Weather gods decided to play party poopers today. Landing into Cancun was through bumpy cloud cover and reasonable downpour, though the greenery from above was a welcome sight. The immigration process was fairly quick but lines were long. Information received later was that sometimes chartered flights arrive at the same time as commercial flights, which if they do, you just need to be ready for the mass exodus of people waiting at the same time for documentation. The transfer to Hotel Fiesta Americana Condesa was convenient via private cab. I was here for the Cancun Travel Mart - appears so were many others!
Arriving at the hotel resembled the grand entrance to the homes in one of those old Bollywood movies where a sure sign of luxury was this never-ending staircase to the top! The entrance at this hotel is huge, up a series of stairs (though you can take the escalator) and welcomed into their reception area to be checked in. The whole process was very relaxed and I couldn’t contain my happiness at the site of beer offered as a welcome drink. Water is an option too. Here’s where they get all your paperwork done – remember to carry your ID and be ready to do some serious autograph giveaways – they do ensure you are aware of all hotel policies before they give you your VIP wristband which you must wear and clearly display during your stay at the hotel. I believe that’s the way they know you are a hotel guest since this is an all-inclusive affair. Your bags are brought over by porters. Walking through the large common areas was fun – having landed in the evening, most folks were already in party mode. A large bar with wraparound seating occupied the center of this open floor plan. Lots of seating options all around and entry to some of their restaurants were accessible here as well. The area opens directly onto the large swimming pool activity center that the entire hotel is built around. I, of course, chose to head to my room to prepare for the evening’s activities.
Champagne and fruit in the room proved a cherished amenity while the winds still roared outdoors. The view of the beach was fantastic and having a balcony area directly overlooking was nice but of no particular importance today as the storm raged on. I especially appreciated the Welcome Home custom decoration on the second bed in the room – made with colored rice grains for the arrival of each guest. Later found out that a team of two is dedicated to just this chore! From the amenities I saw, I appreciated the rooms having a full length mirror and also the personal toiletries. Funny story – While admiring the colorful packaging for the toiletries, I thought they were named Pina Colada, and wondered how fun that was to have pina colada flavored soap and shampoo. Then closer scrutiny proved my eyes had played a trick on me. The brand was Pineda Covalin. But take a look at the picture and you’ll see how I was fooled.
Evening activities included a visit to the newly opened Hotel Live Aqua Beach Resort Cancun for a tour and private meeting with their COO and CCO. The property plays heavily on its proximity to water and the large water attraction in the lobby is one of the signs. The restaurant spaces are spaciously and tastefully designed. One of their restaurants in fact has seven pillars featuring important Mexican personalities – I quickly recognized Carlos Santana but if you visit, try to recognize the others. The hotel opens onto a pool area that is its focal point but it also overlooks the ocean so you could be enjoying a nice time at the infinity pool while the sea is throwing a tantrum – precisely the scene during this visit. The outdoor dining area here offers a few different options but a feature that caught my eye was an ornate wooden door as we headed back inside. The pathway leading after it was almost like a secret hidden garden. Previously an Asian restaurant space, it is now awaiting a decision on its next avatar.
A look at some of their larger guest rooms had me pining for a tub that fancy – the large sturdy rectangular receptacle rested in the center of the bath area, inviting an audience that refused to leave. Other amenities here included beach bags and slippers. The classic dark brown wood interiors and clean white décor make this a comfortable stay. A champagne reception with the c-suite included a discussion on future plans before we were shown to the launch party held in the largest suite of the hotel – equivalent to a presidential suite or honeymoon suite I would say. The space had its own living and dining area, along with a breakfast bar as well as a private pool/Jacuzzi set-up outdoors. Considering this was at the highest floor, the views were incredible and it certainly showcased the level of privacy one could expect if staying in this part of the property. The evening continued amidst lively banter, overflowing cocktails, passed bites, live DJ and violin performances as well as speeches and fireworks. All guests walked away with a little gift bag containing room slippers looking like rubber duckies – the little yellow duck is a mascot and even the tubs in the hotel were filled with rubber ducks for the occasion – a fun twist to an adult event.