What It’s Like to Stay at Chablé Maroma, the Mexican Coastal Resort Where Every Villa Comes With a Private Pool

Welcome to Checking In, a new review series in which our editors and contributors rate the best new (and revamped) luxury hotels based on a rigorous—and occasionally tongue-in-cheek—10-point system: Each question answered “yes” gets one point. Will room service bring you caviar? Does your suite have its own butler? Does the bathroom have a bidet? Find out below.

Chablé Maroma Resort

 Chablé Maroma's communal pool.
Chablé Maroma’s communal pool.

Describe the hotel in 3 words: Tropical beach paradise.

What’s the deal?
Nestled about 12 miles north of Playa del Carmen on the coastline of the Mayan Riviera, Chablé Maroma offers a two-way experience like few others: a confluence of lush tropical nature and pristine white-sand beaches all in one place. That’s because the property’s 70 villas are built amid verdant jungle canopies that serve to cocoon your experience while also giving every guest easy access to 650 feet of private oceanfront.

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These villas utilize all aspects of nature deliberately to enhance your stay. Each has its very own terrace and private pool—so you can take a cooling dip any time you want. Because the units are enveloped by the area’s natural foliage, you’ll enjoy a singular level of privacy. Don’t expect to see or hear your neighbors unless you cross paths on your way to the restaurants and communal pools, which are about a three-minute walk from any villa.

The resort’s restaurant hub has access to “758 acres” of ocean, from which you can experience myriad activities, including reef snorkeling, kayaking, and paddle boarding. For those content to relax on land, two communal pools, two restaurants, and a spa will keep you nourished, hydrated, and pampered.

The best room: 
The Grand Presidential Villa is not only the most spacious unit on the property; it’s also the most private, sitting in its own nook near the beach and significantly separate from the rest of the villas. That’s not its only perk. Essentially a duplex, the unit is two floors and two villas in one—with 3 bedrooms. The ground floor is home to a master bedroom, which features a one-of-a-kind handcrafted bathtub and not one but two walk-in rain showers (both with outdoor “moonshower” options). This level also has a full dining room and living area with a U-shaped sofa, a coffee table setup, and a six-person dining room. Both the master bedroom and living space open onto a huge terrace, which is only eclipsed by a private heated pool that’s big enough for swimming laps. There’s also an outdoor dining table, a daybed, and a sofa, so you won’t lack for lounging space after your swim.

Chablé Maroma: The Grand Presidential Villa's lower terrace and private pool.
The Grand Presidential Villa’s lower terrace and private pool.

On the second floor, you’ll find another villa, making this an ideal unit for families or couples. This level is split into two as well: a king-size bed on one side, and two queens on the other. Like the ground floor, the interior opens onto a balcony terrace with even more outdoor seating and a second, smaller pool. The result is space that allows bigger groups to enjoy the resort together without even having to leave your villa. Of course, when you do decide to head to the beach, the Presidential Villa is closer than any other to the sand and sea.

The spacious first-floor interior of the Grand Presidential Villa at Chablé Maroma.
The spacious first-floor interior of the Grand Presidential Villa.

The Rundown

Did they greet you by name at check-in?
Yes, a private driveway drops you off in a lovely open-air lobby. The moment the car doors opened, three staffers were waiting for us, ready to take our luggage and check us in on the lobby couches.

Welcome drink ready and waiting when you arrived? Bonus point if it wasn’t just fruit juice.
Yes. Not only was a drink ready and waiting, but we also we had a number of choices, ranging from mini bottles of beer to wine and delicious hibiscus juice. We toasted our arrival over a Corona.

Does the resort have a standout perk?

While some would argue that the white-sand beach is the property’s piéce de rèsistance, the villas are the rockstars here. Enveloped by the natural foliage, they deliver a rare level of privacy that you won’t find even at many 5-star luxury resorts. Inside, the rooms are handsomely appointed with dark wood and neutral-beige tones that take cues from both area’s Mayan heritage and the natural environment. Every bathroom features double sinks, robes, and flip flops, and each comes with a multihead shower with both indoor and outdoor “moonshower” options. And here’s the kicker: Every single unit comes with a full-size terrace and a private plunge pool. All of that conjures a space that feels more like a luxury condo than a guest room.

Chablé Maroma's Serenity Pool Villa unit opens onto a terrace with a private pool.
The Serenity Pool Villa unit opens onto a terrace with a private pool.

Does the resort offer a standout activity?
Wellness and fitness enthusiasts won’t find a lack of options at Chablé Maroma. The property offers multiple kinds of yoga—from Vinyasa to Ashtanga—including a 7 a.m. class on the beach to start your day. You’ll also find myriad wellness-focused activities and treatments at the resort’s spa, from Mayan-inspired purification ceremonies to a full range of 60- and 90-minute massages. We took the 90-minute Obsidian stone couples massage. As the name implies, this treatment combines the use of hot stones into a hour and a half massage that’s delivered by seasoned pros. It’s bookended by time at the hydrotherapy pool, which allows you to punctuate your massage with refreshing dip. 

One of Chablé Maroma spa's massage cabins.
One of the spa’s massage cabins.

Private butler for every room?
No, but the staff here is attentive, warm, and decidedly service-focused. They will be at your villa at a moment’s notice should you need something. If you want to explore some of the resort’s activities, the concierge office will also be more than happy to make the arrangements, whether it’s snorkeling on the reef or taking a habanero-dip cooking class.

Is the sheet thread count higher than 300?

You can double that. Chablé Maroma’s beds come with 600-thread Egyptian cotton sheets that are sewn in local Mexican workshops. The troughs and decorative cushions, which were made with the Sna Jolobil community in Chiapas, are designed to evoke nature, but you’d be forgiven for thinking the turquoise accents are meant to reflect the blistering-blue pool in front of you.

The interior of the Serenity Pool Villa at Chablé Maroma.
The interior of the Serenity Pool Villa.

Is there a heated floor in the bathroom? What about a bidet?
You won’t need one. The temperatures here hover in the 80s year-round. You’ll be far more focused on—and thankful for—the villa’s powerful A/C, which will keep you cool inside even when the temps outside are not. As for washing up, the moonshower option is far more interesting perk than any bidet in our humble opinion. It’s like showering under the stars but in total privacy.

Are the toiletries full sized?

Yes, the property has its own branded bath amenities, and they all come full-size. The most underrated bottle might not be in the bathroom, though. Somehow, Chablé Maroma found a way to create a mosquito repellant that actually smells refreshing. No chemical aroma whatsoever. Even better, it works. You’ll find full spray bottles on the terrace when you arrive, and they’re refilled daily so you’ll never run out. The pests here aren’t a nuisance by any measure, but it is the jungle, so a little repellant can go a long way to keep you from getting the occasional bite when laying out near the pool.

Chablé Maroma's spacious Serenity Villa bathrooms come with two sinks, two toilettes and a daybed for good measure.
The spacious Serenity Villa bathrooms come with two sinks, two toilettes and a daybed for good measure.

Are the restaurants worth their salt?
Two restaurants conspire to keep you sated at Chablé Maroma, each delivering its own contemporary spin on southern and central Mexican cuisine. Bu’ul is the dining polestar, with two discrete spaces—and personalities—for different kinds of appetites. On the ground floor, you’ll find an elegant dining room anchored in handsome, locally sourced wood and soft light. This is where couples can enjoy a quiet romantic dinner indoors (or on the terrace) after a day on the beach. Creative starters range from cactus ceviche to duck tacos. Main courses, meanwhile, skew to fish and heartier meats: Think braised oxtail, striped bass “barbacoa” style, and suckling pig. My favorite, the Tikin Xic-style fish, came wrapped in a Mexican corn leaf and served with beans and sweet potato puree with basmati rice and Chaya.

The interior of Bu'ul restaurant at Chablé Maroma
Bu’ul’s interior.

For lighter meals or cocktails, head upstairs to Bu’ul’s open-air Raw Bar on the second floor. Here you can order from a lunch menu (octopus tacos, Mayan-style salads, and sandwiches) and a full range of locally inspired cocktails.

Kaban, the resort’s second restaurant, is a bit more casual. If you’re in the mood for a hearty meal in the morning, the breakfast menu features plenty of familiar standbys (pancakes, eggs, omelets) alongside Mexican staples, such as chilaquiles, enfrijoladas, and tamales. The dinner menu, meanwhile, caters directly to seafood lovers. Think shrimp ceviche, striped bass with “macha” sauce, and charred clams and oysters cooked on the grill.

The dining room at Chablé Maroma's Kaban restaurant.
The dining room inside Kaban.

The Can’t-Miss—La Cena Privada
If there’s a must-try culinary experience at Chablé Maroma, it’s not a dish but rather a full meal. The resort’s chefs will create a romantic cena privada, a private dining-experience customized to your taste right on the beach. A dining table will be set on the white sand amid candle-light with an unobstructed views of the ocean. Even better, the only soul around will be the friendly, attentive server, who will lead you through a delicious four-course meal (the short menu draws from dishes from both Bu’ul and Kaban) alongside wine pairings highlighting local varietals. The atmosphere is unparalleled, and for those who crave the elusive triumvirate of romance, privacy, and ambiance, you’ll get all three in spades.

Is there caviar on the room service menu? If so, what kind?
Not on the room service menu. But Bu’ul features a delectable Mayan twist on black gold: roasted octopus and caviar with leek and salmon roe sauce. If you ask nicely, you may be able to have it delivered to your villa.

The Raw Bar at Chablé Maroma's Bu'ul offers the property's best ocean views.
The Raw Bar on the second floor of Bu’ul.

Do you want to spend Friday night in the lobby bar?
There’s no such thing at Chablé Maroma. The closest thing is Bu’ul’s Raw Bar. On our visit, it wasn’t a social center at night, but it may have something better. Since it’s perched on the second floor, lunch or a drink here will deliver the property’s best open-air views of the ocean. You can also learn something: We took a short cocktail-making class at the bar and learned how to create a Black Rita, a riff on the classic Mexican libation that uses a helping of real charcoal (supposedly an antioxidant) and ginger syrup to balance the drink’s sweet and sour notes. It was as delicious as it was striking.

The Black Rita, a twist on the classic Margarita with a helping of charcoal and ginger syrup.
The Black Rita

Would you buy the hotel if you could?
Owning a private topical villa with your own pool just minutes from the ocean and white sand beach? Sign us up. 

The Verdict
Chablé Maroma delivers a luxury vacation that feels genuinely rare. You’ll experience the beauty of the tropical forest without sacrificing time on white sands and gorgeous waters. The friendly staff enhance that experience with service that’s warm and attentive but never intrusive. I’d highly recommend it for couples and families who want more privacy than a standard resort guest room affords.

Score: 9

What Our Score Means:

1-3: Fire your travel agent if they suggest you stay here.
Solid if you’re in a pinch—but only if you’re in a pinch.
Very good to great. We’d stay here again and recommend it without qualms.
Forget booking a week. When can we move in permanently?

Rates start at $1,289 a night for Treetop Villas, $1,439 for Serenity Pool Villas, $1,739 for Jungle Pool Villas, and $7,700 for the Grand Presidential Villa.

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