A familiar face for many Royal Resorts members, Carlos Montejo, the company’s longest serving employee has retired after 34 years with the company.
In recent years, Carlos worked for the Marketing & Sales Division as a porter and office assistant, but many longtime guests will surely remember him from the early days at The Royal Cancun (Club Internacional de Cancun).
Originally from Pie de la Cuesta, a fishing village near Acapulco in Guerrero, Carlos moved to the Mexican Caribbean in 1976 and is a true Cancún pioneer. He reminisces, “When I first arrived, Kukulcán Boulevard didn’t exist, just a dirt track through the jungle and palm groves out to the beaches. The wooden bridge across Canal Sigfrido at Playa Linda was only wide enough for one lane of traffic. I soon found a job as a driver transporting landfill to the stretch of the island that was being widened and reclaimed from the lagoon, now the Pok-ta-Pok golf course.”
On the subject of Cancún he adds, “I liked it far too much to go back to Guerrero. When we were hungry, all we had to do here was dive into the sea and grab a fish or a lobster. We used to catch large snappers and fry them with shrimp – really delicious. A meal fit for a king. Why on earth would anyone want to go back to Acapulco?” Incidentally, Carlos’s fishing skills would later become legendary in the Royal Resorts community after he caught a magnificent dorado right off the beach on Christmas Day, 1977.
Carlos joined Royal Resorts in May 1977 when The Royal Cancun (Club Internacional de Cancun) was still under construction. He says, “Looking back, I think that joining VCI was one of the best things I ever did in my life and I am very grateful for the opportunity. Who would have thought that the resort would grow so quickly when it only opened with two buildings?”
“I was a jack-of-all-trades in the early days. Apart from being a porter and night watchman, I ferried guests to the airport, removed seaweed from the beach, cleaned the pools, stored the sailboats, and helped Doña Pilar, the Resort Housekeeper with purchasing and errands.”
Shopping was a challenge in early Cancún, there were none of the supermarkets we know today, just a handful of tendejones or corner stores. Shortages were common and deliveries were often delayed. Now retired, Pilar Quintal reminisces that Carlos grew very adept at finding basic commodities in town. “I remember that searching for soap, detergent, trash bags and even milk was often a fulltime job. We would hear word that a delivery truck had arrived and Carlos would take the van and go looking for it. He got to know every corner shop in Cancún! When we found an item we had been looking for, we sometimes bought the whole stock just to be on the safe side. You never knew from one day to the next what was going to become scarce.”
Pilar adds, “Through thick and thin, Carlos was my right-hand man in the early years at The Royal Cancun. He is very good-natured and a hard worker. I used to tease him by telling him that he always said “yes” to everything. No chore was too much for him.”
Carlos reflects on his time at Royal Resorts saying, “I never imagined that Royal Resorts would grow as much as it has. It has been my life. How time flies when you love your job, and I have loved it here. I have learned a lot and worked with some wonderful people over the years. I have also made friends with many of the members and look forward to seeing them year after year. They are always welcome.”
We will miss Don Carlos and his quiet courtesy at Royal Resorts. Always ready to help, he was a mine of information and would happily share his stories about the birth of Cancún and Royal Resorts. On behalf of the staff and his many friends, we wish him a long and happy retirement.
Whether it’s the bellboy who greets you upon arrival, the maid who cleans your villa, your concierge or the waiter who serves you your afternoon cocktail with a smile, many Royal Resorts employees have been with the company for more than 10 years and during this time have formed lasting ties with the families they look after.
Members look forward to returning to their Mexican home away from home and seeing their “Cancún family” year after year. Why not tell us about some of your favorite Royal Resorts employees.