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Overwater Bungalows in Mexico

Words by John Roark
Photos courtesy of Karisma Hotels & Resorts

Riviera Maya is home to a wealth of luxury resorts, glittering like jewels along Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula. The destination embodies the perfect international, romantic getaway: unmatched beauty that feels a world away, but is easily accessible with direct flights from most major U.S. cities.

In September 2016, a game-changer debuted on the scene. Karisma Hotels & Resorts unveiled Palafitos – Mexico’s first overwater bungalows. It seems incredible that in such a spectacular setting, Palafitos is the first of its kind. 

Part of the award-winning, all-inclusive, adults-only El Dorado Maroma resort, Palafitos (which means “stilt house” in Spanish) comprises 30 luxury beachfront bungalows hovering above the crystal sea. Surrounded by the immaculate Maroma Beach – named “Mexico’s Most Exclusive Beach” by the Travel Channel – Palafitos is redefining luxury in Riviera Maya.

From the moment you step onto the glass-floor entryway with the ocean shimmering beneath your feet, you know you’ve arrived at a one-of-a-kind romantic destination. The bungalows are spacious and entirely private, with soaring ceilings, 180-degree ocean views and top-of-the-line amenities inside and out.

For starters, each bungalow includes a glass-floor shower and in-room Jacuzzi for two. You’ll also enjoy a completely enclosed outdoor couple’s shower and private infinity pool, oversized wraparound deck for lounging and stairs leading to a private dock where you can dangle your feet in the warm water or hop right into the crystal-clear lagoon.

INDULGE

Using native techniques and herbal elements found only in the Caribbean, Palafitos’ overwater Náay Spa offers a full line of signature indoor and outdoor treatments incorporating the ancient magic of the Mayan civilization. 

PLAY

The Riviera Maya is also a paradise for adventurers. Plan excursions on land or sea – including parasailing, snorkeling, camel safaris and ATV treks – with Maroma Adventures, located just steps away from Palafitos.

DINE

As if the decadence of Palafitos wasn’t enough, the resort’s Overwater Ocean Grill & Wine Bar dazzles both the eye and the palate. The gourmet, ocean-inspired menu will introduce you to delicacies you’ve never imagined. For breakfast, don’t miss the pork belly BLT.

SAY “I DO”

Whether you exchange vows right on the beach or in the on-site chapel, it’s a given your setting will be spectacular. Planning your wedding at Palafitos is surprisingly effortless with the resort’s website, which enables you to personalize everything from décor to menus to music. You can even send save-the-date announcements through the site with the click of a mouse.

This article first appeared in Destination I Do's Fall/Winter 2017 issue. You can order a copy here.

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