While planning summer holidays, the most important thing is… the beach of course. Here we collected for you the best of the best relaxing beaches.
“Dude” is a word that’s used a lot around Rancho Pescadero, a small hotel in the surfing town of Todos Santos, located in the Mexican state of Baja California. The rooms here, however, don’t reflect the dude aesthetic, which is to say they are clean and classy. Spacious suites offer comfortable spots to relax, with most having retractable glass doors that eliminate barriers between indoors and outdoors and open up onto terraces that have hammocks or lounge beds. Terra-cotta tile floors, rattan and wood furniture, and locally made accents—such as hand-embroidered throw pillows—are some of the decor elements found in rooms. Surfers won’t feel totally out of their element, though; world-famous breaks are less than 10 minutes away and staff can give pointers on the best spots to hang ten. Apart from surfing, the hotel encourages guests to spend a lot of time relaxing and immersing themselves in the laid-back Baja lifestyle.
Some like to call Grace Bay’s new Residences a “micro-resort.” I prefer to think of them as a collection of three luxurious homes with the impeccably delicate service of a five-star resort.
The central room of each home is take-your-breath-away spacious with high vaulted ceilings. It includes a well designed dining area and a kitchen sporting solid wood cabinets and top-of-the-line appliances from Sub-Zero and Wolf.
But perhaps the most defining feature of The Residences is the 95 feet of private, immaculate beach reserved for each home. The entire side of the home that faces the water can be opened to take it all in—extending the 2,600 square feet of private deck space surrounding the infinity pool, outdoor barbecue, and sunning areas.
Sophisticated, luxurious, and certainly exclusive, the all-new Residences by Grace Bay Resorts’ Private Villa Collection need to be experienced to be believed.
Vero Beach is somewhat off the tourism radar. (Those in the know may like to keep it so.) Vero attracts travelers with its golf courses, beaches and a luxury vibe, coupled with an Old Florida feel. Spend a few days at the Vero Beach Hotel & Spa, and its understated elegance and sense of community will begin to lull you in more deeply.
The friendly staff—from the concierge to the desk, valet and housekeeping—offers professional service with genuine warmth. Their local tips and knowledge are gold.
The hotel is luxurious yet cozy, from the refined pool to the beachfront fire pit to the comfy “living room,” where guests are invited to enjoy morning coffee or tea and a wine happy hour. Get social—chat with the staff, and share stories with other guests.
During my stay at the new Hotel Surazo, I fell asleep to the sound of the Pacific surf pounding the sand. Located in Matanzas, a village on the sparsely populated, mountainous central Chilean coast, this low-slung, modern surf lodge is about 50 feet from the waves. The friendly Chilean owners, Andrés Tobar and Felipe Wedeles Tondreau, built two bunk-filled dormitories and eight minimalist, wood-and-glass private rooms equipped with terraces, ocean views, and hammocks. Daytime activities include sport fishing for merluza (hake), surfing, or windsurfing (lessons arranged by the hotel), and strolling along lonely black-sand beaches strewn with giant cochayuyo (an edible kelp that Tobar cooks for guests). At night, soak in one of the Surazo’s wood-fired hot tubs. —Vanessa Gregory
Just 20 minutes from Cancún’s international airport is Belmond Maroma Resort & Spa, set on 25 acres of preserved jungle. Guests here still enjoy direct access to the Caribbean Sea and its powdery, white-sand beach, as well as to a wide variety of physical fitness and wellness activities and services. Rooms are generous in size and are filled with sunlight, let in through large windows. Tile floors and design accents—throw pillows and furniture, for instance—have an earthy color palette. Many rooms feature indigenous artwork and handmade furniture. Though it might be tempting to stay within the confines of the resort, the area is home to a number of worthwhile attractions, including the Maya site of Tulum and a biosphere reserve; the concierge can provide information about both, as well as tips for guided excursions and reputable outfitters.