Price Band: $$
Tags: Beach, family friendly, town, surfing
Price Band: $$
Tags: Beach, family friendly, town, surfing
In a nutshell:
Located at the cusp of the surfers’ Zicatela beach and the town’s Marinero beach, this seaside hotel has one of the best restaurants in the area. Family friendly, good amenities (including several pools) and within walking distance of town (along the beach). Puerto Escondido is less commercialized and less expensive than most well know Mexican beach resorts.
Excellent facilities together with a beachside location and the best restaurant in town make the Santa Fe an ideal choice for those wanting a resort vacation with real Mexican flavor.
The forty-plus rooms are housed in two or three story villas, with balconies overlooking the two swimming pools; some of the higher rooms have sea views over the restaurant and patios.
Mexican tiles and stone together with palm trees and tropical greenery are used in abundance and give a very pleasant ambience.
The Mexican accents extend to the rooms, most of which are generously sized and decorated in pastels with wooden furnishings; bathrooms are equally attractive with large tiled showers and vanities.
We like to spend our evenings at Santa Fe in the thatched-roof open-sided restaurant, overlooking Playa Zicatela. It’s the best place around for cocktails at sunset – we recommend you order the tasty guacamole with your drinks.
The restaurant specializes in seafood and vegetarian dishes and has a casual atmosphere – but be sure to arrive early for the best tables.
It’s an easy walk along the bay into the pretty town, but the Santa Fe has everything you need for a relaxing break and you may be tempted not to stray far.
Guest rooms at the Santa Fe are far removed from the high-rise blandness you may find at other beach resorts. Each is decorated in pastel hues with tiled floors and rustic furnishings. Rooms are large and often irregularly shaped, with views of the pool and patios or glimpses of the sea through the palms.
Standard rooms have one double bed for single occupancy and either two doubles or a king bed for double occupancy. There are also rooms with three double beds for three or more people to share, and the hotel is ideal for families with children who want to share one spacious room. All rooms are air conditioned and have telephones and TVs. You’ll find jugs of purified water in the room and beach towels are available at reception for a small additional charge.
The Junior Suites offer a little more space than the Standard Rooms, with a bedroom and sitting area. These are an excellent choice for families with small children.
Families may also find the hotel’s Bungalows very appealing. These accommodations are located in a separate complex across the road from the main hotel area. They have two double beds and a separate living room with two single sofa beds plus a useful kitchen area. Despite the name, the “bungalows” are located in two story buildings with a small swimming pool and sun terraces nearby.
For romantics and those who want the best sea views, the luxurious Master Suites will be very tempting. The Master Suites have a king bed and a separate living room, with a total of four balconies overlooking Playa Zicatela. The rates are very reasonable considering the space and position – we reckon these must be the finest accommodations in town.
The Presidential Suite is a fabulous choice for families looking for something something special. This 2-bedroom Suite is located up the hillside and has fabulous views of the ocean.
Summary of room facilities
Air-conditioning, ceiling fans, room safe, telephone, TV.
1 double bed, 1 king bed, 2 double beds or 3 double beds
2 double beds or 1 king
2 double beds
1 king bed, sitting room, balconies facing beach
1 king bed and 2 double beds, sitting room, kitchen, private pool
Standard rooms are located in the main section of the hotel and are arranged in two or three story buildings. First and second floor rooms are approached by steps which may seem arduous at the end of the day, but in general the higher rooms afford better views and more privacy. There are no lengthy corridors to reach your room and the effect is that of a little village.
The rooms vary in size and shape but are generally very spacious – some have a small sitting area and others have a balcony or terrace. Bathrooms are also generously sized with walk-in showers, and feature colorful Mexican tiles.
Some standard rooms have three double beds and are ideal for three friends or a family to share. These may overlook the tropical gardens or may have partial views of the ocean between the palm trees, and some have small balconies.
The bungalows are located across the road from the main hotel area and are arranged in two two story buildings separated by a swimming pool and sun terrace.
They enjoy views of the surrounding gardens and palm trees, with glimpses of Playa Marinero from the upper levels. There are eight of these popular units in total at the hotel.
The Bungalows each have a bedroom with two double beds. Two sofas in the separate living room can each accommodate one person which makes them ideal for families.
These rooms are fully air-conditioned and include a TV and telephone. For those who appreciate the flexibility of preparing their own meals, the bungalows are ideal. They include a full kitchen and a dining area with rustic and appealing furnishings. The living and dining room also features two sofas that can be made into single beds.
The Junior Suites are similar to the Standard Rooms but offer additional space and a sitting area.
These rooms are an excellent choice for families traveling with young children. The bedrooms have two double beds or a king bed and share the same charming traditional decor and furnishings seen throughout the hotel. There is an open plan sitting area with traditional Mexican sofa, chairs and table.
The Junior Suites face the pretty gardens and pool areas and have at least one balcony.
The two Master Suites are located directly facing Playa Zicatela, one on the first and one on the second story. Both enjoy spectacular ocean views and feature four step-out balconies in each suite.
The suites consist of a spacious living room and a separate bedroom with king bed. The bathroom includes a Jacuzzi tub.
The Presidential Suite enjoys an elevated position on the hillside above the bay and separate from the hotel. It is reached by several flights of steps; therefore it isn’t ideal for the elderly or people with mobility problems.
This spacious suite has two bedrooms, a separate living room and large terrace with the most fantastic views of the beach and ocean. It is a great choice for families as it also has a well-equipped kitchen.
The suite has two separate bedrooms. One of the rooms has a king size bed, this is separated from the second bedroom by a living room. The second bedroom has two double beds. The suite features traditional Mexican décor, local crafts and antiques.
Guests at the Presidential Suite enjoy the use of a beautiful private pool which is edged by lush lawns and fringed by palms. From its position at the top of the hill, there are far reaching views over the bay. The pool is fairly large, certainly big enough for laps and is surrounded by sunshades and comfortable sun beds. It’s a great spot to spend long lazy days in the sunshine.
The large terrace gives far-reaching views over the beach and ocean. From here you can see some of the most spectacular sunsets. The terrace is equipped with a table and chairs which makes a perfect spot for dinner. You’ll also find a hammock – perfect for afternoon siestas.
Whatever you do in Puerto Escondido, don’t miss eating here. You won’t get a better setting – directly overlooking and open to the bay – perfect for those spectacular Pacific coast sunsets.
Yet it’s also guarded from the public eye with a second floor elevation and low palapa roof, so that at lunchtime you can sit beneath the ceiling fans and watch the action without being overlooked.
Of course, the main attraction is the food. The emphasis here is on seafood and Mexican dishes, with vegetarians very well catered for. There is a noticeable absence of any meat dishes. The main menu together with the daily specials provide more than enough choice, even for a lengthy stay. Don’t miss snapper (huachinango) or lobster (langosta) – perfect for a relaxing evening meal after a day on the beach.
For breakfast, there are delicious egg dishes (including huevos mexicanos – scrambled with chopped tomato, onion and chillies) in the Mexican selection, together with bakery choices, cereals and fruits on the plainer side.
We found fresh fruit and vegetable salads appealing at lunch time, but the full menu is also available. Guacamole, enchiladas and burritos are all delicious and the margaritas are reputed to be the best in town.
One of the tastiest, picturesque and definitely one of the best value restaurants we encountered during our Mexican travels.
In front of the hotel, and stretching for miles to the south, is beautiful Playa Zicatela, one of the top ten surfing beaches of the world. A few steps in the other direction brings you to Playa Marinero where you are more likely to see fishing boats and Mexican families on vacation; the sea is gentler here though swimmers must still be very cautious.
For a few pesos you can rent beach loungers and an umbrella or palapa shade for the day, on either beach. You’ll probably find shade essential around midday, even in the winter.
The Santa Fe is just a hundred yards from Playa Marinero, the main beach of the town. Here the ocean is generally calm enough for swimming. During the daytime it’s a pleasant walk along the beach to downtown Puerto Escondido, where you’ll find more restaurants, bars and stores.
Beautiful palms overhang the poolside patio, giving the area a tropical setting. The main pool is suitable for children too, and parents can supervise whilst relaxing in the sun loungers scattered around in the shade or the sun.
The second pool is long and narrow, designated for adults only and ideal for those morning laps. Don’t forget that the sea can be very dangerous here, so you’ll appreciate the hotel pools for your serious swimming. The large sun terrace by this pool is the perfect place to watch the ocean – and the surfers – and to catch the breezes.
Puerto Escondido’s airport lies just 3 miles and 10 minutes drive from the hotel. There are flights to Mexico City and Oaxaca City.
The hotel is situated by a rocky headland marking the convergence of Playa Marinero and Playa Zicaleta.
From the town centre, head in the direction of Huatulco on the highway 200. After passing over a small bridge by the lagoon, take the second right, signed Playa Zicatela.
It’s a rough road for the short distance to the beach, where you’ll find the hotel on the left hand side, but the surface improves as the road follows beach round and re-emerges on highway 200.
Parking is available at the hotel.