Any place that bills itself as a “handmade hotel” gets our attention, so we hopped on a small boat in the village of Boca de Tomatlan, 15 miles (24 kms) south of Puerto Vallarta, for the 30 minute ride to the village of Yelapa where our luggage was strapped onto mules and we hiked up a trail to the jungle luxe retreat that is Verana.


The Jungle Luxe of Verana

Verana is more like a hip artist’s retreat than a boutique hotel. The architecturally unique casitas exist in a landscape of trees and desert on a hillside overlooking Banderas Bay and the atmosphere is charged with creativity. More traditional hotel-like features include an infinity edge pool and a restaurant and bar.

Our roon, Palapa, is just that, a large open air room covered by a palapa (thatched palm roof).

Our room at Verana.

We stayed in a room called Palapa that basically had no walls which created an enormous open-air, two-level two bedroom spread with a palm roof. Each casita at Verana has been placed just so which meant that even though our room had no walls we felt like we had enough privacy to wander around naked. Which we did.

The pool, which blends perfectly with the sea below looks out over Banderas Bay.

The pool was designed to blend perfectly with Banderas Bay, below.

Verana really does have a handmade feel and the creators have expertly melded luxury and style with nature and privacy.

Lounging by the pool.

Lounging by the pool (those are Eric’s feet not Karen’s, btw).

Yummy ceviche appetizer for lunch.

Yummy ceviche served for lunch at Verana.


Details and views like this are just part of what makes Verana special.

Read our piece about Verana for Afar magazine

Here’s more about travel in Mexico

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