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Last updated: 13 November, 2022
Expert travel writer: Alex Robinson

Cancun and the international airport are less than 20-minutes’ drive away, yet this opulent hotel on a quiet, secluded white-sand beach feels a world away.

Most Riviera Maya hotels are big blocky resorts or toes-in-the-sand casitas. But with its stately terracotta Paraiso feels like a millionaire’s hacienda. Long open-sided corridors are decked out with antiques collected from Asia and the Americas, including a panoply of Balinese stone lions and temple carvings from India.

Suites are plush and vast and divided into a bedroom, sitting area, a terrace with a beautiful ocean view and a bathroom with a plunge pool-sized square stone tub, filled by a tap in the shape of a lion’s head, carved from a single rock. The pool is huge, the Thalasso spa is superb and the hotel has a choice of great restaurants.

Surrounding area

The property is set in 14 acres of tropical forest, amid shady gardens busy with hummingbirds, and bright with hibiscus and heliconia flowers. It overlooks a long broad, powdery-fine white sand beach and a shallow turquoise Caribbean Sea.

There are a few other resorts nearby, but they don’t infringe on the resort’s privacy and feeling of seclusion. The village of Puerto Morelos is around 5km south; the nightlife of Cancun is 35 km north.

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Key facilities

Airport transfers*
Beach: Onsite
Fitness centre
Fitness classes
Golf course
Hot tub
Parking: On-site (free)
Pool (adults only)
Pool (indoor)
Pool (outdoor)
Pool (kids)
Tennis courts
WiFi: Free

Food & drink

All inclusive
Kids menu
Restaurant on-site
Self catering
Additional charge

Room types


Room facilities

Air conditioning
Flat screen TV
Jacuzzi (private)
Pool (private)
Tea & coffee making facilities

Bedding options

2+ bedrooms
3+ beds
Connecting rooms
Rollaway/sofa bed

Bucket list experiences our writer says you must do in this destination, closest first

Gran Cenote

Tulum, Quintana Roo, Mexico

Lily-covered, glassy-clear and filled with terrapins and tropical fish, this cenote near Tulum is easy to reach and fabulous to swim in. Big caverns make for spectacular cave diving.

Best for ages: 6+ | £7

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Overview >

Mayan ruins of Coba

Quintana Roo, Mexico

An authentic, atmospheric and less-visited Mayan site, set in lush, wildlife-rich forest. Climb to the summit of the 126ft-high Nohoc Mul pyramid – the tallest on the Mayan Riviera.

Best for ages: 13+ | £5

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Other worthwhile experiences in this destination if you have the time or the interest, closest first

Cancun Museum of Underwater Art

Isla Mujeres, Quintana Roo, Mexico[22.7 miles]

British artist Jason Decaires Taylor’s underwater art gallery feels like a latter-day Atlantis – with statues covered with wispy sea weeds and baby coral, fish swimming all around sitting on the sand in vodka-clear water off Isla Mujeres.

Best for ages: 18+ | Free

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Overview >

El Camaleon Mayakoba Golf Club

Playa del Carmen, Quintana Roo, Mexico

Designed by Greg Norman, the course weaves its way through dense jungle, beautiful stretches of white sand and mangrove forests, with cenotes – natural sink holes – providing natural hazards.

Best for ages: 13+ | £125

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Akumal, Quintana Roo, Mexico

A simple nature-based theme park with a safari-park zoo, a cenote for swimming, a spectacular cave and a rainforest canopy zip-line adventure.

Best for ages: 4+ | £30

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Overview >

Destination guides including or relevant to this place to stay

Mayan Riviera


Talc-white beaches, reefs teeming with life, ruined temples in misty rainforests – the Riviera Maya offers a family or romantic beach holiday with a dash of Indian Jones adventure.

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Overview >