Photo: Las Alamandas
I'm just back from one of Mexico's most beautiful honeymoon beach retreats—the famed Las Alamandas, a 16-suite gem two hours south of Puerto Vallarta along the Costalegre. Run the by the well-known British socialite, Isabel Goldsmith-Patino, this resort, set on 1,500, secluded acres, has always attracted high-profile celebrities—Brad Pitt, Christy Turlington, Sandra Bullock, Ellen DeGeneres—and it's perfect for a couple that's looking to totally escape from it all and wants tons of privacy. There are four huge, practically-deserted beaches—one right in front of the rooms that's just over a mile long. The staff will pack a fresh ceviche picnic for you, and take you to any of the other three, which are even more remote.
The suites were all just renovated. If you splurge on oceanfront digs, you get a Jacuzzi on the outdoor patio, and you'll be able to fall asleep to the sound of crashing waves. All rooms have cool, contemporary Mexican art, but in terms of design and size, no two are alike, which adds to the charm—some have private, rooftop garden areas, while others have sweeping decks. Some bathrooms have tubs that are elaborately-tiled, while others are more minimalist-chic with polished cement floors and oversize showers.
The resort's signature colors: pink and yellow, inspired by the gorgeous, fuschia bougainvillea that grows in the cobblestoned plaza (which is an amazing place for a 40 person destination wedding, fyi), and by the native, yellow alamanda flower. You'll see the two colors pop up everywhere: in pillows at the 60-foot pool, on your gratis straw beach bag, even on the hot pink speakers by the open-air restaurant. I happened to pack my pink and yellow Havianas and fit right in!
If you're looking to truly disconnect with a perfectly salted margarita, this place is for you; if you want nightlife on your Mexican honeymoon, not so much. But there's plenty to keep busy during the day: mountain biking, kayaking along the nearby river, horseback-riding on the beach, and of course, making new, possibly very famous friends. From $371.
— Jacqueline Gifford