If you only have a couple of days to escape to the Riviera Maya, the all-inclusive Hard Rock Hotel, located about an hour from Cancun, is a great place to pack in some serious fun. Stay at either the adults-only, luxurious Heaven or the family-friendly Hacienda. Both are filled with one-of-a-kind music memorabilia, live bands and seriously impressive amenities (like a Fender guitar to play in your room).
Morning Order room service for breakfast (because, why not?) and start the morning on your private balcony, relaxing in your hammock, listening to chirping birds and crashing waves while you sip fresh, local coffee.
Meet your shuttle just outside the lobby for a quick drive to Xplor, an adventure park built into the middle of a forest in Xcaret. Activities include soaring along 14 zip lines above natural cenotes and treetops or paddling down the Stalactite River. End with a complimentary healthy lunch.
Afternoon Take the shuttle back to Hard Rock and enjoy some much-deserved relaxation. The adults-only Rock Spa is the Caribbean’s largest, with 75 treatment rooms. Experience the synchronicity massage, which combines Swedish techniques and bed vibrations that flow to the rhythm of an expertly chosen, healing playlist.
Evening Have dinner at Frida, where the bright and homey decor is as authentic as the Mexican cuisine. Order a lime margarita and banana chips with guacamole—made tableside with avocado, goat cheese, pico de gallo and tequila. Then savour cochinita pibil, marinated pork served with warm tortillas—the signature dish of the region.
Morning Start your day with a yoga class in the yoga temple and then head down to the breakfast buffet in your hotel. Spend the morning relaxing by one of the pools or private sea coves.
Afternoon Head to the Hard Rock Music Lab to bring out your inner rock star (it’s offered every Thursday and is included with your stay). Choose from three programs, where you will be instructed by local musicians to play in a band, mix tracks or sing and dance along to classic favourites like “Sweet Home Alabama.” In Jam Band, the group is taught to play instruments and sing. In Spin Session, a local DJ teaches you how to create your own spin on a song by adding beats, effects and vocals. RockTube provides fun rock star costumes for you to don while you dance and lip-sync to create your own music video.
Evening After rehearsal, it’s time for your debut. If you chose Jam Band or Spin Session, you’ll be performing live on stage in front of a packed crowd as you show off your new skills. After, shake it off with a juicy steak at Toro and then end the night at Club Heaven for live music and dancing.
What to Do Along Fifth Avenue in Playa del Carmen, Mexico
Located about an hour from Cancun in Mexico’s Riviera Maya is Playa del Carmen’s bustling Fifth Avenue, known as “La quinta” to locals. On and just off this pedestrian-friendly drag, you’ll find boutique shops, flea-market stalls, great food and buzzing nightlife.