As one of the fastest-growing tourist destinations in the Mexican Caribbean, the paradise-like Playa del Carmen makes a great leap forward with the development of the Hotel Grand Hyatt Playa del Carmen.
It is located within a protected mangrove area and near the vibrant energy of the 5th Avenue combining the local environment and culture in a modern setting on an irregular site that slopes down to the sea, with a 140-meter beachfront.
A series of studies of distribution, land use and protection of the natural area led to the development of an architectural program divided into three blocks. Each block is Inspired by the organic shapes of the Yucatan Peninsula and designed with a different intention to generate a wide range of sensations, routes and experiences for guests and visitors.
The spaces reflect a celebration of local culture, craftsmanship and tradition. The first block forms the connection between the avenue and the hotel, creating an interior roadway for pedestrians and vehicles lined by retail stores, generating an informal urban ambience recalling that of the famous 5th Avenue. This indoor street ascends to define the access route to the main plaza, which becomes the motor lobby.
Taking advantage of this elevation, the ballrooms are located beneath the plaza, while the back of house areas are located underneath this indoor street. The second block is located at the center of the site, forming a visual and spatial connection. It takes a rectangular shape, surrounded by a four-story block of hotel rooms. Inside are the fabulous mangrove gardens, which are preserved and used to create a central garden, the perfect setting for the surrounding rooms.
Above this garden and right at the center of the second block there is an open covered pedestrian walkway called “el paseo”, that provides a stepped transition from the entry to the ocean with sculptural design, such as seating and kiosks, appear as though they’ve been carved out of one large stone eroded by sand and water. The space beneath the paseo is employed for the meeting rooms and the SPA.
A large curved, conical, stone-clad volume rising from the earth is the main visual element related to the spa. Its design alludes to the magnificent cenote pools which are a deep natural pit unique to this area, offering beams of sunlight to the Spa below. Inside the cenote you find yourself at an expansive, peaceful space is provided for guests to relax.
Beyond the cenote’s top, guests descend a ramp and arrive at a large area that features kiosk that serve different kinds of refreshments one might find in a traditional Mexican market, such as agua fresca. As the closest to the sea, the third block offers the best views, which are shared with the rest of the site and enhanced with a striking 12-meter high window that spans 55 meters wide.
This final block is the heart of the hotel and accommodates the entertainment amenities and restaurants, with the advantage of the direct contact with the beach. The pools and terraces surround the four-story building providing the rooms and suites with the best views.
The selection of materials and finishes was based on adaptation to the surroundings, with sand-colored cladding and stone, extensive use of natural wood, native vegetation, water bodies, and warm, indirect lighting, among other details. The project’s largest and most significant spaces were purpose-designed to showcase artworks. The concept of this art was worked on in conjunction with the artist César López-Negrete, and his pieces were specifically created for this project. Source by Sordo Madaleno Arquitectos.
Location: Playa del Carmen, Quintana Roo, Mexico
Architects: Sordo Madaleno Arquitectos
Design Manager: Daniel López
President: Javier Sordo Madaleno Bringas
Architecture Leader: Javier Sordo Madaleno de Haro
Project Leader: Andrés Cajiga
Project Team: Liliana Reyes, Maricarmen Lazo, Perla Vázquez, Andre Jaques Bodin, Gabriela Puente
Engineering Coordination: Marcos Hernández
Engineering Team: Juan Carlos Díaz, Héctor Ruiz
Construction Coordination: CPMA Construction Managers Asociados
Structural Engineering: Aguilar Ingenieros
Electrical Engineering: Circuito Ingenieros Consultores Electromécanicos
Air Conditioning Engineering: IACSA
Systems & Special Engineering: Innovative Designs
Hydrosanitary Engineering: Garza Maldonado Ingenieros
Lighting Consultant: Luz y Forma
Audio & Video Consultant: Circuito
Landscape Consultant: Gabayet Paisajistas
Interior Design: Sordo Madaleno Arquitectos + Rockwell Group
SMA Interior Design Director: Nadia Borrás, Enrique Ralph
SMA Interior Design Team: Gzgregorz Leiner, Fernanda Sotomayor,
Studio Leader: Carmen Aguilar
Rockwell Group Design Team: Hilli Wuerz, Barry Richards, Tomás Predrasa, Daniel Holguin, Patricia Barbis, Mónica Gutiérrez
Media & Marketing: Rosalba Rojas, Jimena Orvañanos
Construction: ARCA Desarrollos
Construction Area: 60,000 m2
Terrain Area: 27,500 m2
Photographs: Paul Rivera, Courtesy of Sordo Madaleno Arquitectos