Nestled in the small community of CocoPlum, the Naia Resort and Spa is a quiet piece of paradise that’s ready for couples to explore the beauty of the Caribbean, and each other. Home to manatees, white beaches, lagoons and several dive sites along the coral Belize Barrier Reef, Placencia – where the resort sits on the Caribbean – is a quaint little town in southern Belize.
This was our second trip to Placencia and our first to the new Naia Resort and Spa. The resort opened in October 2016 and judging from my experience with other similar resorts, this place will be a hidden jewel. Naia Resort and Spa started its soft opening just two weeks before we arrived and it was only operating at 60% during our stay. What impressed me the most was that Naia was already outperforming most resorts. Each day I was imagining the endless possibilities this resort will accomplish by the time it was fully open and we return for our next visit.
Just 30 feet away from the ocean, each beach villa and restaurant at this romantic resort boasts stunning views. The hospitality was so impressive that we both felt like the staff had been close friends since the invention of Facebook. Every meal dazzled us with the perfect blend of Belizean cuisine and the drinks were perfectly paired by the mixologist. While talking with the head chef and bar manager about their culinary expertise, it was evident that each meal was prepared with passion – and it showed. As we quickly settled in to the pampering of Naia, it was time to explore.
The island offshore – just a 20-minute kayak ride away – surprised us with an amazing discovery. After breakfast, we grabbed a kayak and some snorkel gear from the activity center, and paddle to the north side of the island, just passed a small cove. When the weather is calm, the water is crystal clear and the snorkeling is breathtaking at a distance of 10-30 yards from the island shoreline. When taking this journey, bring water and suntan lotion, and plan to enjoy the quiet scenery for a few hours. Have your camera ready for the sea turtles, manatees or dolphins that may surface near your kayak.
After the kayak journey had concluded, it was time to relax. Just a short walk from the resort to the lagoon area, we settled in to Naia’s amazing spa and yoga studio for an afternoon of pampering and relaxation. The spa offers an array of services, from a deep tissue massage to a rejuvenating chocolate wrap. The couples cabana is a must try and allows each suitor to have his and her own personalize spa treatment. Although we felt the deep tissue and Swedish massages didn’t provide anything unique, the facial massage was an unforgettable experience. Given a little more time, I’m confident that all of the services at the Naia spa will be world-class.
With an abundance of unbeaten beach amenities, what the Naia Resort and Spa doesn’t exhibit is a party-like atmosphere. It’s a secluded hide-a-way from the hustle and bustle of an all-inclusive resort, yet provides just the right amount of activities, day excursions and small-town life to keep you active. If you’re looking for that Cancun-style resort, it’s best to look elsewhere.
Perfect for couples, the Naia Resort and Spa is quiet and serene – just what we were looking for in a vacation. This little slice of paradise will be around for many years to come. As it continues to mature, I’m confident it will stay true to its charming characteristics and stunning hospitality.