Imanta Resort and Spa Nayarit, Mexico | Imanta Resort & Spa   |   Nayarit, Mexico   |   264,000 GSF

When the client, Juan Mario, was searching for property on which to realize his dream of building the world’s most sustainable resort, he happened upon a pristine jungle on the Pacific Coast of Mexico near Puerto Vallarta. He was so struck by the beauty of the place that he dove from his boat, swam ashore, and declared that this would be the site of the secluded paradise he wanted to build. Juan Mario’s dream became Imanta Resort and Spa, a luxury hotel that seems to grow organically from the soil of his paradise.

A Place To Disconnect And To Connect
As the world moves faster each day, people crave—or rather need—retreat. They need to unplug from the urgency of a digital world and reconnect to the things that matter.Where we came from. Where we’re going. The people we love along the way.

“What does luxury really look like for people who can go anywhere, stay anywhere?” asked Bob Shemwell, principal in charge. He concluded that it looked like connection with pristine nature. The kind of unspoiled riches becoming more rare every day. Harmonious, restored connection between man and nature would inevitably set the tranquil tone for guests of Imanta Resort and Spa.

First Do No Harm
250 acres
of preserved wildlife habitat
Shemwell immediately realized the biggest resource and the biggest challenge would be the uniqueness of the site, an exotic moment of coastline among otherwise scrubby terrain.“It almost looks like Bali,” said Shemwell. “It’s the only time that I’ve ever done a site walk and run into a boa constrictor.”

Preservation was the primary goal in the site design and material selection for Imanta. Manicured lawns are nowhere to be found. The wild and natural landscape is as beautiful as the day Juan Mario laid eyes on it.

After hand-surveying the property, Overland sited the resort in small, flexible buildings, avoiding the watershed and water pathways. By studying their patterns of movement and keeping water sources for the multiple endangered and threatened species like the jaguar far from the buildings, human and fauna can coexist and thrive.

Rather than building right up to the beach, Overland and the owner chose to keep the beach clear of permanent construction and artificial lighting so that the baby sea turtles hatching in the nests along the shoreline can have a clear path to the ocean.

Stone quarried on site helps the building to blend in seamlessly with its surroundings, even as vines grow up the walls as intended. The line between building and earth blurs, and one day it is hoped the resort will look like a mysterious ruin from afar.

Of course, up close, nothing about Imanta is ruinous. The building accommodates the highest level of luxury in the hospitality industry and an equal measure of tasteful, cultural detailing. Bathtubs hewn from boulders, fine art by Mexican artists, and modern design elements throughout capture the spirit of Imanta’s place in natural, contemporary Mexico. Imanta promotes a new concept of luxury centered around a connection to the land, heritage, and the relationship between humans and their natural environment.

  • Condé Nast Johansens Award Winner 2011
  • Robb Report, 7 Best Hotels in the World, Best of the Best 2011
  • Robb Report, Earth’s Most Exclusive Retreats 100 Resorts
  • Condé Nast Traveler, 124 Best Hotels in the World, Hot List, 2011
  • Condé Nast Traveler, Gold List 2011
  • Travel and Leisure, “Mexico’s New Hideaways,” March 2014
  • Architectural Digest, “Idyll Worship,” October 2012
  • Robb Report, “Best of the Best: Resorts: Imanta Resort Punta de Mita,” 2011
  • In Circle Entrée, “Pacific Coast Contrast,” December 2011
  • Conde Nast Traveler, “The Best New Hotels in the World,” 2011
  • Forbes Life Magazine, “Best New Hotels,” October 2011
  • Architectural Digest – Mexico, “Atraccion Magnetica,” August 2010
  • World Leisure Jobs & News, “New Sustainable Resorts for Mexico,” March 2010
  • National Geographic Mexico, “35 Hotels that We Love”
  • Travesias, “Best Boutique Hotel in Mexico”
  • Conde Nast Johansens, “Most Excellent Beach Resort in Mexico and Central America,” 2012

For more about Imanta Resort and Spa, visit their website at