Imanta Resort, Riviera Nayarit
The Imanta Resort is designed to be eco-friendly. It was built to be sustainable while having as little impact as possible on the surrounding wilderness. Yet it still manages to offer guests the highest levels of luxury.
How they rate it
“The place to be these days on the Riviera Nayarit, beyond a shadow of a doubt, is Imanta Resort,” says Paul Richardson in the Financial Times. There are plenty of ‘wows’, including the setting: “a remote crescent of stone and sand”. Then there are the seven villas. They are made from the pinkish local stone and are “so beautifully integrated into the surrounding jungle that it is already beginning to reclaim them, looking for all the world like pre-Hispanic structures discovered and restored rather than new-build scenarios for the collision of nature and luxury”.
The high-ceilinged villas have their own slate-walled infinity pools and views out over the boulder-strewn beach through enormous windows.
A villa costs from $1,200 a night. For more information, visit www.imantaresorts.com, or call 00 52 32 9298 4200.
Mexico has some very built-up holiday resorts, but this definitely isn’t one of them. Verana is a cluster of huts situated miles from anything else. Getting there involves a 20-minute boat trip followed by a mule ride through the jungle. But it’s all worth it – waiting for you is an unspoilt beach and a wonderful luxury hotel.
How they rate it
The hotel’s “anti-ostentation ethos feels so right now”, says James Lohan in The Guardian. It certainly makes a change from all the over-the-top hotels opening up in the Middle East. The Verana’s owners are Hollywood set designers, “so the architecture is dramatic and pared-back”. There are bright Mexican colours and textiles set against polished concrete. The pool is surrounded by stepped terraces with orange loungers and parasols. One terrace wall has become an “unofficial guestbook”, with scratched messages covering it. “It’s that kind of place: the perfect antidote to urban anonymity and chain hotels.”
Some of the villas have full-length windows with views of the ocean. Others have no walls at all, “so you can get the full David Attenborough experience without getting out of bed”.
Doubles cost from $360. Find out more at www.verana.com.
What the travel writers are saying
In recent years the quality of food available in ski resorts has shot up. Here are four of the best alpine restaurants, according to Ultratravel magazine.
Situated inside the bright yellow Brutalist Corviglia ski station in St. Moritz, Switzerland, is La Marmite. This formal haute-cuisine restaurant offers “well-presented dishes with an emphasis on exclusive ingredients”. Sit down at your table, complete with white linen and a silver candelabra, and enjoy lobster bisque and rack of red deer in a herb crust. A meal costs from around £60.
L’oxalys in Val Thorens, France can be reached on skis from Courchevel, Meribel or Les Menuires. The two-Michelin starred restaurant serves “inventive dishes with Asian nuances”. These include lake fish in pistachio sauce with lemongrass and ginger. Meals cost from £65.
To lunch at the Game Creek Restaurant in Vail, US, you have to be a member – and there is a waiting list. But dinner is open to all. The prix fixe menu features amberjack sushi with avocado pudding, and beef short with shrimp potatoes, morels and pinot truffle honey. Prices from £80.
Hospiz Alm in St Christophe, Austria serves fabulous food in front of a log fire. Start with home-pickled salmon, followed by the traditional Hospiz Alm duck. From £65.