By Ronda M. Parag
A recent visit to Cancun, Mexico brought me to what many are calling the next tourist destination in Mexico, Costa Mujeres. An easy 21 miles from the Cancun International Airport and 11 miles from downtown Cancun. The Nexus Tour driver mentioned there will be at least 10 new resorts opening up in the next five years. RIU Hotels & Resorts opened up the classic hotel, Riu Dunamar in December, 2017 with 740 rooms and on the adjacent property, the Riu Palace Costa Mujeres, is scheduled to open in November, 2018.
While the 5-star resort does have a large number of rooms, the scale of the property with the freshly painted white, five-story buildings, does not seem imposing. Located on the white sand beaches of Bahia de Mujeres (Bay of Women), the beachfront property offers stunning views of the Caribbean blue waters and a morning sunset. Off in the distance, almost directly across from the property, is Isla Mujeres, a laid back and tranquil island that can be visited on a day-long excursion from the tour company located on-site. The kids might enjoy the off-site excursion to nearby Chac Moc Chuc Lagoon, to search for alligators and boat through the protected mangrove areas.
The 24-hour all inclusive property offers 11 options for eating and drinking, along with room service too. The main restaurant “Isla Mujeres,” offers a buffet option for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Additional specialty restaurants don’t require reservations and are first-come, first-serve that include Italian, Asian, Fusion and a Steak House. The sports bar is open 24 hours. Perhaps the most fun is meeting people at the two swim-up bars, Tequila and Mezcal. The friendly bartenders, serve up a tasty margarita, daiquiri or other speciality drinks from the cocktail menu.
Guests have the choice of lounging or taking part in the afternoon activities around five swimming pools, with a separate children’s pool. There are plenty of sun loungers, umbrellas and towels poolside. Additional lounging chairs and shade cover is available on the beach too. If you want to keep up with an exercise routine, there is a gym and group fitness activities including Zumba, Yoga, etc., that are included and offered daily. A daily schedule shows the planned family-friendly activities for day and evening. Kayaks, a catamaran, wave runners and snorkeling equipment are included for guests use thru ScubaCaribe. For those that want to party into the night, check out the disco, open six nights a week. If you can’t turn it off and feel the need to check email or social media, the complimentary WiFi connects throughout the guest rooms and hotel common space.
Kids age 4-7 and age 8-12, can enjoy RiuLand that offers daytime programs and entertainment, while parents can relax and re-charge. The Splash Water Works is guaranteed to bring laughs and smiles, sliding down one of five slides that empty into a sparkling pool. While the kids are being supervised, it’s a great time to schedule a massage, hair or nail service at the Renova Spa. Spa services are an additional cost, but use of the steam and whirlpool located at the Spa are available to all guests.
For reservations and more information at Riu Dunamar, visit www.riu.com.
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