Livin’ La Vida Loca on Playa Maroma

February 23, 2011 by


In dire need of a respite from a relentless east coast winter, I headed to the Hotel Maroma Resort and Spa on Playa Maroma in Mexico, about half an hour south of Cancun on the Riviera Maya. A total chill out week of beach walks, great food and an occasional Mezcals did the trick.

On my morning beach walk, I left a little bit of Urban Gardens in the sand…

Tropical flowers everywhere. Oh how I wish I could have brought some back!

The arched and gated entrance to one of the resort’s private villas.

Ah, yes, pray to the Beach Buddha! Just happened upon this one during my afternoon beach stroll.

Entrance to our (upgraded) room…

Built by local Mayan masons twenty years ago as a private home which slowly expanded into a resort, if it weren’t for the thatched roofs, Maroma’s whitewashed architecture would not look out-of-place in Santorini.

The clean buildings are set against the backdrop of lush jungle-like gardens. I came across this large Washingtonia Robustus, or Mexican Fan Palm, while walking one of the property’s winding paths.

A serenity in the spa’s garden while awaiting a mud ritual.

I thought it was a Mongoose in the tree…perhaps a Meerkat? These babies were very aggressive, with appetites larger than mine–we had to watch over our poolside lunch!

Ok, I just can’t figure it out. Can anyone identify this plant for me?

I really like how the plants emerge from these logs. I want to replicate this in my own garden. They would work well too for candles, don’t you think?

He spoke to me, and although I had lived in Puerto Rico and Southern California, I couldn’t even come up with enough Spanish to respond to a bird…!

The multi-hued parrot was not the only splash of color amid the hotel’s neutral backdrop. I spotted this colorful couple at breakfast and was compelled to ask about their outfits.

When asked if these were their Caribbean vacation outfits, this colorful Florida couple told me that this was their look: color, color, and more color. I especially liked his socks.


Take away: Although some large all-inclusive hotels pepper the beach near the Maroma Resort, there is enough distance between them and the uncrowded resort to make the place feel a bit secluded. At the resort’s al fresco beachfront breakfast each morning, a lovely local grandma brings freshly made tortillas to your table. Hands down, my favorite meal of the day and often filling enough that some people skip lunch.

A post-massage veg-out on a Balinese style wooden chaise in the Kinan spa’s garden is perhaps as heavenly as the treatments themselves. Every night at dusk, guests enter a tiny sweat lodge to experience the resort’s signature temazcal ritual. I did not partake. I chose instead to drink margaritas while watching the sun set over the Caribbean.

Belmont Maroma Resort and Spa
Carretera Cancún-Tulum
Km 51, 77710 Riviera Maya
Quintana Roo, México
1 866 454 9351

Photos: Robin Plaskoff Horton

  • Amanda

    Your unknown plant is a banana! Or Musa in latin. You can see by the shape of the flowers they are in a row like a bunch of bananas! 🙂

  • Looks like a banana flower to me.
    Beautiful pictures, lucky you.

  • Oh sorry, didn’t see that Amanda had already identified it!

  • Gorgeous pix! Did you stay at the Maroma Resort on the Riviera Maya, or is there a beach called Playa Maroma?

  • Great photograph of the banana!

  • Robin Plaskoff Horton

    Stayed at Maroma Resort, Ellen. Heaven on earth. Have you been there? It on Maroma beach or Playa Maroma.

  • Lovely photos, next time come to Australia we grow many beautiful plants and trees.

  • OH Gorgeous Photo’s and Yeah its very Loca . Great idea for Garden .Mind Blowing your this post really i loved that . plz tell me Means of “Loca” ?????
    I Think Crazy …..

  • Thaks for stopping by and taking the time to translate 🙂 I’m honoured 🙂

    How exciting with a contest! Of course I’ll have to try make a nice creative container then. For sure I’m gonna enjoy the other participants too.
    I love your blog and I’m gonna link to you today cause I think other should experience your blog too 🙂 Have a great green day!

  • Robin Plaskoff Horton

    Romantic Dinner and Ellinor thank you both so much for your kind words about the blog! I am so glad you are enjoying it, it is my love child! La Vida Loca translates to “That Crazy Life”…I take it to mean, that sort of lazy, loose, happy-go-lucky life. And Ellinor, I will be looking for your container photos!

  • Robin Plaskoff Horton

    Thanks Maggie, I would LOVE to visit Australia! My daughter was there last May and went sky diving over the Great Barrier Reef!

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