Beachfront Boutique: Casa de Mita and a Basket Full of Goodies
“The dust of Mexico long settles on your soul,” quoted Marc Lindskog, owner of Casa de Mita, from an unknown author.
One clear, sunny day in Mexico, Marc Lindskog from Atlanta, Georgia, rented a boat in the tiny fishing (and surfing) town of Sayulita and was exploring the southern coast of Nayarit.
As fate would have it, his boat ran out of gas in front of a secluded strip of beachfront property known as Playa Calleros. What might have been a spot of bad luck turned into a life changing event.
It was then he realized his destiny because on that peaceful beach he saw a house that seemed to be a beacon of hope. His fate was sealed luckily — the house was for sale and the rest is a tale told best with a margarita in hand. After buying the house, he transformed it into the gorgeous boutique hotel that it is today: Casa de Mita.
“Punta Mita, por favor” we cheerfully requested to the driver when we shuffled ourselves into the backseat of his taxi. ‘No problema,’ he gladly obliged as we started the 45 minute drive from the center of Puerto Vallarta to our destination: Casa de Mita (formerly known as Casa Las Brisas), part of Mexico Boutique Hotels.
The road out to Punta de Mita is just miles and miles of picture-perfect coastline and beach lined with an abundance of thick green variations of tropical foliage; the kind of beauty where you have to remind yourself to blink.
When we finally arrived to Casa de Mita, (the taxi driver must have stopped the car about eight times to ask for directions before we found the dirt road that led to the hotel) we were warmly greeted with open arms – no lines, no cold check-ins and most certainly no wristbands, even though it was all-inclusive. They made us feel special like we were one of them. It was no longer a hotel, it was a home. And we were back in our casa by the sea.
I’m sure that they were this genuine with every guest because so many visitors return, year after year, and call this place their casa as well. We were escorted to the patio as our luggage was whisked off to our room. And no room keys were needed here, part of the casual atmosphere I admired. Guacamole, as well as tart limonada, was freshly prepared and delivered to our patio table overlooking the serene ocean as we unwound from the drive.
Soon, a happy looking couple sauntered onto the patio after they experienced an equally warm welcome; they were staying for the week and were, like many, repeat visitors. Then another four couples arrived – which might sound like a lot of people but Casa de Mita has only eight rooms.
It’s secluded and intimate, but with enough space to allow you to be as private or as social as you’d like. We opted for the latter as my husband, a Hollywood writer and producer, loves to visit.
You know those cliché reviews where they say, ‘If you want paradise, look no further’ or ‘It was Heaven on earth’ or ‘If you want the perfect Mexican getaway…’ – well, all of those are true and more. As such, Casa de Mita enjoys a healthy clientele of repeat visitors each year. And after a visit, I can see why. Read the reviews on TripAdvisor as they speak for themselves.
You’d think it was the mesmerizing ocean view, the uncrowded beach, warm, sunny weather or the mouth-watering gourmet cuisine that I was writing home about – but in fact, it was the little things that revved my engine like instant WiFi, a munchies basket in the room (which they refill every time you leave the room), a fully stocked mini-fridge, a docking station for iPods, 100% pima cotton linens, soft, fluffy towels and an abundance of Aveda products including mouthwash at this beachfront boutique.
I admit, when doing hotel reviews, I do sweat the small stuff, and having a ‘snack basket’ filled and refilled was a surprising highlight for me. Check out all of the in-room and on-site hotel amenities.
“This is my interpretation of what Mexican hospitality is supposed to be,” said Marc when we sat down to visit with the hotel owner. With a staff of 24 and a chef that’s been with them for eight years, they are a tight-knit family with one goal in mind — to keep you satisfied and happy and they do it with ease and grace.
Even with his laid back style, Marc is constantly working to ensure guests are taken care of and that they have what they need to enjoy their time at Casa de Mita. Victor, one of the very helpful staff members, even drove us into the town of Punta Mita to explore a bit, using the Casa-de-Mita-mobile.
But when Marc is not busy maintaining the hotel or adding colorful décor and creative arts and crafts from charming towns like Morelia and Tonalá, he does make time to relax on the beach with his well-behaved and sweet-natured dogs. You can join him and hear stories of a life on the beach. A charming southern gentleman, he gives you southern charm and hospitality combined with Mexican casual living.
During our 3-day, 2-night visit, we witnessed whales frolicking in the ocean and were amazed by their acrobatic displays. We relaxed on both the patio and beach, ate fresh gourmet cuisine for breakfast (chilaquiles and French toast), lunch (jumbo shrimp salad), dinner (tortilla soup, locally caught salmon, flavorful tossed vegetables) and dessert (a decadent brownie and ice cream).
The menu changes everyday and fresh breads and pastries are served to please. We rested, browsed through the many books on display and met wonderful guests who really knew how to ‘vacation’ or as I liked to call them, ‘professional vacationers’.
I have stayed in many hotels in Mexico, usually larger ones, but staying in a private boutique allows you to fully enjoy the rewards of a peaceful, intimate break in time. The individual attention is easy to get accustomed to at Casa de Mita.
“This is what a vacation is suppose to be,” said Marc. “You can do as much or as little as you like.”
Take a vicarious trip to Casa de Mita through the video below:
Take a real trip to Casa de Mita!
FLIGHT: Airport code PVR (Puerto Vallarta); right now Alaska Airlines has GREAT fares starting at $129 one way, i.e. Los Angeles to Puerto Vallarta, Seattle to Puerto Vallarta and more.
HOTEL: Currently, The MEXICO Report and Mexico Boutique Hotels are offering ‘The PERKS’ incentive which includes two complimentary massages, a romantic suite set up with fruit and chocolate and a late check out with any 3-night booking.
Hotel reservations must be booked by April 30, 2011 and rooms subject to availability. Call toll free from the U.S., Monday through Friday, 9am to 6pm (CST) and Saturdays, 9am to 2pm, 1-800-728-9098, or click here to book the room online and receive the perks by entering promo code, ‘The PERKS’.