Hotel Escondido plunge pool

Puerto Escondido, like many other beach spots on the Oaxaca state coast of Mexico, has long been a place for surfers and budget travelers to hit the waves by day and party by night. Traditionally if you wanted a plush place to stay at night, you headed further down the coast to the resort region of Huatulco.

That all changed this year with the opening of Hotel Escondido, a boutique property run by the cool and respected Habita Group of Mexico City. While some of their hotels are more design-centric than luxurious, this one really gets the balance right. It’s flip-flop casual throughout, but pampering enough to make picky high-end travelers happy—like the group who came in by private plane while I was there.

All rooms are individual bungalows with a palapa roof and their own terrace with a plunge pool. These look out across a cactus garden to a stunning beach beyond. A beach with nobody on it, one long enough that if you hung a left and kept walking, you could spend the whole afternoon moving before you’d have to turn around. To the right is a mountainside about a kilometer to the right, offering some drama to the landscape. Here’s a video tour of the resort:

The food is a nice mix of casual and elegant too. Breakfasts feature a lot of Oaxacan food prepared by ladies from a local village, with homemade cheese from the cows you pass on the dirt road in. Lunch goes up a notch and has more seafood, but most guests eat it on the lounge terrace that runs along the Olympic-length lap pool parallel to the beach. Dinner is where the chef lets his talents shine, choosing what’s fresh in the Puerto Escondido market that day and then preparing a menu with several choices to match.

This is the kind of small and chic resort where couples or small groups come to really get away from it all and truly relax. The main sound you’ll hear at night is crashing waves and you’ll seldom see another person who’s not a guest or a staffer, even on the beach. Yes, you can get Wi-Fi and a Telcel signal though and there’s an underground soundproofed party room if you want to let loose at night.

Find out more about this laid-back beach hideaway: see our detailed review of Hotel Escondido near Puerto Escondido, Oaxaca.