Take a look inside Dominican Republic's greenest luxury resort
As I move from chaturanga into upward dog, a tiny lizard scuttles across my yoga mat.
Not something I’d find in my London vinyasa class but a common sight at the treetop wellness canopy at Club Med Michès, the latest resort to open on the north-east coast of the Dominican Republic.
While boasting the idyllic clichés of any Caribbean getaway (think swaying palm trees and turquoise waters), Michès’ design and sensitivity to the surrounding nature is what sets it apart.
For starters, nothing is built above tree level so as not to mar the landscape as well as offer a more ‘hidden-away-in-the-jungle’ vibe than your average all-inclusive beach holiday.
Care has also been taken to ensure its impact on the environment is minimal, with vegetation that was removed to build it replanted nearby.
In addition, Michès Playa Esmeralda, as it’s fully named (translating to ‘emerald beach’, naturally), is leading the charge for sustainability.
It’s Club Med’s greenest resort yet, pioneering a programme called Bye-Bye Plastics. You’ll see this right from the get-go.
On arrival, I sip my welcome piña colada from a straw made from avocado seeds, which is not only fully biodegradable but way more robust than paper.
Plastic bottles have been banished too, replaced by glass. There will soon be a water filtering and re-bottling room on site to further reduce waste.
This eco-friendly attitude is one of many ways in which Club Med is getting more ‘down with the kids’.
The French company has long had a reputation for being quite the chi-chi, middle-class family type of holiday. However, more of its latest ventures, like Michès, are looking to pique the interest of a younger, hipper crowd.
Take, for instance, its adults-only, natural-water Zen Pool with a swim-up bar and Insta-worthy hammock. Adding to this, the resort offers a great half-day trip to Montaña Redonda, a mountain known for its cliff-hanging swings, offering hair-raising photo opportunities.
There are wellness activities to appease Gen Z and millennials as well, from horse riding on the beach to trapeze lessons and electric surfboarding.
And the food is ace. There are several restaurants within the 93-acre resort, from à la carte dining at chic, urban steakhouse Coal & Copper to the buffet-style main restaurant, Cayuco Market, which is far from the typical all-you-can-eat affair.
Fresh lobster or giant king prawns are grilled most nights and dishes are presented artistically by staff as they’re plated up.
In true Club Med style, there’s a dress code for evening parties, with nightly themes. Monday might be fluorescent get-up and Tuesday jungle fever – it’s endless, brimming with Euro cheesiness. Before you know it, you’ll surrender –
and your inner glam rocker will prevail.
There are also plenty of excursions to open your eyes to the real Dominican Republic. Los Haitises National Park is a particular highlight.
Here, the idea that island time should be spent solely sun- worshipping is turned on its head.
You can explore caves, kayak through the jungle and swim in springs that seductively meet the sea.
Perhaps best of all is the journey there by boat, where you’ll cruise past towering limestone islands covered in lush vegetation and circled by turkey vultures. On a cloudy day you might even spot dolphins.
The resort feels incredibly wild, while doing a great job showcasing the Dominican Republic as one of the most biodiverse islands in the Caribbean. And now you can come and do yoga with the lizards too.
Seven nights all-inclusive at Club Med Michès Playa Esmeralda from £1,505pp, excluding flights, clubmed.co.uk. Indirect return flights to Punta Cana from £334, airfrance.co.uk
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