For those who have no clue what Mayakoba is, it’s essentially a 1,600-acre development south of Cancun. The development has four resorts — the Fairmont (which opened in 2006), the Rosewood (which opened in 2007), the Banyan Tree (which opened in 2008), and the Andaz (which opened in 2017).
What makes Mayakoba unique is the scenery — it’s not just a beachfront resort area, but the whole development was built into a mangrove forest, with some pretty cool lagoons. Just as there are rooms facing the sea, you can also have a lagoon view room with a crocodile a few feet away.
I’d say the benefit of the development is that the whole thing is well contained, so it feels safe and generally luxurious. You can easily go between resorts if you want to eat at a different restaurant. On top of that, I loved the varied landscape.
Upon entering the high-walled lobby, christened by the hotel as ‘El Sanctuario’ or the sanctuary, you are welcomed by a rounded body of water intended to represent a cenote, with a circular opening directly above to let in the sunlight.
The spacious lobby has two check-in areas and a number of seating areas situated comfortably around the cenote.
Simple yet elegant, like so much else in this stunning Playa del Carmen resort.
Andaz Mayakoba is spread out through the jungle leading to the white sand beach of the Caribbean Sea.
In between, beautiful man-made mangrove channels snake through and around the property.
The buildings are graciously distributed throughout the jungle, allowing for more intimate contact with nature while at the same time providing a sense of exclusivity and privacy.
A vibrant Caribbean resort from the Andaz company, with beachfront and lagoon-side villas and suites within the luxury Mayakoba resort. Buildings throughout the relaxing, natural-feeling grounds are livened up with cool, colourful furnishings and Mexican graffiti-artist Senkoe’s large, vivid murals of local wildlife.
This resort is part of the illustrious family of 5-star resorts that include Rosewood Mayakoba, Fairmont Mayakoba, and Banyan Tree.
Secluded in the private gated-Mayakoba complex, surrounded by tranquil lagoons and lush vegetation with nature trails that guests can enjoy for walking, jogging, and biking while listening to the sounds of nature.
Despite a lively feel in the colourful modern design, peace reigns here, starting from The Sanctuary – a domed lobby hallway with an artificial pool. Guests ride between the lagoon, beach and buildings on golf carts or free-to-use bicycles. There are abstract sculptures on pathways, plus Senkoe’s colourful murals of birds, jaguars and an octopus.
Staff at the Naum Wellness & Spa are thorough and professional, with individualised treatments and almost sleep-inducingly relaxing massages in private cabins. Guests can choose to be active, with a gym and, on the beach, kayaks and paddleboards. More sedate options include eco-boat tours to see the area’s exotic birds and beasts.
It’s about a mile between the two sides of the resort, and you can get around either by bike or by golf cart. Bikes aren’t assigned to specific rooms, but rather are on a first come first served basis, and are readily available. We loved biking around the property, and just about everywhere was reachable within 5-10 minutes.
At the heart of the property, Casa Amate is a recreation of a warm, luxurious Mexican home, with a bar, courtyard and living room. The food comes from across Latin America, including Venzuelan, Peruvian and Mexican dishes, from ceviche to Tikinxik fish, with Latin American wines and caringly presented cocktails also on offer.
Of the other three restaurants, Cocina Milagro serves a big breakfast buffet and freshly cooked Western and Mexican dishes, such as motuleños eggs (eggs on tortillas with black beans and cheese). At luncha and dinner it has more of a bar feel, and dishes include octopus carpaccio. OllaTaco has a market-style selection of tacos, salsas and Mexican specialities, while OllaCeviche has a tequila bar and many varieties of ceviche, including passion fruit with shrimp. Both the Olla restaurants are by the seafront pool.
Andaz Mayakoba Casa Amate (Dinner)
The hotel’s best restaurant is Casa Amate, located on the lagoon side of the hotel. It’s only open for dinner (from 6PM until 11PM, except Sundays, when it’s only open for brunch), and it serves Latin American cuisine. You can find the dinner menu here.
You’ll want to make a reservation here as far in advance as possible, as the restaurant is small and tends to book out. This restaurant is spectacular, in terms of decor, service, and food quality. I highly recommend it.
Kimbo Kids' Club offers activities from 9am to 6pm, including Mexican board games, piñata making, pottery and Spanish language lessons, as well as outdoor activities. Connecting rooms are available, with no extra cost for cots or additional beds, depending on availability.
There were kayaks, paddleboats, and paddleboards, which were all free to use.
There were also the usual other water toys available for rent, like sailboats, Jet Skis, and parasails.
But no one was out there pushing you to rent them like on the beach in Playa Del Carmen.
It was the epitome of relaxation.
The resort boasts two refreshing outdoor pools including a heated hot tub.
Unwind poolside, stretch out on our chaise lounge chairs or cabanas, and immerse yourself in the lush greenery and tropical landscaping of Andaz Mayakoba.
El Camaleón Golf Club at Mayakoba is a spectacular 18-hole golf course designed by PGA legend Greg Norman with a par 72 and distinctive hazards, winding through an area of preserved mangroves.
This challenging course is home to the annual PGA Tour OHL Classic and customized lessons are available at the Jim McLean Golf School.
The golf club also features a driving range and a short-game practice facility.
Andaz Mayakoba Resort Riviera Maya gladly welcomes your furry travel companions to join you during your vacation. Please inform us three days prior to your arrival if you will be bringing a pet.
Canines must weigh 50 pounds or less. Two dogs are allowed if their combined weight does not exceed 75 pounds
When booked through Roxstar by centred using their Hyatt Privé status. You guaranteed the best rate, and for booking that way you get the following additional perks:
Daily full breakfast for two in the hotel’s restaurant
A $100 property credit per room per stay
A one-category room upgrade confirmed within 24 hours of booking (room-to-room or suite-to-suite) — based on availability at the time of booking
Early check-in (as early as 9 AM) and late check-out (as late as 4 PM), subject to availability get a welcome gift and letter.