Costa Careyes' privacy and lush accomodations (bungalows, casitas, villas and even a castle) are attractive to visitors. // © 2015 Costa Careyes
Feature image (above): Spy Kids star Alexa Vega and actor Carlos Pena Jr. held their wedding at Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit. // © 2015 Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit
History shows that celebrity couples are quick to head south of the border for romantic getaways after tying the knot. Chris Martin and Gwyneth Paltrow made headlines with their intimate honeymoon in Los Cabos (before their “conscious uncoupling”) and, more recently, Kim Kardashian and Kanye West set off the tabloids by shacking up in Casa Aramara, a private seaside estate in Punta Mita, for a romantic escape.
It’s no surprise that Mexico is a preferred honeymoon hot spot, with its coastal resorts, sprawling white-sand beaches and calm, down-tempo vibes. While most honeymooners won’t trigger paparazzi the way that Hollywood “it” couples do, they can live vicariously — and lavishly — through their favorite stars by checking into these notable honeymoon hideaways favored by the rich, fab and famous.
With beautiful beaches, top-notch resorts and charming cobblestone-street neighborhood Zona Romantica, Puerto Vallarta is a paradise for lovebirds.
Costa Careyes (formerly El Careyes Beach Resort), about two hours south of Puerto Vallarta, offers plenty of privacy for visiting celebrities and jet-setting newlyweds. Musician Seal and model and television host Heidi Klum spent their honeymoon at the beach resort, which offers bungalows, casitas, villas and even a castle — all oceanfront or with ocean views.
Seventy percent of Costa Careyes’ land is a nature preserve, and myriad outdoor activities are available, including horseback riding, golf and snorkeling. Rooms begin at $350.
Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit
Riviera Nayarit, a quiet, 200-mile stretch of gorgeous coastline just north of Puerto Vallarta, has recently become a preferred hot spot for celebrities. Chock-full of undiscovered beach towns, intimate resorts and off-the-radar attractions, the area is perfect for couples who want to escape to an authentic part of Mexico that hasn’t been discovered by hordes of tourists.
Spy Kids star Alexa Vega and actor Carlos Pena Jr. were married at Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit, the coast’s only all-inclusive resort to be awarded Five Diamonds by AAA. The 267-suite resort offers superstar-friendly accommodations that start at a minimum of 1,000 square feet. It has a perfect location on Banderas Bay and a pampering destination spa with 20 treatment rooms. Suites start at just under $600.
About a two-hour flight from Los Angeles (and even shorter on a private jet), Los Cabos is the stomping ground for Hollywood’s elite. Many A-listers are so smitten with the charming beach town that they own homes here, so it’s not uncommon to run into George Clooney or Molly Sims on the beach.
The 173-room One&Only Palmilla resort receives plenty of celebrity love thanks to its private beaches and intimate quarters — several palapas are tucked away in hidden spots, and suspended beachside beds amp up the romance factor. Pop star Kevin Jonas and wife Danielle Deleasa spent time here in 2010 for their honeymoon, and New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning and wife Abby McGrew were married on the lush grounds in 2008. The resort reopens April 20. Rooms start at $555.
St. Regis Punta Mita
St. Regis Punta Mita is a draw for boldface names. The AAA Five-Diamond property is equipped with 120 rooms and suites (which start at 600 square feet), three infinity pools, sprawling manicured grounds and signature butler service right at the foot of an idyllic, secluded beach.
It’s one of the most posh resorts in Punta Mita, attracting honeymooning actors such as Adam Brody and Leighton Meester, who checked into the resort last February after their secret wedding.
Rooms begin at $749.