I love Tulum in Mexico. Since I have been there about 8 years ago more beautiful hotels and resorts have opened their doors. One of them is Hotel Esencia. This former hideaway of an Italian Duchess, located on a 50-acre estate between Tulum and Playa del Carmen, is tucked into the jungle on one of the prettiest stretches of beach. The Main House is the hotel’s centerpiece, around which footpaths lead to only 29 suites and villas where guests enjoy genuine privacy and top flight hospitality. Ideally situated far from huge resorts and the roar of pleasure boats, the immaculate bay of Xpu-Ha is a natural haven where each year sea turtles make their nests. Hotel Esencia invites the happy few who know how rare it is to find a place that is truly unique, to make it their home in the tropics.
Native Eco Villa is built on a stunning location, right on the rim of the cliff at the village of Imerovigli, Santorini, with the world’s most beautiful scenery. This part of the island has the nickname “the balcony to the Aegean Sea’ for a reason. The building was constructed following the unique architecture of the Island without any corners and with soft and earthy colors. This villa is the first house that acquired the title “Green Key” on the island of Santorini for the ecological way that has been built. The interior is decorated with handmade objects with ecological materials all of unique design. But the very best feature of the house is of course the stunning view. More information can be found on the Native Eco Villa website.
Pensão Agrícola is a small rural hotel(only six rooms) located between the historic town of Tavira and Cacela Velha, a picturesque clifftop fishing village in Portugal. The original farmhouse was built in 1920 as a wedding present to the owners’ only daughter and it remained a working farm until 1970. After 40 years of neglect, the memories of those more prosperous times have been preserved and incorporated into the current architectural project by Atelier Rua. On the shady terrace next to the farmhouse, guests can enjoy a delicious, generous breakfast, or take other light meals by the plunge pool. Thanks to the owners’ eye for detail and care to preserve precious curiosities, each room is a minimal delight, with carefully considered details such as industrial lamps from the 1940 and 50s, and pieces by local artists including Joana Astolfi and Márcio Vilela.
This beautiful villa is a luxurious vacation rental located in Ibiza, isolated on more than 10,000 square meters of land, with a spectacular view of the sea. From here you can watch the sun set every day of the year. Even in the summer, when the island tends to get more crowded, this is still a rather quiet and peaceful place, perfect to calm down and relax. The building, which is about 150 years old, had been abandoned for 40 years. It had no ceiling and the walls were crumbling and there was no electrical wiring. Renovations took about five years. However, the first two years were spent gathering permissions and getting all paperwork in order. The house is protected due to its location close to the sea as well as its age. The owner about the interior design: “We wanted to respect the building and the land, the simplicity of the place, so we kept all the aspects the house had 150 years ago, creating a dialogue between the past and the present. Therefore, the rooms were kept the same and the house was decorated in a simple and discreet manner with simple wooden furniture, kilims and individual pieces we collected throughout our travels.”
Casa Cook is a brand new hotel brand by travel company Thomas Cook. Their first hotel, which has recently opened, is on the island of Rhodes, Greece. The boutique hotel has 90 rooms, each coming with a small private swimming pool. The design is a collaboration between architect Vana Pernariv, interior designer Annabell Kutucu and design agency Lambs & Lions. I think the result is beautiful: there is a lot of white and natural materials such as wood and rattan give a rustic chic vibe. Casa Cook Hotel: “Our aim is to set a new standard among holiday resorts. We want to create hotels that connect and inspire like-minded travelers. Those who like to eat local and adventure authentic. Who thrive on style and value well-being. At Casa Cook, there will be no one-size-fits-all architecture. No repetitive interiors. Each hotel will have its own distinct personality and will inspire through the use of eclectic, evocative design. As well as through embracing and integrating the native culture of each location.” More information can be found here on Casa Cook’s website.
Swedish born Helene Henderson has a two-acre organic farm in Malibu. For years she has been organizing cooking classes and hosting farm dinners out of her home and recently she has openend Malibu Farm, a cafe & restaurant at the Malibu Pier in Los Angeles. Helene: “We are not a big corporation or funded by investors, we are a locally owned small business. Our food is super simply prepared, there are no secret ingredients. We order everything organic, but none of our local small farmers are certified, and our big suppliers, do not deliver 100% organic 100 % of the time. I naively thought when I opened the cafe, that organics were easy for restaurant to source – it is not. It is a daily and challenging struggle.However we are proud of the products that we serve and believe we put the best possible produce available on every dish served”
This colorful holiday villa, called Casa Dos Chicos, is located right on top of a hill overlooking the Pacific Coast of Sayulita, Mexico. The house has been redecorated using a mix of minimal and clean lines combined with colorful Mexican accessories. Casa Dos Chicos can be rented for events (imagine having a wedding here!) and/or holiday villa accommodating up to ten guests. The property features four beautifully decorated suites, a swimming pool, a tree-top Jacuzzi with ocean views, and a Mexican-style open air living area which includes a rooftop living room and kitchen/dining room dramatically linked by a bridge. Sayulita, which has been called “Mexico’s best kept secret”, is on my list of places-to-go-to. The small charming town with a great vibe has lots of good restaurants and boutiques. You can visit Casa Dos Chicos’ website for more information and bookings.