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Hotel Review: Casa Kal-Mar, Zipolite

On the Pacific coast of Oaxaca state, there is a small beach town called Zipolite. Off the typical tourist trail, with Mexico’s only official nude beach, it’s long been popular with backpackers, artists, and counter-culture aficionados. And up on a hill, a short walk from the northern end of the beach, there is a bed and breakfast that looks out to the ocean and down across the entire stretch of Zipolite’s sandy beach: Casa Kal-Mar. If you’re looking for a place to stay in Zipolite but you don’t want to be in the middle of its non-stop beach party, Casa Kal-Mar is a great option. I’ll share some highlights from my stay. 

There are affiliate links on this page to book Casa Kal-Mar because I would totally endorse that. But I paid for my visit myself at full price, received no compensation from them, and they didn’t know I would be writing about my experience.


Breakfasts at Casa Kal-Mar start the day right

Every morning there was fresh fruit with yogurt and granola, fruit juice, coffee, and then a hot, freshly prepared main breakfast course you could customize. And, almost every day of my stay in February, while all of us guests ate breakfasts at the large table by the pool, we watched whales splashing and breaching out in the Pacific.  

As readers of this Guide will know, I love breakfasts in Mexico. Enjoying breakfast with fellow adventurers (the whales) and the other guests at Casa Kal-Mar was something I really appreciated. Many of the guests had stayed there before. One couple was on their annual trip to Casa Kal-Mar. There were a few other digital nomads while I was there as well. It definitely feels like staying at your own big beach house.

Sipping mezcal by Casa Kal-Mar's infinity pool in the moonlight

The pool is good. It’s nice and deep, so it was possible to get a workout in it. The view hanging off the side is beautiful at any time of day. Watch the whales in the morning. Float in the sun during the day. Watch the stars at night burst over the ocean like fireworks. 

There are plush sofas and tables around the deck and open-air kitchen. There’s an honor bar with a selection of local mezcals straight from the producers, in plain glass bottles with just a hand-written sticker to let you know what type of mezcal. They were excellent. The kind of mezcals you can sit there for an hour sipping, listening to the waves crashing on rocky Shrimp Beach below.

A glass of mezcal on a table beside Casa Kal-Mar's infinity pool, at night. The ocean is dark but there is a bright star twinkling about the waves, in the dark blue sky.

Reviewing the rooms at Casa Kal-Mar

I stayed in one of the pool-side rooms, which was $94 USD per night. There are also several suites around the building, which have more privacy, and their own terraces. The Deluxe Suite on the top floor, looking out over all of Zipolite and the ocean, at $165 per night, with its own kitchenette, living room, balcony, and a private terrace, is a very good deal. Check out the photos on Booking by clicking on the suite’s name: Casa Kal-Mar Deluxe Suite

The pool side room wasn’t as much space as I usually like in a room. I couldn’t do my hotel room HIIT workouts there. But it wasn’t necessary. There was always space to sit around the pool and several tables for doing work on my laptop. The bathroom in my room was spacious and the white tiled shower had plenty of space and hot water.

There’s also a dog and two very relaxed cats that offer daily masterclasses on how to do nothing.

The sun setting behind the infinity pool at Casa Kal-Mar, in Zipolite. The entrances to the poolside rooms are visible on the right side of the image.
The pool-side rooms at Casa Kal-Mar were excellent. There were no issues with noise or comfort. But next time, I'd opt for the suite above them.
A cat lying on a table beside a replica statue of a jaguar carving. The cat is asleep, one paw over its head, the others flopping out on the table
If you've forgotten proper vacationing technique, the cats at Casa Kal-Mar are happy to educate you.

Is Casa Kal-Mar good for digital nomads?

I was on vacation, so I didn’t push the limits here much, but I did run a speed test, and there was a couple there I spoke with, who were working their jobs back in New York as though they were at home. One of them ran a meeting beside the pool while I was swimming in it. I tried not to make any loud splashing noises. 

For the internet speed test, I got around 11 Mb/s down, and just under 4 Mb/s up. That’s typical for the region. There’s not great internet on the Pacific coast of Oaxaca. So it’s not ideal if your focus is livestreaming or you want HD quality video calls. But if you’re looking for a big table to work, with perfect weather, a pool, a stunning view of the ocean, great mezcal on hand, and you just need access to email and your work documents, then this is an excellent location for some digital doing.

Is Casa Kal-Mar convenient for accessing Zipolite?

If you want to stay in Zipolite, but not right in the action on the beach, then Casa Kal-Mar is perfect. You can visit the town when you want, but also have your own private oasis.

There is a foot path that takes you from Casa Kal-Mar down to the streets of Zipolite, right by El Alquimista, the Mezcaleria Gota Gorda, and one of the best-rated restaurants in town, La Providencia. It’s a 10 minute walk down, along a path that serves several B&Bs. There are a lot of stairs on the path. 

Would I stay at Casa Kal-Mar again?

Yes, without hesitation. I would be happy to stay at Casa Kal-Mar again. Check it out: Casa Kal-Mar

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