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“Wonderful place!”
Review of Genesis Eco-Oasis

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Genesis Eco-Oasis
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
Reviewed May 6, 2014

We stayed at Genesis for 3 nights in early March. My husband and I had the Birdhouse and my daughter and her friend stayed in Torre. Both rooms were great. I really like the open-air feeling of the Birdhouse, with the bathroom being pretty much outside. The grounds are stunning, with really beautiful plantings and an inviting pool. We enjoyed talking to Lee and hearing about her experience building Genesis. We had dinner there two nights and the food was excellent. We took a village tour with Lee that was fascinating -- interacting with the villagers and getting a glimpse into their lives was wonderful. I liked the jungle and village sounds at night, but if you are a light sleeper, bring ear plugs. Lee gave us a "treasure map" to a hidden cenote nearby, and we had a blast finding it. We also visited Chichen Itza, Valladolid, and of course the Ek Balam ruins. Ek Balam is amazing. We enjoyed the cenote there as well. If you love nature and adventure, Genesis is for you. I would go back in a second. Give yourself at least two nights there, and the more the better.

  • Stayed: March 2014, traveled with family
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1  Thank Winnie H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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73 - 79 of 189 reviews

Reviewed April 7, 2014

We went to Genesis to participate in a mayan cultural experience around food. We stayed at the stunning Genesis retreat center for 3 days and could have stayed all week. This amazing place is tucked in the center of a 300 person village of subsistence farmers. Lee, who built it, is committed to helping the local folks share their culture with the outside world. She crafted an incredible experience for our family where we went to the local market to learn about food, visited a tortilla maker, tasted local fruit juices with lots of explanations, and then spent an entire day with a Mayan family cooking a feast. Genesis itself is gorgeous, incredibly comfortable without being fussy, and magical just as the sun sets over the surrounding jungle. Lee served good food, was kind and generous as a hostess, and made us feel totally at home. Everyone we met there was a kindred spirit: down to earth, adventurous, interesting. I'd go back in a flash.

Room Tip: We had the Cielo room and the one next to it that shares a marvelous balcony and I recommend it high...
  • Stayed: March 2014, traveled with family
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1  Thank Liz3500
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 2, 2014

My friend and I were motivated to stay here on a friend's recommendation. I was looking forward to staying in a village, and also my friends said that the sound of the animals would be practically deafening. It sounded like an experience!
The design of this place is amazing. I love that the kitchen is just as you enter, and all the little houses among the gardens. And Lee is warm, welcoming, and overall seems like a very cool woman.
My friends were wrong though - deafening sounds of animals? This wasn't all that much louder than where I grew up in Kalamazoo, Michigan in the summertime. Maybe light sleepers would have some challenge, but I would have been up for more noise actually! I slept like a baby on my hanging bed.
Well, other than getting sick (nothing to do with Genesis). We were only there that one night and didn't get nearly as much chance as I would have liked to have enjoyed the grounds. I'm in love with Mexico, and hope to come back to Genesis on my next trip. With so much to do nearby - the ruins, cenotes, Valladolid - it deserves more than one night next time though.

  • Stayed: March 2014, traveled with friends
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1  Thank Chicago D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 1, 2014

Lee is an amazing hostess and brings her enthusiasm for the local area, her hotel and Mexico to her guests. She has meticulously planned and built an amazing tropical retreat. If you love tropical plantings, cool gardens and adobe architecture this is a place for you. The information provided about the local area, traditions and her Maya farm impeccable. We enjoyed the relaxing vibe of our courtyard gardens, pool, dining area and also bike rides to the Ek Balam ruins just 2 kilometers away. To be able to experience the amazing and cool cenote (open air limestone pool) in the Ek Balam ruins was so refreshing and a visual pleasure. Lee has used her imagination to use products and materials to save the environment. She also employs local persons in cultural and hotel activities. We had fun learning how to make tortillas with a local Mayan neighbour, what a hoot! We will be back.

  • Stayed: February 2014, traveled as a couple
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Thank Herbeeking
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 21, 2014

We stayed with a group of 17 of us from March 5th until the 12th. I had never been here before, but members of our group have been coming here for 10 yrs. First impression. I don't even know where to begin. Amazing. I love the open air feel of the place. The dinning area is inviting. The grounds are so lush with tropical vegetation. I walked around the grounds the whole week and don't think I had seen everything. (Cool bomb shelter) I had seen most of the rooms there and liked them all. I stayed in the Iguana room and enjoyed it. I loved the Bi-folding doors on the room and the front porch. The food served was mostly Vegetarian, which was fine for this Meat eater. After a day or too, I really enjoyed it. I have since come home trying to copy the food from Genesis in my own kitchen. The cook staff, yard staff, and Lee the owner were nothing short of AMAZING!!!!! There are toooooo many to list but my favourite things about Genesis are the Amazing pool which I enjoyed as much as I could. The Mexican coffee which the kitchen staff would make (Awsome), and Swerta my buddy, who I hope to see this summer. There is so much to list on here but I don't have all week to write about it. This really is one of my FAVOURITE places that I have been, and cannot wait until I get back here. See you again Lee. Tell Antalano Canada say's Hi.

Room Tip: I save the spa an excellent, counting the pool as the spa, which is breathtakingly beautiful.
  • Stayed: March 2014, traveled with friends
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2  Thank lochliam
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 2, 2014

Can't say enough wonderful things about this retreat! We arrived after dark and we weren't sure if the door would be open. There was Lee to welcome us and offer us help with our bags and tea and made us feel welcome. She up graded our room at no extra charge. It was a special place with a hanging bed and outdoor private bathroom. The grounds were lush and the pool was clean and inviting with beautiful plants all around.
Lee has an awsome staff of very friendly gracious people. The food was home cooking mexican style served up when ever we were hungry. This retreat is very close to Ek Balam ruins and the city of Valladolid. One hour north is Rio Lagartos where flocks of pink flamingos can be seen. Chichen Itza and Merida are also within a 2 hr drive.
We stayed here for 2 nights and would stay her again. Ek Balam is a charming little village off the regular tourist places of the Yucatan. We have recommened this retreat to our friends and family.

Room Tip: stay in the bird's nest.
  • Stayed: February 2014, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Dtravelling_show
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 10, 2014

My family stayed here for a few days during our trip around the Yucatan. It was our favorite place. We loved the lush and tranquil energy of the village, ruins and Genesis.
Each room has its own unique feeling and layout. If you can, stay in the birds nest. It is very magical, high up in the trees, with a hanging bed. The compound is a lushly landscaped garden, with a wonderful cool pool, in the center, that is filled with water that comes from deep underground.
The food was wonderful. Much of it organic, and grown on a nearby farm. The owner, a wonderful Canadian woman, also blended whimsical cocktails, that were made with fresh local fruit.
The owner also organizes wonderful cultural exchanges.
You can spend the day with a local family learning to weave or cook tamales, and just get to experience what their life is like in a small village. Our 8 year old son was introduced to one of the neighbor boys, and for the next 4 days that we were there, he so enjoyed playing soccer and hanging out with all of the village kids.
Ek Balam is a gem, if you are looking for a unique and authentic experience, spend some days at the Genesis Eco-Oasis!

  • Stayed: January 2014
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2  Thank Triciagourley
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Genesis Eco-Oasis

Address: Ek Balam Village | Next to the archaeological zone, Ek Balam, Ek Balam Village 97743, Mexico
Location: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Yucatan > Ek Balam Village
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 B&Bs / Inns in Ek Balam Village
Price Range: $50 - $90 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 7
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A one-acre Oasis of lush tropical gardens teeming with life, a pool of crystalline subterranean waters, fresh vegetarian, mostly organic home grown, home-cooked food; unique lodgings that compliment, rather than dominate, their natural surroundings. Guests are generally well travelled and in search of authentic cultural experience, contact with nature and intriguing archaeological sites of international importance. In partnership with several local families, we provide meaningful, respectful interactions and cultural exchanges through our Artisans Tour and Maya Cooking Class. We host a Pilgrimage tour that includes morning walks to untouristed sacred and natural sites. 2 Hours from Cancun or Merida airports; 1.5 Hr from gorgeous Caribbean beaches at Tulum or the biosphere reserve on the Gulf of Mexico. 45 Minutes from Chichen Itza; Half hour from the Colonial city of Valladolid, cenotes XKeken (Dzitnup) and Samhula and minutes from the Ek Balam archaeological zone, cenote Xcanche, cenote Hubiku and others. See our free Tours and Activities travel planner online at GenesisEkBalam. We are independently owned and use a portion of profits to provide ongoing work and skills development for local staff, intercultural exchange programs and animal welfare projects. Genesis has operated at Ek Balam for 13 years. It is owned by a local resident expat from Canada who lives on site. Management is Yucateca and also on site. Continental Breakfast Included. English Spoken. Reservation recommended. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Genesis Eco-Oasis Hotel Ek Balam Village
Genesis Eco-Oasis Yucatan, Mexico - Yucatan Peninsula

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