Published on Thursday, August 2, 2018

Cheeky, sassy, sexy, but not tacky



With a touch of apprehension Alexis Besson checked into the Temptation Cancun Resort, but was soon swept away by the party vibe.




First Impressions: Coined as a 'Playground for Grown-Ups' many people, like me, might feel apprehensive about staying here. I had heard tales of wild party nights at its enormous swim-up bar and was worried it might all be a bit tacky, but thanks to a $65 million refit in 2017 the hotel looks and feels upmarket and glossy. Sharing many design cues from Ibiza's Ushuaia hotel, there's lots of high gloss white and suggestive imagery. The lobby is bold and buzzy and from the moment you open the door of your taxi the upbeat background music and party atmosphere is palpable. The incredibly polite Jose Manuel took us through the week's entertainments and politely ran through house rules (no full nudity, no pics and respectful conduct to other guests), then handed us the cocktail of the day - a delicious Aperol Spitz with a twist.

Location: The hotel is only 20 mins from Cancun Airport. Expect to pay about $40-60 for a private taxi transfer. It's close to downtown Cancun, with its shopping malls and its legendary nightspots Senor Frogs and Coco Bongo, should you want to leave the resort. Also nearby are the eco-archaeological park, Xcaret, and the Cancun Underwater Museum.

Facilities: There's plenty to keep you busy here: two swimming pools (topless is optional), the Tranquil Rose Spa, eight restaurants, five bars, a state-of-the-art gym and a private beach complete with watersports.

Bedrooms: There are eight grades of room so guests should find one that suits their budget and style. All have 48-inch TVs, hair dryers, straighteners, Bluetooth speakers, mini bars (all inclusive), coffee machines, and free wifi. The LED lighting and electronic blinds are a snazzy touch. My 'Trendy Garden View' room overlooked the 'Quiet Pool' and offered a tranquil corner away from the buzz of the main hotel. Those looking to be in the centre of the action should request a 'Tower room' overlooking the aptly named 'Sexy Pool'. Upgrade to a suite and you'll benefit from your own outdoor Jacuzzi. The top of the range 'Temptation Oceanfront Master' suites have a full wrap-around balcony, jacuzzi, hammock, lawn feature and even your own bar, perfect for the seasoned party-goer.


Wining and dining: You'd be forgiven for thinking that food and drink would take a back seat in a hotel that puts so much onus on hedonistic antics, but thankfully the team at Temptation has come up trumps with a choice of eight dining options. For casual bites head to Amores by the 'Sexy Pool'. This Mexican-styled hotspot serves up a range of burgers, pizzas and local cuisine. The Mac and Cheese burritos were delicious and generous. The Asian-inspired Sutra served up a mind-blowing array of fusion delights in sleek sophisticated surroundings. The sushi was truly awesome and the sweet sticky chicken totally moreish. For the full theatre, book into one of the Temaki counters. Sea Flirt offers intimate ocean-side dining. The steaks were truly amazing and it was hard to believe that it's all included in the price. There's also 'She', a couples-only aphrodisiac restaurant, but I didn't get the chance to try it. The breakfast buffet had a wide selection, including mimosas. Nearly everything is included as part of the all-inclusive package. Those with premium wrist bands (which come with an upgraded room) can access a few more premium items on the menu and other exclusive additions can be purchased for a supplement. The Rib Eye steak in Romanza, for example, carried a $30 surcharge. With the high quality of the menus in general, and the fact you can have a rib eye in Sea Flirt for no extra charge, personally I would say there's no need to upgrade.

Leisure time: People come to Temptation to party and this hotel serves up the fun in spades. I particularly enjoyed the Neon party as it comes with some specular theatre. The expertly choreographed performance would give Coco Bongo a run for its money and I was blown away by the effort that my fellow guests went to with their outfits. Other themed nights include a pyjama party and super hero party, but dressing up is optional so don't feel any pressure to do so. A new 'Schoolgirls and Nerds' party night will added this year. During the day, the entertainment continues with a live band performances and DJ sets all taking place around the 'Sexy Pool'.'~¨'~¨

Highs: I loved the spicy but friendly buzz of the whole place, where every guest is a friend you just haven't met yet. I was also very impressed by the inclusive atmosphere, where everyone can join the party regardless of their age, size, or shape.

Lows: If you're hoping for a room in very quiet and peaceful spot (although, why come to Temptation?), make sure you specify this when you make the reservation.

Verdict: This sexy, sassy hotel serves up a truly unique experience. It's cheeky but without the tacky. I look forward to trying out the new addition at Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic, which is due to open in the autumn of 2019.

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