Thursday, February 5, 2009

Spring Broken?

In the battle for a dwindling reservoir of tourists, Mexico has left the Caribbean high and dry. My family voted with our frequent-flyer miles and the winner was Cancun. (There were no seats available to any other destination.) We’ll rent a car in March and head south along the coast. With a group including one tween, one teen, and my walker-wielding mother, we wanted multiple rooms with at least one on the ground floor.

None of us has been there before, but the so-called Riviera Maya is second-home to rafts of expats, and hence numerous opportunities for villa rental. I contacted several online agents. One of them—Janice Spate—actually called me at home to talk potential properties. I could tell from her area code that she lives in British Columbia but I didn’t ask for her story.

There are many fine and expensive possibilities on the Yucatan coast but we did not choose any of them, opting instead for a three-bedroom Akumal condo through an outfit named Cancun Steve.

Steve’s website is goofily charming, one of those artifacts of the Internet that disarm and discomfort simultaneously, complete with mouse-over magic tricks. I was curious enough to request his story, and here are the answers I received.

Q: Are you a one-man operation?

A: we have a team. a girl up in New York. 4 of us here in Cancun.

Q: Is your name really Steve?

A: my name is Steve

Q: Do you live in Cancun, or somewhere else?

A: I reside in Cancun

Q: Has the economic downturn affected business as much as it has in the Caribbean, where flights were cut 15%?

A: the recession has effected us all friend

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