Going back to the drawing board for the Garden of Eden you would struggle to beat Secrets Akumal, “the place of the turtles”, on the Mexican Mayan Riviera.
The Gran Velas Riviera Maya takes the concept of all-inclusive to the highest level indeed, and you get your own private butler in its top suites. It’s just five minutes’ drive from Playa del Carmen and the first thing you notice when you arrive here is the huge amount of space with 70% still pristine jungle. Everything is so spread out that it’s a 2km drive from the entrance to the main buildings by the Caribbean. Fortunately there are always shuttles ready to whisk you around.
The Riviera Maya specialises in large all-inclusive resorts and Dreams Tulum Resort takes the concept to a new level. Forget about queuing up at the buffet, there are six a-la-carte restaurants where you don’t have to book and there’s also unlimited access to branded spirits and a choice of wines. It’s a high end hotel where everything is included.
Like all world-class cities, Mexico’s capital is a collection of neighbourhoods each worthy of a few days’ exploration. But with downtown and its ritzy extension Polanco so rich in cultural jewels, few visitors venture beyond, and thus miss out on the joys of Condesa, Roma, Coyoacan and San Angel, all unmissable for different reasons.
If anyone could bring a touch of class to an area whose rep has been damaged by overbuilding and too many package tourists, it’s Fairmont Mayakoba Hotel,. The company which now owns the Savoy, magnificently restored to its art deco glory days, has shown, in its Mayakoba resort on Mexico’s Caribbean coast, that it can also do eco-resorts.