Every bride, bestie, or maid of honor who’s ever helped plan a bachelorette party weekend knows that getting the entire squad on board with one game plan takes more than a few emails and group texts. Whether you’re planning on four, eight, 10, or more attending, it’s inevitable that there’s going to be at least a couple of bridesmaids who would prefer to head for a party destination and others who would rather just chill poolside (or on the beach) somewhere warm and sunny.
So why would you settle for one or the other when you can get the best of both worlds in one location? The laid-back beach town of Playa del Carmen, Mexico, has pretty much perfect temperatures year-round, swanky hotel amenities the ladies are sure to love (hello, rooftop pool and private cabanas!), beaches overlooking the turquoise waters of the Caribbean Sea, and a largely car-free, walkable downtown that’s great for strolling and souvenir shopping, and wining, dining, and dancing all night long. Oh, and did we mention there’s also a beach club that hosts daytime champagne parties? Here are a few reasons why Playa, as the locals call it, really is the ultimate bachelorette party destination.
1. Getting there is a breeze.
Since Playa is located on Mexico’s Rivera Maya, just about 30 minutes south of Cancun International Airport, your squad most likely won’t have an issue nabbing a great airfare from their nearest airport—no matter where they call home. Although travel to Mexico does require a passport, airfares from such carriers as United, Delta, and Jet Blue are competitive with what you’d likely be spending to fly to most bachelorette destinations in the States.
2. About those rooftop poolside cabanas…
Thompson Playa del Carmen, one of the most stylish new hotel properties in town, has a rooftop pool scene that’s on par with anything you’ll find at exclusive, hotel-within-a-hotel properties in Vegas—only in the desert, you’re never going to get the panoramic, 180-degree ocean views the Thompson offers, or the fabulous pool features that are begging to be in your next Instagram update. And compared to Vegas prices, the private poolside cabanas are a steal: A small cabana, which fits up to six guests, can be reserved for $400 and includes a $300 food and beverage credit, while a large cabana (for up to 10 guests) can be reserved for $800 and includes a $600 food and beverage credit.
While you don’t have to be a guest of the hotel to book the cabanas, one of the best perks of making the Thompson your home base is that the hotel has a sister property just a few blocks away, the Thompson Beach House, and guests at either property are free to take advantage of the amenities at both sites, which means rooftop pool time one day and beachfront loungers with margaritas in hand the next. What’s not to love about that?
3. Playa’s downtown has everything.
One of the best perks of planning your bachelorette party in Playa del Carmen is that the beach town’s downtown area is predominantly a car-free pedestrian zone that has everything you or any of your ‘maids could be looking for—day or night—and no one has to drive! Whether your ladies feel like doing some shopping, forgot to pack sunscreen (it happens more often than you think), or are looking for a shady respite from the midday heat (paired with some tacos, natch), you’ll find anything you’re looking for within a few blocks of your hotel.
By night, Playa’s downtown scene turns into a veritable adult playground of themed bars, open-air restaurants, and more clubs than you could possibly ever hit in one weekend, with something that’s sure to please every type of bride-to-be. While you and your squad can get glammed up for a night out on the town (and if that’s your thing, by all means, go for it!), more casual, beachy attire is acceptable too.
4. About that champagne party…
For those in the bachelorette squad pining for a Vegas-style pool party, Coralina Daylight Club is your jam. While the weekday scene is more about chill vibes, on the weekends, all bets are off when the club’s swimsuit-clad go-go dancers break out the champagne spray guns, literally. It’s a next-level party scene that has bachelorette written all over it—just be prepared to pony up for the cover charges (which vary by day and event) and club-priced libations. But hey, brides, you’re only going to do this bachelorette thing once, right?