Is there a definitive answer on which hotels and resorts are viewed as the best in Mexico, Central America, and South America?
Sort of. I’ve said before that there’s a lot of hanky-panky that goes on with “best of” readers polls in magazines. Ballot stuffing is a part of the job when you’ve got a vested interest in who wins and people who are on the clock are much more likely to go through those hour-long surveys. Plus some readers are voting for places they’ve never set foot in, on reputation alone.
But if the two biggest travel magazines get the same results on some hotels, AND they’re featured here in Luxury Latin America, well that starts to look like a real trend. Three hits and you’re solid. Here are the hotels that came out on top in this year’s Conde Nast Travel Best in the World survey, Travel & Leisure’s 500 Best survey, and our picks here (follow the links to detailed reviews).
Mexico Top Resorts and Hotels
La Casa que Canta – Zihuatanejo
Four Seasons Mexico – Mexico City
One & Only Palmilla – San Jose del Cabo
Las Ventanas al Paraiso – San Jose del Cabo
Capella Pedregal – Cabo San Lucas
Esperanza – Cabo San Lucas
Banyan Tree Mayakoba – Riviera Maya
Fairmont Mayakoba – Riviera Maya
Four Seasons Punta Mita – Riviera Nayarit
St. Regis Punta Mita – Riviera Nayarit
Central America Top Resorts and Hotels
Lodge at Chaa Creek – Belize
Hotel Casa Santo Domingo – Antigua, Guatemala
Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica – Papagayo Peninsula
Top Hotels and Resorts South America
Llao Llao Hotel & Resort – Bariloche, Argentina
Palacio Duhau Park Hyatt – Buenos Aires, Argentina
Alvear Palace Hotel – Buenos Aires, Argentina
Park Hyatt Mendoza – Argentina
Ritz-Carlton Santiago – Chile
Hotel Monasterio – Cusco, Peru
JW Marriott Hotel Lima – Peru
Obviously it pays to have a well-known brand name and the hotels that have been around for a decade or more have a clear edge. The big surprise for me is how few matches you see for Chile (where the most impressive resorts have been opening) and for Central America overall. Conde Nast had loads from Costa Rica, but T&L hardly any. Expect that to change in the coming years as more readers get out and about in this region.