Few destinations offer the combination of value, historical and cultural sightseeing, relaxation and beauty as Mexico.
To enhance your vacation, consider booking a villa, or a casita, and enjoy the thoughtful hospitality touches—from private chefs preparing meals on your terrace to a family game-night concierge to secluded oceanfront bungalows and special kids’ clubs—that allow the whole family to reconnect and get a much-needed break.
Here are our recommendations for luxurious villa-style accommodations south of the border.
1. Playa Viva, Zihuatanejo
Booking a casita at the eco-friendly Playa Viva is the definition of “getting away from it all” in this formerly sleepy southern Mexico fishing village, where the sound of waves will lull you to sleep each night. Each casita, styled as beachfront huts with sustainable wood materials and palapa roofs, can sleep up to four people, with a front-row view of the ocean. The hotel facilities are mostly powered by solar energy.
There is a common area that includes a kitchen, dining room, living area and lounge space, a pool and yoga deck, and an outdoor theater where guests can watch movies under the stars. There’s a game room and children’s play area. In the evenings, roast marshmallows at the beach fire pit. An onsite restaurant serves up a farm-to-table menu (breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks are included with your stay), with fresh ingredients grown by local farmers.
The hotel is located next to a sea turtle sanctuary, and volunteers regularly bring turtle hatchlings to the hotel, allowing guests to participate in turtle releases. There are also 120 acres of private land available for hiking, in addition to horseback riding and other local excursions by land or sea.
2. Mahekal Beach Resort, Playa del Carmen
Mahekal Beach Resort is surround by lush vegetation and is nestled between the Riviera Maya jungle and Playa del Carmen’s longest stretch of beach. The resort offers a spacious two-bedroom bungalow for families called the La Residencia, Mahekal’s take on a presidential suite. The La Residencia can sleep eight adults or eight adults and two children, offering a full kitchen, one master king bedroom, two queen beds in the guestroom, a queen sleeper sofa and two day beds in a separate sitting area. To complete the residence is a private patio, running the length of the building, which includes numerous hammocks, woven lounge chairs and an outdoor dining/seating area.
Other bungalow-style accommodations offered at Mahekal include Ocean Front Beach Houses touting private plunge pools or outdoor moon showers, perfect for stargazing, and Treehouse Rooms overlooking lush greenery complete with incredible views and hammocks swinging on open-air terraces.
The resort offers four pools, including the Itzi Pool with handmade wooden rope swings and a swim-up bar. Kids can play Ping-Pong and Shuffleboard at Boli’s Bar or take an onsite pottery painting session at the Artisan Palapa. Also available are Mahekal’s beach butlers, who stop by with ice-cold Mexican beer, chips, and house-made salsa and guacamole. Guests are welcome to create an inclusive meal plan including breakfast and either lunch or dinner in their rates.
3. Club Velas Vallarta, Vallarta-Nayarit
Part of the Velas Resorts chain of resorts throughout Mexico, Club Velas Vallarta earns high marks from parents for its family-focused offerings. Choose from a range of accommodations, from budget-friendly studios to larger three-bedroom suites. All suites include kitchen facilities and fully stocked mini-bars.
The location, along a 10-acre beachfront, offers lots of relaxing beach days for families, as well as three pools, including one just for kids. There’s also a kids’ club that offers a variety of activities for children ages 4 to 12. There are two onsite restaurants and a snack bar, in addition to a swim-up bar. The resort hosts a variety of performances nightly, including Mexican ballet folklorico and fiestas. The resort also offers a spa and golf course nearby.
Families love the personal attention from the friendly staff here, as well the animals, including peacocks, a resident iguana and a trained hawk, that enjoy visiting with guests.
4. Four Seasons Resort Punta Mita, Punta Mita
The hacienda-style villas at Four Seasons Resort Punta Mita offer the ultimate in luxury accommodations, featuring full kitchens, outdoor grilling and dining areas and private infinity pool and hot tub. Resort staff can arrange for groceries to be delivered and a private chef to cook a custom menu on your terrace.
Elsewhere at the resort, amenities include tennis, family golf clinics, a lazy river and options for chartering a yacht. The Kids for All Seasons Program is a complimentary kids’ enrichment program offered daily at the dedicated building, with arts classes, language lessons, planned hikes and more.
There are seven onsite restaurants and bars, including The Shack, a beachy bar with swinging daybeds and evening fire pits. Parents can book some self-care at the Apuane Spa, with treatments inspired by traditional indigenous techniques and performed in private outdoor cabanas.
5. Esperanza, Auberge Resorts Collection, Los Cabos
The only private beach resort in Los Cabos, Esperanza offers luxury villas for families, as well as a personal family concierge service.
Villas range from one to four bedrooms, and each includes a full kitchen, dining area, and spacious outdoor terrace. Some include private hot tubs and plunge pools.
The resort offers family-friendly activities, including swimming with whale sharks, cooking classes that highlight local cuisine, and a weekly Mexicanisimo night, with a buffet, local arts-and-crafts vendors and fireworks. A kids’ club offers cooking classes, stargazing, movie nights and piñata parties.
The Mi Familia package includes a special family concierge that delivers to their villa classic board games such as Loteria, along with a Cabo-inspired snack bar with treats such as churro popcorn, Mexican hot chocolate and chips and guacamole.
6. Hacienda Beach Club & Residences, Cabo San Lucas
Hacienda Beach Club & Residences is a 22-acre resort located on Medano Beach in Los Cabos. The resort offers a luxurious, family-friendly option, with suites, villas and penthouses, with up to four bedrooms available for large or multi-generational families. Each offers a large kitchen and an oceanfront patio.
There is a kids’ club onsite, which offers an arcade, game room, and supervised arts and crafts. The resort also includes a multi-tiered infinity pool, and a beach with paddle boards, kayaks and snorkeling equipment available. Private in-room babysitting can be arranged for a nominal fee.
Parents can sneak away for a treatment or two at the full-service spa, and also enjoy the adults-only pool and complimentary fitness classes. New curated culinary experiences take guests to the best local neighborhood restaurants or on a road trip to sample food and cocktails throughout Baja California.