2 Sides of Vibrant Cancun

DestinationsSmart Dispatches

Mayan Pyramid

Groups can enjoy luxury properties and exciting offsite adventures

It’s easy to get seduced by the soothing, elegant JW Marriott Cancun Resort & Spa and the adjacent CasaMagna Marriott Cancun Resort. They’re located on a visually stunning, ocean-side area of the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico and offer sterling service, comfortable guest rooms, an excellent array of international dining options, plenty of activities and much more.

I was invited to join a media trip to the properties in May, and stayed at the JW Marriott, which features 448 guest rooms and 20,236 sq. ft. of meeting space. The rooms are attractive and spacious, and will become even more appealing after they are renovated during the coming months.

The group toured the properties, created drinks using herbs from the onsite garden, participated in a guacamole-making contest and relaxed on Bali beds overlooking the ocean. We enjoyed meals at Sedona Grill, Mikado Japanese Teppan Yaki, La Capilla Argentine Steakhouse and Gustino Italian Grill.

We also went off property for a day, and what a day it was! After a two-hour drive, we arrived at Tulum, where we visited pre-Columbian Mayan ruins, including the magnificent, 25-foot-tall El Castillo (pictured). Tulum was one of the last cities built and inhabited by the Mayans, and was particularly active between the 13th and 15th centuries. The architecture is typical of Mayan sites on the east coast of the Yucatan Peninsula.

After visiting Tulum, we went to Puerto Aventuras to visit two cenotes, which are sinkholes that form after limestone bedrock collapses, exposing groundwater underneath. One cenote was inside a cave, with dramatic rock formations hanging above it. The other cenote was an open water pool that features cliffs that are ideal for jumping and diving.

I was intrigued by the opportunity, so I walked up to the cliff and jumped. It was an exhilarating experience, and a great way to cool off from the very hot weather!