Hotel Basico Por Favor

Sure, the name means basic, but basic it is not. Hotel Basico in Playa del Carmen, Mexico is a property beautifully convoluted with basic, local materials. Here’s a quantified list of Hotel Basico’s intricacies (notice the relative weights of sand and plastic, not all hotels can boast this impressive ratio).

8200 tons of sand
7142 pounds of glass
2122 tons of concrete
1300 tons of iron
1050 tons of mirrors
264 pounds of plastic
16 tons of wood
35 pounds of paper
162 artisans
881 pounds of cotton
2660 pounds of latex
1140 square feet of tire

Before your mind wanders too far wondering and dreaming of 2660 pounds of latex, rest assured it’s not what you think. Each room is embellished with latex curtains (a subtle nod to a local tire shop). Add these basic materials and Héctor Galván (of Omelette) will mold magic.

This excerpt from Design Hotels has me drooling already:

A thrilling jumble of influences, found objects, new design and local culture, the Basico is a defiantly modern Mexican hotel in the newly bustling Caribbean coast town of Playa del Carmen. White-sand beaches are steps away, but the real story is the openness of the hotel, from its street-market-style reception area and bar to its floor-to-ceiling bedroom windows. Basico’s 15 guestrooms are eccentrically furnished with local references including spare tires, plants, and rich textures, featuring recycled materials, resins, exposed plumbing pipes, and even latex.

Beds are elevated and contain a variety of pleasant surprises underneath, while a white Polaroid camera sits above the bed to capture magic moments. Plasma-screen televisions show a constant video feed of the beach. Upstairs, the top floor contains the Azotea Bar and pool area. Two converted petroleum tanks serve as above-ground pools with views of the Caribbean; a bar, DJs and film projections fill the evenings. It all evokes a glamorous, style-savvy and young Mexico, one that defies conventional wisdom and offers a glimpse of the future.

Perhaps the most attractive and inviting facet of Hotel Basico (aside from the latex curtains) is the attainability. The reservations website currently boasts rates as low as $115 per night. I know, right?

If slopes and snow is more up your alley than sand and surf, perhaps this winter resort in the Alps will have you packing your suitcase.

(Thanks for the introduction to this gem in Mexico, Pure Green.)