The chic Mexican hideaway hotel Verana, set in lush jungle overlooking Mexico´s Pacific coast just south of Puerto Vallarta, is a unique mountaintop retreat that will take your breath away. Verana, designed like a film set by movie industry veterans Heinz Legler and Veronique Lievre, appeals to adventurous, discerning travelers seeking an out-of-the-ordinary experience encompassing a connection with nature, complete privacy and total relaxation.
A 30-minute open-air boat ride along the Pacific coast, followed by a short hike up a jungle path while donkeys carry your luggage, brings you to Verana, this unique paradise. An oasis of modern amenities where folklore and high design, nature and sophistication coexist, creating the ultimate primitive-chic experience.
Verana has just 8 guesthouses that dot the 5-acre property, lush with tropical plantings and fruit trees. All the guesthouses are unique in concept and feel. The most bohemian 'Palapa' boasts a traditional thatched roof, uneven rock floor, and no walls leaving it wonderfully exposed to the jungle while the modern eye-popping 'Studio' is replete with George Nelson lamps, tiled floors and a huge bank of steel framed windows overlooking one of the largest bays in the world.
Despite the remote location, Verana's kitchen led by Yelapan native, Chef Fabian, creates 3 sublime meals a day. Every other day the Verana boat picks up supplies in Puerto Vallarta to help fashion the menu which is ingredient driven, organic where possible, and Regional Mexican in origin laced with international flavors and finished with modern health consciousness. The Bar serves up sunsets, signature cocktails and a thoughtful wine list featuring international and local producers and a good selection of top shelf tequila from the region.
Verana´s spa, which continues the indoor-outdoor theme, features romantic open-air soaking baths to enjoy by candlelight under the night sky, two palapas for lush body and face treatments and massage, one of which seems to float above the jungle and ocean, and a watsu massage pool surrounded by palm trees.
If reflecting in the spring water pool with 180 degree views of the mountains and ocean, or lazing in a hammock reading a book from the library while waiting for an afternoon massage isn't your idea of a perfect day, Verana offers an extensive array of activities and excursions, including ocean kayaking, fishing, whale and bird watching, trekking jungle trails to waterfalls and snorkeling.
Yoga is offered daily and private sessions may also be scheduled. Built on the hillside near the pool, the floor of the yoga palapa extends beyond the incline of the hill to provide a sense of floating as you move through asanas and kriyas.
About an hour outside of Puerto Vallerta, Verana sits next to the village of Yelapa where there are no roads and no cars. Everything is done by boat, mule or foot. Yelapa is a small village with a few good restaurants, grocery stores, a lively beach and dancing at the "Yacht Club" Saturday nights.