Mark & Gerard's Mexico Escapades
By Gerard Watson, Mexico Golf Holiday Specialist at Chaka Travel.
Having been to Mexico on four previous occasions I relished returning and I looked forward to showing Mark Marais (Chaka Travel MD) around one of my favourite destinations. We both looked forward to getting out for some winter sun and seeing a wide range of resorts, playing the courses and enjoying the legendary Cancun nightlife.
Days 1 - 2
After leaving a very cold, wet, miserable UK behind and after a
10 hour flight we arrived early evening on the same day into Cancun. We flew with Virgin and
as usual their friendly efficient service meant we were well supplied with both food and drink whilst watching the latest movies on their excellent entertainment system.
On arrival we were greeted by our local representative and had a comfortable 20 minute journey to our first hotel, Secrets The Vine Cancun. On arrival at The Vine we were greeted with a very warm, "Welcome Home", a cool refreshing towel and an ice cold glass of champagne....what a cracking start to our trip! This is a superb 5-star adult's only hotel where we were to spend our first two nights.
Secrets The Vine, Cancun, Mexico
After getting a tour of the hotel by our excellent concierge, Alberto, we were then shown to our rooms, which were Preferred Club Junior Suite Ocean View and they were located on the 21st Floor. The views of the beach and sea from our rooms were memorable!
Mark and I decided to quickly freshen up and make our way down for something to eat and I am pleased to say we chose the Blue Water Grill, Steak Restaurant which is located on the 12th floor. Well, all I can say is, there is nothing that beats tucking into a t-bone steak and beautiful glass of red wine 2 hours after touching down in Cancun!
After dinner we enjoyed the entertainment and atmosphere in and around the lobby bar. We also made sure to sample a drink that Mexico is very famous for .........TEQUILA!
The following morning after breakfast we explored the hotel further and we were very impressed with the outlay and all the facilities on offer. As we had a free afternoon we decided to spend the day at the pool, enjoy the atmosphere and of course sip some excellent ice cold cocktails to battle the warm sunshine.
Mexico resorts and beach
Days 3 - 5
On our third
day we checked out of the excellent Secrets The Vine and made the short
15 minute journey to Moon Palace Golf Resort & Spa.
Moon Palace is a large resort split into 3 lobbies, Sunrise, Nizuc and Moon Grand and we were staying at the Sunrise section.
The hotel also has an excellent 27-hole golf course attached.
After a quick check in we left our luggage in our rooms and made our way to play the first 9 holes, Lakes on the Moon Palace Course and let's just say this was an interesting 9 holes of golf. Whether it was a long journey, not playing much over the winter at home or just bad golf, we didn't exactly light up the course.
The highlight of the day was my 6 iron leaving my grip after my tee shot at the Par 3 and ending up in a tree! I put this down to hot weather and not wearing a golf glove!
Gerard and Juan Looking for Gerard's club
A day of golf better forgot about but on a brighter note the 9 holes we played
just whet our appetites to play the remaining 18 holes!
That evening Mark and I had the pleasure of meeting up with clients of mine, Mel and Joy Wright who were also staying at the Moon Palace. We had such a great time in the company of the Wright's and we ended up having dinner with them all three nights during our stay. It was great to meet clients of mine and the Wright's were as lovely in person as they have been on the phone with me over the last few years. We thoroughly enjoyed their company and are looking forward to seeing them in Belfast for a game of golf and showing them around our wonderful home city (don't believe what you see on the news!)
Mark and Gerard enjoying dinner with the Wrights
The following day Mark and I played the remaining 18 holes, Jungle & Dunes on the Moon Palace course and I am pleased to say they did not disappoint. Our golf also improved thankfully but unfortunately Mark ran away with the win 4&3 so I was left licking my wounds. Whilst I lost a bit of my pride having to play with my shorts around my ankles for not having
driving past the ladies tee on one occasion at least I managed to keep a tight grip on my club and didn't have to search for in the jungle again!
Saturday we had arranged for a site inspection of Le Blanc Resort & Spa which is part of the Palace Resorts Group. Le Blanc is located in the hotel zone in Cancun and Mark and I were both wowed as soon as we entered the lobby. It's a beautiful serene
adults only hotel with an outstanding spa, perfect for couples looking a relaxing getaway, golfers looking for luxury or honeymooners alike.
We also sampled some culinary delights in each of the restaurants and the food was definitely up there with the surroundings. Clients staying at Le Blanc can also avail of the unlimited golf package that Palace Resorts offer on the Moon Palace and Riviera Cancun Courses.
After our Le Blanc visit we did a tour off the area including downtown Cancun where tourists can pick up some great bargains in the many shops in this area. We also visited the infamous nightclub zone where popular venues like Coco Bongos and Senior Frogs are located. Thankfully they were closed when we were there or it could have been a very long day!
Le Blanc Resort, Mexico
Days 6 - 7
The following day we checked out of the Moon Palace and made our way to Dreams Riviera Cancun which was to be our final hotel for our last two nights. Dreams Riviera Cancun is an excellent resort for those looking for a relaxed informal resort and is particularly well suited for families with plenty of activities during the day to suits all ages and superb entertainment at night for the whole family to enjoy.
As we had nothing planned for that afternoon we decided to take advantage of the 30 degree heat relax at the pool and beach.
The following day we had arranged for more hotel inspections so our transport was waiting on us at reception and off we went. Our first stop was the Secrets Silversands Hotel situated in the Riviera Maya. Another fantastic adults only hotel which would be perfect for, honeymooners, groups of friends or couples looking a romantic getaway. The hotel itself is very modern with excellent pool areas where you can enjoy the activities or just kick back and relax.
Next on our list was Secrets Maroma, which I had already had the run down on as my little sister spent 10 days of her honeymoon at this hotel. Well, everything I was told was exactly right and it even exceeded my expectations. It is a truly wonderful hotel which would be perfect for honeymooners or couples looking to celebrate a special occasion in the most beautiful setting. One particular point of note is the beach at Maroma, turquoise blue water, soft white sand, I thought I was in the Bounty Bar advert!
The final hotel we visited was Now Sapphire, a lively 4 star family hotel which would be great for groups, families or a wedding with children. They also had excellent kid's facilities from 3 years right up to 17 years.
Our final day arrived and as we were on a night flight we decided to play one last round of golf. We played the beautiful Grand Coral Course situated in the Riviera Maya, an excellent Nick Price designed course with many fantastic holes. I very pleased to say that my golf game had finally returned and the outcome was a 7&6 demolition of the boss (I'm lucky I am still in a job) so all in all the golf ended up pretty even over the week!
After golf we returned to the hotel and as we had arranged a late checkout we were able to enjoy the last few hours of sunshine before catching our transfer to the airport for our flight home.
In summary it was great to see so many variations of excellent accommodation which will certainly suit all of our clients no matter what their requirements. The food was spectacular and I had some of the best meals I have ever had, from outstanding Osso Buco to mouth watering Fillet Mignon there is something for everyone's taste.
What truly made this trip worthwhile was experiencing the friendliness and warming hospitality of the Mexican people. The hotel staff always greet you with a smile and a, "Buenos Dias" or "Buenos Noches". It makes you want to return to this wonderful destination again!
Thank you for taking the time to read about our trip to Mexico. So if it's a golf trip, honeymoon, family holiday or if you just want to discuss the destination please do not hesitate to contact me.