Mayakoba – Riviera Maya, Mexico

With a 10 hour direct flight from London, the Riviera Maya in Mexico is an excellent choice if you are in search of exquisite white sandy beaches and exemplary service.

One of the best places for a luxury holiday in the area is the Mayakoba resort.

Located on the Riviera Maya, a 45 minute drive from Cancun airport, Mayakoba is a resort that encompasses four hotels – Banyan Tree Mayakoba, Rosewood Mayakoba, Fairmont Mayakoba and Andaz Mayakoba.

It also features a world-class golf course, a number of residences and a Mexican village with cookery school and weekly market.

The golf course at Mayakoba in mexico

The resort is built on a natural reserve, where the buildings are scattered around lagoons filled with native wildlife.

The conservation and preservation of the environment is paramount at Mayakoba, where a network of indigenous fish and bird species live harmoniously in a carefully maintained ecosystem.

Mayakoba on the Riviera Maya in Mexico

One of the benefits of staying in Mayakoba is that each hotel will drive you to and from the other hotels, for free.

Therefore, for those who get cabin fever, you have 4 world class hotels and their restaurants and spa facilities within easy reach. You can even take a boat that sails through the waterways to travel between properties.

Banyan Tree Mayakoba

There are no standard rooms at the Banyan Tree Mayakoba, but a collection of freestanding private villas ranging from 1 to 3 bedrooms, each with a pool and large outdoor area.

The beach area at Banyan Tree Mayakoba

Most of the villas are in-land, many overlooking the lagoon, but the most exclusive are located next to the beach.

Families should book a townhouse, with three interconnecting bedrooms and a rooftop pool – plenty of space for privacy and relaxation

The bedrooms at the Banyan Tree Mayakoba

Banyan Tree’s Thai heritage and Asian-inspired design is evident at every turn. A large, beautiful open plan lobby captures this feeling with its use of dark wood and dramatic view of the lagoon.

In the villas, handcrafted Mayan furnishings and amenities complement the Asian design. The signature restaurant, Saffron, offers modern Thai cuisine with a romantic candlelit setting on the lagoon.

Saffron Thai Restaurant at Banyan Tree Mayakoba

The Banyan Tree offers a full-service resort with the privacy of an individual villa setting with fantastic service.

Mixing Asian design and hospitality with its beach-side jungle location, the Banyan Tree blends seamlessly into its surroundings.

Rosewood Mayakoba

The Rosewood Mayakoba is an all suite property that is luxurious in all respects. The 130 suites are built along serene lagoons and come with rooftop sundecks or private garden terraces, plunge pools and boat docks.

The bedrooms at Rosewood Mayakoba

The best suites, however, are located on the beach, where you can step out on to the white sand from your bedroom.

Every guest at the Rosewood Mayaboba is taken to the room in a river boat, escorted by a butler while enjoying a welcome drink. Not a bad way to arrive!

The beach at Rosewood Mayakoba

Suites are spacious and offer open plan living, designed in neutral colours made from limestone and wood.

There are two large pool areas, including one next to the beach and one of the restaurants, Punta Bonita, which offers Mexican cuisine served ‘tapas’ style.

Agalve Azul restaurant at Rosewood Mayakoba

My favourite restaurant, however, is Agave Azul with its excellent sushi and views of the lagoon and the mangroves.

Make sure to head to the beach for the midday ‘Champagne O’clock’ to enjoy your complimentary glass of Taittinger on your sunlounger.

Andaz Mayakoba

Andaz Mayakoba is the latest hotel to open in Mayakoba at the end of 2016 with 214 guestrooms, including 41 luxury suites.

The Bedrooms at Andaz Mayakoba

Rooms are light and fresh with statement design pieces inspired by the Mayan culture, such as local artwork on the walls and decorative tiles on the floors.

Around the pool, choose your lunch from OllaTaco or OllaCeviche, both offering authentic Mexican street food, and for dinner visit Casa Amate, a more refined yet homely restaurant offering Latin American specialities (pictured below).

Casa Amate at Andaz Mayakoba

The Andaz is the choice for the younger crowd who want a more lively luxury hotel.

Fairmont Mayakoba

With 401 rooms, the Fairmont Mayakoba is a true family resort, but with rooms and facilities spread out over 240 acres of tropical forest, it stops short from feeling too mass market.

The bedrooms at Fairmont Mayakoba

The signature casitas with terraces overlooking the lagoon are relaxing and peaceful, but those who prefer a sea view should opt for the beach front suites, each with a terrace and private plunge pool.


The Mayakoba development offers something from everyone – world class luxury can be found at the Banyan Tree and Rosewood; a cooler, more lively setting at the Andaz; and a full service family resort at the Fairmont.

With a direct 10 hour flight from the UK, it’s no wonder the Riviera Maya is such a popular destination, and Mayakoba should be towards the top of anyone’s list.

Bon Vivant’s Travel Guides

Read some of our other travel guides and reviews including the best hotels in New York, Jade Mountain in St Lucia, the Six Senses Douro Valley or our to the best new hotels in Miami.

Sign up to The Bon Vivant Journal here.

Share This