Review by Spa & Wellness MexiCaribe
Recently I had the pleasure of spending a few days at the newly opened Chablé Resort and Spa. Located around 15 minutes drive from the airport in Merida – or a three and a half hour drive from Cancun or Playa del Carmen, Chablé is situated in the small Yucatecan town of Chocholá.
Upon entering the resort grounds, manicured lawns and lines of henequen cactus greet guests on the drive to the small reception building. A display of artifacts traditional to the area decorates the walls of the reception; henequen rope, weaving thread, candles and beekeeper masks and tools all set the scene.
This 750-acre development incorporates the ruins of the original hacienda building wherever this was possible. The newly constructed areas and renovated Hacienda ruins are decorated with modern comforts in mind. Although visiting during the month of August – the hottest of the year, the heat was not too unbearable due to the surrounding jungle environment and plentiful tree cover. The evenings were cooler than expected and it was pleasant to sit outside.
The 38 spacious ‘casitas’ at Chablé all feature a private plunge pool, outdoor seating area, sun loungers and a hammock. Choose from either a king bed or 2 queens, all with a lounge area, TV, dressing room and expansive bathroom. The twin sink vanity and double shower look out to the lush jungle foliage, while the moon shower allows you to shower outside, surrounded by nature.
The two private villas at Chablé, Royal and Presidential, allow for groups or families to stay together in a 3-bedroom home away from home, offering both luxury and comfort. Modern construction is combined with existing colonial walls from the original structure of the hacienda. The Royal villa boasts a 1500 sq. ft. private pool, Jacuzzi, spacious terrace, private spa cabin and fitness room, media viewing room and indoor and outdoor dining areas.
The Spa at Chablé is built around an ancient Cenote, with all 12 single treatment suites and the couple’s suite overlooking the sacred water, surrounded by the green vegetation. The hydrotherapy area comprises a sauna, steam room with individual seating areas, salt room, sensation showers, flotation room, cold plunge, Jacuzzi and hydrotherapy jets. These are separated for male and female guests, although couples can enjoy the mixed Jacuzzi and pool area.
Opposite the open-air reception area, a shallow pool set with tiles of petrified forest leads towards the mystic ‘Caracol’ structure. Caracol, meaning shell, is an iconic symbol in the Mayan culture. It is here that the shaman performs cleansing rituals using indigenous herbs and sacred copal resin; setting the scene for a holistic, Mayan inspired spa journey of your choosing. I recommend trying the Tree of Life Treatment (completed with four hands), this rhythmic treatment balances and creates inner calm and stability as two therapists work in synchrony to align the body, mind and soul.
The spa restaurant emphasizes healthy nutrition offering four predesigned, balanced meals, each with four courses. Choose from gluten-free, lactose-free, vegan or traditional, and take advantage of soya and almond milk options, yeast-free breads, raw unprocessed honey to replace sugar – all with minimal salt. An extensive menu of juices and vegetable extracts rich in enzymes, and an array of teas provide you with the perfect accompaniment to your healthy spa meal.
The resort offers a daily schedule of wellness activities, details of which are delivered to each casita or villa in the evening for the following day. Take part in a morning meditation session, a yoga class, a bicycle tour of the property, a group workout in the gym, a gratitude ceremony or a personalized herbal bag making class.
The cuisine served at Chablé is Mexican in style with many modern twists; developed by world-renowned chef Jorge Villegas in partnership with the Chablé resort’s Executive Chef, Luis Ronzón. Ixi’im, meaning ‘corn’ in Mayan, is Chablé’s fine dining restaurant; highlights include the Hairless Suckling Pig and Deer Tartare for meat eaters. The restaurant also features the largest tequila collection in the world, an impressive array of bottles that adds to the décor and ambience of Ixi’im. Ki’ol restaurant, meaning ‘healthy’ in Mayan, is a poolside, alfresco dining option for breakfast, lunch or dinner. The avocado toast and fresh smoothies are not to be missed. The spa also features a restaurant
The gardens at Chable provide much of the produce used in the kitchens. Raised garden beds known as ‘Ka’anches’ are constructed from local wood. The beds are filled with organic soil and used to grow fruits, vegetables and herbs for use around the resort’s restaurants.