Whoooooooooa Mexico. Sounds so sweet with the sun sinkin low. Moon’s so bright, makes it light up the…okay okay. Enough of the James Taylor. That song always seems to be looped on my brain whenever I jump a plane due south. This trip: Puerto Morelos. Just south of Cancun, as the crow flies. Ca-caw
A lot of smoke and mirrors in this place. Now, hear me out. I am not complaining about luxury. But to be honest, I don’t really need that much to be happy when on holiday. My best trips have always been when I’ve roughed it a bit. So, when I’m shelling out the extra skrilla for a spoon fed vacation, imagine my chagrin when they take my money, but don’t give me the value for it.
Ocean Coral y Turquesa in Puerto Morelos is a time-share owners lovely little slice of store-bought, 3 times processed, apple pie. This massive 3 star resort is tucked away off of a major highway, which makes it easily accessible for days trips, but impossible to leave the compound by foot. There is NOTHING that surrounds this place.
But isn’t that what all time-sharers are looking for? Their own little city nestled on a beach they never set foot on, where everything is within walking distance. 4 pools, countless bars, and all you can eat dining in their restaurants. And eat. And eat. And the drinks. Let us not forget about the drinks.
Well, I did. By day 2 I was on to nothing but water. Very uncharacteristic of Holiday Erin. Shall we dive in a bit deeper, examine this more thoroughly?
1. Alcohol: Corona was the only beer at the ENTIRE resort. <insert puzzled look> Not only was it the only beer, but every glass was watered down and smelled like wet dog. No bottles to be seen.
Mixed drinks: well, they were good if you prefer to drink juice. And I ain’t talking drank. I asked for a Mojito and got simple syrup and mint leaves floating in what appeared to be watered down coconut milk. In the end, I decided the bottled water is what tasted the best.
2. Food: was so awful that I retired to my room after every meal to nosh on the goldfish I brought with me last minute. Oh sweet, golden and crunchy saviors of mine! Mystery meat hamburgers, nachos with radioactive cheese, and hot dogs for lunch?!?!?!
The Mexican restaurant used cream cheese in lieu of sour cream. Tip: does not go well with fajitas. Apparently they thought no one would notice. But you can’t fool a foodie. Seriously. Everything was either out of a can, a box, or a plastic sealed package. I won’t even tell you about my stuffed sea bass…
3. Nighttime entertainment: Now, I am not a resort junkie. The last one I went to was 10 years ago in Puerto Vallarta, and I do remember them having a discoteca. Which, at the time, was heaps of fun. Friday night at Ocean Coral consisted of line dancing to Shania Twain, doing a Conga line to Tequila, and popular songs from the Grease soundtrack. Grease! It was like a tiny microcosm of my own personal hell.
You may be saying, you were in a beautiful resort, why does it take so much to please you? But oh contraire mon fraire. The thing is, if I am paying for all-inclusive, what I get better damn well be good. If it isn’t, and I have to pay for it anyway, well, then I am not so happy. I’d much rather have to pay for each meal and drink if that means I’m actually going to ingest it.
I’m a minimalist by nature, and thus, I travel that way too. Hostels, hole in the wall restaurants where you fill your belly for $2.50, partying til the wee morning hours in an underground disco with the locals…that’s my style playa.
Ocean Coral y Turquesa took that all away from me. It was like a prison. There is only going in – no coming out. And they tried to take my soul, too.
A happier, more positive post is coming about our trip to Tulum, and how we stormed the gates to get a taste of real Mexico.