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Forget what you might picture when a Mexico vacation comes to mind. There’s more to visiting our southern neighbor than massive, cookie-cutter hotels and resorts. A plethora of tiny towns overflow with charm, lush jungle sanctuaries boast eco-luxe adventures, and cities prove rich in authenticity. Moreover, Mexico’s diverse landscape is a dream come true for couples in search of an intimate escape. The following properties are one-of-a-kind, impeccably well-designed and small scale, with none exceeding more than 100 rooms.

RELATED: 10 Mexico beaches locals want to keep secret

Hotel MatildaSan Miguel de Allende

Hotel Matilda – San Miguel De Allende – Mexico - Owner Suite C terrace

Considered to be one of San Miguel de Allende’s tucked-away treasures, 32-room Hotel Matilda is as beguiling as its name suggests. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, this colonial-era city has been dubbed “the most beautiful in Mexico” and the property is eager to live up to that moniker. There’s contemporary art and handmade odds and ends galore, plus international cuisine and impressive spa rituals. As for lovers quarters, the top choice would be Owner’s Suite C. The well-groomed, verdant balcony is an ideal vantage point for enjoying a fiery sunset and if you’re in town when the jacarandas are in bloom (between March and May), you’re in luck. The grounds come alive in a fragrant sea of purple blossoms. Did we mention the new Krug Champagne tasting menu at Moxi, their in-house restaurant? No wonder Hotel Matilda plays nonstop host to celebs, fashion-forward editors, and discerning twosomes in the know.

Las Ventanas al Paraíso: Los Cabos

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You haven’t done date night right, until you’ve done it at Las Ventanas al Paraiso, a Rosewood Resort in Cabo. Boasting 83 dreamy suites and villas, it’s a favorite among jetsetters and celebrities alike and for good reason. The magical oceanfront property is the ultimate setting for unwinding, given their eight different pools, killer amenities (bespoke in-room cocktail service anyone?), and first-ever lazy river in Baja California Sur. Then there are those villas. Ever try whale watching, star gazing, and a full-course dinner in your robe? This is all possible from the comfort of your own suite. No request is too small (or too unthinkable) for your personal Department of Romance concierge, either. Between their skywriting spectacles, classical guitarist serenades, and private cinema screenings on the beach, it’s unlikely you’ll ever want to leave. And if the other-worldly, Seussianstyle trees dripping with hand-blown red glass hearts don’t conjure a romantic mood, we don’t know what will. Should you be vacationing with your pet, they’ll even treat your four-legged friend to massages, walks and bougie meal services while you sleep in. Ah, the life.

Hacienda Uayamon, a Luxury Collection Hotel: Yucatán

Hacienda Uayamón – Yucatán – Mexico

For Mexico lovers who have yet to travel to the Campeche region in the Yucatán Peninsula, you’re missing out. This Mexican state is a breathe of fresh air compared to touristy, beachside resort communities and provides an unrivaled experience you can only find in these parts. Known for its lush tropical rainforests and Mayan remains (like Chichén Itzá, one of the Seven Wonders of the World), you’ll undoubtedly revel in the magic spirit this ancient area has to offer. As for where to stay, Hacienda Uayamon is a former henequen estate that’s been refurbished as a 12-cottage, 5-star boutique hotel. Given its jungle address, you may spy the occasional insect or whistling frog, but the charming suites with vaulted ceilings, private outdoor daybeds and soaking tubs immediately remind you why you came. As does the dreamy pool, set amidst romantic ruins and columns dating back to 1685.

Ser Casasandra: Holbox

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You won’t find a lot of WiFi—or cars for that matter—in off-the-beaten path island Holbox, which is part of the Yum Balam Nature Reserve in Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula. What you will find is a vibrant street art scene, locals who feel like family by the end of your trip, and a lot of sharks. Whale sharks, that is. Don’t worry…these filter feeders may be the largest fish in the sea, but they’re not dangerous and swimming with them is a highly recommended pastime and an obvious bonding experience for honeymooners. Check into “the artist’s home” Ser Casasandra for 20 quaint, yet spacious, rooms and suites fitted with treasures from all over the world. Spend your days devouring platters of red snapper and the island delicacy—lobster pizza. Or explore Holbox Village on bike, before taking the obligatory couples pic on the stilted, above-water hammocks.

Imanta ResortsPunta Mita

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Deep in the heart of Rivera Nayarit—literally to the point of being hidden amidst the towering brush—is the unparalleled Relais & Chateaux eco-resort Imanta. At just 15 rooms, they offer a one-of-a-kind romantic and unspoiled setting, thanks to a middle-of-nowhere location in the Sierra de Vallejo national biosphere reserve. Besides the clearly surreal landscape (and crazy views), you can’t top Imanta’s unique experiences for couples, either. Wind your way through the jungle accompanied by live traditional huichol music, enjoy a delicious seafood feast served beachside, take a dip in your private oceanfront casa infinity pool and sip sunset cocktails from the highest vantage point at Observatorio Bar. Oh, and whatever you do, be sure to reserve ample time for treatments para dos at The Jungle Spa, where Aztec healing methods and some pretty sexy open-air spa suites await.

Casa Kimberly: Puerto Vallarta

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Fun fact: Casa Kimberly is a nine-suite boutique hotel comprised of side-by-side houses once owned by screen legends Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton during their torrid love affair. There’s an open-air rooftop restaurant, tequila bar, pool and spa, preserved Puente Del Amor (Bridge of Love), and enough tucked-away corners, coves and passageways designed for canoodling in secret. This retreat in the heart of Puerto Vallarta is splashed with Old Hollywood vibes at every turn and if you really want to live like Liz, you’ll reserve her over-the-top personal quarters for your stay. A private elevator opens to 2,500-square-feet of unreal bliss, featuring wrap-around terraces overlooking Banderas Bay and the Sierra Madre mountains, chandeliers bedecked in crystals, and the pièce de résistance: the original pink-marble heart-shaped tub that Taylor commissioned for Casa Kimberly. No big deal.

Cala de Mar Resort & Spa: Ixtapa

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The 59 all-suite Cala de Mar Resort & Spa is a romantic hilltop hideaway. Expansive terraces are made for soaking in Pacific Ocean views, while individual plunge pools make having to trek down to the pool a thing of the past. There are also state-of-the-art wellness offerings throughout the resort and an emphasis on indigenous Mexican traditions that connect couples. Try daily meditation, sunset yoga on the deck, El Capricho Spa therapies and ancient cacao and Temezcal ceremonies led by a local shaman. Of course, no holiday would be complete without a candlelit dinner on the beach for two. After a trip to the market with their chef to gather ingredients and learn about their origin, your night concludes with a personal fireworks show for the ultimate swoon-worthy finale.

Coqui Coqui: Mérida

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Coqui Coqui is next-level travel goals due to the fact that that the property is exactly one room. It’s a veryyyy extravagant one-bedroom suite, however. Just imagine this entire place to yourself and then you’ll understand why people want to keep it a secret. A restored Belle Epoque hotel in Mérida—the historic, colonial capital of Yucatán—it has all the beautiful bells of whistles including his and hers claw-footed tubs, a velvet curtain draped private balcony overlooking the courtyard, antique chandeliers, intricately tiled floors, and an abundance of marble that just feels right in the space. No design detail is spared here and supply of quality content for your followers is endless. They also have an in-house perfumery, boutique, and bistro, so it’s really like having your own mini mansion in Mexico when you visit.
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Tagged: Cancun, Los Cabos, Mexico

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