TRAVEL & LGBT
LGBT Friendly Hotel Review: Belmond Maroma Resort & Spa in Riviera Maya
When I sat in my office in Pennsylvania on a snowy afternoon dreaming of a warm escape I might have been dreaming of the Belmond Maroma Resort & Spa. The beach meets the jungle underneath the bluest of skies and rooms are hidden somewhere in between. So when we were invited to stay here it was an opportunity we just couldn’t pass up. We’ve been eyeing some of the stunning Belmond properties all over the world but hadn’t had a chance to visit one yet. We’ve stayed in a lot of hotels and this room had our jaws on the ground.
The attention to detail is what sets Belmond Maroma Resort & Spa apart. The moment you arrive you will pick up on the distinctly Mayan details. We found out much of the furniture and decor was made by local Mayan craftsmen. The Mayan culture continues to be present in everything from the welcome drinks to the lotions used in the spa. So even if you choose to stay on the resort for your entire stay you’ll have an opportunity to learn about the area.
When we are traveling it’s not uncommon for us to walk 7-8 miles in a day trying to see everything. I guess you could call it a serious case of FOMO. For three days here we forced ourselves to slow down. There are so many different styles of travel and there is room for them all. Any one style alone can be limiting or exhausting but mixing styles together allows us to see a more rounded picture.
A quick 30-minute cab or shuttle ride will get you from the Cancun International Airport to the hotel property so almost no vacation time is lost in transit. Also, located just thirty minutes from great restaurants and shopping in Playa del Carmen. It is also only a short drive to the gay Cancun hot spots. Whats most incredible about the location is that its close enough to not waste time in the car yet far enough away to feel private.
We are huge fans of off-season travel and when possible we almost always opt to schedule our trips accordingly. One of the main reasons is simply fewer people around. In this situation, it paid off big time. Not only did we have the beach to ourselves one afternoon we also got to help release baby sea turtles.
This area of Mexico is where three species of sea turtles come to lay their eggs. We found out the local hotels, including Belmond Maroma Resort & Spa, are working with local biologists to help maintain the sea turtle population. A nest nearby had hatched and at dusk, the baby turtles took their first steps into the ocean right outside our hotel room. A group of about 10 people gathered watched and made sure they were safe from birds.
The rooms are offered at 4 different price points located on different parts of the property. While on a tour we saw a room in each category and were impressed by how much was included in each. We were fortunate enough to be upgraded to the Oceanfront One-Bedroom Suite. The first thing that we noticed when walking in was we had a PRIVATE plunge pool. In my mind, I was sure that would be the highlight but it just kept getting better. The king size bed faced the large bay window overlooking the ocean. Each morning we woke up to the sound of the waves coming in.
We often joke that we rate hotels based on the quality of their robes, like all good jokes there is a grain of truth in there. The suite not only came with an A+ robe but also kaftans and slippers to lounge around in. We wore the robes as often as socially acceptable.
We had both indoor and outdoor shower options complete with the best smelling bath products. Our favorite feature was the gigantic bath tub. Meg loves baths but I’m almost 6ft tall so not many tubs are large enough for me to comfortably relax. So we took complete advantage of the chance to take one together.
We decided not to leave the resort and opted to eat our meals at the on-site restaurant. Both mornings we woke up slow and sipped the coffee delivered to our room in before heading to breakfast. Breakfast was served from a menu, not a buffet. It also included fresh handmade tortillas made to order with eggs, cheese, bacon, and sausage.
We ate two dinners at El Resturante which overlooks the ocean. The first night we sat out on the patio by candlelight. We even enjoyed some cocktails which are all but a once a year thing since I can get a hangover from just considering a drink. I think we mostly just wanted to savor the moment. They use a lot of fresh local ingredients but in unique ways. The menu was really diverse and included a good vegetarian selection. We especially enjoyed the grilled seafood platter and the sweet corn risotto. The service each night was also fantastic. Meg loves to ask servers not only what food they recommend but also what we should in the area. These guys didn’t miss a beat they practically gave us whole second posts worth of ideas.
The hotel is dripping with romantic vibes. Everything from the candlelit dinners to the couples massage was obviously geared towards romance. The hotel staff did not skip a beat that we were two women. Everyone was extremely friendly and respectful of our desire to have those romantic moments together. The staff at the spa was particularly amazing. The massage itself was great but the fact that we were treated so well as the same-sex couple getting a couples massage made it that much better. Our experience could not have been any better. From beginning to end that staff made us feel welcomed and accepted.