Checking In: Hotel Esencia


Let me start by saying I have gone here twice. Now this is a big deal, because even if I really love a hotel, it takes a lot for me to go again instead of trying somewhere new. That said, I would love to go back a third, fourth, fifth time. In fact, most people I met at the hotel were repeat visitors. That in itself says a lot.

Now on to the hotel. This gorgeous 50-acre estate, located between Playa del Carmen and Tulum, used to be the private hideaway for an Italian Duchess.  The hotel defines barefoot luxury; it is very laid back but has this amazing chicness and exclusivity. 


With only 29 suites and villas, Hotel Esencia is intimate and private. The suites are scattered throughout the "jungle" area  and in the main house, which are the only rooms with ocean views. The decor in the suites is minimalist, but this is what adds to the coolness of  the hotel. I love the extra touches in the rooms, like pre-loaded iPods and stocked complimentary minibars. While the hotel does not offer connecting rooms, they do have 2-bedroom villas, and for a major splurge, a 4-bedroom and an 8-bedroom villa. 


If you are looking for a hotel with a full roster of activities, this is not the hotel for you. Part of the charm of Esencia is that there is not much to do but relax. They have a to-die-for spa and a small gym, but pretty much the only activity is to sit by the pool (they offer an adult's pool and a children's pool) or  lay on the beach under your private palapa. They offer a complimentary yoga class in the morning in a stunning yoga pavilion. There is no kid's club, but they do offer babysitting and the hotel is very kid-friendly. 


Esencia offers two restaurants - a pool restaurant and a garden restaurant. The garden restaurant is only open on certain nights of the week, so primarily all meals will be at the pool restaurant. The restaurant is lovely, but for guests staying for longer than a couple nights, I would suggest leaving the hotel for dinner in order to have some variety. One of my favorite complimentary touches at Esencia is the morning wake-up of coffee, juice, and fresh baked pastries. This is left in front of your room each morning and it such a delicious treat to wake up to.  There is no nightlife here, so this is a place to come to decompress and recharge. 

Hotel Esencia is a top pick for couples looking to reconnect, friends wanting to relax, or families with young children.  Email me today  to book this chic gem!

My exclusive amenities include:

  • Upgrade on arrival (based on availability)
  • Daily breakfast for 2
  • $100 resort credit
  • Early check-in/late check-out (based on availability)

Photo Credits: Hotel Esencia

Alisa Cohen