A Stylish Stay: Coqui Coqui, Mexico
Once featured in every notable design and travel publication, our arrival at the latest edition to the Coqui Coqui family was drowned in excitement and a healthy measure of anticipation. Escaping the arctic like conditions of New York was enough to get us enthusiastic about a tropical vacation and having a few nights booked in this restored Epoque Hotel, ignited our passion for the luxurious Mexican adventure that awaits.
Out of the shadows of our wardrobe emerges our summer favorites as we ready ourselves for warm weather, eagerly arriving at JFK well in advance of our boarding time.
Within a few hours, post plane snooze and some last minute research we are immediately immersed in the local architecture surrounding the Coqui Coqui Spa and Residence. The unique facade of this stylish stay has us instantly captivated and ready to explore this Merida hotel once described as The Empire of The Senses.
Francesca, an accessories designer and her husband, Nicolas Malleville, a contemporary landscape architect and perfumer have done it again, creating a space that steals your breath in the first few moments. As we walk through the perfumery the scent of orange blossoms, roses and native Mayan tobacco fill the air with a moody ambiance.
The reception desk is footsteps away and I try not to get too distracted by the stylish selection of straw fedoras, handmade leather goods and what seems likes hundreds of fragrances. Our welcome was so warm, and right away this has us feeling that our arrival is what the Coqui Coqui staff had been anticipating for hours. Our bags disappear up to the second floor and we are handed a key to this uniquely majestic on room guest house.
We meander through the internal courtyard marveling at the well weathered walls painted in a vivid shade of persimmon. Vintage blue patterned tiles join the two spaces and a single palm tree arches its truck towards the afternoon sun. The newly opened Salon Degustación located at the back of the hotel is everything we could of dreamt of - intimate, imperial and littered with home blended teas as well as local honey’s and artisan chocolate.
Restless to explore our suite, step by step we climb the steep staircase to the second floor. Vientiantan plaster walls line the space with yet another splendid selection of original ornate tiles. Highlights of deep cherry and chartreuse velvet drape the windows and separate the two spaces.
Both rooms are elegant, mildly rustic with a mix of custom design and vintage furniture with every design aspect eerily symmetrical. A matching pair of freestanding clawfoot tubs sit beneath an oversized brass mirror - just one of the views from our four-posted king sized bed.
We hustle to unpack, I take a short but sweet bath (My husband Chris took the shower option instead ) and we head out on the hunt for a late lunch. Surrounded by quant cafe’s and traditional Mexican eatery’s we are spoiled with choice and end up at the Organico Cafe.
It’s a 4min stroll from our hotel and we dine on homemade hummus, an oversized Huevos rancheros and a pair of iced coffee’s. As we relax deeper and deeper into our chairs the afternoon rain shower rolls into Merida moving through the streets that like an afternoon breeze. After a few hours of exploring and house stalking the rainbow exteriors of the local dwellings we retreat to our hotel for a hot tea. Sitting back in what seems like our very own private courtyard surround by lush green vines we enjoy the soundtrack of the three-tiered fountain beside us.
Every detail of this boutique stay is perfection, even our tea is served in custom Angora Para for Coqui Coqui china.
In advance of our stay we made our first dinner reservation at Los Almendros as recommended by the hotel. On arrival we order way to many margaritas to break in our first night of holiday's. As a result, we can’t remember what we ate - we just know it was good, authentic and had us moving at a much slower pace and we head for one more round at the Malahat Speakeasy.
Peaking to early with the first few rounds of drinks we were on our way back to the hotel just before 10pm. The streets are dark are well and truly dark as we arrive at the big glass doors and were amused as on-lookers watched with curiosity as we go inside what looks like a closed shop and lock the door the door behind us.
Back up the steep staircase to the dimly lit, romantically scented guest quarters feeling what only can be described as a little bit buzzed and a little bit special.
With breakfast being served at 9am as requested we’re up early to catch the morning light on our private pool, getting in a quick dip before we cascade down the stairs to the parlor to start our day. Freshly squeezed orange juice and fruits from the local market is what we start with. The setting is so exclusive and I realize with no-one else but the hotel hostess I could have come down fresh faced in my bath robe.
‘It really feels like a home’ I rattle off again and again picking out charming design elements I plan to emulate one day in our own home and share on our insta-feed. Every detail is very considered, lightly seasoned and feels overall French in design.
Wendy our host quietly appears again to gently remind me of my spa treatment, ‘oh yes, thank you for reminding me’.
There was no chance I was forgetting about this booking. Pre-pouring over the detailed therapy menu, I had made this reservation within moments of our hotel confirmation email.
Located upstairs and beyond the private courtyard, the spa is secluded and pint-sized with just one treatment bed. The room echo’s the consistent design theme with Jade walls with tonal mosaic tiles with stairs leading to secret outdoor garden. The sophisticated warm, rich and elegant scent of rose, sets the mood for 60 mins of relaxation and has quickly became the scent of our stay.
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