Hacienda Temozon could be tagged as the 'Grand Daddy' of the luxury haciendas. At the turn of the 20th century it was considered as one of the most important haciendas of the Yucatan. The sheer scale coupled with the strength of its architecture surrounds you in its bubble of grandoise opulence. This is perhaps the reason Hacienda Temozon has often been the hacienda of choice to entertain dignitaries and presidents of neighbouring countries.
For this family of five, it made quite the extravagant weekend escape. Stretching lawns suggested a stage to serial cartwheel upon, vast verandas voiced invitations to nurse cocktails whilst facing the evening breeze, and the sparkling centrepiece swimming pool spoke softly of spins and swims into various snazzy, show-off-to-your-friends snapshots.
After a leisurely check-in, with a tall glass of iced hibiscus tea in hand, we were lead to our family quarters, passing our own outdoor hot tub and his'n'hers hammocks hitched up in the patio.
The room offered all that was required to match the stately respectability of the hacienda. However, it wasn't the comforts of the room that we were too interested in. As fast as they could manage, the kids were in their swimwear and off we skipped towards the picture perfect pool.
I have been asked, if when we stay at such luxurious places, we find the need to rein in the kids a little. Luckily, our kids are pretty used to the routine of check-in, and the rules of respecting other guests and their right to a relaxing atmosphere. Plus, I see nothing wrong with the kids squealing with delight and excitement. It's quite beautiful really. And in Mexico, this is (in my experience) a universal truth. Hacienda Temozon was no exception. Whether entertaining Presidents or the six-and-under crowd, the message was clear, 'Relax, slow down, and enjoy'.
As recommended by the welcome pack, we took the short drive to Hacienda Ochil to enjoy an extensive and delicious Yucatecan buffet. A working hacienda mini train pulled our 'truc' to the dining area where I admired gorgeous Moorish inspired architecture whilst the kids splashed around water features and ran up and down the amphitheatre. Long tables offered panuchos, poc-chuc, cochinita pibil, sopa de lima, relleno negro, dulce de papaya. You're not familiar with these dishes? Visit the Yucatan and get familiar with them! They are all so yummy!!
Returning to Temozon meant returning to the stunning pool. Did that sound like a complaint? Excuse me, that was not my intention. But before that, I headed to reception to request that the hot tub be filled at the suite to coincide with a session for a Mayan massage at the Spa. The kids got more fun in the water before slipping into pajamas and I received a blissful hour of pampering at the hands of Lucia with her range of natural ingredient lotions. Heaven.
The next morning some of us were up early, so we crept out to find a gardener and asked for some guidance on Yucatecan birdwatching. Roberto led us through a back exit and into the small and quaint village that surrounds the hacienda. He pointed at flapping colours up in almond trees that were fenced in by stone walls, orioles, flycatchers, woodpeckers and mot-mots. The boys and I were happy to watch proud displays of morning flights, often not needing the binoculars that Roberto hung about our necks.
Bidding Roberto 'Buen dia' we returned to our suite to find we had lost track of time. We had a date to keep with a mule... The hacienda property boasts the fortune of Cenote Xaca Mucuhi. The sinkhole is situated 3km from the hotel and a mule-pulled wagon follows the iron tracks to the mouth of the crystalline waters. The 30 minute ride out to the cenote felt timeless as it rocked us to a relaxed rhythm and sent my mind into a slow-paced harmony with my surroundings.
There was a secure but steep ladder to descend in order to reach the platform from which to dive into the clear cenote waters. One of my six-year-olds made it perfectly clear that he would not be using the ladder. He is not keen on heights. My three-year-old did not flinch at all whilst stepping down. I stayed beside my boy at the top whilst three of the five of us enjoyed a splash and a swim in the fresh waters below.
The return journey on the wagon soothed a disappointed child into forgiveness, with its sway and its stop right in front of the sensational swimming pool. High-Five to Temozon!!
Located just 50km north of the Mayan ruins of Uxmal and 50km south of the magnificent city of Merida (as well as being close to various other ruins on the 'Puuc Route' and more cenotes than you could visit in one trip), Hacienda Temozon makes an excellent choice to explore the region. That's if you choose to leave its hypnotic grandeur...