Rolling and tumbling at Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya

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The 20,000-square-foot Camp Woodward facility at the Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya includes a skate park.
The 20,000-square-foot Camp Woodward facility at the Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya includes a skate park.

I twisted my body in the air, my arms hugged against my chest and my legs flexed tightly, before landing to safety in the squishy-squashy foam pit.



I do it again. And again. And again.

Adrenaline coursing through my body, the repetitive movements marked the first time in nearly two decades that I tried to learn a new gymnastics skill. And it was all within the low-key confines of a Riviera Maya beach resort.

Built for novices as well as world-class athletes, the newly opened Camp Woodward at the Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya offers a new activity for beach-going visitors, both young and old.

At 29,000 square feet, the facility includes skateboarding and BMX parks; tumbling floor and foam pit; and a cafe and snack bar.

The opening brought out a who's who of BMX and skateboarding athletes, including Tony Hawk, Brazilian street skateboarder Leticia Bufoni and professional BMX rider Daniel Dhers.

Hawk said during a press conference at the opening of the facility that he enjoyed watching his kids play. In fact, they asked when they would return to the facility.

"I think it's going to elevate and heighten the awareness for Mexican skaters," Hawk said.

Dhers said Camp Woodward will elevate the sport, specifically in Latin America.

An aerial view of the 1,264-room all-inclusive Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya, which is divided into all-ages and adults-only sections.
An aerial view of the 1,264-room all-inclusive Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya, which is divided into all-ages and adults-only sections.

Ashe Tembe, vice president of global field sales for AIC Hotel Group, said the company's mantra is to deliver an experience that is different from what everyone else is providing.

"With Woodward, we're offering something no one can get anywhere else in the all-inclusive market," Tembe said. "Many resorts have waterparks, which we do, as well, but no one has an action sports and lifestyle facility."

The Hard Rock brand stands out because everything is based on music, Tembe said.

"Everyone loves music — whether it's a child to a grown adult, it makes you happy," Tembe said. "We plug you into music through our weddings, our events, through Woodward and Music Lab, the Little BigClub, even in your rooms."

The Music Lab is a free interactive experience divided into three classes: Jam Band, Mix and RockTube.

With 1,264 rooms, the all-inclusive Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya is split into two sections: Heaven is for adults only, while Hacienda is for families. Heaven includes the resort's signature Rock Spa, with 75 treatment rooms. The resort also includes four restaurants and three bars and lounges. As with all Hard Rocks, memorabilia from some of the best-known musicians is peppered throughout the resort.

Rates begin at $450 per night, double. Visit www.hrhrivieramaya.com.

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