Text and photos by Ron.
Hi from Buenos Aires!
I thought you might enjoy seeing the photos from our June 2010 holiday in Cancun Mexico. There will be three more parts following this one. I've broken it up into digestible chunks to accommodate your mail server.
This is a far cry from winter in Buenos Aires. The flight from Ezeiza (via Miami) was very pleasant. We left some rather chilly weather and knew that we were headed for the tropics of the Yucatán peninsula.
This is the view from our balcony at the Raintree Club Regina. And yes, the water is quite comfortable.
For the first few days we have done nothing but lay on the beach, reading, and enjoying the fantastic sunshine. The Inizio Restaurant on site has great food, so we've eaten dinner there 3 times already. They also make the best margaritas. The 3 young (19 year old) recreational staff at the pool are a bit annoying. Nothing is more irritating than trying to read a good book with someone calling out BINGO numbers over a loud PA system. Fortunately the game doesn't last too long. We can always get away from it, but then we'd have to hike back to the pool bar for our margaritas. LOL We are surprised at how few people there are vacationing. Perhaps it is off season, but in the Caribbean every season seems to be the same, weather wise. Perhaps it's the economy.
Club Regina now has free WiFi in the rooms. It's coming next year in Cabo. Yeahooo!
About a year or so ago, Raintree, who bought the Club Regina chain from the Westin Hotel chain, had a falling out with the hotel, and broke their relationship completely. The hotel was really ripping off Club Regina by charging an exorbitant fee for the services they provided them, such as maid service, maintenance, toiletries and laundry service. The Club discovered that they could provide those services themselves at less than a third of what the hotel was charging. The effect on us is that now we must pay $10 per day to use the hotel gym. However, Club Regina will soon be building their own gym, and it will be free once again. Also, we must use our credit card or pay cash when we use hotel facilities, like restaurants or the Tobacco/Gift shop. Before the breakup, we could just charge anything we bought there to our room, and at the end of our stay get a 20% rebate on all our purchases.
Club Regina is also in the process of upgrading all it's suites, and the upgrades are pretty nice. Of course we know who is paying for this. Our annual maintenance fees will be increased again in 2011. I just keep telling myself it's only money, and you can't take it with you when you go. LOL So, we may as well enjoy it while it lasts. Like the slogan on the T-Shirt I bought in Margaritaville, "Changes in Lattitude ~ Changes in Attitude." There is a lot to be said for the life style of Jimmy Buffet. I'm sure that if you've travelled anywhere in the Caribbean, you are familiar with this logo:
I like the sun, but can only take it in small doses, then I enjoy the shade of an umbrella.
Today is our 28th Anniversary, and we are going to the JC Capitan restaurant for dinner tonight. They have lobster! Alexa, our hostess for our stay this year, and she is the one who made the reservations for us, told me that we must order the flan, because they make the best flan in the world. I'll let you know if I agree with her assessment.
Pete on the other hand, can sit in the sun for hours on end, and enjoys it immensely.
Monday night we attended the Member's Party. At 5:00PM they took us by van to Carlos N Charley's for drinks and snacks, and of course they had games and contests so they could give away these ridiculous yard long plastic beer glasses, and a few ball caps. LOL The big prize was a 30 minute massage. Pete got to participate, because they played a sort of musical chairs game with 8 girls, and they had to run into the audience and get whatever the game host told them to get, and a man with a mustache was one of those "things", so Pete got drug into the game. It was mildly entertaining. After the party was over, we walked around the mall a little, then started walking back towards our hotel looking for a restaurant to have dinner. I got a bit tired of walking, so we crossed the street and caught a bus, and wouldn't you know it, just a few more (long) blocks and there were some great restaurants. Anyhow, we continued on back to the Westin and had dinner at one of the Westin Hotel restaurants. Hotel row is a very long strip of land, separated from the mainland by a lagoon. We are at one end, and Carlos N Charley's is at the opposite end (see map just below this next photo).
This is us at the Member's Party at Carlos N Charley's.
Here is a map of restaurants on Cancun Island in the Hotel Zone. The Club Regina is at the bottom, at "20", and Carlos N Charley's is at the top where it says Cambalache. Transportation is easy, with buses that run every 5 minutes or so, and for only 7.50 Mexican Pesos (a little over 50˘).
There is a cool book in our room, and this old guy tells a story about Mexico, and the population of the Yucatan peninsula and its culture. We were actually last here in May of 1989, and we stayed at the Casa Maya. We visited Chichen Itza and were really amazed by the Mayan culture. One of the things that really struck me as odd was the game they played, Juego de Pelota, in which the warriors competed to put a ball through a stone hoop along each side of the arena. Nothing wrong with that, except for the fact that the WINNER of the game (according to what our guide told us) was a very revered warrior, and his reward was that he was beheaded, and his head was placed in a sacred sanctuary near the game field. I'm afraid I'd make certain that I was one of the "losers". LOL In playing the game they could only touch the ball with their hips, elbows or knees. Here you see a warrior knocking the ball with his hip towards the hole in the stone ring.
Since they don't have ice in Central America, they can't play ice hockey, but they do have a similar game, using a flaming ball for the puck. I'd hate to forget to duck when the ball comes flying my way. I noticed that they do have leg protection.
The Mayans are typically quite small in stature, so they really go in for feathery costumes which are actually quite impressive, and definitely enlarge their stature. This is the owl man. If I saw him coming towards me in battle, I might be tempted to run the other way.
And anybody wearing the head of a jaguar for a head dress is probably someone to be avoided.
As for me, just give me a nice quiet little farm that grows the Blue Agave plant so I can make tequila, and I'll be satisfied.
That's about it for this chapter. Next I will write about our anniversary dinner. I hope you have enjoyed this first part.