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  1. Explore Mexico
March 7, 2014

Relaxing (Dining, Partying, Kayaking) in Riviera Maya

By Chris Boyle




If you are looking for a bit of fun in the sun, Riviera Maya is getting a boost at all ends of its tourism offerings, from hip hotels to high luxury, while more and more fine dining chefs are creating casual experiences with their culinary offerings center stage.  Add a myriad of new soft adventure attractions and the Caribbean coast line options are greater than ever.


Hotel La Semilla at nine rooms offers an intimate boutique hotel experience in the hear of Playa del Carmen’s trendy 5th Avenue zone.  Each room has distinctive décor that is “trendy and stylish.”   Cuisine is fully organic, with all ingredients fresh farm to table, according to Jeanette Rigter, who represents Riviera Maya.  Also at 40 rooms SOHO Playa also provides an “urban” beach experience for those who want to be in the middle of the action.


Super chef Enrique Olvera who espouses “quality rather than luxury” has opened Maiz de Mar taking advantage of freshly caught seafood.  Menus are driven but what the chef gets in that day, and while his take may be relaxed, one of the restaurant tenets is “The customer is King (or Queen).”


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Meanwhile Hyatt is closing in on adding an Andaz and Park Hyatt.  The Andaz will be part of the Mayakoba resort complex which already includes hotels from Fairmont, Rosewood and Banyan Tree.


At the other end of the spectrum beachfront “petit hotel” Al Cielo has added two new villas to its four suites and two existing villas.  Its beachfront restaurant is worth a visit as well.


Xcaret Group has brought the charm and fun of Mexico City’s Xocimilco canal district to the resort area.  Dine on an open air boat holding up to 20 – perfect for celebrations – and as the dinner progresses you will be treated to different entertainers along the canal like route of cenotes.


If you are looking for a bit of adventure Xenotes Oasis offers the popular zip line as well as rappelling and kayaking through cenotes in the jungle.


Rigter noted events are a good reason for elite travelers looking for a fun diversion to make the trip.  March 13-16 is the growing Wine & Food Festival.  Last year attracted about 500 visitors. In November the Jazz Festival returns with the line-up of talent currently being finalized while the PGA’s OHL Classic will return to Mayakoba’s Greg Norman designed golf course again in November.



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