Saturday, December 11, 2010

Mazatlan Fun and Pampering

It was one of those days where I couldn’t possible deny that I have a fun job and Mazatlan is the perfect place to have some fun!

We’ve had a bit of fog that comes and goes, blocking the sun a bit, but it’s still in the 70s with absolutely no chance of rain (or snow, like they are having back home), so I am not about to complain about not perfect weather.  My trusted guides Maria Elena of the Mazatlan Hotel Association and Julio of Pronatours took me to the Cenaduria La Regional, where I had an authentic Mexican breakfast of Panqueqes, a rolled pancake with cinnamon and sugar, and Chilaquiles Rojas, fried squares of tortillas in a sauce with salsa and cheese.  It was tasty and definitely filled me up for our trip to the aquarium.

The Mazatlan Aquarium is tiny by the U.S. standards, but they are currently under construction in a number of areas, including a large shark exhibit.  We enjoyed the sea lion show and walked around a bit, checking out the turtles, alligators, stingrays, sharks and other native fish to the California Gulf.  The aquarium also has a large bird section, and the parrots were chirping away in and out of the theater they performed in.

We had a bit of free time, so Maria Elena took me to one of her favorite stores, Cielito Lindo, where I saw more silver jewelry than one can imagine in their wildest dreams!  It actually took me over an hour to go through it all and pick out some earrings for holiday gifts.   We were still full from breakfast so we decided to skip lunch and head straight to the Riu Emerald Bay’s Revova Spa, where I had the terrible job of picking whatever treatments I wanted!

I spent nearly three hours at the spa, enjoying a Mango-Passion Fruit Scrub, followed by a wrap in the same luscious scent.  As my muscles relaxed and my skin suddenly transformed to ten years younger (OK, maybe I’m taking the anti-aging thing a bit too far), I dosed off a bit.  I awakened to a glass of green tea and my therapist telling me my first treatment was over and she was beginning the massage.  I didn’t think it was possible to relax more, but I did, through the Swedish massage and then my facial.

When I left the spa, I headed to one of Riu’s six restaurants to grab a slice of pizza since I had skipped lunch.  I made it down to the beach for the first time on my trip.  It is a beautiful beach at the Riu Emerald Bay and even though it was only for 10 minutes, I got to see this incredible sunset.

I enjoyed the sunset for a bit before getting ready to head to Machado Plaza, which I had discovered on my first full day in Mazatlan.  This is where to be at night, with outdoor Mexican style cafes, live music, restaurants, bars and the Angela Pealta Theater.  It was there that I saw “El Cascanueces” ballet, better known to Americans as “The Nutcracker.”  The dancing was beautiful and I enjoyed the old theater, with its balcony’s and large stage.

We then had dinner at Las Brasas, feasting on guacamole, cheese and chips, followed by BBQ Chicken.  I also had a delicious wine that turned out to be a Blanc de Blanc by J.P Chenet, ironically, a French company.  From Machado Plaza, Maria Elena wanted to take me to one of her favorite local bars so we headed to El Mil Amores for some Mexican Karaoke and cosmopolitans.

I got back to the Riu Emerald Bay well after midnight, glad that Saturday was not an early day, but it’s an important one as I have some spirits tasting on the schedule!

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