Yes, indeed. The world’s best hotel is located in Chocholá, 25kms away from Merida. At least that is what UNESCO and the International Union of Architects say. Together, they sponsor the Prix Versailles 2017.
This is a world architecture award for hoteles, shopping centres, stores and restaurants. In its latest edition, held in Paris in 12th May 2017, Chablé Resort & Spa was named the best hotel in the world. Another Mexican facility, Mar Adentro hotel (Los Cabos) got the Special Prize Exterior.
However, there are so many institutions making different rankings that is hard to conclude which is really the best. Conde Nast, Travel + Leisure, The Telegraph, Forbes Travel Guide, all of them present annual rankings for world’s best hotel. Prix Versailles is more focused on design, spaces, comfort and environmental balance. It recognizes two Mexican hotels and that is all we need to know.
The best hotel in the world
Chablé Resort & Spa is brand new. It only opened in Jun 2016 to become a “very hedonistic” destination, in the words of Nicolas Dominguez, its manager.
It is located just 30 minutes away from Merida International Airport. All of its 38 suites are surrounded by a dense jungle forest. In this way, they offer privacy but also a wink into how it felt to be a Mayan 500 years ago.
Chable’s spa incorporates an actual Mayan cenote. “It’s pampering, luxurious spa. Not the type of place where you’re only allowed to boring sip tea”, continues Dominguez.
The Yucatecan Hacienda
Yucatan Peninsula is famous for many things, including Chichen Itza, one of the new 7 wonders in the world. Haciendas are also a trademark for the bonvivant visiting Yucatan. They are old villas where owners to large henequen plantations lived in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
In the last 20 years many of them have been refurbished to become incredibly luxurious small hotels. The original 19th century walls of the working hacienda serve as the framework for every room in Chablé Resort & Spa. Therefore it also incorporates modern touches and traditional Mayan architecture. Paulina Moran and Jorge Borja, both Mexicans, are the designers and creative minds behind this hotel.
Dine like a Mayan Prince
Chablé is, as expected, an expensive dream to fulfill. However, its restaurant Ixi’im is a far more affordable way to experience the world’s best hotel. It is located on the opposite side of the property and is the child of renowned chef Jorge Vallejo. His Quintonil restaurant in Mexico City is considered among the 25th best in the world. Read here to know about our experience at Quintonil.
Ixi’im presents both ancient and modern techniques to mix the local flavours. True to its organic spirit, most of the ingredients used here come from their own ka’anche (Mayan farm) located within the hotel premises.
Prices during high season start at US$950 per room. However, in low season (around May) you can find rooms below US$600. This area is visited in our MAYATour. We will be glad to upgrade your accommodation so you can spend a couple of nights here.