Surrounded by thick, almost primitive jungle tumbling into one of the most beautiful stretches of Riviera Maya sand, Hotel Esencia was originally built as a private hideaway for an Italian Duchess. Today, the main house still stands at the heart of the 50-acre estate, linking to 40 guest suites and three villas along a series of winding stone paths. Rooms strung along the beach or nestled in the jungle come with dazzling whitewashed interiors, punctuated by dark wood furnishings and vibrant splashes of colour. It is ideal for families; two-bedroom cottages come with a private swimming pool and chef service, and there is a dedicated children's pool so couples can enjoy the resort in peace. Days are spent snorkeling or kayaking through the turquoise water, enjoying treatments in the jungle spa, with its thatched palapa roof overlooking the estate's very own cenote. The pristine sands of Xpu-Ha Cove, where sea turtles come to lay their eggs, is right on the doorstep - staff will alert you if they are about to hatch. The strategic positioning of the resort far enough away from some of the area's bigger, brasher hotels gives it a real sense of exclusivity and romance.
Wherever possible, ingredients served at the resort are locally grown and sourced. The internationally acclaimed, Michelin-starred chain BeefBar recently set up shop here, serving cuts of Wagyu and Japanese Kobe beef from an open kitchen. Barefoot Mistura, set right on the beach, offers an exciting fusion of Peruvian, Japanese and Yucatan flavours, including just-caught seafood. Laidback Café Esencia is open all day, serving salads, sandwiches and tacos, and sundowners are served at the breezy Beach Bar.
Families with older children
Spa featuring an array of treatments, steam room and Jacuzzi
The idea for Red Savannah was always based on a clear market need. A small team of the most experienced travel designers, supported by the latest technology and delivered with the lightest touch. In short, a travel company redefined for the 21st century.