You won't find any big chain resorts, but that doesn't mean you have to sacrifice comfort. In fact, one of Mexico's most luxurious boutique hotels, La Casa Que Canta, is located here. Carved out of the rocky cliffs above Zihuatanejo Bay, between Playa la Ropa and Playa Madera, the cantilevered, terra-cotta-colored buildings, numerous palapa roofs, and folk-art-filled public spaces create a dramatic Mexican-style hideaway that has appealed to numerous privacy-seeking celebrities, including Meg Ryan, Claudia Schiffer, and Jack Nicholson (there are no TVs or clocks in any of the 28 rooms). One of the most sought-after accommodations is the one-bedroom Mexico Lindo suite (#2), with its open-walled living area and an enormous deck where a plunge pool and a hammock await (siesta, anyone?). Since La Casa isn't on the beach (it's a five-minute walk down the hill to la Ropa), the focal point is the blue-mosaic-tiled infinity pool that seemingly hangs off the cliff's edge. Giddy guests fling their arms over the rim, raising them only to summon the waiter for another mango margarita.

If you prefer to stay right on la Ropa, there's the elegant Villa del Sol, whose rooms are spread out in low-rise casitas amongst a landscaped oasis of palm trees, tropical flowers, and lagoons. The one-bedroom lagoon suites feature an open living room that gives way to a large deck with an infinity-edged minipool. Air-conditioned bedrooms with king-size beds and Frette linens, inlaid pebble floors, and marble baths add to the opulence. Guests, who hail mostly from the U.S., Canada, and Europe, are unabashedly pampered: Why not have that piña colada in a hollowed-out coconut delivered to you in the pool? The staff will set a table with linens and china on the sand behind your chaise so you won't even have to leave the shade of your thatched umbrella when you're ready for an alfresco lunch (lobster tacos, perhaps). The concierge can arrange a round of golf in Zihua's more built-up neighbor resort Ixtapa (15 minutes away by taxi), a sunset cruise, or even a trip to Las Gatas, a pristine beach across the bay that's accessible only by boat. But for many guests, daytime activities - other than reading and dozing - are simply wishful thinking.