tourists. Located within the Reserve are Boca Paila and Punta Allen, a village with only 600 inhabitants whose livelihood is dependent on spiny lobster fishing.

The southernmost point in the Riviera Maya is the town of Felipe Puerto Carillo, considered a central point for all Mayan communities of the area. It provides a glimpse into the past, as the town has pre­served much of its ancient Mayan culture. Its numerous historic and archaeological sites include The Temple de la Cruz Parlante (Temple of the Talking Cross) and a cultural center from the last century.

J. Bernhardt

posted by Donna-Lee on Oct 28

Xpu-Ha Palace, Palace Resorts’ eco-centered property located in the Riviera Maya region of Mexico, is pleased to add the family pet to the guest list.

Starting in 2009, guests are welcome to bring a maximum of two pets (first pet is free of charge and the second pet is $50 per stay), at least five months old and less than 40 pounds, to the resort.

While at Xpu-Ha Palace, our furry friends will receive a welcome treat and water upon arrival, special bedding and personal water/food bowls, access to the Pet Club where they will be able to play and exercise in an intimate and secure area under the supervision of expert personnel, and a relaxing grooming session that will be provided once at the end of the pet’s stay.

For the safety of the animals, guests and staff, certain restrictions apply.

posted by colin on Jun 26

In Mexico, scuba divers are often able to swim with the dolphins and sea turtles. To many, this alone is worth the cost of scuba diving.  Aside from swimming with sea animals, you can also spend your scuba diving trip examining the life and environment underwater.  Just a few of the many sea animals that you may see in Mexico include lobsters, eels, sting rays, and a large number of different kinds of fishes. The fishes found in underwater Mexico often include puffer fishes, spotted fishes, and parrot fishes. 

 While the sea animals found underwater are the most exciting part of scuba diving, there are other underwater activities that you can participate in.  Many scuba divers enjoy diving along coral reefs that are found along the coast of Mexico.  Coral reefs are not only home to a large number of sea animals, but they also make for great adventures. You may find it exciting traveling in, over, or around the many different sized reefs. For good reef diving, you’ll love scuba diving and snorkeling in the dazzling waters of the Caribbean in Cozumel, Mexico.

Scuba diving Cancun and the Rivera Maya is a paradise full of attractions. One of its most valuable treasures are found underwater, it’s The Maya Reef, the second largest in the world just after the Great Australian Barrier.  It stretches from Cabo Catoche in Mexico, to the Bay Islands in Honduras and it runs parallel to the shore at a distance fluctuating between 300 feet and 120 miles


This richness has turned the Mexican Caribbean into the scuba diving and snorkeling capital of the world where visibility in the water compliments the beauty of the reefs, its fauna and flora. We invite you to explore a world of diving possibilities in Mexico. Even if you’ve never done it before, you can take Scuba Diving Lessons here and enjoy this unique experience!





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