April 6, 2024
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The 10 Best Hotels In Tulum 2023

With its vivid blue Caribbean waters, proximity to historical sites and world-class restaurants like Heartwood and ARCA, it’s no surprise that Tulum has become a must-visit for jet setters and wellness travelers. The once sleepy fishing village still feels more bohemian than the Yucatán Peninsula destinations of Playa del Carmen and Cancun with its more rugged jungle landscape and authentic downtown that still caters to locals. Hotels and resorts play up their exotic surroundings with low impact architecture, open-air restaurants serving wood-fired seafood and all the beachfront yoga and meditation sessions a wellness seeker could ask for.

While Tulum is trendy, note that most of the best hotels offer eco-chic luxury (if you’re looking for a large resort experience, look elsewhere) and are located along the 6-mile-long stretch of beachfront from the Tulum Ruins to the soft sand beach in the south end. Here are the 10 best hotels in Tulum, including a Robinson Crusoe-esque luxury guesthouse on the beach and a modernist treehouse hotel surrounded by jungle.

  1. Best Wellness Hotel: Be Tulum Hotel
  2. Best Hotel For Couples: Mi Amor
  3. Most Environmentally Friendly Hotel: Habitas Tulum
  4. Most Exclusive Hotel: Hotel Esencia
  5. Best Hotel For Families: La Zebra Beach Hotel Tulum
  6. Best All-Inclusive: Amansala Eco-Chic Resort and Spa
  7. Best For A Girlfriend Getaway: Sanará Tulum
  8. Best Design Hotel: Tulum Treehouse
  9. Best Overall Luxury Hotel: La Valise Tulum
  10. Best Boutique Hotel: Casa Violeta Tulum

Best Wellness Hotel: Be Tulum Hotel

  • Who Will Love It: Wellness warriors looking to detox, shed pounds or rejuvenate in a peaceful setting
  • All-Star Amenities: Options for villas with private pools for small groups and families; menus that make it easy and tasty to eat clean while on vacation
  • What Not To Miss: The healing water circuit—a collection of sauna, steam rooms and plunge pools to rotate through before other treatments
  • Location: South Beach Zone
The 10 Best Hotels In Tulum 2023

Tulum is a renowned wellness destination and nearly every hotel seems to offer some sort of wellness experience, but few go as far as Be Tulum Hotel. The hotel’s Yaän Healing Sanctuary offers energy healing cleanses, detox programs and traditional mayan rituals. Staff grow herbs and botanicals to use in treatments, teas and elixirs in a rooftop garden. Yoga classes—from hatha to vinyasa—take place daily in a tree top yoga studio overlooking a canopy of jungle. The two restaurants feature organic, local ingredients and sustainably caught seafood in Mexican-influenced dishes. Be Tulum’s 65 guest rooms—all are considered suites—are tranquil and luxurious with premium linens, views of the ocean or jungle and copper bathtubs. Villas and residences sleeping six to ten people are also available.

Best Hotel For Couples: Mi Amor

  • Who Will Love It: Honeymooners and couples looking to reconnect
  • All-Star Amenities: A bottle of mezcal on arrival; rooms with plunge pools; rain showers; beach towers; nightly turndown service
  • What Not To Miss: Private dinner-for-two served in a cabana on the rocks overlooking the ocean
  • Location: North Beach Zone
The 10 Best Hotels In Tulum 2023

Set on a rocky outcropping, Mi Amor hotel’s panoramic sea views and glamorous Acapulco-style architecture set the stage for a sophisticated couples retreat. There are just 17-rooms—some with private plunge pools—at the adults-only property. All guest rooms feel like sleek love nests with rainfall showers, crisp white linens and floor-to-ceiling glass doors opening up onto terraces with views of jungle, the cabana lined swimming pool or the ocean. The hotel’s small spa also caters to couples with romantic treatment packages for two such as the Falling in Love that includes honey exfoliation treatments, a hot stone massage and a flower bath. The menu at Mi Amor Restaurant By Paul Bentley, featuring fresh oysters, ceviche and tempura snapper tacos, also evokes romance.

Most Environmentally Friendly Hotel: Habitas Tulum

  • Who Will Love It: Sustainably-minded travelers who want to tread lightly
  • All-Star Amenities: Ashtanga yoga and other wellness classes are available at no additional charge; copal, the resin from local trees, is used instead of DEET-fueled bug spray; swimming pool; spa
  • What Not To Miss: Artisan craft workshops that teach guests about local craft traditions
  • Location: Beach Town
The 10 Best Hotels In Tulum 2023

As tourism to Tulum has increased—taxing the region’s infrastructure and resources—protecting the fragile environment has become more and more crucial. Habitas Tulum has been a green leader in the region since it opened in 2017. The hotel is paperless; guests use tablets to sign the check in the restaurant, for example. Architects used sustainably sourced and organic woods and materials like palapa roofs and canvas walls to build the 32 safari tent-like rooms and outdoor bathrooms. Only one of the hotel’s structures, a community pavilion, is permanent. It all gives the hotel a “glamping” feel, but accommodations do have air conditioning and mid-century wood furniture. The hotel’s sustainability efforts extend to the community. It has a program where it collects plastic from around town and educates locals about plastic alternatives. Habitas Tulum also has weekly music programming including Sunday Sunset Sessions.

Most Exclusive Hotel: Hotel Esencia

  • Who Will Love It: Those who prefer to vacation away from the scene
  • All-Star Amenities: Private helicopter and airport transfers; health club; Chanel pool sarongs; complimentary Havaiana sandals and use of water sports gear
  • What Not To Miss: Perusing the on-site art collection including works by Picasso and Botero; a sunrise yoga session; dinner at the Japanese meets Mexican restaurant Taiyo
  • Location: North Beach Zone
The 10 Best Hotels In Tulum 2023

North of Tulum on 50 private oceanfront acres, the Hotel Esencia is an exotic escape within an escape. The former home of Italian duchess Rosa de Ferrari, guests feel like they’re staying at a wealthy friend’s mansion rather than a hotel. But there are plenty of perks such as pastries and coffee delivered to guest rooms each morning and afternoon teatime. Each large accommodation has a terrace and separate sleeping and living quarters, but the Rooftop Wellness Suites are in a class of their own with king beds and large outdoor dining spaces with sofas. They can come equipped with the virtual personal trainer the Mirror, a personal Peloton bicycle, TRX suspension training equipment or a Technogym treadmill upon request. The service at Hotel Esencia is top-notch and staff can arrange babysitters, masseuses, chauffeurs and translators if needed.

Best Hotel For Families: La Zebra Tulum

  • Who Will Love It: Families and multigenerational groups
  • All-Star Amenities: Kid crafts and games; a full spa; on-site parking
  • What Not To Miss: The eight-course Chef’s Table experience in the restaurant
  • Location: Middle Beach Zone
The 10 Best Hotels In Tulum 2023

Many hotels in bougie Tulum are adults-only, but the Yucatan is a fun family destination with it cenote water parks and ruins to explore. Thankfully the central Tulum hotel La Zebra not only allows children, it has amenities that cater to families without trying too hard. The zebra mural behind the reception desk doubles as modern art and a fun find-the-animal game for kids. All of the guest rooms can accommodate four people with one king size bed and two single beds. Kids can play for hours on the wide beachfront or at the small playground next to the restaurant, which serves a breezy authentic Mexican menu or an eight-course Mexican gastronomy experience if you book the Chef’s Table. The décor in guest rooms and public spaces is more contemporary than some of the surrounding jungle properties.

Best All-Inclusive: Amansala Eco-Chic Resort And Spa

  • Who Will Love It: Travelers who don’t want to bother with reaching for cash or a credit card when taking classes and dining on healthy meals
  • All-Star Amenities: Spa services rooted in Mayan healing therapies; sound and ice baths; Temazcal sweat lodge
  • What Not To Miss: The Beach Club, a waterfront hotspot with drinks, cabanas, music, pools and beach views; it’s also the only pet-friendly beach club in Tulum
  • Location: Middle Beach Zone
The 10 Best Hotels In Tulum 2023

While all-inclusive resorts aren’t prevalent in Tulum, travelers who don’t want to think about the tab at dinner or adding on another yoga class should book an Amansala retreat package where immune boosting meals, spa treatments and accommodations are included in the rate. The Bikini Bootcamp includes daily yoga and fitness classes while Restore ‘n Renew is focused more on mindfulness. Amansala’s exceptionally well organized staff can also design a bespoke all-inclusive package just for you. Travelers whose dream house looks like the island treehouse out of the Swiss Family Robinson will love the accommodations that have thatched roofs, canopy beds and terraces with hammocks and daybeds.

Best For A Friends Getaway: Sanará Tulum

  • Who Will Love It: Friends looking for a fun and healthy vacation
  • All-Star Amenities: Beachfront yoga studio; wellness center
  • What Not To Miss: Dining at the Real Coconut, the hotel’s healthy gluten- and dairy-free restaurant
  • Location: Beach Town
The 10 Best Hotels In Tulum 2023

The 19-room Sanará Tulum on Tulum Beach offers healing wellness experiences through its location—it’s surrounded by Tulum palms and an expansive white sand beach—as well as a robust offering of daily wellness classes. Guests and groups of friends can kick off a healthy getaway with power yoga at the beachfront yoga studio—which has a specially sprung floor and floor to ceiling glass doors—and relax during a healing sound bath in the afternoon. Visitors can choose to schedule a one-day or four-day retreat or simply book classes a la carte. This choose your own adventure approach ensures everyone gets what they need whether that’s watching the waves from a hammock or doing an intense detox. Sanará’s Real Coconut restaurant is a hot Tulum table for its grain, gluten, dairy and refined-sugar free meals. Guests don’t even realize they’re cleansing when dining on green caesar salads with vegan dressing and fish and chips marinated in coconut milk.

Best Design Hotel: Tulum Treehouse

  • Who Will Love It: Aesthetes who like castaway-style architecture
  • All-Star Amenities: Nightly musical performances; artisan workshops; open fire restaurant
  • What Not To Miss: Reflecting on the jungle’s biodiversity from your jungle-view shower
  • What Not To Miss: Middle Beach Zone
The 10 Best Hotels In Tulum 2023

Most of Tulum’s resorts and hotels have spaces that flow from indoors to outdoors seamlessly. The designers behind the five-room Tulum Treehouse took this idea and ran with it. The architecture is inspired by the work of modern Mexican architect Luis Barragan. Guest rooms with cool, white cement walls and polished, locally sourced Tzalam wood have windows and doors that open onto private terraces with hammocks or lounge chairs and expansive jungle views. Tulum Treehouse’s beating heart is the open-air restaurant serving newfangled takes on traditional local cuisine. It’s open to the public at night, but hotel guests have it all to themselves during the day.

Best Overall Luxury Hotel: La Valise Tulum

  • Who Will Love It: Luxury travelers who want the full Tulum experience
  • All-Star Amenities: A WhatsApp concierge service so you can text requests whenever you need; swimming pool
  • What Not To Miss: The chance to roll your bed outside to safely sleep under the stars
  • Location: South Beach Zone
The 10 Best Hotels In Tulum 2023

Tulum’s little luxuries like warm Caribbean waters, fresh fruits and vegetables and starry nights are thanks to Mother Nature, but travelers looking for more traditional pampering should book a room at the 11 room La Valise. The beach bungalow turned luxury hotel has large palapa topped guest rooms with views of jungle and the sea, private terraces and air conditioning, and a saltwater swimming pool. The attentive team goes above and beyond for guests and will arrange mezcal tastings, snorkeling or sailing excursions, private yoga classes and Tulum ruins tours. Guests can also dine on modern Caribbean fare at Nü Tulum and access the restaurants and swimming pools at the hotel’s sister properties including the beachfront Nest and jungle-surrounded Radhoo.

Best Boutique Hotel: Casa Violeta

  • Who Will Love It: Families and friends looking for laidback luxury
  • All-Star Amenities: Private beach; wellness experiences like yoga
  • What Not To Miss: A private temezcal session for two
  • Location: South Beach Zone
The 10 Best Hotels In Tulum 2023

Th 16-room Casa Violeta boutique hotel embodies the rustic beach vibe Tulum is known for. Guest rooms have crisp white walls, beach views and local artwork. Owner Karla Gutierrez moved to Tulum in 2003 when it was in the very early stages of resort development and has been called the Mayor of Tulum. She has championed the down-to-earth wellness getaway from the beginning and guests at Casa Violeta can do yoga on the sand, book a cacao ceremony or cleanse body, mind and spirit in the hotel’s traditional temazcal. The sweat lodge has hot volcanic rocks infused with healing waters. The ocean view restaurant serves crowd pleasing Mexican and Italian meals.

By Margaret Littman.

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