Yucatán’s Hotel on ‘The World’s 50 Best Hotels’ List!

by | Feb 12, 2024 | travel

beatiful grounds at chable yucatan
Cháble Yucatán did not disappoint.

What exactly is “The World’s 50 Best Hotels” list? It represents the pinnacle of recognition, awarding 50 premier hotels worldwide, as chosen by nearly 600 seasoned experts in the global hotel industry. I started this trip with some wonderful stays at a few beachfront properties in the Riviera Maya, then we ventured across the Yucatán Peninsula to the city of Merida. Here we checked into the exquisite Yucatán Cháble, which proudly holds the #13 spot on the 2023 edition of the 50 Best Hotels list.

Yucatán Cháble

Transformed from a 19th-century estate, Yucatán Cháble now stands as a luxurious five-star retreat, seamlessly blending historical charm with contemporary luxury. Guests can enjoy the privacy of their own villas and casitas, each featuring its own pool, offering a unique blend of modernity and historical ambiance. The property transcends the typical hotel experience, serving as a haven for spiritual rejuvenation, including a top-tier spa centered around a cenote, a natural sinkhole the Mayans revered as a sacred entrance to the underworld. The culinary experience at Cháble is unparalleled, boasting three restaurants curated by internationally acclaimed Mexican chefs. Its flagship restaurant, Ixi’im, gained fame through Eva Longoria’s CNN feature “Searching for Mexico.” Our stay was enriched with daily yoga and meditation classes beside the cenote, cycling through the estate, and relaxing by the lush pool. Additionally, the estate offers tennis courts, a private golf course for short games, and a traditional temazcal steam ceremony led by a Mayan elder.

The spa surrounds a natural cenote at Cháble Yucatán.

Arriving Here

Reaching this part of Yucatán is straightforward, with direct flights to Mérida from multiple US cities. We opted for a car rental in Cancun for a scenic drive across. For those less inclined towards driving in a foreign country, we can arrange convenient transfers. A recent infrastructure development includes a railway connecting Tulum and Mérida, promising future connectivity throughout Yucatán.

Mérida: A City Steeped in History

Mérida is gaining traction among tourists, thanks to its rich cultural and historical significance. Situated in the heart of the Yucatán Peninsula, it’s a city where history and culture converge. Known as the White City, Mérida is celebrated for its colonial heritage, visible in its architecture, museums, and vibrant cultural offerings. Established in 1542 over the ruins of the Maya city of T’ho, Mérida is a dynamic museum where Spanish colonial and Mayan legacies merge. The historic center, highlighted by Plaza de la Independencia and Mérida Cathedral, showcases the region’s historical evolution. Our visit coincided with a Sunday market, offering a lively mix of arts, crafts, gastronomy, music, and performances.

The grounds are beautiful and so peaceful for walks or bike rides.

Safety: A Traveler’s Peace of Mind

Mérida is often cited as one of the safest cities in North America. Its low crime rates and hospitable locals make it a haven for tourists. However, standard precautions are advised with traveling to any destination.

Hacienda Xcanatun in Mérida

Our journey concluded with a two-night stay at Hacienda Xcanatun, an 18th-century estate transformed into a boutique hotel that mirrors Yucatán’s colonial past. Its meticulously restored accommodations fuse historical elegance with modern comfort, set within original structures and new additions featuring private pools and hammocks. The estate’s verdant gardens, exquisite local cuisine, and a lengthy pool position it as a prime choice for visitors to Mérida. With one on-site restaurant providing excellent food and service, Xcanatun is managed by Angsana and is part of the esteemed Banyan Tree Hotel Group.

I love private plunge pools outside my villa or room!

Exploring Beyond: Beaches and Ruins

Celestún: A short drive from Mérida leads to Celestún, famous for its flamingos and untouched beaches, offering a peaceful retreat from the city.

Uxmal: This ancient Maya city is celebrated for its impressive architecture, including the Pyramid of the Magician and the Governor’s Palace.

Chichén Itzá: A trip to Yucatán wouldn’t be complete without experiencing the awe of Chichén Itzá, a New Seven Wonder of the World, showcasing the Mayan architectural genius.

Discovering the Road Less Traveled

While I enjoy iconic sights like Chichén Itzá, I also cherish the tranquility of less-traveled destinations. However, navigating these less accessible places can be challenging due to limited tourism infrastructure. Leveraging my global connections, I can facilitate travel to nearly any destination. Allow me to craft your upcoming journey, tapping into my extensive network to explore beyond the beaten path!