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“Blessed to find Playa Viva”
Review of Playa Viva

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Playa Viva
Ranked #1 of 1 Petatlan B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
Boulder, CO
1 review
“Blessed to find Playa Viva”
Reviewed 18 January 2010

I feel very lucky to have stumbled across the new boutique eco resort Playa Viva for our New Year's vacation. The place is gorgeous. You're right on a beautiful secluded beach. The accommodations are very lovely - you feel very comfortably a part of the natural surroundings. The staff was great and the food outstanding. Our family enjoyed the daily yoga, the surf, the pool, the nightime movies, dominos and releasing sea turtles at the nearby sanctuary.

My only regret is that this amazing spot is likely to get harder for us to book as the good word spreads...

  • Stayed December 2009, travelled with family
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Helpful?
Thank etownroger
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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201 reviews from our community

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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (51)
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  • English first
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English first
Tokyo
1 review
Reviewed 9 January 2010

We found Playa Viva at the last minute through Trip Advisor and were thoroughly impressed. We try to stay in SLH properties - this is right up there and they have gone to great lengths to preserved the environment as well as the local way of life. If you're looking for relaxed, high end seclusion with a conscience, you'll appreciate Playa Viva. They opened in December 2009 with just six rooms, all open air and right on the beach. The experience is communal - walls don't reach the ceiling so you hear your neighbors - but the crashing waves drown out much of the sound. The property is nestled behind the village of Juluchuca, separated by a jungle and mangrove on untouched beachfront without another property in site. During our three day stay we didn't see one beachgoer that wasn't a guest at Playa Viva. If you're into it, every morning they offer meditation followed by yoga before breakfast. Reasonably priced massages are also available throughout the day.

A friendly staff to whom you are introduced by name upon arrival prepares three family style meals a day. They ring a bell and guests gather around a long wood table carved from the trees behind the property. The food is fantastic. Fresh fruit, oatmeal, eggs, and homemade tortillas for breakfast. Fresh grilled fish and meats, lentil soups, pozole, grilled vegetables, black beans and rice, and more homemade tortillas for lunch and dinner. Food is locally sourced. One of the staff's aunt makes the white Oaxaca cheese. Delicious salt comes from a salt flat in the village next door. Coconuts and basel also come from local village productions. Beer is all you can drink and they'll make you a cocktail for five dollars.

The beach is literally untouched, all sand and no rocks. Waves are big (six feet when we were there) and the undertow is strong but swimming is great. The staff will arrange any other activities you are interested in - snorkeling, fishing, etc. They'll also loan you a surfboard or boogie board if you want to brave the big waves.

A sustainable development, Playa Viva was built by locals from local materials. They have gone to painstaking detail to ensure minimal impact on the environment while maintaining a high end property. The entire place is solar powered. No televisions, but through a satellite, they manage to have reliable wi-fi and telephone service.

Playa Viva's attention to customer service is spot on. I called at the last minute and within a few hours received a call from David, the general manager, who worked us in and made us feel welcome from the time we arrived. The staff will give you as much - or as little - attention as you need throughout your stay.

You'll get a security briefing on the scorpions (we didn't see any during our visit) and the undertow (it's strong) but other than that, Playa Viva is pure relaxation. If you're not into nightlife, big crowds, or tourist activities when you're at the beach, go to Playa Viva. We'll go back without hesitation.

  • Stayed December 2009, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank fooora
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Salinas, CA
1 review
Reviewed 8 January 2010

I can't wait to go back. Playa Viva is not like anywhere I have ever been. It is not really a hotel, or a resort. It is more like a guest house, small (currently about 18 guests) with a sustainable consciousness. It is located near Zijaut/Ixtapa if you need a taste of town, but is on a secluded beach with no other structures as far as the eye can see. An actual functioning (read:not a tourist trap, no gift shop or bus loads of tourists) sea turtle rescue group is right down the beach, on Playa Viva property. We released several hundred baby sea turtles, and one magic evening spotted a mama turtle laying eggs in the sand on our beach.
Palapa roofs and open air rooms (I could see the waves crashing on the sand from my bed), organic sheets and towels, homemade food 3 meals a day. When the meal bell rang, we all came running. The food is local and traditional, plenty of it with options to satisfy the meat eaters, the vegetarian and the gluten free in our party. The freshly made for each meal tortillas, the homemade bread, and freshly made butter! Beautiful local produce and cheese. We had fresh grilled fish and shrimp, and for new year's eve...lobster along with champagne. There was always a large fruit bowl available with 2 aguas frescas each day (watermelon, cantaloupe, pina, yummmm...) Surprise noontime snacks would arrive as we sat by the pool, cut up jicama and carrots sprinkled with lime & chili salt, popcorn, fresh coconut, house made chips.
Our everyneed was met. Peter was our host/bartender/Chi Gong morning meditation leader/massage therapist/domino instructor/snorkeling trip guide and he made us feel welcome and he became part of our group. My 3 year old said "Peter is great". We swam, surfed, practiced yoga, watched movies outdoors projected on to a large wall, and overall relaxed and had a great time. David, the owner, is personable and charming, and his mission of creating a beautiful, sustainable resort that fosters the health of its guests and of the community in which it exists is visible in every inch of this place.

  • Stayed January 2010, travelled with family
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Helpful?
Thank SuzanneSalinas_CA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Oakland california
Level Contributor
21 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 December 2009

Playa Viva is simply perfect --- an isolated stretch of Pacific Mexico's best beach, buildings with character and visual delight, healthy Mexican food, and a social program that honors the best of environmental and social values. David and Sandy have embarked on a transformative approach to the resort experience: restoring the land, changing the personal dynamics with the local population, and offering an experience that is personally restorative as well. Whether you come for a relaxing holiday or a study course, your will have a wonderful experience.

  • Stayed December 2009, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank HarwoodCA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
vancouver
Level Contributor
27 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 December 2009

We were a party of 19 who spent the afternoon and early evening on Playa Viva's beach and in the pool. The staff prepared us a fabulous authentic Mexican meal. We wandered down to the turtle sanctuary and watch turtles being released to the Pacific Ocean. A truly great day at a great get away, in a wonderful setting.

  • Stayed December 2009
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Helpful?
Thank haymacVancouver
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
San Francisco
1 review
Reviewed 15 December 2009

As soon as I crossed the bridge and entered through the beautifully crafted door, I realized that i was in a world with a different kind of balance. Upon reflection back in San Francisco, I would say that the balance I experienced came from the Triple Bottom Line approach. Playa Viva is a leading example of that balance in action.

At first, I was impressed with the Architecture and how "The Casitas" blended with the majestic Pacific landscape.The attention to detail was simply exquisite. I was pleased to see the solar installation in place, and learn that the entire project was operating off the grid with such efficiency.

I was also intrigued by their permaculture work, but what really captivated me was the friendliness of the staff. One day I had the opportunity to visit a house up in the mountains deep in the Sierra of Guerrero about 1 1/5 hours off road from Playa Viva (by 4x4 bike).

While eating Lima's the size of grapefruits and talking to the local farmer I realized the importance of the people aspect of the triple bottom line for the founders of Playa Viva. I concluded upon much thought that the friendliness of the staff is the result of the quality of the relationship between Playa Viva and the local community of Juluchuca.

My take- the accommodations are superb, the food is delicious and the triple bottom line approach is priceless..

  • Stayed November 2009, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank TripleBottomLine
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Washington, DC
1 review
Reviewed 12 December 2009

A must for those looking to promote environmental responsibility through their travel choices.

The committment to environmental sustainability of Playa Viva was as palpable as it was enjoyable; by this I mean that by being completely dedicated to being ecologically responsible with every choice made -from food served to power generated- Playa Viva has created a unique and extremely comfortable experience.

I came away very impressed with what the owner, David, and team have accomplished in an isolated locale, with David's vision for the future of Playa Viva, and with their dedication to being responsible environmental stewards.

Hopefully, more places will follow Playa Viva's lead and wonderful model -- both very good to follow!

  • Stayed November 2009, travelled solo
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Helpful?
Thank dcdubs
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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Additional Information about Playa Viva

Property: Playa Viva
Address: Carretera Zihuatanejo-Acapulco | Playa Icacos Juluchuca, GRO, Petatlan 40834, Mexico
Region: Mexico > Pacific Coast > Guerrero > Petatlan
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 B&Bs / Inns in Petatlan
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:4 star — Playa Viva 4*
Number of rooms: 5
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Playa Viva is a sustainable boutique hotel with 8 rooms on a private beach located 30 minutes from Zihuatanejo-Ixtapa International airport. Play Viva is located on 200 acres with 1.3 kilometers of beach front. 85% of the property is in a Private Reserve for use of guests and includes a turtle sanctuary, archaeological site, working permaculture farm, forest restoration, estuary and much more. Come enjoy yoga, surfing or any of the many local activities. Playa Viva is off grid, operating 100% on solar power, solar thermal water heating, grey and black water management systems and built with local materials and craftsmanship. We specialize in farm to table, sourcing much of our food locally and can handle a wide variety of dietary concerns from vegetarian and vegan to many types of allergies. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Playa Viva Hotel Petatlan

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