Category: Reviews

The new Ora “oral sex toy” from Lelo. Worth checking out.

Back in the 1990’s one of the best sex toys in the world was something that looked like an 18-inch replica of Gene Simmon’s tongue. Invented by a housewife with five kids in the suburbs of Toronto The Tongue by Lady Calston toys was something completely new in the area of women’s romance items. “The idea came to me in the middle of the night” said Darryl Brown, the inventor, during an interview with me in 1993. “Women didn’t need a vibrating penis, what we wanted was a tongue.” She requested that her engineering husband design and manufacture it for women and it was the subject of a number of articles including one in Playgirl (back when people read Playgirl), and Cosmo.
It was funny looking, loud and undulated in a strange way. It was slightly off putting with a large nubby cow-like tongue at the end. But it was the closest thing I had ever found to replicate oral sex. Until now! the tongue

It turns out that just this month LELO launched in the U.S. a new oral-sex simulator that mimics a tongue’s movement with a little “flicking button”. ORA, the newest addition to the Swedish LELO luxury product line is a slight departure from the brand’s typical renditions of couples’ vibrators and “for her” stimulators.
There are so many different kinds of sex toys for women. Walk into any sex shop and you’ll see walls of toys in all colors, shapes and with types of vibration. Women are the focus of the sex toy industry, as opposed to male toys. Male toys are all variations on a tube and a hole with the occasional ring thrown in. But what should women choose when looking for a new toy? If you are a woman who enjoys oral sex (and who doesn’t?), you might want to look into the new Ora to add to your toy collection. This new product is definitely something beyond the same old vibration toy.

Lelo makes sturdy, well-made toys with that usual Swedish practicality. This continues with the Ora. It’s small, circular and easy to handle. It is rechargeable and it comes in a fetching purple color. It both vibrates gently and has a slight bulge at the bottom that moves back and forth in a flicking motion. Place it against your clitoris for any length of time and I guarantee it will start your motor. It is soft enough to be a first toy for women who are little alarmed by the size of most vaginal toys. It certainly doesn’t have the zero to sixty energy of a magic wand or pocket rocket variation, but for a new, unique toy it is a very fun addition to an inquiring woman’s toybox. It certainly held my attention.

The best new Fall date night suggestions. Especially if you live in Ottawa

 

Top new date nights in Ottawa, Fall 2013

1.     Nature Nocturn. Friday nights at the Museum of Nature. $20 from  8 to midnight. Starts Sept 20 and runs until May 23rd once a month.  Get tickets in advance at nature.ca/nocturne. Bands, themes (including Star Wars, and The Arctic), food wine and friends.

 

2.     The Tribe pool and House parties. Nudist/lifestyle friendly pool parties outside of Almonte that has a potluck, prizes and very, very interesting scenery. If you are looking for a naughty community this is it. The hosts, F and Wayne are gracious (protective if you need it) and run a great bi-monthly Saturday party for couples who want to walk on the wild side. Tell them I sent you (they will make sure you get the complete tour and are taken “under wing” a bit). Write me and I’ll send you the contact info.

September 21st –  George’s Pig Roast BBQ      (Pool Closer)  

October  5th –     Disco Party
October 26th  –   Bark at the Moon   (Hallowe’en)

November 9th –   Seven Deadly Sins    

November 23rd –   Starry Night         (Van Gogh’ s inspiration)

 December 7th –    XXX   Dutch Christmas   

 December 31st   –    A Tribal New-Year’s Eve! 

 

3   Rockabilly burlesque. Ottawa’s longest running burlesque troop. They had an information night September 14th, and their annual zombie Halloween evening is coming up. It’s perfect for couples. Thursday, October 31st – 9pm $10 adv
4th Annual Zombie Strippers Halloween Show w/ Rockabilly Burlesque, Fevers, The Mansfield Brothers, MC Greg Houston & more

https://www.facebook.com/events/173142002874785

 

Other Burlesque troops to watch are Capital Tease, Sin Sisters, and Sexual Overtones.

4.      Try Milestone’s Wednesday date night. $50 for 2. They have a caramel, gingered apple crisp which is best shared and without panties. Just saying….

 

5.      I like the Fall fairs for Ferris wheel rides, caramel apples, and cute, fuzzy bunnies at the petting barn. The Richmond Fair is on this weekend, Carp Fair is next weekend and so on. Get out, hold hands and watch wear you step. Smile.

 

6.      Fall football games on Saturday afternoon. Many of us are Carleton and Ottawa U alumni (Go Ravens!) and this is the first year that Carleton’s much missed football team is back. Check out the listings for both Ottawa U and Carleton Athletics and carry on a rivalry with your sweetie if they went out of town for school. Spif still has is purple and silver Western Mustangs jersey 25 years later. Find info at  http://www.geegees.ca/, and http://goravens.carleton.ca/teams/football/

 

7.       Venus Envy classes. They have ones coming up that include Bigger Orgasms for her, Lessons in Monogamy, and the big Impact (light to not-so-light paddling). Get more info at http://venusenvy.ca/schedule/workshops/ottawa

8.       Tantric Sex Classes. Find out what all the buzz is about! MC and her husband are up and running with their new tantric sex workshops!  Do it in a PG 13 forum with grace, and meditation. Perfect for the partner that needs to be nudged gently into sensuous date nights.  More info at: http://www.lemonbliss.com/sexibliss-for-couples/

9.       Camp Fortune Ziplining. Anything that gets your adrenaline up qualifies as a great date night. Ziplining safely 25 minutes outside of the City is a perfect outing. You can then go and soak in the hotsprings at Le Nordik in the area as well. A little more money, $17 per person but you can’t beat it for the experience. http://campfortune.com/summer/welcome-summer/. Make a reservation at The Le Nordik  at lenordik.com/en/. I’ve written both the ziplining and Le Nordik to see what couples offers they can suggest for my listeners. I’ll keep you posted. J

10.   Spirit the Halloween Store.  I love Halloween and think these stores that open in September until November 1st are great date nights with your sweetie. They have lost of zombie buttons you can push for cool animatronics.  You can dress up as any fantasy in skanky costumes, and the change rooms are big enough for two. Any props you might require for your year (you can start a tickle trunk of inexpensive sex dress up gear) can be had. Their website offers a 20% off coupon at www.spirithalloween.com that will make anything that catches your eye affordable!

So Valentine’s Day is Thursday (tomorrow eek!). Don’t panic.

valentines2I meet many people who think that Valentine’s Day is an over rated commercial Hallmark holiday. I think Valentine’s Day can be magic. Maybe I’m a little wide eyed and that I still believe in romance (despite my daily mediation with struggling couples). Valentine’s day is the day of the year when you stop and say “I picked you. You are special. And I would do it all over again. February 14th can be a reminder to stop and attend to your relationship. I see so many couples who have forgotten to make their relationships a priority. Given the craziness of daily life, too many couples push their relationships to the bottom of the pile. By the time I see them in my office, the intimacy they have always counted on has fallen off the rails simply to lack of attention. Relationships take mindfulness and work.

I love this list of ideas about ways to be mindful about your relationship for no money. There are little reminders to give you that necessary push, even if its not mid February.

1. Create a Game Night
Avoid yet another evening spent on the couch and host a game night this Valentine’s Day. Whether it’s a mellow game of Scrabble or a high-intensity round of Texas Hold ‘Em, you’ll enjoy a little friendly competition with your date.
2. Head to the Playground
Skip the pricey restaurant and head to the playground for some kid-like fun. Compete on the swingset or see who can hold out the longest on the merry-go-round.
3. Volunteer Together
Valentine’s Day seems to be all about what you’re doing for your special someone. Why not collaborate and do something for others instead? Soup kitchens and nursery homes are always looking for a few good volunteers, so spend your Feb. 14 brightening someone else’s day.
4. Make S’Mores
Forget chocolate-covered strawberries; s’mores are where it’s at this Valentine’s Day! Roast marshmallows over your kitchen stove, expertly melt chocolate in the microwave and create a multi-layered, gooey treat for your lover.
5. Bring the Spa Home
Spas and salons will be brimming with lovey-dovey couples this Valentine’s Day, but you can skip the crowds and create a better experience at home. Gather your candles, towels and favorite CDs and prepare a steamy bath. Complete the experience with a couples massage.
6. Get Touristy
Despite how long you’ve lived in your current city, there are likely several hidden gems you haven’t yet experienced. Stop by the local visitor’s center with your date and inquire about free things to do in your community, then hit the road toward discovery.
7. Host a Movie Night
Host a movie night and ask friends to bring their favorite snack to share. Peruse your DVD collection for a funny or thought-provoking flick and leave the tear-jerkers for just the two of you.
8. Relive Storytime
Open a bottle of wine or pop the top on your favorite brew and settle in for an evening of storytelling. Share passages from your favorite books or pick up your favorite childhood classics from the local library.
9. Cook Dinner Together
Cooking a meal for your loved one has long been a Valentine’s Day tradition, but why not prepare something together? Challenge each other to create a tasty meal out of items you already have in your pantry and toast to your resourcefulness.
10. Host a Wine Tasting
Tasting flights will cost you a pretty penny at fancy restaurants, but you can bring the experience home for less. Ask friends to bring a bottle of wine and their favorite snack pairing and enjoy an intellectual discussion about tannins and undercurrents.

Only 3 more weeks. Here are my 2013 best Valentine’s gift ideas.

valentinesValentine’s Day is only second to Halloween (and oh how I love Halloween) as my favourite holiday. Maybe its the SpongeBob in me. The geeky, nerdy, sappy longing to tell my sweetie that I would do it all over again. Although it can be a tad overly commercial Valentine’s Day should be a sure thing in terms of romance and sex. So what should give this Valentine’s Day? It turns out that that the latest stats says that the most popular gifts this Valentine’s Day aren’t what you think.

According to internal Ebay sales data from its 2012 Valentine’s Day promotion shows the most popular gifts for loved ones are actually:

1. Clothing and accessories (30% of all sales)

2. Travel gifts or experiences (15% of all sales)

3. Consumer electronics (8% of all sales) followed equally by health and beauty products (this means something battery operated to my way of thinking).

So what does that mean for wayward lovers? I tried to keep this list in mind when coming up with my top items for 2013.

~Chocolate fountains. Nothing says cool electronics and amazing chocolate than one of those cascading fountains. I found mine on kijiji cheap but in Ottawa we even have a chocolate fountain store at
www.capitalchocolatefountains.ca

~Je Joue MiMi Rechargable egg-shaped Vibe.One of the most powerful clitoral vibrators on the market the MiMi is in a league of its own. Waterproof, powerful, rechargeable and beautifully packaged, this smooth and ergonomic vibe is ideal for her solo use and also incredibly easy to use together.

~Smitten Mitten. A Valentine’s favourite this personal item has been updated this year. A warm, fussy mitten that allows you to hold hands (and stay warm) all at once. A little schmaltzy but its cheap and you’ll get loads of brownie points.

~American Eagle underwear. Although I usually prefer to go commando, the AE underwear may simply be the most comfortable pair of skivvies I’ve ever tried. The fit, they hug the right places, they are sexy AND comfortable. Available for both genders, I loved their pink stripped ones. $16.95 a pair but they won’t have you uncomfotably fixing yourself during business meetings.

~A jar of unpasteurized honey. I just finished the book The Blue Zones about the populations in the world that live the longest. One of the consistent secret was a daily spoonful of local honey. I buy mine from Diane at sweet bee in Beckwith Township. It is also one of the ingredients in my Libido Diet. Just saying…

~A weekend get away. I found a flight recently for $85 each way on Westjet on a Thursday to Sunday night(INCLUDING TAXES!!!!) to Orlando. I love Orlando, home of the discount hotels. You can have a cheap but special long weekend, for $150 a weekend including breakfast. I book through redtag.ca, and I am always watching the fairs on Westjet. Believe it or not, it’s less money than money than a road trip to Toronto. Give it some thought. Holiday sex is always the best, and any relationship can use a few day get away.

The magic Banana. The new vaginal exerciser that is both yellow and “green”.

What’s new in sex toys? An environmentally sound, non-vibrating loop that tightens you up while it stimulates your G spot. Called The Magic Banana, it’s a device designed by Ontario based fine artist and yoga instructor Janeson Rayne after 30 years of research. It helps you tighten both the internal and external vaginal muscles, and prevents the need for those adult diapers in the future. The G spot can be elusive, but using basic muscle principles, tightening up those hard-to-reach muscles can ensure a more powerful orgasm.

The magic banana is defined as a self-discovery champion, designed by a woman for women

The Magic Banana® responds directly and immediately to your muscles, and works in harmony with your own movement. The flexible loop contracts and releases in conjunction with your inner muscles (‘the magical muscles’). You can insert and hold The Magic Banana® inside and squeeze against it pulsing on and off with your muscles or move it back and forth to experience completely unique rippling sensations, discovering areas you may not have even known existed! The loop of The Magic Banana® with its signature subtle curve is designed to reach and stimulate the G-spot.

How to use the Magic Banana

1. For first-timers, definitely lubricate the Magic Banana. It might also be a good idea to lubricate the vaginal area. Be sure to relax and allow yourself the necessary privacy.

2. Insert the Magic Banana, with the curve of the loop facing up. You will have to squeeze it so that it will fit; the initial size of the Magic Banana will seem daunting and large otherwise. With practice, it will get easier.

3. Once inserted, the Magic Banana will expand and press against the vaginal walls, which at first, might feel a bit awkward.

4. If you’re looking to improve the strength of your vaginal muscles, contract and relax the muscles against the resistance created by the Magic Banana.

5. If you’re looking to explore your G-spot, move the Magic Banana in and out. The loop will massage the soft tissue that makes up the G-spot.

—Source: magicbanana.com and Janeson Rayne

This banana is no ordinary fruit.

The Magic Banana, created by Kingston artist and yoga instructor, Janeson Rayne, BFA ’97, has
steadily gained in popularity among women since it first hit the market in 2000.

The Magic Banana is available online, at select specialty shops in North America and at the Sexual
Health Resource Centre (SHRC) at Queen’s, which is located in room 223 in clubs space in the JDUC.

G Boutique, a female-friendly shop in Chicago, has recently sold its 700th Magic Banana, according to Rayne. The store has carried her product for three years. The SHRC declined to comment on how many Magic Bananas have been sold. The device is sold under two different names—although still the same product—reflecting its two different uses. The Magic Banana is advertised as a female exploration tool, whereas its sister, the KLoop, is advertised as an aid in curing incontinence, which occurs when the vaginal muscles lose their elasticity.

Rayne said because the use of her product is not immediately apparent, it has added appeal.

“It is non-phallic and it is discrete,” Rayne said.

It’s called the Magic Banana because the curve of the loop is such that it creates the silhouette of that curvaceous fruit. Although at first glance it seems rather large, the flexibility of the Magic Banana allows for it to be bent and contorted for insertion into the vagina.

“You can move it manually in and out, which stimulates the G-spot,” Rayne said. “You can use it in conjunction with a vibrator or any kind of clitoral stimulation. … The loop actually reaches the walls of the vagina and stimulates them in a way that even a penis or other apparatus can’t.” If you visit the product’s website, magicbanana.com, there are nearly 30 testimonials from women who have used the product.

“It’s like a Thigh Master for your vagina!” wrote Hannah Varto, a Public Health Nurse from B.C. The K-Loop is advertised in a more medically-oriented context. It’s used in conjunction with Kegel exercises, named after the gynecologist who invented them. The exercises are a series of vaginal exercises used to help with incontinence.

What’s new in sex toys. You might want to consider a new summer romance item for bedroom play

If you have been feeling like your sex life is lagging a bit, or that your bedroom isn’t quite the exciting environment it once was, don’t despair. There are plenty of ways that you can go about spicing up your sex life, and many of them are actually quite simple, and work quickly. Problems in the bedroom are completely normal, and happen to most couples at some point – you simply can’t stay satisfied doing the same things over and over again. One exciting way that a lot of couples go about injecting some new life into their sex lives is through sex toy play, which is actually a broader concept than most people tend to realize.

You may think of sex toys as somewhat limited and personal. You think of the most basic toys that men and women can use to satisfy themselves, but would rarely use on each other. This is a popular thought process for people who have never actually gone to a store like Adam & Eve to look through different sex toys and accessories, and explanations on how and when to use them. What you’ll find if you do start exploring these things is that the term “sex toys” is actually extremely broad and can mean a number of different things. In fact, new toys are always coming out, and there are overall almost innumerable ways to have fun in bed with toys! Using some of these toys may be just what your relationship needs for some revitalization, so here are a few words on some of the newer and hotter sex toys out there:

• For Men – One highly reviewed new toy out there is the Super Sucker 2.0 Vibrating Stroker, a masturbation-enhancing toy that is said to feel more lifelike and stimulating than any of its predecessors. This can be a useful toy for men on their own, and is also recommended for couples during sex play, as it can still enhance male pleasure in certain couple scenarios.

• For Women – The Jack Rabbit Vibrator has hit sex toy stores as essentially the most advanced and thoroughly pleasing vibrator stimulator on the market. As women who have used this product will tell you, the jack rabbit vibrator has a more diverse array of stimulants than anything before it, making it a good buy for women, whether they wish to use it alone or with their respective partners.

Review of Hedonism 2 Negril Jamaica – The pioneer is still going strong

Hedonism ll A review

By Sue McGarvie, and Blaik Spratt

Clinical Relationship Therapists, Syndicated Talk Show Host, and Authors of The Ethical Hedonist

When I was 16, I spent arguably the best summer of my young life as a counselor at a large family camp in Ontario . I was one of 60 co-ed staff. It was an amazingly fun place, and I made lifelong friends. Camp was singing by the campfire, raiding the boy’s cabin, skinny dipping, dancing at costume parties, and summer romance.

Going to Hedonism was the closest thing I’ve experienced as an adult to re-creating that community feel of laugh-out-loud fun of camp. Only instead of mystery meat in the dining hall, and outhouses with flashlights, Hedonism offers spectacular sunsets, unlimited perfect banana daiquiri’s, hot tubs, cabaret shows, and sensuous spa massages. And it’s the scurrying crabs, not mosquitoes that abound.

Forget what you’ve read about Hedo in Playboy, or the myth of it being a sexually aggressive place. The words we would use to describe the two Hedonism resorts are silly, zany, relaxing, casual, outrageous, sensual, saucy and friendly. Clearly, some of the legends are no more than wishful thinking. Nobody jumps you, and it isn’t a place to go trolling for sex. You would probably have more luck at a nightclub like Rick’s Cafe down the beach atop Negril’s cliffs (one of the 10 most famous bars in the world, and home to the fearless cliff divers). However if you want to make real friends who may want to play with you, then Hedonism does offer the best opportunity we’ve ever found to meet the group we call “Ethical Hedonists.” This is an open-minded and adventurous crowd.

People who “get” Hedo are almost cult-like in their love of the place. There are books written about it, Hedonism cocktail parties that organize themselves in large cities, and groups of travel friends that make an annual pilgrimage with names like “the Wild Bunch”, the Bubbly Bares”, and the BareAss Buccaneers”. It’s really about community and the need for like and open-minded people to congregate. Hedonism is not about orgies on every flat surface of the place. We did see some relaxed, but loving, open sexual play going on a few times between partners. It wasn’t offensive, and was limited exclusively to the nude hot tub. You had to look for it, and if you think it’s about getting all the sex you want there then you are likely mistaken.

We think the magic of Hedonism can best be defined by Serena, the nude pool bartender at Hedo lll, who said “It’s not craziness. Hedo is just about people being who they really are.” And having grown-up fun (which includes, but isn’t limited to a flirty sexuality) and relaxing in a place where nobody judges you- provided you offer the same in return. This means you can use your ball cap to comb your hair, dance naked, play the game that shows off the tattoo closest to your pubic region, pretend you are a Roman Emperor on toga night, or just honeymoon away from it all floating in the warm Caribbean Sea on a raft. It’s different from the elegant but over-dressed crowd at other resorts (fashonista’s at breakfast) Hedonism overall is much more down to earth and friendly.

There are two large resorts, the 27 year old Hedo ll in Negril (we were there during their anniversary week the end of October), and the newer, nine year old Hedo lll in Runaway Bay about three hours apart from each other on the coast of Jamaica. They have almost the same amenities, and similar cliental. They both have a 40% return of guests (unheard of loyalty for a resort, so those who love it, love it again and again), but if you have guests returning for over 27 years, they tend to now be in the 45 to 65 age group on average. Don’t get the idea that it’s a place for the over 50 crowd, there were a range of ages (we met five large “girls gone wild” groups of girlfriends in their 20’s having an adventure week together a la Sex in the City), and newly-weds wouldn’t be out of place. A majority (80%) of the guests are couples, unless they are in organized travel of girl groups, and the wandering single guy syndrome was something we simply didn’t see. And despite the perfect people shown in the brochure, (don’t go expecting to see nothing but gorgeous supermodels rubbing suntan lotion all over each other) the majority were ordinary looking people dressed in 45 sunblock and a smile. Hedo lll as a rule skews younger, but there was a couple in their 70’s who we met there as well. You can go online to www.hedonism.com and see what groups or activities are happening the week you’re thinking of attending, and register to start talking to other guests in advance of your arrival. We met people that greeted each other like long lost friends when they met after chatting a few times online. It allows you to recognize people, and gives you an opening to start conversations and have friends to have dinner with from the get go.

Kevin Levee, the General Manager of Hedonism lll calls Hedo a “facilitator”. “The Hedonism resorts open a door to play if you want it. Or simply lets you have an outgoing and interesting all inclusive vacation, on one of Jamaica’s great beaches if you just want to hang” he says.

Don’t let the stories scare you off. Both Hedo ll, and lll (there never was a Hedo l) are clothing optional – not nude. There is a place for all stages of undress at Hedonism. There are two definite areas at Hedo ll, one for the clothed (which is far, far larger than the nude section), and there is an invisible line in front of the dive shack that will have the smiling security guard handing you a towel if you cross naked. The nude pool and hot tub are discreetly tucked away at the far back corner of the resort. At Hedo lll there is the clothed and naked side, and there has also evolved a “confused” (not nude or prude) area they call the quad with its own gorgeous swimming pool. It’s open to clothed, topless, or nude, (wear or don’t wear whatever you want), and the two groups mingle easily. It offers a safe alternative for nudists who don’t want to see any open sex. The one thing I know about people who like to get naked in public is that they are a friendly bunch. They tend to be a more tolerant and open minded, with a philosophy of “we are all the same under our clothes”.

Kevin goes onto say (in his sexy Jamaican accent), “when you lose your clothes you lose your “isms”, and it’s just about people talking together.”

Jamaica has stereotypical tropical weather. Cloudless sunshine all morning, and heavy showers for an hour during nap time mid afternoon. And you need your nap. Unlike most comparable resorts, Hedo offers terrific nighttime entertainment right on the property. A large entertainment staff and the available nightlife were two of the things that brought most of the first timers we met to try out Hedonism. The music was well worth taking in. The Jamaican culture of music and dance was prevalent from the singing “eggman” at breakfast to a couple of the best dance bands we’ve ever heard play anywhere. We would have gladly paid separately to see the rockin’ Commitments-type band, or the exceptional reggae group whose style was tight, infectious and great to dance to. Hedonism also provided a strong house band during dinner and before the 70’s style disco (complete with age-appropriate music) got going. Or guests had the option to make their way to the notorious Hedo piano bars. The piano bar is half sing-a-long, half variety act, and all with mandatory audience participation, where the host changes the words of songs to be hysterically naughty. Late night has everyone congregating in the hot tubs, or doing a kamikaze waterslide that shoots you like a bullet through the disco. The hot tub bars stay open until the last patron stumbles their way to bed, often at 6 am. Each night is theme night where a good portion of the patrons dressed up in costumes that included a “pimp and ho night”, a pj’s and lingerie evening, a swashbuckling pirate themed night, and the infamous toga party where the staff leaves you a extra sheet on your bed so that the whole resort is wrapped up in billowing while cloth.

Beyond a raucous nightlife, consistently hot weather, and an all-inclusive price (tipping is disallowed, so we spent less than $40 extra for airport gratuities only), Hedonism is set on a spectacular coastline. Turquoise water that stays shallow for a good distance, offers world-class snorkeling right off the beach. We saw hundreds of multi-colored fish, rays, beautiful fan coral, and even an octopus within sight of the resort. Sailing, sea kayaking, separate reef snorkeling and scuba boat trips are offered daily. We walked thigh-high through the water as the sun was going down, and had to watch out not to step on the fish floating above the sandy bottom.

It should be noted that Hedonism isn’t five star rooms and impeccable venue. As one house inspector from Calgary said, “they have 100% humidity, salt water, and off-the-scale UV rays. The only way they could keep up with the peeling paint would be to close the resort down and paint for a month every year.” The resorts were clean, the rooms pleasant with the usual accessories, but abject luxury isn’t how we would describe it. This is a place you go to watch the picture perfect sunsets, hang on the beach, dance the night away, chat with exceptional people, and roar with laughter at the friendly stories. Most people just use their rooms to sleep in. The two complaints we heard expressed were about a shortage of beach towels, and the occasional presence of “working girls” (although we didn’t see any) who snuck in on a purchased night pass with other locals or guests at different resorts to see the nightly entertainment. They are escorted off property, and banned if caught “selling their wares”, but are a fact of life in a country with disparaging incomes.

There are a few package-included on-site restaurants which take reservations in the morning, and three beach grills that offer typical beach fare (most notably amazing jerk chicken and pork, a Jamaican specialty). We ate everyday at the beach for lunch as it was that good, especially at Hedo lll, where the jerk festival was just finishing as we arrived, and their reggae restaurant had spectacular (but hot!) jerk meats. Otherwise, a large buffet was provided for guests that did offer a decent variety of food. Having made changes in the kitchen over the last year, guests commented that the food was much improved from the previous year.

One of the things we heard again and again when we asked why people returned to Hedonism (the place is littered with colored rocks with the names of couples and their dates visited) was the quality of the people – both staff and guests. We can’t say enough about the great staff, who went out of their way to say “ya mon” the Jamaican hello, every time you walked by. Everyone from Robert, the 25 year old maintenance guy to the General Managers were approachable and smiling. It was infectious to the guests, and without fail the people we spoke to stated the thing they liked best about Hedonism was the interesting and kind people that frequent the resort. Think of an amazingly friendly staff, with big hearts and a great spirit about them, and the kind of like-minded guests that morph into friends you stay in touch with long after the holiday is over. It really is that kind of place and we loved it and can’t wait to add our own painted rock as soon as possible.

Hedonism offers “booze cruise” boat rides a few times a week that you pay separately for, and go out for a three hour cruise. Their Saturday trip is a nude excursion that takes you to the snorkeling spots, let’s you splash down the attached slide, and shows you the magnificent Jamaican coastline. We heard a story about a recent nude trip that set sail out of the Hedo ll dock’s on the afternoon before the swashbuckling theme party. The participants brought along their pirate hats and plastic cutlasses on board as part of the festive theme during the cruise, and pirate lingo flowed. When a boat from a neighboring resort anchored close by to gawk at the naked revelers, and as the rum punch took hold, a group of naked Hedo men got into the spirit of things. They swam over and boarded the other boat (fake sword clutched in their teeth and pirate hats askew), and demanded “their beer or their women”. Stealing a few cans of Miller beer, they swam triumphantly back to the nude boat with their bounty to roaring laughter and leaving behind a stunned plundered vessel. That in essence, is a classic Hedonism experience. Being outrageous but fun, hanging with other silly new friends, and playing the part of a naked pirate on the Caribbean Sea . And where else can a group of middle aged people dress up and behave like pirates in the safest and most accepting of ways?

The 10 Quick Steps to Reaching a G-Spot Orgasm as described on the Sexapalooza stage.

Check the Sex with Sue Blog!

Sue reviews the top sexy vacation hotspots!

Sex toys – Reviews of the Top 15 best sex toys and devices.

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Review of Desire Resort- Rivera Maya Mexico (Cancun) – more naked vacations

Review of Desire Rivera Maya

By Sue “Sex with Sue” McGarvie and Blaik Spratt, Clinical Sex Therapists, Syndicated Talk Show Host, authors of The Ethical Hedonist

www.sexwithsue.com

As sex and relationship therapists we’re on a mission to seek out the most romantic, the most sexually charged, and the most unique erotic vacations for adult couples who we describe as “Ethical Hedonists”. Tough job, staying away from all those calorie- rich pina coladas and preventing sunburn on your naked parts, but it’s a mission we take seriously. No hurricanes this year to worry about, but if there are hardships to lying naked at a five star, all inclusive resort in the Caribbean , we just can’t think of them at the moment. As part of our nude and romance havens worldwide tour, we have just returned from a week this fall at the upscale Desire Rivera Maya resort 40 minutes outside Cancun Mexico . All in the name of science of course, (grin) our interest was to determine where on the sexual continuum of Ethical Hedonism, the couples staying at Desire found themselves.

Described as an “elegant and exclusive, clothing-optional, couples-only resort” Desire is an adult-only, 114 room, secluded resort somewhat off the beaten path. It’s situated between acres of mangrove swamps – take the “beware of crocodile signs”seriously – (we had five, 2 meter crocs swim towards us a few feet from the edge of the road outside the resort when we got out of the car) along with an interesting array of jungle birds and animals including a baby coatimundi (wild jungle raccoons that are social, curious and let you pet them on your way to dinner). The resort is located on the wayward side of the road, and is situated on a strip of Mexico ’s typically breathtaking Caribbean beaches, complete with white sands and warm, turquoise water. The beach includes 40 canopied beach beds (complete with drink-providing waitresses and cabana boys) situated along the edge of the water. These beds are the ultimate in decadence beach relaxation. Apparently couples frolicking romantically on the beach beds were a common sight in the past. Desire Rivera Maya had previously been sequestered from any other resorts, but as development has hit this area of the coast (with a new resort a little down the beach) the sexual adventure has had to be curtailed by the security guards asking you to take the sex inside your rooms, or upstairs to the hot tub. A few couples grumbled about the “evil bed police”, stopping their “from Here to Eternity” wave crashing. It deterred those who really enjoyed rolling in the surf and had loved the freedom to be intimate in the Sea, but overall the tone on the beach tended to be more romantic than sexual.

Desire Resorts claim it is for couples over 25, but the average age of couples we observed would probably be in their mid 40’s. We met one couple who were a remarkably active and well preserved 80, (if only we could all be at a nude resort at 80), most of the couples had been together for ten years or longer and were what we call the “empty nesters gone wild” group, or anniversary couples looking for something different. According to the staff (which has some variation depending on the time of year), guests were 20% Mexican/Latin, 20% European, 20% Canadian, and 40% American in nationality, all in varying stages of undress. Clothing optional, as opposed to nude means that bathing suits are seen, but the majority of the couples were either nude or topless throughout the day. They had typical resort games such as water polo and beach volleyball taking place, (nude volleyball is always an interesting eyeful) along with far more sexual ones such as the chocolate eating contest (where two couples compete to see who can drizzle and eat the most chocolate and whipped cream off their partners). Nobody was pressured to participate. The tone was entertaining and playful during the day, rather than sexual, and the evening theme was more erotic, rather than smacking of blatant sex. There is no “getting jumped in the lobby” fear that some people perceive happens at lifestyle friendly resorts. The activity staff was relaxed, but enthusiastic and did their best to be inclusive of everyone interested in participating, and respectful of those who wanted to read quietly, or simply lounge on the beach.

The large elevated hot tub (which is off limits to management and only manned by a bartender and one cleaning staff for the mountain of towels being used) gets going about 4 pm, and is the place to socialize until couples start getting ready for dinner at 7. The hot tub is surrounded by a bar and six beds (all in view of the hot tub) which are either draped or open depending on the level of exhibitionist tendencies of the couple in question. A few couples were seen playing on the beds, (mostly with their own partners, but with some group massages going on). However for the most part, people were simply flirty and friendly in and around the hot tub, and exceptionally respectful of couples who were only into each other. Provided you don’t stare, it’s quite acceptable to watch. And everyone is understandably curious, and wanted to see if the participants are having longer, or more interesting sex than they are. It can get wilder depending on the flavor of groups staying any particular week, but the concern that one young man had before coming to Desire of “being afraid to leave his wife alone while he went to the bathroom for fear she would be mauled” was completely unfounded. A couple of people approached us asking if we were lifestylers, but like most lifestyle aficionados we’ve ever met, they graciously understood the etiquette and body language of disinterest.

Three dinner restaurants (an Asian, a fine dining, and buffet style) had enough of a quality and variety to keep everyone happy, although we found the sameness of the breakfast and lunch buffets had us craving for anything beyond the typical beach food by the end of the week. This is not the place to go if you are trying to manage your weight – and we struggled to find things that weren’t deep fried, or carb loaded (although yummy). The service was outstanding. There is something about Mexican waiters that let them show their appreciation of you, without ever being schwarmy. The dress for dinner was sexy and elegant, and a second change into erotic costumes or lingerie was common for the late evening entertainment and disco, so paying attention to the days themes before you arrive meant you were up for prizes, and admired by the other guests. Disco themes include “pimp and ho night”, Latin fever, costume and mask night, and sexy pj’s, and participants were encouraged to do a strip tease or “show off” to determine who won the t-shirt for the most enthusiastic performance. A couples- only playroom off of the dance floor was popular for about an hour a night (after 11pm), and was the only other condoned, sex-friendly zone in the resort. However it took us two days to find the door leading into it, and with no windows, any active play certainly wasn’t in your face.

The highlight for us were the evening shows before the disco got shaking which were brought in activities including a classic rock band, body painting, lingerie fashion show, casino night (with an auction for Desire merchandise) and where you could find the entire cast of resort guests lounging on chairs, mingling, or just cuddling romantically after dinner on cabana chairs built for two. The late night hot tub action (we were leaving upstairs a few nights at 2 am and the action was just beginning), didn’t get going until very late, and there were a few groups who found beach beds after 3 am to continue the revelry. We marveled at their stamina.

Desire’s concept is certainly upscale, and anyone who tried the couple “Desire” massage (which included very sensuous touching, and a guided “happy ending” in a private room) raved about it. Desire seems to oscillate between the decadent “indulge yourself” mantra of “what goes on in Mexico”… while emphasizing their spa-like features of relaxation and health. To their credit, they had very little of the time-share, or excursion aggressive sales pitches that seem to be the bane of other resorts we’ve visited.

Occupancy at Desire is one of the highest in the Caribbean , with Rivera Maya being close to 80-100% filled from mid October until April. Martin Good, the charming General Manager said that they had purchased the vacant land next door, and were building another 40 units to deal with the occupancy levels, as you will struggle to get in any week during high season. He went on to say “about 40% of Desires guests were repeaters (we met one couple who had been nine times already), and that people seemed to really enjoy the concept”. Desire has no “spring break” feel to it, and with that kind of occupancy, and high end entertainment, the room rates are a bit dear. Rates vary during the high season range from $250 to $540 US a night per person, with bottles of wine, massages, and specialty foods like lobster being extra. This is not discount travel, and within an eight days time span, 90% of the guests turn over.

But it is one of the only places that tolerate what we call “upscale sexual encounters done with taste”. The clientele are affluent, professional, open minded, and have the time and money to explore the boundaries of their relationship. Like with all nude resorts we’ve encountered, the minute you take clothes off, the barriers to meeting people come down. You make friends easily, and most people are happy to tell you about themselves. There is a “no camera policy” and discretion is expected. In interviewing as many couples as possible, Desire vacationers seem to fall largely into one of three categories. They were the “honeymooning type” – couples who were into each other and their relationship, enjoyed a sexually charged environment, but stayed away from the hot tub, disco, and simply re-connected monogamously. They may or may not be nude through their stay. The next third were what we call “exploratory lifestylers or nudists”. These were the couples that were open to “something happening” if it felt right (although many weren’t sure what that something might be), liked trying relaxed nudity, and may participate in a gentle, and somewhat innocent group massage. This group were committed to their own relationships but usually went home without seeing any kind of action as they were just testing the waters. The final third were the swingers, or lifestylers who were social, and interested in meeting and hooking up with like minded people, along with the group we called “indiscriminate lifestylers”, for whom this was about how many partners they could try on their week away. This group was friendly, but were really only interested in meeting other lifestylers.

On the whole Desire really is what you make it. Elegant, upscale, quietly naked and romantic, or with late night happenings, disco dancing, and hut tubbing along with 50 new friends and sexual adventures under the stars. We heard absolutely no complaints, about the resort, rooms, food, or service, and Original Resorts who run Desire Rivera Maya and their Los Cabos location have really found their niche. Anything the resort could control, they managed very well. We really can’t rave about the service more. It is very similar to Desire Los Cabos, in theme and layout (although Los Cabos in our opinion is the nicer, newer resort), however the type of guests seemed to differ at the west coast Desire Los Cabos. They get more of their visitors from California, (think Hollywood clothes, and way, way more silicone), and on the whole weren’t as laid back and relaxed as the “let it all hang out” group we met at Rivera Maya.

The clientele changes by the week, but as a whole, this is the sexy honeymoon most of wish we had, and can still have. It is worthy of its reputation, and a “must-try” on the bucket list of any adventuring Ethical Hedonist.

Creative marriage proposals at Couples Swept Away Resort, Negril, Jamaica

 By Sue McGarvie, and Blaik Spratt, Relationship Therapists, Syndicated Talk Show Hosts, Authors of The Ethical Hedonist  radioshrink@rogers.com

 When you picture the most romantic place on earth to propose where do you think of? The Eiffel Tower? Moonlight in Venice? We had heard of some typically quaint but corny marriage proposals that include the videotron at hockey games, or the overdone, “ring-on-the-rose-stem” proposal. As die hard romantics who regularly speak at the bridal shows, we are always interested in smart proposal stories.  On a recent trip to Couples Swept Away in Negril, Jamaica we saw a succinct, but elegant proposal that combined a warm, windswept Caribbean evening, with a new way to ask for your sweetie’s hand in marriage. For guys, the goal is a memorable, yet idiot-proof proposal that allows her to be                                  moved to tears in private. 

Imagine a perfect evening on vacation away from the stresses of life, where you surprise the object of your affection with a private dinner on the beach. Serenaded by saxophone leading two piece band, you have a five course meal served by an unobtrusive waiter. The smell of hibiscus is in the air. As the fruit and dessert plate gets presented, you lift up the cover and carved in the melon centerpiece are the words “Will you marry me?” Creative, unique, and you don’t have to do anything beyond a quick email and a credit card number in setting it up.   

Couples Swept Away is a spectacular all-inclusive resort in the middle of Negril’s famous 7 mile beach, and one of the four Couples resorts in Jamaica. They are all adult only resorts, and are known for their emphasis on magical, romantic vacations. Couples is a mixture of wellness and decadence set on one of the best beaches in all the Caribbean. Complete with the requisite white sand, turquoise water, hot weather and starry nights. 

There is a top notch athletic facility and spa, along with juice and veggy bars for couples wanting to take care of themselves on vacation. Tennis, swimming, squash, water sports, yoga, aerobics, a serious weight-training gym, and healthy snacks strategically placed in case you need to keep your blood sugar up, Couples Swept Away had the most complete fitness and wellness component of any high end adult resort we’ve ever been to. 

The resort as a whole is safe, and open minded. The beach is well patrolled, and very clean. The three other Couples locations all have private nude beaches on property- or in the case of the Couples resorts in Ocho Rios – a completely nude island. Couples Swept Away doesn’t have a nude section, but the Negril beach has been known since the 60’s for tolerance to being topless, so smooching with your sweetie under a beach hut would only be looked at with an indulgent smile by the hotel. 

The facilities are truly elegant, beautifully maintained, and what is noticeable about this resort is the serious attention to detail. The ownership is local, and on site, and it shows. From the elegant staff clothing designs, to the unique lobby furnishing – it is evident that the staff and management are paying attention to the little things we often see missing in other resorts.  The turned down beds, along with Jamaican expressions printed on small cards on the pillow at bedtime we a lovely touch. A full size compliment of liquors in the in-room bar, flowers in the room, a wrap around porch, and special toiletries are a few examples of extras that are of course, all inclusive. A number of the rooms don’t have a television (in keeping with the romantic “get away from it all” theme), but will leave you a selection of reading material and music to help you connect. And with a strict no-tipping policy, you don’t have to worry about money anytime during your vacation.   

Having been to a number of resorts in Jamaica, and being used to the happy, smiling people – Jamaicans are some of the most musical and lyrical people on the planet – we met a number at Couples Swept Away that stood out from anything we had seen anywhere. The employees we absolutely delightful to meet.  We conversed with a range of staff from the crossing guard to the receptionist to the general manager at Couples Swept Away. All of them genuinely seemed to feel that “they worked for the best  resort in all of Jamaica.” The staff were empowered to make guests happy, and were rewarded for solving a problem with a guest- even if it took them away from their regular duties.  The piano bar is famous, and interactive and becomes the place “where everyone quickly learns your name.”   

 The Couples resort seems to have two major mandates. One is to emphasize romance in all forms, and they work hard to convince you to fall in love, propose, get married, honeymoon and spend your anniversaries there. They take romance seriously. Their goal is to make you feel all that schmushy, lovey, eye-gazing stuff that lovers rarely get a chance to experience between the kids, laundry, and work deadlines. Think rose petals on the beds, chocolate fountains, and spectacular sunsets. Couples is an outstanding place to have one of those simple, yet special beach weddings that save you the thousands of dollars in feeding extended relatives when you get married conventionally at home. So if you are planning on eloping down south to get hitched on the beach, give Couples Swept Away a serious look. Couples Swept Away is also appropriate for anyone else who might come down and share in the nuptials (we met grandparents and crazy brothers-in laws in the wedding party who all seemed happy with the resort). A good mix of decorum for extended family, but not too sleepy or staid if you are hoping for some hopping night life. It isn’t party central like a few of the Negril resorts, but it is five minutes from the infamous Rick’s Café (home of the legendary cliff divers) which is rated as one of the top 10 bars in the world, and always has colorful night life. With a full time department dedicated to weddings, and a large property, we witnessed a number of bridal parties at different times during our stay. 

The other goal at Couples is to turn every visitor into a repeat guest. They consistently rank second (behind Hedonism) for the highest recidivism (return) rates in Jamaica. We met people there on this visit who had been to Swept Away over 25 times. As a repeat guest, you get a special shirt, a package of extras at check-in, and an invitation to attend a repeaters dinner with all the staff and management, who make a fuss over you. A separate cocktail party invites the newcomers to a meet and greet, but it is with repeat vacationers, that Couples spends a huge amount of time and attention on.      

We had a few experiences that stood out at Couples Swept Away. Many of the other all -inclusives throughout the Caribbean have a sameness about them, but this one is truly five star. Two fabulous restaurants (one Continental, and the other Thai), had meals that rivaled the best a la carte restaurants in French St. Martin, and was the best meal we had on holiday this year. A martini bar, lots of different beach foods including a health hut, fabulous burgers and Jamaican jerk chicken, and a rum punch (that will have you singing in no time) fleshed out the other food and beverage highlights. However, like elsewhere in Jamaica the music blew us away.  The evening dinner band included a tight reggae quartet from Kingston that you would have happily paid for. Our favorite moment was at an early morning breakfast buffet at their main restaurant. A duo of acoustic guitarist and cello player strummed up popular songs while we ordered at the smoothie bar. Lincoln the guitar player, smiled and nodded while he played with his cello partner. In very  short order most of the restaurant had stopped eating to appreciate the music flowing through these two guys. They were that good. It brought a whole restaurant of people together as we all made eye contact to see if everyone else was as impressed as we were with the live, breakfast music. 

Compared to some of the other adult-only resorts we’ve reviewed Couples Swept Away is tame, but they nail their demographic of couples 25-55 who are looking for a safe, upscale romantic vacation.  With an emphasis on health, the resort has almost a “clean cut” feel to it -the wholesome side of adult-only vacations. Try as we might (and we did look for faults), we really had no complaints with our stay. All the guests we spoke to raved about it, and we were sad to leave.  With a tremendous occupancy rate (Couples Negril, five minutes down the road couldn’t show us a sample room as they were at 100% occupied for the next five weeks) despite difficult economic times.  Couple’s  guests come primarily from the United States, Canada, Britain, Germany and Italy, and were mainly in their 30’s and 40’s. With a 40% return rate, this resort seems almost recession proof, and is a testament to their great service, food, location and facilities. Expect to pay USD $4000 a couple per week (although there are some deals to be had on off weeks online), but everything from catamaran trips and 10 minute beach massages were free. So other than golf (also included) or the full spa services, (the spa was in a beautiful building, and did a brisk business with brides and couples massages) you should have no need to go off property or pay for anything else on your romantic week. Couples Swept Away is the relaxing, romantic, effortless, wonderful Caribbean honeymoon vacation (no matter if you are newly-wed, renewing your vows, or just checking in with eachother.) It  recharges anybody’s relationship.

Temptations/Desire Los Cabos. A great place to feel sexy

Review of Temptations or Desire Los Cabos
How to make friends at a Nude Lifestyle resort

Temptations/Desire Los Cabos

by Sue McGarvie, Clinical sex therapist

It’s not just that we’ve had 17 feet of snow this winter in my part of Canada , that has me wishing I could emigrate to Mexico . I have fallen in love with the lifestyle, and culture of our southern neighbors. The Mexico I experienced, was absolute paradise. Los Cabos Mexico, where I spent a week in March this year, is home to the most charming Latino waiters, almost perfect weather, the world’s yummiest coconut ice cream, and now arguably the best couples resort in the world. Move over Hedonism, the new Desire Resorts has got serious game.

Los Cabos Mexico , which bills itself as a place of guaranteed sunshine, (only six days of rain all of last year), is located on the tip of the Baja, where the sea of Cortez meets the Pacific Ocean . It’s a thousand miles of desert, along Mexico’s west coast, Los Cabos has come into it’s own due to a spectacular coastline and the advent of desalination, and with bevy of fresh water out of the sea that has turned desolate scrub brush into an oasis. This is where the wealthy Californian’s come to vacation (typical real estate prices for a vacation property is over a US million). And at the Desire Resort, it is where the sexually adventurous come to explore the romantic and erotic side to their relationship.

Desire Los Cabos, is similar to Desire Cancun in many ways. An exclusive, couple-only, clothing optional, all inclusive hotel, with a boutique resort feel, with a maximum capacity of 150 rooms. Desire comes with complete privacy and serious security. It’s the honeymoon of decadence and sensuality that you may have always wanted. I find that like with any nude place, the minute you take your clothes off, your inhibitions go as well. That means fellow guests are open, and conversation and friendships start easily all over the resort. However unlike with a typical nude or clothing optional resort, (like the Caliente resorts where PDA’s –public displays of affection- can get you kicked out), there are places where you can be overtly sexual with your (or possibly someone else’s) partner. It is more centrally located than in Cancun, (in the zone tourista, as opposed to Cancun which is way, way off the beaten path). This means there is no nudity on the more public beach, (too bad, as the Desire Cancun beach beds are one of life’s great pleasures). It also means swimming in the ocean is out (the flags read FATAL due to the undertow), but provided you wore a bathing suit, the beach was a delight to walk. With no beach activities, it meant that everyone congregated in the rooftop hot tub, and heated, extra-large, central swimming pool. This central congregation meant it was easier to meet everyone staying in the resort on a first name basis.

This also meant you had less of the “gilded cage” feel, as you could easily walk to shopping, restaurants and leave the resort if you needed a change of scenery. So if you are social, and a perfect holiday is having everyone know your name and making friends, the west coast Desire may be a better fit for you, than the isolated, and spread out Cancun Desire. Overall I thought the food was good, (I hugged Antonio, my evening grill chef who made something he specially concocted just for me every night), and I loved the live music played outside between dinner and dance club opening outside on the mezzanine.

They’ve set the lay out well, so that sexual interaction happens only on the secluded hot tub area, or in the playroom in the dance club. Which means that if you choose not to watch the sex going on, (although who’s kidding, everyone is curious to see if their pool buddies are doing anything more interesting than they do), you can completely avoid that section. So with sex only going on in very specific places, you can otherwise treat it like any other first class resort except that a good 60% of the guests are in various stages of undress.

This is the place where you can be nude (or not), overtly sexual with your partner (or not), and meet other couples for friendship or more. Or you can stay to yourself, and honeymoon in an erotic environment. As Sylvia the Guest Services manager said “The experience at Desire is strictly what you make of it”. So Desire can be called sensuously discreet. It’s there if you want it, but sex is done with ease and elegance. I would say that only about 25% of the guests (in my humble estimation) were in the “swinging” or lifestyle play. Some people were direct in their approach that they were looking for an exchange, but most were just having their partner only eroticism. What surprised me was how many “first-timers” there were, who had never even been to a nude beach before. There was a large group of people who booked off Expedia looking for a vacancy, and although seemed surprised at how sexually open the place was, very quickly dropped the laundry and joined in on the semi-clothed frolicking. When in Rome … seemed to be the philosophy, and the comfortable atmosphere relaxed even the most prudish. I watched a Catholic, grade 1 teacher go from cover-ups, to commando, to sex in public with her husband, over a three day period. Desire has a minimum age of 25 posted on their website, and the age ranged from mid to late 20’s, with the bulk of the guests between 30 and 50. Certainly a 60 year old plus couple wouldn’t be out of place, but most of the bodies were better than average, and a majority had been enhanced. The crowd was affluent, well-preserved, and well-groomed, (with more than their share of silicone and botox).

The Los Cabos is less crowded than the always booked Cancun location (114 rooms), but my guess is that it will be as equally difficult to get a room over the next year as word gets out. During the high point of the regular travel season (March break, where every other resort was fully booked), Desire Los Cabos was at only 35% capacity. This isn’t a place you bring your kids, and around family holidays, the Desire resorts are slower. Times that are typically not “family holiday time”, you’ll find the parents have pawned off the kids and are engaging in the sensuous adult play that a trip to Desire offers. As an example, May, a warm month up north is 100% booked at Desire Los Cabos, when there are vacancies everywhere else.

A couple of things you may want to take note of when packing for Desire. With guaranteed sunshine, and predominate nudity, we went through far less clothes than anticipated. Although day time clothing needs can be put into a toiletry bag, most women dressed elegantly for cocktails, dinner and after dinner drinks, and for the disco party, every night is theme night. So my suggestion is bring a big suite case full of erotic costumes to be creatively silly. It is hot and sexually charged at the disco. Themes included Rodeo-cowboy, naughty school yard, pink, red, and black and white nights, jungle, along with emergency (fireman, nurse). Cancun had similar (but different themes), and it was an adult dress up, with a smile. You should also know that Desire has a camera verboten policy, so you won’t end up in someone else’s pictures naked. However, you may need to plan a day trip if you need pictures to take back to the kids because you can’t otherwise take photos.

Despite what a good job Desire is doing running its resort, it wasn’t perfect. The highlight was the staff and service. I can honestly say that I’ve never met a more gracious, more accommodating staff anywhere in the world. They learned your names from the get go, and made a point to make everyone feel special.

The food however, was a bit inconsistent at times. We had the best steak we’ve ever eaten on holidays, as well as the worst steak, only a day apart. I thought there could have been a more rounded out room service menu, and the pool lunch food was repetitive as the only option to eat. They had great bartenders however. I was very surprised as a therapist, (you would think even for strictly liability reasons), there wasn’t condoms in the playroom and hot tub areas. I also wished that the disco should open earlier for those of us who turn into a pumpkin after midnight.

Most significantly, I also felt that there was a real thirst for information on what is the erotic lifestyle, and there was a need for clear, non-judgmental facts about what full swing, lifestyle play, group massage, bisexual swap meant to the new attendees. Having tourists books in each rooms were helpful, but those weren’t the questions it took five margherita’s, and a week of beating around the bush to ask. Everyone it seemed, was looking for information on “how do you spice up your relationship with group play without messing up what you have”, or just “how do you keep it hot after years together?” Desire seems to be marketing to the large middle group that one guest described as “Empty Nesters gone wild”, who are curious, open, but very tentative in trying out any kind of extra marital play. Not the serious swingers who are open to anything and everything, but more than the romance marketed by conventional couples resorts. With a few minor changes (better training of their activity staff, more ice breakers, and delicately written information packages), the Desire resorts will be the premiere location for sensuous couples world-wide. Book your holiday soon, because as they make the final adjustments, they will continue to be sold out year round.

Review of Desire Rivera Maya – more naked vacations


Review of Desire Rivera Maya

By Sue “Sex with Sue” McGarvie and Blaik Spratt, Clinical Sex Therapists, Syndicated Talk Show Host, authors of The Ethical Hedonist
www.sexwithsue.com

As sex and relationship therapists we’re on a mission to seek out the most romantic, the most sexually charged, and the most unique erotic vacations for adult couples who we describe as “Ethical Hedonists”. Tough job, staying away from all those calorie- rich pina coladas and preventing sunburn on your naked parts, but it’s a mission we take seriously. No hurricanes this year to worry about, but if there are hardships to lying naked at a five star, all inclusive resort in the Caribbean , we just can’t think of them at the moment. As part of our nude and romance havens worldwide tour, we have just returned from a week this fall at the upscale Desire Rivera Maya resort 40 minutes outside Cancun Mexico . All in the name of science of course, (grin) our interest was to determine where on the sexual continuum of Ethical Hedonism, the couples staying at Desire found themselves.

Described as an “elegant and exclusive, clothing-optional, couples-only resort” Desire is an adult-only, 114 room, secluded resort somewhat off the beaten path. It’s situated between acres of mangrove swamps – take the “beware of crocodile signs”seriously – (we had five, 2 meter crocs swim towards us a few feet from the edge of the road outside the resort when we got out of the car) along with an interesting array of jungle birds and animals including a baby coatimundi (wild jungle raccoons that are social, curious and let you pet them on your way to dinner). The resort is located on the wayward side of the road, and is situated on a strip of Mexico ’s typically breathtaking Caribbean beaches, complete with white sands and warm, turquoise water. The beach includes 40 canopied beach beds (complete with drink-providing waitresses and cabana boys) situated along the edge of the water. These beds are the ultimate in decadence beach relaxation. Apparently couples frolicking romantically on the beach beds were a common sight in the past. Desire Rivera Maya had previously been sequestered from any other resorts, but as development has hit this area of the coast (with a new resort a little down the beach) the sexual adventure has had to be curtailed by the security guards asking you to take the sex inside your rooms, or upstairs to the hot tub. A few couples grumbled about the “evil bed police”, stopping their “from Here to Eternity” wave crashing. It deterred those who really enjoyed rolling in the surf and had loved the freedom to be intimate in the Sea, but overall the tone on the beach tended to be more romantic than sexual.

Desire Resorts claim it is for couples over 25, but the average age of couples we observed would probably be in their mid 40’s. We met one couple who were a remarkably active and well preserved 80, (if only we could all be at a nude resort at 80), most of the couples had been together for ten years or longer and were what we call the “empty nesters gone wild” group, or anniversary couples looking for something different. According to the staff (which has some variation depending on the time of year), guests were 20% Mexican/Latin, 20% European, 20% Canadian, and 40% American in nationality, all in varying stages of undress. Clothing optional, as opposed to nude means that bathing suits are seen, but the majority of the couples were either nude or topless throughout the day. They had typical resort games such as water polo and beach volleyball taking place, (nude volleyball is always an interesting eyeful) along with far more sexual ones such as the chocolate eating contest (where two couples compete to see who can drizzle and eat the most chocolate and whipped cream off their partners). Nobody was pressured to participate. The tone was entertaining and playful during the day, rather than sexual, and the evening theme was more erotic, rather than smacking of blatant sex. There is no “getting jumped in the lobby” fear that some people perceive happens at lifestyle friendly resorts. The activity staff was relaxed, but enthusiastic and did their best to be inclusive of everyone interested in participating, and respectful of those who wanted to read quietly, or simply lounge on the beach.

The large elevated hot tub (which is off limits to management and only manned by a bartender and one cleaning staff for the mountain of towels being used) gets going about 4 pm, and is the place to socialize until couples start getting ready for dinner at 7. The hot tub is surrounded by a bar and six beds (all in view of the hot tub) which are either draped or open depending on the level of exhibitionist tendencies of the couple in question. A few couples were seen playing on the beds, (mostly with their own partners, but with some group massages going on). However for the most part, people were simply flirty and friendly in and around the hot tub, and exceptionally respectful of couples who were only into each other. Provided you don’t stare, it’s quite acceptable to watch. And everyone is understandably curious, and wanted to see if the participants are having longer, or more interesting sex than they are. It can get wilder depending on the flavor of groups staying any particular week, but the concern that one young man had before coming to Desire of “being afraid to leave his wife alone while he went to the bathroom for fear she would be mauled” was completely unfounded. A couple of people approached us asking if we were lifestylers, but like most lifestyle aficionados we’ve ever met, they graciously understood the etiquette and body language of disinterest.

Three dinner restaurants (an Asian, a fine dining, and buffet style) had enough of a quality and variety to keep everyone happy, although we found the sameness of the breakfast and lunch buffets had us craving for anything beyond the typical beach food by the end of the week. This is not the place to go if you are trying to manage your weight – and we struggled to find things that weren’t deep fried, or carb loaded (although yummy). The service was outstanding. There is something about Mexican waiters that let them show their appreciation of you, without ever being schwarmy. The dress for dinner was sexy and elegant, and a second change into erotic costumes or lingerie was common for the late evening entertainment and disco, so paying attention to the days themes before you arrive meant you were up for prizes, and admired by the other guests. Disco themes include “pimp and ho night”, Latin fever, costume and mask night, and sexy pj’s, and participants were encouraged to do a strip tease or “show off” to determine who won the t-shirt for the most enthusiastic performance. A couples- only playroom off of the dance floor was popular for about an hour a night (after 11pm), and was the only other condoned, sex-friendly zone in the resort. However it took us two days to find the door leading into it, and with no windows, any active play certainly wasn’t in your face.

The highlight for us were the evening shows before the disco got shaking which were brought in activities including a classic rock band, body painting, lingerie fashion show, casino night (with an auction for Desire merchandise) and where you could find the entire cast of resort guests lounging on chairs, mingling, or just cuddling romantically after dinner on cabana chairs built for two. The late night hot tub action (we were leaving upstairs a few nights at 2 am and the action was just beginning), didn’t get going until very late, and there were a few groups who found beach beds after 3 am to continue the revelry. We marveled at their stamina.

Desire’s concept is certainly upscale, and anyone who tried the couple “Desire” massage (which included very sensuous touching, and a guided “happy ending” in a private room) raved about it. Desire seems to oscillate between the decadent “indulge yourself” mantra of “what goes on in Mexico”… while emphasizing their spa-like features of relaxation and health. To their credit, they had very little of the time-share, or excursion aggressive sales pitches that seem to be the bane of other resorts we’ve visited.

Occupancy at Desire is one of the highest in the Caribbean , with Rivera Maya being close to 80-100% filled from mid October until April. Martin Good, the charming General Manager said that they had purchased the vacant land next door, and were building another 40 units to deal with the occupancy levels, as you will struggle to get in any week during high season. He went on to say “about 40% of Desires guests were repeaters (we met one couple who had been nine times already), and that people seemed to really enjoy the concept”. Desire has no “spring break” feel to it, and with that kind of occupancy, and high end entertainment, the room rates are a bit dear. Rates vary during the high season range from $250 to $540 US a night per person, with bottles of wine, massages, and specialty foods like lobster being extra. This is not discount travel, and within an eight days time span, 90% of the guests turn over.

But it is one of the only places that tolerate what we call “upscale sexual encounters done with taste”. The clientele are affluent, professional, open minded, and have the time and money to explore the boundaries of their relationship. Like with all nude resorts we’ve encountered, the minute you take clothes off, the barriers to meeting people come down. You make friends easily, and most people are happy to tell you about themselves. There is a “no camera policy” and discretion is expected. In interviewing as many couples as possible, Desire vacationers seem to fall largely into one of three categories. They were the “honeymooning type” – couples who were into each other and their relationship, enjoyed a sexually charged environment, but stayed away from the hot tub, disco, and simply re-connected monogamously. They may or may not be nude through their stay. The next third were what we call “exploratory lifestylers or nudists”. These were the couples that were open to “something happening” if it felt right (although many weren’t sure what that something might be), liked trying relaxed nudity, and may participate in a gentle, and somewhat innocent group massage. This group were committed to their own relationships but usually went home without seeing any kind of action as they were just testing the waters. The final third were the swingers, or lifestylers who were social, and interested in meeting and hooking up with like minded people, along with the group we called “indiscriminate lifestylers”, for whom this was about how many partners they could try on their week away. This group was friendly, but were really only interested in meeting other lifestylers.

On the whole Desire really is what you make it. Elegant, upscale, quietly naked and romantic, or with late night happenings, disco dancing, and hut tubbing along with 50 new friends and sexual adventures under the stars. We heard absolutely no complaints, about the resort, rooms, food, or service, and Original Resorts who run Desire Rivera Maya and their Los Cabos location have really found their niche. Anything the resort could control, they managed very well. We really can’t rave about the service more. It is very similar to Desire Los Cabos, in theme and layout (although Los Cabos in our opinion is the nicer, newer resort), however the type of guests seemed to differ at the west coast Desire Los Cabos. They get more of their visitors from California, (think Hollywood clothes, and way, way more silicone), and on the whole weren’t as laid back and relaxed as the “let it all hang out” group we met at Rivera Maya.

The clientele changes by the week, but as a whole, this is the sexy honeymoon most of wish we had, and can still have. It is worthy of its reputation, and a “must-try” on the bucket list of any adventuring Ethical Hedonist.

Sue reviews the top sexy vacation hotspots!

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