Dream Honeymoons: The Yucatan Peninsula Awaits, When You’re Ready
You’ve been good. You’ve stayed inside — even in New Orleans, where so much diversion tempts. You’ve even foregone the big wedding that you’d planned for months. Instead, you married in your backyard with only family and a Zoom screen in attendance. But, that’s not enough. You just can’t give up the notion of a honeymoon. Would it be safe? Certainly, the safest option is staying home, but if you hanker to get on a plane and go somewhere exotic and festive — but not terribly far away — Cancun and the Rivera Maya fits the bill.
Cancun, a city on the Yucatan Peninsula’s northeast tip holds the famous Zona Hotelera, edged by azure Caribbean beaches, and Cancun Centro, a fount of local culture. Just south of the buzzy city, the Riviera Maya region begins at Puerto Morelos, stretching to the Sian Ka’an Biosphere. Rife with peerless beaches, the peninsula boasts cenotes (fresh water springs once sacred to the Maya people), Maya ruins (Tulum, for example), villages that evoke local flavor, wildlife (if you’re lucky you’ll spot a sea turtle, jaguar or a cute kudamundi), and oodles of mangrove forests. Entrenched in the gravitas of ancient Maya culture, home to stellar diving and premier hotels, this part of Mexico stands alone. One of the countries that never closed its borders to U.S. citizens, Mexico, nevertheless, discouraged non-essential travel until September. At this time, certain regions and cities, such as Cancun and the Riviera Maya, have received accolades for their Covid-19 mitigation policies — including strict mask wearing protocols (fines will be levied for those not complying), social distancing regulations, and limited capacity at monuments, beaches and in hotels and restaurants. Individual hotels have embraced strict policies to keep travelers safe, as well, on their properties.
When you are ready, these resorts welcome you.
A swanky, all-inclusive wonderland bordered by both beach and jungle, this stunning hotel was the setting for a portion of the Netflix show, “Love Is Blind.” It has won awards for its eight distinctive restaurants and spa, known for its signature seven-step water ceremony and Mexican-inspired treatments. Enjoy its Love is Blind Experience, featuring accommodations in a 1,300-square-foot Grand Class Suite (think: plunge pool), romantic three course gourmet dinner on the suite’s oceanfront terrace, and credits for massage lessons, stargazing and more.
Note: Velas Resorts have received the global safety stamp of approval from the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) due to state-of-the-art safety and cleanliness protocols detailed in a 15-page Stay Safe with Velas program.
Nature lovers can spread out at Mayakoba, an eco-conscious compound, which incorporates a varied complex of thoughtfully developed nature — including pearl-white beaches, undulating canals, (and boat transfers), lagoons, mangrove forests and bike paths. Its Asian-intoned, spa-inspired Banyan Tree Mayakoba houses guests in commodious, thatched-roofed, stand-alone villas, each with personal pool. Choose the new beachfront villas, opening end of the year or the Sanctuary Spa Pool Villas, which lie lagoon side, and include unlimited spa treatments and wellness menus.
Just 20 minutes from the airport, this haven of barefoot elegance occupies a prime oceanfront expanse in Cancun’s lively Zona Hotelera. Known for its personalized service, the hotel has a reputation for flattering guests, remembering their names, preferences and interests. An all-inclusive option includes dining at any of the Ritz Carlton’s four restaurants. Or, book the Luxury Romance Package, which includes sparkling wine upon arrival, a scrumptious welcome amenity, a romantic bath at turndown and a discount for spa treatments.
Found on the coast of the Riviera Maya between sandy beaches and lush jungle-scape, the ultra-romantic Chable Maroma digs deeply into local ancestral traditions, celebrates nature and provides an enchanted, isolated hideaway, ideal for amorous pursuits. Thatched roofed, white-washed buildings, with accents in bright Mexican colors (turquoise blue, for example which mirrors the sky and sea) house guests with a tropical, hand-crafted aesthetic, Do sunrise yoga, take cooking classes, explore the nearby Uxmal archeological site, swim in the sea, lounge by the pool, partake of the spa’s Mayan-galvanized rituals — or remain in your eye-popping villa, feet in your private swimming hole. The Chable’s Blissful Honeymoon romance retreat package includes a massage, daily breakfast and more.
The brand’s “Cleaning For Wellness” concept harnesses tech innovation and strategic adjustments to operational and cleaning methods to instill confidence and a sense of security for guests and staff. From ozone generators to biodegradable hospital-grade disinfectants, the “Cleaning for Wellness” concept keeps guests safe with cutting edge science, without undercutting sustainability.