Sometimes you decide to take a risk and explore new places and are rewarded with the feeling of finding something truly special. Our two-night stay at Xixim was not one of those times.
This sprawling hotel, which was built in 1996, appears to have not been updated since it was opened. This may not have been so much of an issue, but it became complicated when we realized their use of the term 'eco-resort' actually meant 'situated in a dense jungle' by the ocean. We've spent a good amount of time in deep nature and it's not an issue at all for us, but with the room prices being what they are at Xixim, they should at least have sufficient screens in the cabanas to keep out mosquitoes (instead there is a gap between the walls and grass-roof wide enough for Iguanas to nap in, which they do). Even with the mosquito net over our bed, we were bitten constantly both nights of our stay and slept terribly. The could so easily be avoided with proper facilities maintenance and management.
If you happen to be there in August, be prepared for extra-large swarms of mosquitoes and hefty spiders (one 3 inches across that we had to have removed from our room the first night). A lack of any other guests (we counted six other people besides us during our stay) is another creepy feature of this huge place. If you stay in a master suite, as we did, ask for the closes one to reception. Ours was a five minute sweltering walk through the jungle.
It also seams the service has suffered over the years. Most requests needed to be relayed twice - and in Spanish - to be granted (not one of the hotel staff speaks fluent English). The food at the restaurant is awful and the only other option is to take a car 25 minutes on a bumpy dirt road into town.
The upsides of our weekend at Xixim was that the ocean is beautiful (although the beach had trash on it and the lounge chairs had no cushions), and we had a lovely boat tour of the mangroves by Nielse Noh Ojeda (email@example.com), who even took us to see the salt flats where locals harvest much sought-after pink salt crystals. Note: the hotel charges $150 for this hour-long tour, so email Nielse directly and I image it will be much cheaper.
If you'd like to visit Celestun, plan a day trip and go between December and February, when there are far less mosquitoes and the flamingos are much for prevalent. We saw roughly 40 flamingos during our tour and they were absolutely stunning. So by all means do go see them and the other wonderful wildlife, just don't stay at Xixim.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- XIXIM: a different alternative. Consciousness, love for intact nature, rediscovering yourself, high quality and the simplicity of our services are the secrets that we generously share in our paradise...Hotel XIXIM is an ecological paradise. Bordered by an unspoiled beach that stretches forever, a dwarf palm plantation and an abundance of indigenous vegetation, the environment here has always taken precedent over profit, in this very special, luxuriously rustic hotel. At present, we have 32 thatched cabanas, 24 junior suites with 2 four-poster double beds and 8 master suites with a king size bed, each with its own private verandah and en-suite bathroom. An extremely large thatched, double-story rondavel with sweeping views of the beach, golden sunsets and our pool area. Upstairs one will find El Santuario, our fully stocked bar and lounge area, and downstairs, our pride and joy, Restaurant Zaxim. The buildings dramatic thatched roof with the longest, straightest tree trunk supports, graphically canopy your occasion.Our Wellness Center as a set of architectural human and natural elements: palapas and mangroves, buildings and coastal dunes, windows overlooking the emerald-green sea, open spaces yet of intimate dimensions, each and every one of them integrated to the pristine nature. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Eco Paraiso Xixim Celestun
- Eco Paraiso Xixim Hotel Celestun