After Cabo San Lucas, a mostly boring port on day 3 of our cruise, we stopped in Mazatlan, a much larger city (about 350k people).
We disembark, take the shuttle and are dropped in front of the shops and other vendors. Seeing some of them peddling pictures of resorts and hotels, I stop May and say "Well, the guided tour of the city with the ship is $40 per person. If those guys can give us something similar for free, I don't mind visiting their resort for an hour or two". To which May says "As long as it is not a time-share presentation". We check with one of the guys and he says it is not; it is supposed to be a hotel offering a few perks and a visit to attract future business. Some further checking with May and we agree after some more negotiation (we get USD $50 to spend on food and drinks at the resort and a 2 hours taxi tour of the city).
Well, it was a time-share presentation...
May is slightly pissed-off but I am having some fun with the sales guy as I do the maths in front of him to prove to him that the time-share concept would absolutely not work for us. He lets us go after 25 minutes...
That is the hotel resort. Pretty nice actually. The tour of the premise was about 45 minutes.
Now, that was the surprise. After the hotel/resort visit, we were quite hungry and we decided to use that $50 at the hotel's restaurant. The food was really good and so were the drinks. First time I tasted refried beans that actually tasted nice, as opposed to the typically pasty, yucky stuff we get in Canada. Quesadillas had a generous helping of tasty chicken, not too dry. And the guacamole was excellent. I just couldn't believe it. Oh, and I forgot the soup; perfectly spicy and zesty.
We then went on our 2 hours city tour. We had time to visit pretty much everything we wanted and, as we were making our way back to the ship, I thought: "These guys have actually lost money on us today".
Nevertheless, make no mistake if you are offered to visit a hotel but not a time-share for perks; it will be a time-share, and be prepared to say no, no matter how good the deal might look.
(It is not a good deal, trust me)