Banyan Tree Mayakoba - Tranquility meets Rivera Maya



Mayakoba is man made property with a lagoon filled with fish and bird species and has a carefully preserved ecosystem.

Banyan Tree Mayakoba is the epitome of luxury resort living, bringing Asian hospitality to the  Riviera Maya. Nestled within the private gated  resort development of Mayakoba, immerse yourself in untouched nature complemented with the Riviera Maya luxury resort's familiar warmth and charm. This resort is home to some of natures most amazing flora and fauna. Enjoy a guided eco adventure boat tour, hosted by one of their nature specialist.

The Asian inspired villas, each host a wonderful plunge pool allowing you to relax while enjoying the sounds of the wildlife that fills the area. Many rooms even offer a private outdoor bathtub that has a candle wall behind you to touch on the senses. The villas each offer private lush, landscaped gardens that just brings that zen feeling to life.

You will be greeted in the lobby by one of the spa therapists who will give you a welcome back rub while you are met by an inviting drink. Sometimes you will even find a monkey taking a seat, just relaxing as you are checking in. Even the wildlife feels at home at this property.

Enjoy dinner in of the many restaurants, you have five wonderful options to tantalize your taste buds. The chef is beyond amazing at accommodating all your special requests:

Saffron - offers a wonderful Thai Cuisine

LaCopa - outdoor rooftop terrace offering, tapas and light cuisine

LaCava - is a private wine cellar, seating 14 people, perfect for small private dinner

Oriente Restaurant - offers international cuisine, but famous for the Tomahawk Steak, we relished in this divine steak and they accented it with sea bass atop salt slabs, which was simply divine.

Tamarind - is the fine dining spices where natural ingredients fuse with the local flavors of the region

Tapas Cruise - this is by far one of my favorite elements of this property, enjoy a relaxing cruise down the canals while sipping margaritas and enjoying tapas

The Spa, one must experience their world class spa. From the moment you enter the rain forest room to the multi jet pool and then into the private spa villa, you are pampered, relaxed and just put into state of utter bliss.

This property has an amazing white washed palapa, perfect for that beach wedding, only steps from the ocean.

Ceremonies can be held on the beach or off the main lobby - the possibilities of this property are endless. 

I became a believer once I experienced this resort and plan on spending many vacations here not to mention sending my clients here to create memories that last a lifetime. 







Lobby Terrace

Lobby Terrace

Seaside pool at Banyan Tree Mayakoba

Seaside pool at Banyan Tree Mayakoba

Considering a destination wedding?

Working in this industry for many years, I've found that because destination weddings are filled with travel, activities, new sites, etc. they tend to be very memorable. In addition, hosting a destination wedding allows you to spend quality time with your family and friends over a longer period of time. When I talk with my clients who are torn about having a local or destination wedding, we usually review these few points: 

How do I choose a location? The location should be a true representation of your personality. Most couples will pick a location based upon their vacations or the location where they met or even where they were engaged. 

Embrace the destination. If you dreamed of a castle in Ireland, you will experience the beauty of the region around you. Enjoy the culture, experience, and food and have fun.

How does this affect our guest list? The most important people will attend, thus reducing your ever-growing guest list by more than half. This upside not only helps with the overall budget, but it also gives you more quality time with close family and friends. A destination wedding can also become a vacation for the guests, giving them a reason to step away from their day-to-day routine to spend three unforgettable days in a great spot. If you give your guests a 9-12 month lead time, they will be able to plan accordingly.

What are the differences in planning our budget? This is my favorite part. Instead of spending the money on a five hour event, you will get three days of fun with family and friends. You are essentially spending the money for a longer period of party time. 

What will we do there? Enjoy the experiences offered at the destination. While in Italy host some cooking classes or wine tasting tours. In the Cayman Islands swim with the stingrays and in Hawaii enjoy snorkeling.

Incorporate the culture into the plans and activities. In Italy we love to hire mandolin and accordion players to serenade our guests. In Mexico hire a Mariachi band on welcome night. In Hawaii, don't miss out on a hula dance!

It's also worth pointing out that any place can be a destination. If you live in San Francisco, you're a stones-throw away from Napa. Hosting your wedding in a place that might be local for you can still be a destination for your guests.

Welcoming your guests!

Welcome bags are a fun part of destination planning. You want to make a great first impression when your guests arrive at the location.

Greet your guests with items that are native to the region in which they are traveling to. 

Think about some of your favorite snacks that will make your friends and family think of you when they see them. Do you always reach for Salt & Vinegar chips? Consider throwing in a very "you" item. One of my favorites was when everyone knew the groom was really into Spider-Man - everyone received a Spider-Man comic book.

Start with the following items for your bags: 

  • Map of the region
  • Restaurant guide
  • Timeline of the weekend activities
  • Bottles of water
  • Salty snacks (chips, pretzels, popcorn, or nuts) 
  • Sweet snacks (chocolates, candy, or fruit) 

Want to get a little more creative? Consider:

  • The type of bag - tote bags, gift bags, old-school tin lunchboxes, gable boxes, etc.
  • Make the snack local! Find a local bakery that can package up some cookies or a favorite local taffy or candy!
  • Add a custom tag that matches your theme. 
  • Add an after party Hangover Kit filled with Advil, Alka Seltzer, Tums, eye drops, Emergen-C, tea bags, etc.
  • For planned group activities include some gear. For example, basic snorkeling equipment, sunscreen, and Aloe Vera. 
  • Use the welcome bag to add the wedding favor. We had a couple who took photos of every guest the first night. We put those photos in a special frame and added them to the welcome bags that night! 
  • Personalized towels, hats, or t-shirts are always fun to help continue the theme.