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THE BEST OF NICARAGUA

Explore the wild, untamed beauty that this land is known for at two of the most unique properties that are quite unlike any place else... 

Do you know anyone who has been to Nicaragua? Probably not—and that’s exactly why you should go, and fast. Start rolling your rrrrrrrrrs as you explore the wild, untamed beauty that this land is known for, from its immaculate landscapes to its tranquilo people. A new wave of ex-pat creatives have brought with them conceptual hotels and experimental restaurants, finally giving Nicaragua a faster pulse after decades of dormant civil strife. Nomads are drawn to its colorful cities, pro surfers to its epic waves, wanderlusters to its remote, unspoilt islands. It’s only a few hours flight from the US, but it feels worlds away.

PHOTO: COURTESY OF NEKUPE

With the recent openings of Nekupe Sporting Resort & Retreat in the mountain region and Mukul Beach, Golf and Spa on the Emerald Coast, five-star luxury accommodations have come to Nicaragua at last, and it was worth the wait.  Both properties are unique in their own way with a special common thread linking them together — and that is the story of the Pellas Family. While one brother owns Mukul and the other owns Nekupe, the influential Pellas family has a mission of giving back to their country, which is transparently engrained in each element of their DNA. The two properties and other business ventures alike have created so many opportunities for the people of Nicaragua. To hear the locals talk about the Pellas family with such praise is as admirable as it is moving. There is an authentic sensibility felt at both Nekupe and Mukul, quite unlike any place else in the world. Get the details on Nicaragua's best below. 


PHOTO: COURTESY OF NEKUPE

NEKUPE SPORTING RESORT & RETREAT

www.nekupe.com

PHOTO: COURTESY OF NEKUPE

The first luxury countryside resort in Nandaime, Nicaragua, Nekupe is set within the mountain region’s 1,300-acre nature reserve, and has a list of amenities as lush as its’ setting. Consider it a posh, private sleep-away camp for adults in a where you’ll receive the utmost attention from your own personal ‘Rangers’ to take care of all your needs.  

"Nekupe", which means “heaven” in Chorotega, is exactly that. An intimate eight-room property featuring four standalone 1-bedroom villas, each with an open terrace and private staff, and La Gran Residencia, a 4-bedroom residential compound that houses two grand suites and two additional suites. To call La Gran Residencia magnificent would be an understatement: the 24,000-square-foot villa features a movie room, a game room with a poker table, and an out-of-this-world infinity pool that overlooks the Mombacho Volacano. 

One of the most special things about Nekupe is their ability to push your boundaries, exceed your expectations, and surprise you with details both large and small. From little gifts in your room throughout the stay to unexpected special guests, activities, and entertainment... Nekupe keeps you on your toes and even for the most detailed planner, will find a way to give you something you never thought to ask for.  

PHOTO: COURTESY OF NEKUPE

  THE EXPERIENCE & ACTIVITIES — 

Playing on your passion points and attending to all personal preferences, the property creates a customized itinerary where anything can be altered at a moments notice. All around Nekupe, outdoor experiences await. From hunting to farming, ATV riding and hiking, there is something for every level and every interest. Serving as a social center, the Casa Club features a cocktail lounge, a swimming pool, and a farm-to-table restaurant serving neo-Nicaraguan cuisine inspired by the culinary talents of Doña Theresita Pellas herself. And when it comes to nourishing a healthy balance between mind and body, the spa and wellness facility offers treatments grounded in local ingredients.

ATV RIDES – An exciting 30-minute off-road experience perfect for adventure lovers, our ATV ride experience takes guests from our teak plantation through the forest to Ochomogo River. Prepare for fun – and mud!

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HORSEBACK RIDING – Two riding paths deliver a stunning journey around our property. In the first, ride through the birdwatching forest and the teak plantation. The second begins in the wild forest, where you’ll meet both the indigenous and rescued animals of Nekupe.

MOUNTAIN BIKING – For those looking for a challenge, take off on specialized bikes for one hour-long, 8-shape circuit, where you’ll be engulfed in nature.

YOGA – Wake up with morning yoga sessions on the beautiful Mirador Deck overlooking the volcano.

SHOOTING
(TARGET)
Try your hand and accuracy in a one-of-a-kind Running Boar and visit the Pistol Range, designed by Central American Pistol Shooting Champion Emilio Chamorro.

(SPORTING CLAY) 
Designed by renowned sport shooter John Higgins, Nekupe’s sporting clay features eight stations with forty two machines, where guests can shoot a variety of styles including skeet and trap. The variety of stations and machines puts Nekupe’s shooting course on a world competitive level. 

TENNIS – Tennis lovers will be in heaven at our two tennis courts, which have a professional flooring system and are completely immersed in nature. Lessons allow players of all ages and skills to hone their specialized skills.

HIKING – Hike through beautiful and winding trails: the hiking experience begins at a beautiful and continues up through the forest to the top of a mountain where you’ll will enjoy breathtaking 360-degree views of the property. On the way down, take a walk on the wild side as you cross via a hanging bridge. 

ROPES COURSE – An adult jungle gym, if you will, that’s set in the middle of the forest and feels like the little village made in Robin Hood. At the seemingly simple 10 low structures, a host of creative obstacles and fun games await.

SPA, FITNESS CENTER & PERSONAL TRAINING – Nekupe Spa is an oasis of one’s own, where you’ll rejuvenate in the most serene setting with unspoiled, sprawling views. On property is a fully equipped fitness center with private trainers available for those who wish to have one-on-one attention.

CREATIVE ARTS – Partake in cultural experiences with Nepuke’s art classes that showcase Nicaragua’s love of craft. Teachers from local villages known for their unique crafts will share their knowledge and leave you feeling more inspired than ever. Activities include painting, cooking, folklore, marimba, and rum & cigar tasting. 

OFF-SITE ACTIVITIES

  • Pottery Classes & Studio visits in San Juan de Oriente
  • Tour of Granada and Isletas
  • Visit to Mombacho and Masaya Volcanoes
  • Visit to Coffee Hacienda at Mombacho Volcano
  • Volcano Sandboarding in Leon
  • Tour of Mangua with a Boat Tour of Lake Nicaragua
  • Day Trip to Ometepe Island
  • Day Trip to Laguna de Apoyo
  • Golfing at Guacalito Golf Course
  • Tour of Rum Distillery in Chinandega
  • Surfing
  • Sport Fishing
  • Canopying
     

— NEED-TO-NOTE

  • Everything is all-inclusive except certain top-shelf liquor, spa services, and bullets for the shooting.
  • Property is available for buyout. It’s the perfect place for a small corporate retreat, group of couples, a boys-only/girls-only trip, or even a multi-generational family looking quality time in a unique setting.
  • Each villa & suite comes with its own ATV for personal transportation – this is an off-road vehicle that is very safe.
  • Kid-Friendly – Nekupe offres on-site childcare upon request and offers a range of activities that cater to different ages. For younger kids (6-9) there's horse and bunny feeding, reptile petting, farming, zip-lining, tree-climbing, board gaming and swimming. For teens, there are bike rides, ATV, hiking, swimming and tennis. Though Nekupe does offer kids services, we felt that this was a place more geared towards adults... 

PHOTO: COURTESY OF MUKUL

MUKUL BEACH, GOLF & SPA

www.mukulresort.com

The magical Mukul, the first-ever luxury resort in Nicaragua, lives on the dramatic line where the rainforest meets the ocean. Set above the sand and along a jungle-covered hillside, are 37 bohios & villas where ocean views and private plunge pools are a standard and each are decorated with indigenous materials such as teak and sugarcane, blending effortlessly into the landscape.  

“Mukul” – the Mayan word for “secret” – was and still is a rarefied gem on the coveted Emerald Coast. There is a sense of discretion that prevails in all elements of this place–from the subtle, yet mindfully personalized service to the privacy-ensuring sight lines–Mukul beautifully delivers on this promise. It is quite simply one of the finest beach hotels on the planet: where few rival in its beauty, in its style, and in its design. This spare-no-expense eco-resort does not disappoint and does not come by often.

Mukul Casa Madera Bed.png

 THE EXPERIENCE & ACTIVITIES — 

Mukul is a place where you can kick your feet up for some quality R&R, while having just enough activities so at no moment will you be bored. Explore the pristine jungles, admire the rising cliffs via helicopter rides, visit the charming fishing villages and enjoy Mukul’s Emerald Coast, a blossoming area quickly becoming known around the world as The Destination of the Future. A staff of "Aventura Rangers" familiar with the native flora and fauna is on hand to introduce Mukul guests to the rich nature found within Guacalito’s 1,670-acre reserve.

THE SPA – There are no words to describe this to-die-for spa. Spa Mukul is made up of six private sanctuaries, each individually designed with a unique experience.

SURF – There is arguably no better place to hit the waves at one of Mukul's 17 world-class surfing spots, including the crown jewel Manzanillo Point. In collaboration with TropicSurf, the pioneer of luxury surfing, Mukul offers full-time surfing guidance whether you're a beginner or a master.  

YOGA – If you love yoga, nothing beats the morning yoga sessions at Mukul. Mukul has a roster of in-house and very passionate trained yoga masters, who will take you up to the most beautiful lookout point for yoga each morning. 

GOLF – Play golf at Guacalito, a beautiful oceanfront David McLay Kidd signature 18-hole course.

    BEACH CLUB – Set in and around a towering 85-ft.-wide palapa, the Mukul Beach Club is the heart of Mukul, a gathering place where guests can enjoy snacks by the pool, cocktails in the split-level bar and lounge furnished with sumptuous hand-crafted sofas and chairs, and breakfast, lunch and dinner. 

    KUL KIDS CLUB – The complimentary Kul Kids Program is spectacular and offers a ton of fun, adventurous activities like treasure hunts, water balloon flights, cooking classes, mini-spa treatments, and so much more. Instead of staying inside, the little ones will be on the beach collecting shells, releasing the turtles back into the their natural habitat or heading on a nature hike to see the monkeys. When the sun goes down, Kul Kids continues with the special activities like bonfires on the beach and movie nights. 

    THE RUM –  The Pellas Family owns one of the most renowned rums in the world: Flor de Caña. On property, there’s a really cool rum cellar where you can taste the different aged rums & bottles. For an even more VIP Experience off-property, Mukul will arrange for a tour of the distillery accessible by private helicopter or car. 

    OTHER ACTIVITIES

    • WATER – Kayak & Snorkel, Standup Paddle Board, Fishing, Private Boat Cruise
    • LAND – Hiking, Biking, Tennis, Archery, Turtle Release
    • LOCAL COMMUNITY – Granda, Gigante, Cerro Negro


    — NEED-TO-NOTE — 

    • Prior to your arrival, an "Aura Architect" will contact you and creates a unique in-room ambiance for every guest, with customizable aromatherapy to give the space a unique, personalized fragrance, ambient music, and healthy snacks & elixirs in each room. During your stay, they'll help plan activities for you!


    — BENEFITS OF BOOKING MUKUL WITH ITKE

    • Daily full breakfast, for up to two in room guests served in restaurant
    • Upgrade on arrival, subject to availability
    • For stays in a Bohio: One US $100 resort credit to be utilized during stay (resort credits are not combinable, not valid on room rate, no cash value if not redeemed in full)
    • For stays in a Villa: One US $200 resort credit to be utilized during stay (resort credits are not combinable, not valid on room rate, no cash value if not redeemed in full)
    • Early check-in/late check-out, subject to availability
    • Complimentary Wi-Fi


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