There is no question about the fact that it's touristy, the kind of place you'd usually avoid because the hype is almost never as great as the venue. But: At Señor Frog, the food is actually great. the atmosphere is fun, the prices are reasonable and the place appeals to every age group, from young kids to seniors.
Yes, most of the activities are designed for the college-agers who descend on Cancun at Spring Break, from the tequila-shot lady to the conga line; those pursuits are not for the grade-school set and participation is rare for the Depends crowd, although it does happen.
The entry is a crowded mess of bodies waiting for a table in either the main room (with stage and DJ) or the end room which is open to outside, quieter and more suited to dining only or seating with kids. To the right of the entry is a Señor Frog's logo shop wherein you can purchase T-shirts, hats, shot glasses and other items. This spot is very popular. Nothing, it seems, says "cool" in Iowa or Oregon as much as a genuine Señor Frog T-shirt, unless you're throwing a frat party, in which case the "yard glasses" means you have arrived.
They aren't really a yard long and they aren't made of glass, but they are terrific souvenirs. Order a margarita yard, and you are served in a tall (about 22 inches) beaker in neon colors with the Senor Frog logo and name. They are made of a clear light polymer, easy to pack and take home. The more you can accumulate, the higher your "cool" rating.
The menu offerings are fairly simple: tacos, guacamole and chips, Mexican-style roast pork dinners, enchiladas. Some dishes are definitely designed for the U.S. palate, others are
more typical of Mexico or of the Mayan Riviera. All of the food is priced quite reasonably and is very nicely prepared.
As the dinner hour gets under way, as the restaurant becomes more and more crowded, the fun begins. A DJ encourages everyone to get up and do the Macarena. A Conga line is started, and grows as it snakes around the room. The Tequila Shots ladies, cute young hotties in halter tops, run around the rooms finding gullible souls who are willing to have a shot of raw tequila poured down their throats while every one around makes "Go! Go! Go!" noises. (Depending on the age and willingness of the subject, the shot girl might stand behind, slap a hand over the mouth of the participant, and shake his head back and forth, usually -and not coincidentally- against their young and ample breasts. They seem to have an uncanny knack for knowing who would enjoy this and who would find it... a bit too much.)
At the top of the main room is an odd protuberance looking like a leaky air conditioning vent or pipe. It isn't. It's a tube through which daring individuals can slide, lying on their backs, from the top of the restaurant, across the ceiling, and out a hole into the lagoon beyond. The area into which this brave person is kerplunked is totally enclosed in fencing, as there are alligators in the lagoon. It takes someone either very young or very inebriated to try this, sliding through the restaurant above the heads of the diners, only to end up in an alligator infested lagoon. One has to have a lot of trust in the creators of this activity; trust that the tubing won't fall from the ceiling and trust that the fencing surrounding the splash-landing point is intact.
In all, this restaurant/nightclub is great fun. If you're looking for a cultural experience that reflects the heritage of the Riviera Maya, this isn't it, unless the history you are seeking is that created by high-school graduates or college kids from all over the United States.