La Vita e Bella
Travel Blogs from Tulum
... sound of the jungle on one side and the Caribbean sea on the other. We spent 2 and half weeks waking up to the sound of screaming jungle birds and what we thought was rain until we discovered the campsite was in fact built on top of an underground civilization of big blue crabs, the rain sound actually being their pincers clicking away as they ate the soil.
During our stay we spent most our time in the crystal clear sea or on the white beaches and ...
... it was great to have my pack carried for me to a little backstreet hotel (loose term) where we were to stay. I was exhausted frlm the the trip and it was a quick unpack and off to dinner. Tulum town is a transit town and the beaches and ruins well away a few kms bikeride to the coast. No matter the town had quite a few restaurants . It's hot here and our little room has a barely useful pedestal fan. Still it is a sweet little run home where the lady, Dora,runs a few rooms ...
... of turquoise water. Conveniently cut steps means it is easily accessible, and seeing as it is cold, freshwater, the only thing to do is to jump straight in. The pool is apparently over 50m deep and we shared it with some fish, so I didn't stay in too long. It was more fun to repeatedly climb the ledge and jump in.
During our visit, we were offered a shot of Mayan alcohol. Most people on my bus seemed reluctant, so I took the first shot. They ...
... were three or four Mexican guys who just showed up to help us. They were all giving directions, etc. but it was more directed to each other than to us. I noticed one of them was trying to explain it to me so I followed his directions and we were out. Good thing I was driving a manual as I was able to worm my way out with no difficulties. :) We thanked them and were on our way. After asking for directions, we were there. This Walmart ...
... and one of 34min. The first had a max depth of 9m (darkest one with some narrow passages) and the second of 8,4m (but here we stopped a moment at cave with a dozen bats and this one had the most impressive formations). The sunlight coming through the water in a small beam is also amazing!
To give you an idea: www.cenotedosojos.com (from which I ripped the maps and the picture below) or see movie I found on youtube (see facebook).
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Historical Traveler Reviews La Vita e Bella Tulum
Fantastic place, don't be put off by the hot tempered Italians!
We loved our stay in La Vita e Bella despite an upsetting encounter on the first day.
After a long flight and journey we arrived at the property and completely fell in love with the place. The cabanas are simply but thoughtfully furnished and everything was clean and well kept. Swinging in the hammock on our deck looking out to sea we congratulated ourselves on finding paradise.
Around midday the following day we were quietly sunning ourselves on the beach when one of the members of staff came marching up to us and started yelling at us in part English and part Italian to pack up and clear our room, in front of other rather astonished guests. He was adamant we had paid for one night, despite my explanation we had in fact booked for 6 and had already paid for 3 nights in advance. After continued shouting at us he stormed off back to reception. Shocked, I followed him with proof of our bank transfer, whereupon another dark haired Italian tried to make sense of the confusion. To cut a long story short they had mixed up our booking so all was fine in the end but no apology was offered and the angry guy just scowled and scuttled away.
The encounter left me feeling a little upset all day, and we seriously considered leaving, but I've spent a lot of time in Italy and persuaded myself that this instance of rudeness was just fleeting hot temper. We stayed put and I have to say that for the rest of our stay the service was great and friendly, and we had a fanastic time. Yes, it could be slow in the bar/restaurant but this is Mexico. If you're determined to live life at full throttle stay in the city and hang out at McDonalds or Starbucks. If you're looking for a romantic cabana on a beautiful beach with good food then La Vita e Bella is perfect for you. I wouldn't hesitate to come back.
Une cabana sur pilotis
Nous avons terminé notre séjour dans la péninsule du Yucatan par Tulum. Nous nous sommes balladés sur la plage en partant du site de Tulum à la recherche d'une cabana pour 4 personnes (nous étions avec nos deux enfants). La Vita e Bella est un bel ensemble de cabana. Nous avons obtenu une cabana un peu en retrait de la plage, construite sur pilotis avec vue sur la mer et sur la campagne. La chambre était sobre mais très belle avec ses deux grands lits avec moustiquaires et sa salle de bain extérieure (vous prenez votre douche face à la mer). Le prix n'était pas excessif : 65 euros pour 4. Du côté restauration, c'était très cher ; mis à part les pizzas excellentes, à 4 c'était impossible d'y prendre tous les repas. Au niveau de l'accueil, hôtesse charmante mais le reste direction et personnel inexistant. C'est un superbe souvenir.
I'll be back!
I would like to clear up some of the misconceptions regarding this hotel. I found our stay at La Vita e Bella to be exactly what my husband and I were looking for in terms of a relaxing, tropical vacation. We wanted to be on the best strip of beach in the Riviera Maya. We wanted a self-contained cabana. Hammock required. Restaurant and bar on premesis. And most importantly to be left alone. I think people need to remember that traveling outside of the U.S. is much different than traveling within. This property is Italian owned and operated, and I found the staff to be gracious and respectful of our privacy, while many have considered this "lack-luster" service. Time in the Caribbean is perceived much differently than it is in the U.S., and the resources for solving problems quickly are not always available. I give this staff much credit for creating an environment that is welcoming and easygoing, yet secure. While staying at La Vita e Bella, my husband and I scoured the Boca Paila in search of a hotel that might compare and did not find one. We had friends staying at the Copal and Zahra properties who had experienced an overbooking that placed them in a sweatlodge of a room with no plumbing. They also encountered rude service with no remorse for their dilemma, and no attempt at compensating them for the inconveniences and a bummer of a vacation. The only issue with La Vita e Bella was the fact that they did not accept credit cards for deposit, therefore a costly wire transfer or snail mail was the only way to get the deposit to them. However the highlights included; a shower with a floor to ceiling window that faces the ocean, your own 1/2 acre of privacy, an empty beach for sunrise walks, an intoxicating ocean breeze that screams "siesta!", and excellent seafood pasta with the best Mojitos. I do believe that La Vita e Bella is not for everyone, and frankly I am glad because this means I shouldn't have a problem getting my favorite cabana!
I just love this place, I have been coming there for the past 2 years and I am in my way there this Ocotber '05. "La vita e bella" is for people that is not looking for those expensive hotels where employees are there to kiss your feet and treat you like a goddess (for the money you pay). This is a good quality place but simple. The beach you have in front of the cabañas is worth anything. As for the food, certainly, not the best italian food in town, but good. I will recommend with no doubt.
Below average Hotel for Tulum area!
I have known this wonderful small Hotel for many years, and have been able to follow its growth and direction. Unfortunately having stayed there recently I must say that with making the Hotel much larger the quality of service has gone down tremendously. It seems the (very unfriendly) manager and Restaurant staff are more concerned about making dollars then providing a quality service. Breakfast was without Espresso (as offered on the menu), the toast was rock hard, and when one asked about it, the waiter reacted in a unfriendly and unprofessional manner. It hasn´t been like this - years ago I counted this Hotel as a top notch choice for Tulum Beach hotels - but today there are many better options with first class service at reasonable price (this Hotel is way overpriced considering the level of service).
The location is excellent, the atmopsphere is nice - just wish the rooms wouldnt smell so terribly and the quality of service was better!
My husband and I stayed here for 3 nights of R& R away from our toddler. Our first real getaway since having a baby almost two years ago. What a perfect place to unwind and enjoy your travel partner. The beach is absolutely beautiful--poweder white sand and water crystal clear. The beach was just steps from our cabana. After having a look around the area, we both felt we were staying at the best place.
Our cabana was very nice and everyday they cleaned it for us. The best was leaving the windows and door open (screens) and listening to the ocean waves. You can look out at the ocean while taking a shower. The cabana has a great porch complete with deck chairs and a hammock. It even had its own little yard if you preferred to lounge there rather than the beach. Plenty of palapas and beach chairs down at the beach. Very serene setting.
The food wasn't great but does anyone really come to Mexico or Tulum for the food?Breakfast was included but nothing to write home about but again--so what?!!
I was obsessed about finding hte right place for our quick trip and I must say that we were really happy about choosing this place. Upon arriving at our resort in Cancun for the final two nights, we were both sad. Tulum and La Vita e Belle is so much better and more special.
PS if you are looking for Fancy, five star accomodations then this is not the place for you but if you are made happy by nice, comfortable accomodations is a beautiful setting then this is the place for you.
Great beach but hotel may not be for everyone
We wanted a quiet hut/cabana on the beach, and that's what we got. The wind is strong though, thank goodness, because it really cools you off at night. Once off the beach it's quite hot. As for the room itself, it was pretty basic and the water pressure out of the shower was little more than a dribble. Also, there's electricity only from six at night to 11, something we enjoyed actually. The help wasn't always helpful. In fact, when we asked for two extra beach towels, the woman behind the desk actually said, "No, you can't have them." They gave us a small bottle of water in our room. If we wanted another one, we had to pay for it.
The restaurant food isn't bad but not spectacular, and don't be in a hurry, which most of the time was fine, but not always. We enjoyed the dinner at the Diamante, down the road more than the dinner at La Vita e Bella and the breakfast at Don Caffeto in town much more than the hotel's.
The beach is simply beautiful and relatively quiet.
Oh, one more thing. We had a room right at the edge of the property. It borders on a camp site. After three nights in, we suddenly found ourselves in the midst of tent city. It was pretty noisy the first night, but the second night after the kids had a day of playing in the water and the grownups a day of sucking down the beers, it was quiet, but that may have just been good luck. I wouldn't risk taking that room again, although I would insist on one of the cabanas that front the beach because the cool wind makes such a difference.
We were in Tulum for a total of 6 nights, 2 in Zahra, 2 in El Paraiso (cabana) and 2 here at La Vita e Bella.
There is no question this was the best of them. The location is perhaps not quite as pretty as the Nohoch cabanas at Zahra but everything else is much better, though $50 USD a night more expensive ($150 USD per night in total). We stayed in cabana 9 (just behind the bar on the beach) and it was perfect - plenty of hot water for showers, electricity from approximately 7am to 11pm. Candles provided, mosquito nets above the bed (though never needed due to the sea breeze), very clean bathroom (definitely equivalent to 4 or 5 star hotel), artistically folded towels on the bed every day etc. This place is pretty much perfect and the food excellent - from plates of olives brought out with drinks (the olives were so good I imagine they were brought in from Italy) to seafood pasta; just a shame the wood fired pizza oven was being replaced whilst we were there. The owner even let us park a bag with them for a week whilst we went travelling elsewhere. In general very friendly staff though speaking fluent Italian or Spanish would probably help you fit in a bit more.
It's difficult to find faults with the place to be honest but if I had to be picky then I'd pick out the awful DJ at the beach bar whose idea of mixing was to jump to the next track mid way through the one that was playing.
Great hotel but a very unfriendly manager
In November stayed 2 nights in Tulum in La Vita e Bella. The cabanas and the beach are beautiful and we thought we were in heaven! Unfortunately this feeling lasted 4 hours (until the check-inn time) because the Italian manager was everything but customer friendly. He failed to inform us about a broken water pipe, let us wait for 4 hours and then sent us to hotel Piedra Escondida (although they were not informed about us coming, the staff was very friendly and the restaurant is great!). The next day, we returned to La Vita e Bella to go, as promised by the manager, to our room. Again this was not possible and we were sent off by taxi to find a hotel ourselves. We stayed in Cabanas Tulum (also friendly staff and a very large, beautiful beach).
In the end we had a great time in Tulum. However, I strongly recommend everybody staying in one of the other nice places if you don't want to loose one day finding a different hotel and being treated in a rude way.
This IS the Beautiful Life!
Heaven on earth! Tulum is one of the most beautiful places in the world and the La Vita e Bella cabanas just might be the best value in Tulum. Walk out your cabana door onto the porch with a hammock and a spectacular view of pale green, crystal clear, warm Caribbean water. Walk down the so soft, sugar white sand through lush tropical plants surrounding your cabana and take the 25 or so steps down to the water for a swim. On the way back notice the beautiful topless girls meandering by! Sitting on a stool outside amid lush beauty you turn around and notice the waiter coming with 2 perfectly delicious margaritas for you and your companion.
That night, walk down to the little restaurant down the road and have a table out on the rocky cliff surrounded by the ocean and and devour extremely fresh and tasty fish. This IS the beautiful life (italian:La Vita e Bella)! Extremely affordable too. What are you waiting for? Come to think of it, I just might need to book another flight there right now. No electricity, but who cares. Lots of other fun stuff to do there too, but you might be tempted to just lay there basking in the sun on your perfect beach on that perfect day. Waiter!