Where Maya meets the 21st century

Sometimes, a client gives us all the pieces and we fit them together. But sometimes, a client like developer Alan Becker comes with passion and an idea and asks us to invent the brand. With Nizuc, we turned an empty stretch of sand at the gateway to Riviera Maya into an ultra-luxury resort that seemed so real, people were trying to make reservations before a single building had gone up.

A Unique Design Language

All you need is a little inspiration. We did our homework, and found Nizuc’s location on ancient Mayan maps (very cool). “Punta Nizuc” translates to "Nose of the Dog”, and from there, we had our inspiration for creating a modern glyph to reference these ancient ties. The resort became “Nizuc”, and our concept was to bring Maya to the 21st Century. We combined the modern—black-and-white—with high-energy imagery that references the warmth of Mexican culture and the unspoiled natural environment. This aesthetic, and the ethos behind it, helped Alan talk about his vision and curate a team of world-class partners to bring Nizuc to life. 

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Talking in Pictures

Story always matters, and this is especially true with Nizuc. It was how we made the destination real during development. Leslie spearheaded an elaborate on-site photo shoot, meticulously crafting the Nizuc lifestyle with two casted models and embedding our branded premiums into the photography. The resulting images made the place seem all the more real and enticing, capturing moments in time and revealing both the natural and luxurious nature of the Nizuc lifestyle. The images were stitched together and became a spirit book (an evocative sales tool), international advertising campaign, and even a short film by the directors of the movie “Babel”.

The Right Message

Behind all of the visible assets exists a brand strategy and positioning that, not to brag, we think anticipated trends in luxury travel. To reach the target customer—adventurous, time-starved, design-savvy—we made Nizuc all about modern, understated luxury, where the emotional experience is just as important as the physical environment. Everything we created celebrated nature, and appealed to guests’ desire for adventure and exposure to local culture, all from the convenience of the Riviera Maya. No matter how beautiful, without the right message driving the brand, Nizuc would not have resonated so deeply. 


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Carbone Smolan Agency combines content, technology, and art to create brand strategy and design systems for the physical and digital worlds

© 2014 Carbone Smolan Agency