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Date night 2012: Rosewood Mayakoba’s Agave Azul Library awaits eager palates. Credit: Joaquin Duenas.

By Amy Drew Thompson

Some interpret that the ancient Mayan calendar, astonishingly accurate over millennia thus far, predicts the world will end in 2012. I say if you can’t beat ʼem — join ʼem. And go properly anesthetized. In that same spirit, many Riviera Maya hotels are well poised to usher guests into divine oblivion via the prized nectar of the agave: Tequila.

Long considered an elixir of the pre-Hispanic gods, tequila has risen to top-shelf status worldwide. Tastings at the Lounge of The Tides Riviera Maya feature an interactive experience in ultra-chic digs, where guests can absorb tequila’s history, process and incarnations – blanco to reposado to añejo – from Tequila Maestro Emilio, and sample ceviches as they learn how to pair tequila with food.

At the all-inclusive Hacienda Tres Rios Riviera Maya Resort, Spa and Nature Park, the chef and aficionado leads popular tastings at the Agave Bar – taking participants through tequila’s many endearing traits with palate-cleansing sips of sangrita betwixt.

The Rosewood Mayakoba, tucked into a dazzling mile-long arc of Caribbean sands, has a host of luxurious amenities, including the Agave Azul Library, which boasts volumes of the finest labels in the region. No visit would be complete without attending their signature tasting led by resident Tequilero Victor Sanchez.

“With the Mayan-inspired countdown to December 21, 2012 in full swing,” says Sanchez, “tequila makes sense. Our guests learn to sip and savor the flavors and aromas of tequila and immerse themselves in the culture of this complex drink — the drink of the gods.”

If the overwhelming romance of your beachfront or over-water lagoon suite keeps you from attending, fret not. Every guest receives a beautiful, complimentary in-room bottle of Milagro Reposado, which pairs especially well with magnificent Mayan views.

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Freelance writer and aspiring tequilero Amy Drew Thompson will be sipping extra añejo come the 2012 holiday season. Just in case. Visit her compendium at

Tagged: Mexico

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