Walk to the furthest point on the end of the beach road, that’s where you’ll find them.
100% Powered by the Sun
AMENITIES & FEATURES
Property Type: Eco Hotel
Season: October - August
Types of Accommodations: Villa
Environment: Beach / Jungle
Nearest Airport: Cancun
Starting Rates: $245 USD
YOUR ECO-FRIENDLY AMENITIES...
Renewable Energy Sources
Locally Sourced Food
Energy Efficient Lighting
Showers in Room
Toilets in Room
Explore Shan Ka'an Biosphere
Minimize physical, social, behavioral and psychological impacts
Design, construct and operate low-impact facilities
Build environmental and cultural awareness and respect
Provide positive experiences for both visitors and hosts
Provide financial benefits & empowerment for local people
Deliver memorable interpretive/educational experiences to visitors
An intimate eight-suite boutique retreat that operates 100% sustainably and is located on a private and tranquil stretch of Tulum
Olas is a boutique hotel, a guest house and a home but it’s also a gathering place and a point of connection between people and nature (or the natural world). They believe if they create a space for like-minded travelers to come together from around the world – to experience sustainability, eat locally, speak meaningfully – that they’ll keep the spirit of Tulum alive.
Every moment at Olas, from the first sip of Chiapas coffee in the morning to the last sunset of the day, is a celebration of the Tulum they know and love.
At Olas, they start each day at a table set for twelve, under the shade of coconut trees with their feet buried in the sand. They pour steaming cups of organic ground coffee sourced from the rainforest state of Chiapas, and eat crunchy granola and peppery chilaquiles made in their kitchen, just a few steps away. Their guests gather, sharing stories and tips for the day – whispers of secret cenotes, yoga in the studio, a boat trip to explore the Sian Ka’an Reserve.
There’s breakfast, and then there’s breakfast at Olas.
They can still remember the moment they saw it, a property at the end of the beach road at the gateway to the biosphere reserve. Back then Tulum was a row of charming but unassuming beach cabañas – and, of course, that crystal clear sea and white sand beach. The house that enchanted them, was built in the 1970’s by Austrian engineer Carlos Schober, who specifically designed it to work in synthesis with the surrounding natural environment.
The ingenuity of his original design has allowed them to operate sustainably to this day. Palapas still shade their structure from the heat of the afternoon sun, while intentionally curved walls circulate nature’s own air and natural, pure underwater streams are gravity fed into their sinks and showers. That magic doesn’t come around twice in a lifetime, so they have held it close. They’ve followed in Schober’s path, lovingly restoring this once private estate to what they proudly call “Olas” today.
Days at Olas are marked with plates of peppery chilaquiles, homemade coconut yogurt and freshly caught fish turned ceviche squeezed with lime – all shared around one table in the sand. At the helm of their kitchen is their beloved Chef who sources produce from local vendors and farmers.
Olas is a stone’s throw from the action of Tulum but it feels like a world away. Walk to the furthest point on the end of the beach road where the Caribbean Sea meets the Sian Ka’an reserve and the bustle of Tulum fades away. That’s where you’ll find us.
Their Eco Story
They also happen to be the only property that operates 100% sustainably on the entire beach. They are deeply committed to not only preserving this exquisite paradise that they call home, but leaving it in a better place than when they arrived there over a decade ago. They harness all of their electricity needs from the sun with a state of the art solar panel system as well as capture all of their water from natural, underground streams.
The word sustainability is used so much, it often loses meaning. For Olas, sustainability is making long-term commitments to the land and fostering long-term connections with the people of Tulum – those who live here, and those who visit. It’s the guiding principle in everything they do and a measurable standard evident from their platinum reviewed LEED building to the care and respect they give to their staff and guests.
Their outlook on energy is much like ttheir view of the biosphere reserve: green. The entire property at Olas is powered by solar energy from photovoltaic panels you’ll find on their roof.
When it does rain, they take full advantage. Their property’s intricate system collects rainwater, which they use to feed the indigenous vegetation on site by hand. And while most of Tulum beach relies on water trucked in from town, their property is fed by an underground river system that captures water and is transferred to cisterns on their roof and then gravity fed into each of their suites. Although the supply is endless, this allows Olas to harness only the water in which they need.
A true Tulum kitchen means knowing where their ingredients come from and championing local providers. All their fruits and vegetables in their cocina come from regional farms, their eggs and cheese from the Mennonite community and they source their seafood from local fishermen who were raised on these seas.
They know this isn’t a popular topic for people to discuss, but it’s vital to the sustainability of our planet. While reusing and recycling are important, reducing their waste and disposing of it properly is critical for a sustainable future. They compost organic food onsite and use it to feed their vegetation throughout the year. They invested heavily into a septic system - called a “Pirana” — an aerobic bacteria generator. It provides a unique oxygen environment allowing the natural bacteria, some of the most powerful recycling bacteria found in nature, to survive and thrive in the septic tank. And tthey went one step further and installed a “humidal” - a traditional Mayan treatment system that turns this grey water into water that feeds phosphorous loving plants.
The architecture of our main villa was designed by an Austrian engineer and naturalist, Carlos Schober, half a century ago whose vision was to build a home in harmony with nature. Whenever they add or build at Olas, they ensure it doesn’t interfere with nature.
“I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”
Olas was created with Maya Angelou’s words in mind. Yes, Olas is a place — but it’s also an example of how we think the world should be experienced; how we all should be treated. That’s why when you come to stay with us, it’s akin to staying with family.
For Olas, people play an important role in their ethos of sustainability. There are the local providers – fruit sellers, farmers, fisherman – their neighboring community, the team at Olas and our guests that return to visit year after year. Their connection and interactions with one another is the only currency that truly matters.
"We’ve created the platform and we’ve built the vehicle, but our relationship with those that come to experience our place is what propels forward our vision of a more sustainable and enjoyable world. "