Spring Break in Mexico -- for Grownups


Just because you're an adult doesn't mean you can't do Spring Break.

It was an essential part of your college education, those two-weeks in March and April that led to places like Mazatlan and

Cancun for an endless party. The vacations usually included a ceremonial stay at a horrible high-rise hotel, meals at reputed beach shacks between all-day booze-cruises and all-night binge drinking.

Luckily, you've grown up a bit and although you've hardly got a free week of vacation or 20-something party stamina, there is still a good time to be had for grownups.

Let's take an older, hopefully wiser, look at a few quintessential Mexican Spring Break destinations.

The Green Spring Break
Hotel Azucar at Veracruz

The idea of an eco-friendly Mexican resort may sound far-fetched, but acclaimed hotelier Carlos Couturier of über-chic Habita and Deseo hotels is looking to change all that with the debut of Veracruz's first environmentally-friendly hotel.

Most guests arrive via specially arranged airfare from Mexico City; otherwise it's a very long drive through the local mountains. The hotel name is derived from the area's sugar factories, a tribute to the eastern state's dominant industry.

The decor of Hotel Azucar mixes bohemian chic and eclectic seaside decor with individually selected driftwood and 1930s furnishings from Couturier's grandparents' farm.

The property features an intensive holistic spa with daily yoga sessions by well-sculpted and spiritually developed locals. It's not all serious spiritual business -- a hip pool area sizzles with all-day grooves at a swim-up bar or people catching a tan atop brightly colored beanbag loungers with silky pillows.

Almost-Cancun Spring Break
Mandarin Oriental Riviera Maya

We usually try to avoid the big chains, but there's something wonderfully hedonist about checking into a Mandarin Oriental. Mandarin's first venture in Latin America, Riviera Maya is located 10 minutes from Playa del Carmen's chic Quinta Avenida and 30 minutes from Cancun Airport.

The sprawling property doesn't disappoint, built in a new residential development on the Caribbean coast with water inlet and central Cenote lagoon typical of many Mayan dwellings.

Amidst 36 acres of tropical forests, the property is home to a staggering five restaurants including a snazzy seafood eatery, lively beach club with bar and much-touted gourmand known as Ambar with copper dome roof and glass floor.

A 25,000 square foot spa is lavishly equipped with Turkish hamam, rasul, ice fountain and vitality pool.

Rooms are some of the best in Mexico, in a series of two-story villas and bungalows with rainforest showers, outdoor bathtubs and stone courtyards.

The Boutique Spring Break
El Careyes Resort

It's not the easiest journey to get to El Careyes Resort, located 112 miles south of Puerto Vallarta along Mexico's stunning Costa Alegra. Beyond the concrete hotels and luxury developments of Puerto Vallarta, this tropical resort is located within a pristine rainforest along a hushed cove of the Pacific Ocean.

The resort is richly decorated in loud tropical colors, with terracotta stone and a landscaped common area leading to a never-ending swimming pool strewn with redwood loungers with bright-blue cushions.

The sleepy resort offers 51 suites and casitas decorated in regional décor with whitewashed walls of orange and purple detailing. Large rooms offer extra details like small kitchens and private pools with sun loungers and plenty of room for entertaining.

The in-house spa is a stunning environment of rejuvenation, offering outdoor massage, accompanied by the gentle ocean breeze, beneath the covered patio just outside the main spa building

The Retro Spring Break
Las Brisas Acapulco

With a fresh crop of be-seen eateries and renovated nightclubs filling-up the hours after dark, Acapulco's hotel is a jet set comeback. Recreate your own Slim Aarons'-style photo-op at the legendary Las Brisas.

The recently renovated resort is nestled on a dramatic hillside overlooking Acapulco Bay accessed by private white jeeps that also chauffeur guests to its seaside beach club. The crowd mixes retired Midwesterners with big-city globetrotters in Etro shorts and Pucci beach bags.

Prices are still reasonable despite the place's being fashionable again. Reserve one of the hotel's suites featuring private plunge pool and dramatic views overlooking the Pacific Ocean.

Rooms have been exorcized of their cottage-cheese ceilings and flamingo-colored décor in lieu of white-minded minimalism with eclectic touches of '50s modernism like pink cubist-sofas and tulip chairs.

There's a spa at this resort, too -- and don't forget to bring your tennis racquet to test your serve against one of the in-house instructors.

The Designer Spring Break
The Tides Zihuatanejo

Visiting Zihuatanejo has long meant checking into the highly praised La Casa Que Canta.

That's until Kor Hotel Group acquired the former Villa del Sol, creating the latest addition to its Tides Hotel brand. Started in Miami's South Beach, Tides offers a sophisticated design brand along pristine Playa la Ropa.

The beachfront lobby incorporates the sleepy architecture of this fishing village with thatched Polynesian details with glamorous touches like beach butlers offering bronzing oils and pre-loaded I-Pods.

Enchanting two-story, adobe-inspired casitas house the resort's 35 guestrooms and 35 suites in a garden setting with touches of Balinese design.

While not designed by Kor's design diva Kelly Wearstler, the rooms provide a muted luxury aesthetic typical to the region. Private balconies with tiled infinity pools overlook a 600-foot palm-studded surfer's beach.

The resort's in-house spa offers updated hacienda-spa suites and new line of marine-derived, environmentally sustainable wellness products.

Show Comments

Back to Top