Jacqueline said …

April 2017

# 1 out of 5. What a nice experience. We’ve traveled one month in the Yucatan area in Mexico. This second floor large apartment in Chelem was our favorite. This place is a great place to get away from the hustle and bustle of the touristy areas. Ben and Julie are truly the perfect hosts. They go out of their way literally to make sure their guests have everything they need to settle in and have a pleasant and confortable stay. From the well stocked open space mexican style kitchen and living room furniture to the bed and bathroom linens as well as several other guests amenities, Ben and Julie spared no efforts to accomodate their guests. The only drawback for us would be access to transportation. One needs a vehicle or access to one to come and go from Chelem. We used UBER. The buses or collectivos are not always available. Ben and Julie of course took us in the villages a couple a times to get groceries and provide us with important info where to go to get what we needed. We would definitely recommend this place.

Tanya said …

April 2017

Beautiful apartment, clean with modern finishes. Very secure location and Ben and Julie could are very friendly and helpful. We would definitely stay again!!

Nicole said …

April 2017

 Beautiful place. The dipping pool was really nice and the breeze coming off the water is stupendous. We truly enjoyed our stay here. Ben was really helpful when we had unexpected vehicle troubles and made it very clear that if we needed anything, he was there to help.

Kevin said…

March 2017

Incredible place to stay

 This is the most amazing place to stay in this part of Mexico. The owners, Ben and Julie, go out of their way to share their knowledge of the area, the places to go, and the ways of the Yucatan people. The unit was clean, comfortable, well appointed, and just such a tremendous value that I cannot imagine staying anywhere else next time I return to the area. We so enjoyed Ben and Julie’s company that we took them with us out to dinner on our last night in town. You will be mistaken if you choose some place else!


Jose C. said…

March  2017


Loved it!

Very friendly! The pool is beautiful and amazing! I love the walk by the beach! Definitely stay here when you visit


H S. said…

February 2017


Perfect in every way!


We spent two weeks in this great little rental and were completely satisfied with it. Squeaky clean and new and well equipped. The kitchen has everything you need if you wish to cook-we usually chose to eat at local restaurants or went to Merida for dinners but ate breakfast and lunch at the apartment. The beach is a very short walk away on sandy roads. It is beautiful and wide in this area, we enjoyed hanging out and swimming on calm days, also we regularly walked the beach to Chelem and to Chuburna a couple of times when we were feeling ambitious. A car isn’t necessary unless you really want to explore the area, the combi goes by regularly also Uber is now available in the area, we loved taking the motorcycle taxis home from town as well. The apartment feels safe, there are security bars on the windows and door also there are usually other vacationers and the owners nearby. The property is just beautiful-it is an oasis on a hot Yucatan afternoon and it continues to transform as Ben and Julie add more plants and other improvements. We would absolutely stay again!



Arlene said …

February 2017


Serenity Sands has 2 rental casitas set in a quiet and beautiful enclosed courtyard with a big pool and well kept garden. It is only a 5 minute walk to the beach and it is close to road where there is public transportation. The buses do not seem to run on a frequent and regular basis so it is advisable to have a car. Ben and Julie are both wonderful hosts and are very helpful. We would highly recommend their place for a secluded, relaxing stay away from the beach and it’s high afternoon winds.


Noemi said

January 2017

Ben and Julie offer a really lovely and spacious apartment. It’s well equipped and really comfy. We used the kitchen a lot and all the cozy chill areas. Also the pool is a really big asset! The whole site is really beautiful and neat! The apartment is really close to the beach and a 30 minutes walk to Chelem centre where you find stores and restaurants – or of course you can take a “colectivo” 5 min. ride. Ben and Julie are great hosts and really helpful and courteous! They made our stay really special and we totally recommend all the lodgings they offer!

Laurie  said…
January 2017

Wonderful Accommodation & People

Our stay at Serenity Sands was wonderful. Ben and Julie are amazingly welcoming and gracious hosts. They upgraded us from a basic room (which was very nice) to an apartment with full kitchen, living room and dining room with no extra charge. They were very knowledgable about the area and offered information as requested. We would return to the area again and absolutely stay at this wonderful place again! Thank you, Ben & Julie

N & L said …

December 2016

 Ben and Julie offer a really lovely and spacious apartment. It’s well equipped and really comfy. We used the kitchen a lot and all the cozy chill areas. Also the pool is a really big asset! The whole site is really beautiful and neat! The apartment is really close to the beach and a 30 minutes walk to Chelem centre where you find stores and restaurants – or of course you can take a “colectivo” 5 min. ride. Ben and Julie are great hosts and really helpful and courteous! They made our stay really special and we totally recommend all the lodgings they offer!

 Paul said…

Nov 24, 2016

Wonderful Time, Fabulous Hosts

 Well, visitors can hardly complain about being greeted in the village of Chelem by a procession for the Virgin of Guadalupe and fireworks! Ben says that he didn’t arrange it, but the magic Tinkey touch was everywhere else. Mayan meals, fishing trips, beachwalking, a car tour of the area so that we sort of knew where we were going, a concert by student musicians were just part of the fun. We also learned a lot about building an apartment in Yucatan, from seeing the primitive tools to hearing tales of stops and starts, the whimsies of contractors and workers, to viewing the gorgeous results, designed by Julie. Also siestas, hanging out by the pool, watching the clouds and rain and looking at pink salt and pink flamingos. Highly recommended.

 Dee Dee and Doc said…

August 2016

Great Oasis

 Ben and Julie (and Jake and Topaz) have created a beautiful place to relax. Sitting by the pool under the palapa with Topaz talking to you is priceless, You are also only a short walk to the beach. The only downside was no AC in the bedroom. Fans helped but August in MX is hot! Serenity Sands is located near three towns and there are great shops and restaurants close by. Ben and Julie are wonderful hosts and we look forward to seeing the again!

 Moshe. said…

August 2016

This place is effectively paradise

 The property is fenced in in a very nice neighborhood. There is live music on Fridays and Sundays about two blocks away so that’s something to keep in mind as either a pro or con. The property is absolutely beautiful, there are gorgeous plants throughout, especially the palm trees. The hotel around the corner (where the music is) has decent food but there are better options around. You can go just a few minutes away for some excellent pescado frito or other local dishes (two minute drive, a car is a must). However keep in mind that the locals have a very different idea of hygiene in food preparation. The fresh coconut products from the multitude of street vendors are remarkably good, that is a strong factor in making me want to return, it’s just too pleasant being able to go to these little shops and vendors. As far as the room itself, it’s large with a king size bed, fresh linen, it has a safe, a nightstand on each side of the bed, and a small table. It has bathroom as well with two large towels and two hand towels. The room is part of a hacienda, meaning it has multiple rooms, all separated from each other but connected by a beautiful open area with plants and a nice table, the kitchen area, and a lovely pool. There’s also a washer which Julie was glad to help me with and let me use although you will have to hang your clothes to dry but that’s really not a big deal, they have clothes lines and ~infinite clips to hang items. The pool is great, there are plastic floaty things that you can relax on or for swimming or whatever. Since it’s like two minutes from the beach, basically all the water is saltwater, including the pool but it’s usually not so noticeable although it seems more distinct in the shower than the pool. It’s not a real concern either way, just don’t drink the tap water. You can always go to the hotel and get water/beer/tequila/food, it’s literally a one minute walk (btw you don’t need to walk all the way around to the front, you can enter from the pool side in the back) and they’re glad to have you there. In fact basically everyone, everywhere is glad to have you there. Altogether it’s a very pleasant place and I had a great experience, the only improvement that could be done is the room doesn’t have AC so if you’re coming in the summer, you need to be alright with some serious heat and humidity but everything else is perfect. Ben and Julie are great, the property is beautiful, the area is lovely. I look forward to making the trip again.

Recommended for: People with Disabilities, Families with Young Children, Sightseeing, Girls Getaway, Age 55+, Romantic Getaway, Families with Teenagers.

Sheila said…

February 2016

Great Place

Spent 2 weeks in March in this great beach spot and had a lovely relaxing time. Close to the beach, walk or bike ride to town or sit in the lovely garden with pool. Bikes were provided for our use so we were able to explore Chelem and Chuburna easily. Public transport easy to take if you want to go to Progreso. The place is very clean and comfortable and Ben and Julie are very knowledgable about things to do in the area. Thanks to their suggestion we spent a lovely day out with a local tour company. We did some cooking in the outdoor kitchen but Julie also cooks great meals you can purchase and enjoy in the outdoor dining area. If you need a place to hang out and relax then this is where you want to be! We loved having Topaz the cat on the premises. Safe, clean, affordable. 5 out of 5. Thanks again Ben and Julie.

Gary/Nancy  said…

February 2016

A pefrect week of relaxation

We stayed at Serenity Sands for 7 days in February 2016 and loved every aspect of the property. The gardens are beautiful and the property is well taken care of. It was exactly as advertised and then some. Very relaxing and quiet, only minutes walk to a lovely beach with no crowds and beautiful views of the sunset. The owners, Julie and Ben are great hosts and very accommodating. They go out of their way to make sure that your stay is comfortable and are a vast source for local information. They even drove us to town a few times. Julie’s added touches in our room did not go unnoticed – night light, hair dryer, blanket, lotion, bug spray, hair spray to name a few. The outdoor cooking area and BBQ were perfect for our needs and one night Julie cooked us an amazing meal at a very reasonable cost. We will definitely return when in the area and highly recommend their little piece of paradise to anyone. The town of Chelem is two kilometers away with a small grocery store and a few restaurants, we walked twice and rode the bikes provided once. The town of Churburna was 5 kilometers the opposite direction, we road the bikes there one day and really enjoyed exploring this little visited area with its endless beaches. Progreso, with full amenities was an easy colectivo ride from the main street a block away. You just wait on the road for the vans to drive by and wave them down. It cost us each 10 pesos to go to Progreso. We had one of our best meals out at a restaurant just passed Chelem called “La Playa” right on the beach. There is a bar “La Barcas” close by with live music on weekends that was fun and full of interesting expats from the area.


Mike O. said…

December 2015

Quiet and relaxing.

 My wife and I stayed at Serenity Sands for 7 nights in the beginning of January. We had a very relaxing week hanging around the pool, walking to the beach (which is only a couple blocks away) and checking out the nearby town of Chelem. We spend a few days checking out Yucatan attractions which includes pink flamingo tours, various cenotes, Maya ruins and the beautiful city of Merida. Ben and Julia were great hosts. They spent time answering our questions about the area as they have a good knowledge of whats going on in the area. Our bed was very comfortable. We almost slept too long a couple of nights. There is full use of kitchen facilities which we took advantage of and cooked for ourselves all week which saved us a lot of money not eating out all the time. There are a couple restaurants in town if you don’t like to cook. The town also has a couple of produce markets, a small grocery store, a small pharmacy, a few tortillarillas and of course, a couple of beer stores. It was a great place to stay and at a great price Thanks Ben and Julia!


Carrie and Gabe said…

March 2015

Spring in the Yucatan

Serenity Sands is aptly named. Julie and Ben Tinkey have created a beautiful and restful retreat on Yucatan’s northern shore. Serenity Sands is located on the beach between two small Mexican fishing villages. We loved the vibe of this safe and friendly community. We spent most of our stay either enjoying the swimming pool and gardens at Serenity Sands or swimming and collecting seashells on the beach. Most evenings we walked over to a local joint for our nightly margaritas. A few times we got in the car to do some sight-seeing. We explored rural villages and ancient Mayan ruins, swam in cenotes, watched local artisans make pottery and ate Yucatan cuisine in open air restaurants. A very pleasant surprise was that Julie is an incredibly talented cook. She was offering carry-out dinners three times a week, and they were a treat! On the days when her meals weren’t available, Ben and Julie recommended local restaurants that served delicious fresh seafood at reasonable prices. We had access to a full outdoor kitchen when we wanted to do our own cooking, but with all the good things to eat nearby, the kitchen didn’t get much use. Even if I were on a desert island, I would still want my internet, and Serenity Sands has speedy wireless access. My laptop decided to quit on me while I was staying there and Ben was able to get it running again. Talent doesn’t go unnoticed long in this Yucatan beach community. In the same way that Julie’s talent in the kitchen led to a demand for her carry-out meals, Ben’s knowledge has made him the “go to” guy in the area for computer problems. But as busy as they both are, they always had time for us when we had questions or needed anything. Ben and Julie are wonderful hosts. It was very nice living on the other side of the swimming pool from them for a couple of weeks. We had such a nice time that we added an extra day to our visit and wished it could have been longer still. You can be sure that you will enjoy your stay at Serenity Sands.

Karen S. said…

January 2015

Yucatan 2015

Serenity Sands is a beautiful property! We stayed for about a week in January with our kids (20 and 22 years old). My husband and I shared a very spacious and comfortable room with full bath and a king size bed. The kids’ room was just as comfortable and one slept in a hammock and the other in the king bed. A full kitchen is available in the courtyard so we could prepare meals to eat there or to pack them up for our adventures. The pool in the courtyard is perfect for a cooling dip after a trip to the Mayan ruins or to just float around and relax. Our favorite part of staying at Serenity Sands was waking up in the morning and sitting under the palapa while enjoying a cup of coffee or some fresh fruit! It’s so peaceful to enjoy the light breeze while looking out over the pool and the lovely gardens! The property is a short 5 minute walk from the beach where we spent hours swimming and enjoying the sun. With a short ride, you can go to the Ria and see dozens of flamingos. Merida (the capital of the state) is a 45 minute drive and has everything you might need. There are smaller stores in or nearer Chelem, but if you are looking for big box stores, Merida has them all. Chelem is conveniently located if you want to visit Mayan ruins (Uxmal and Chichen Itza are within about 2 hours). Wear your walking shoes! Cenotes or underground caves are all over the Yucatan too! If you are looking for a quiet, relaxing place to stay, look no further! Julie, Ben and Serenity Sands are the best!