Dispatch, Cancun: Move over, spring break

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Eager to see Cancun as more than a spring break destination, Travel Weekly’s Jenny Hart headed to the JW Marriott Cancun Resort & Spa for a sponsored trip highlighting local luxury.

I had been to Cancun once before as a child, but now in my early 20s, I had come to associate the Mexican city with wild spring break trips.

It is a common mindset, and the city embraces its party reputation. It certainly is one way to experience Cancun, but the city has other qualities that lure travelers, such as the opportunity for a luxurious vacation.

Balinese daybed, JW Marriott Cancun

The JW Marriott, with its high ceilings and gold accents, bore no resemblance to the Cancun hotels I had seen on MTV and heard about from my peers. The interior design, as well as the ease of check-in and the graciousness of the front desk employees, told me I was in for more than a Caribbean beach vacation.

I felt like Dorothy arriving in Oz. “Toto, we’re not on spring break anymore.”

The lobby bar was bustling and energetic as guests crowded around television screens to watch the World Cup championship. Valuing relaxation over fútbol, and wanting to experience more luxury, I clicked my imaginary ruby slippers and headed outside — and discovered the resort’s new Balinese daybeds.

Wary of the sun eating up what energy I had left, I opted for the sights and sounds of the sea from one of the bamboo-covered lounge spaces.

As I let my body melt into the daybed’s cushions, I was immediately greeted by a waiter, who took my food and drink order. Fried calamari and a frozen margarita were delivered moments later, and I spent the rest of the afternoon comfortably indulging in a book and the warm salt air.

I was far from MTV’s spring break.

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