I Went To A Clothing-Optional Resort With My Partner & I Felt Closer To Him Than Ever Before

A few months ago, I received an invitation to write a piece on the travel trend of clothing-optional resorts by going to three with my partner: Desire Riviera Maya Pearl Resort, Desire Riviera Maya Resort, and Temptation Cancun Resort in Mexico. I know, I have the best job ever. Naturally, I emailed the PR rep back with a "yes" within an hour, and my partner and I braced ourselves for a vacation unlike anything else we (or most people) have experienced.

We spent the next few months counting down the days until the trip, but a few weeks before it, we hit a rough patch. Or, more accurately, I did. I was getting tired of being in a relationship and craving more freedom. I started to resent my partner for tying me down. I stopped feeling the excitement I used to feel around him. I didn't want to have to end things; I just wanted things to change. I desperately hoped our vacation would provide that.

After a delayed 11-hour flight, we arrived at Desire Riviera Maya Pearl on a Wednesday afternoon. Immediately, we passed a tantra workshop, a spa offering erotic massages, and a hot tub full of naked people. Within an hour, we were two of the naked people in the hot tub. Within another hour, we were hooking up in the water. Needless to say, we took to this kind of vacation quickly.

Over the course of the next week, which we also spent at Desire Riviera Maya and Temptation (which is actually top-optional, not totally clothing-optional), I saw new sides of my partner, got through some uncomfortable situations with him, and felt closer to him than I ever have before. By the end, I was no longer fantasizing about being single. I was getting the excitement I craved with him. And I was remembering what I loved about him.

I think that's why so many couples keep coming back to these places: They force you to grow — together. Here's why I'd recommend a clothing-optional vacation to any couple willing to get out of their comfort zone and their clothes.

1You’ll Be Having LOTS Of Sex

Ashley Batz/Bustle

The first step toward getting in the mood for sex is thinking about it. And at a clothing-optional resort, you’ll be thinking about it a lot. With people talking about sex and even doing it all around you, it’s hard not to. They don't call it Desire for nothing. During our third day there, my parter and I had sex four times. One couple we met said they did it six times in a day. And that's a good thing. When you’re spending so much time making each other feel good, you appreciate each other more.

2You’ll See New Sides Of Each Other

Suzannah Weiss/Temptation

When your partner is naked in front of strangers, you’ll get to see how they behave in a new situation. A side of them you haven’t seen will probably come out. I learned, for example, how open-minded my partner is. I don't expect my partners to be as comfortable with sex as me, but he was an amazing sport, completely throwing himself into everything. On the flip side, this kind of experience could probably also show you a side of your partner that you don’t like. But either way, you’ll learn something about them.

3You'll Get Through Some Weird Situations Together

Temptation

For the most part, being naked in public is not as weird as it sounds. But in such an unusual situation, some strange stuff is bound to happen. Over the course of the week, I found myself crying at a spa out of jealousy after my partner got an erotic massage, making a dramatic exit from a club where another woman tried to hit on him, and accidentally offending a tantra teacher. He was on my side in all these situations, and thanks to him, I'm now able to laugh about them. I developed a newfound appreciation for him after that. I know he has my back, and I trust him to help me through uncomfortable situations like these (though I have a feeling we won't be in those exact situations ever again).

4You'll Get Some Solid Relationship Advice

Andrew Zaeh for Bustle

People at clothing-optional resorts are an open book. They're constantly talking about their relationships and sex lives, which means you have a lot of opportunities to get advice about yours. One couple gave us a run-down on squirting. Another told us how they've kept their sex life exciting after decades together. If you've got sex or relationship questions, clothing-optional resorts are a great place to ask them, because people will not hold back with their answers.

5You'll Dedicate Time To Your Relationship

Desire Riviera Maya

Most couples' vacations are dedicated to the relationship to some extent, but they're also dedicated to sightseeing, relaxation, or whatever else you're there for. Trips to clothing-optional resorts are truly dedicated to you and your partner. Temptation, for example, has a couples-only aphrodisiac restaurant. Desire Riviera Maya Pearl and Desire Riviera Maya Resort have "fantasy menus" including activities like "sex on the beach" and a "private playroom." Between all these options, your mind will be on the two of you — not in a "let's work on our relationship" kind of way (though there is value in that) but in a "let's enjoy each other's company and remember why we love each other" kind of way.

6You'll Get Excited About Each Other Again

Andrew Zaeh for Bustle

People are always lamenting the loss of the excitement they felt in the beginning of their relationships. But you won't get the excitement of experiencing something new unless you, well, do something new. The adrenaline rush of leaving your comfort zones together can make you feel like you're falling in love all over again.

7You'll Lose Your Inhibitions

Suzannah Weiss/Temptation

This'll vary from place to place, but at Desire in particular, the nudity fostered a sense of acceptance. It wasn't about being sexy; it was about nobody caring who's sexy or not. This helped me shake off some of the self-consciousness many women feel while naked. I wasn't afraid of not being sexy enough, and I wasn't afraid of being "too" sexy and "leading on" anyone.

This also changed how I interacted with my partner. When we danced at night, I did the same silly dances I do in the privacy of our apartment. And I didn't feel ashamed about being sexual. Even when we fooled around on the beach one night (on a chair far away from everyone else, but still), I didn't care about being seen. I knew the other people there either had done something similar themselves or totally understood why someone else would.

Taking your clothes off in a foreign location probably won't solve your relationship problems. But if you're willing to work on them, I can't think of a better setting to do that in. You'll be forced to bring your guard down and bond in new ways, and all the sex you'll be having can only help that process along.