It List: The Best New Hotels 2013

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Jessica Sample

Beach: Mukul Beach, Golf & Spa, Guacalito de la Isla, Nicaragua

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When Nicaraguan industrialist Carlos Pellas decided to build the country’s first five-star hideaway, he chose an undeveloped stretch of land on the Pacific coast—a blank slate, in effect, to create a new image for a country in flux. Pellas smartly added the familiar trappings of luxury: plunge pools, butlers, a spa with themed treatment rooms, a golf course designed by David McLay Kidd. Mukul soars on its strong sense of place: the staff is mostly local, and the furniture in the 23 cliffside bohíos and 12 freestanding beach villas is built by hand (unique touches include headboards made of rum-barrel staves and polished pewter tables). Grass-fed Nicaraguan beef, as well as Pellas’s own excellent rum, Flor de Caña, is served at the beachfront restaurant. And there is a palpable feeling of pride in a project destined to help transform this oasis and jungle into Central America’s next fashionable destination. mukulresort.com. $$$$

It List: The Best New Hotels 2013

Beach: Mukul Beach, Golf & Spa, Guacalito de la Isla, Nicaragua

When Nicaraguan industrialist Carlos Pellas decided to build the country’s first five-star hideaway, he chose an undeveloped stretch of land on the Pacific coast—a blank slate, in effect, to create a new image for a country in flux. Pellas smartly added the familiar trappings of luxury: plunge pools, butlers, a spa with themed treatment rooms, a golf course designed by David McLay Kidd. Mukul soars on its strong sense of place: the staff is mostly local, and the furniture in the 23 cliffside bohíos and 12 freestanding beach villas is built by hand (unique touches include headboards made of rum-barrel staves and polished pewter tables). Grass-fed Nicaraguan beef, as well as Pellas’s own excellent rum, Flor de Caña, is served at the beachfront restaurant. And there is a palpable feeling of pride in a project destined to help transform this oasis and jungle into Central America’s next fashionable destination. mukulresort.com. $$$$

Jessica Sample
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