Casa de las Olas: The Greenest Stretch of Tulum

In Playa del Carmen & Tulum, Stay by Suzanne Koch

Tulum has quickly placed itself on the map for chic destinations, but what really makes it a must-visit spot is the many hotels and restaurants that are preserving and celebrating its surrounding environment on a daily basis. One hotel that is fully committed to this is Casa de las Olas, an intimate seven-suite bed and breakfast whose main goal is to leave Tulum even more pristine than when its owners, Sam and James arrived nearly a decade ago.

The cozy and breezy boutique hotel is nestled between a stretch of private housing and the entrance to the Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve, a 1.3 million acre UNESCO world heritage site. Its location creates a secluded and tranquil paradise, one that they take great care to preserve.

Oceanview Suite

Oceanview Suite

The hotel operates 100% sustainably and is the only one to do so on the entirety of Tulum beach. It’s also the only Platinum LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Reviewed property in Mexico, which in short, is the highest level of certification you can receive for achievement in green-building. The self-sufficient hotel completely powers itself using state-of-the-art solar panel systems, and its underground water sources and rain collection systems provide all the water needed for the villa’s showers and vegetation. The surrounding plants are fed by composited kitchen and organic waste and even the cleaning products and bathroom amenities are organic and biodegradable.


Not only does Casa de las Olas strive to preserve the environment in every way possible, but they also aim to uphold the culture by only recommending activities and excursions to its guests that are locally run and truly authentic. To really provide guests a full experience, the hotel created retreat weeks, a perfect way for guests to immerse themselves in the culture. Since all of the hotel’s food is handpicked and locally sourced from family farms, it’s no surprise that its “Eat Retreat” is one of their most popular retreats. Highlighted by top local restaurants, Hartwood and Cetli, Eat Retreat allows guests to dive tongue-first into the world of Yucatecan and Oaxacan cuisine with chef-led, hands-on cooking classes. Eric Werner, the owner and chef of the sustainable and environment-friendly Hartwood, makes an appearance to talk about his Tulum restaurant which sources “sea-to-table cuisine,” while Cetli’s owner and chef, Claudia Perez Rivas—the “Frida Kahlo of cooking”—provides everything you need to know about Mole, from its history to making it from scratch.

Eat Retreat

Eat Retreat

Aside from the mezcal tastings, cooking classes, group dinners and wine pairings, the seven-night retreat also takes guests around the Yucatan to explore the Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve, the recently excavated archeological site of Ek Balam, cenotes and hidden food spots that harbor delicious dishes.

Don’t miss your chance to take part in the next Eat Retreat, happening November 3–10, 2016 & May 17–May 24, 2017.

For more information on this eco-friendly paradise, visit:

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