In our December 22 issue, Travel Agent told you about the great Riviera Maya properties we visited during a one-week trip to Mexico. Now, we'll tell you about the Cancun properties we saw during the same trip.
A Presidential Suite at Palace Resorts' Beach Palace, Cancun
Our first Cancun property tour was at Palace Resorts’ Beach Palace, Cancun. Like most Cancun properties, this all-inclusive resort was devastated by Hurricane Wilma in 2005; it reopened in 2007 and is practically 100 percent new. There are only two room categories here (Superior and Presidential Suites), which made for an easy tour.
The best room we saw— and possibly the best room in the resort— was room #1000, which was one of the property’s 24 Presidential Suites. There is a Jacuzzi in every room, living and dining areas, and a king-size bed, but our favorite aspect was what we found outside: a spacious balcony with views of the ocean and the main pool. Just in front of the main pool is a 500-foot-high projection screen where movies are played at night, and where the resort airs the National Football League’s Super Bowl every year. The best part is that the screen is completely visible from the balcony, so your clients can book the Presidential Suite and essentially have their own private Super Bowl party. This, along with some very chic sports bars with more than 20 flat-screen TVs, makes this the perfect guys' getaway property.
Then again, the 10-treatment room spa and shopping area make this a great haven for a girls' getaway, too. Couples will feel comfortable here as well, but we got the impression that this resort is a great spot for a vacation with friends. Agents should call Luis Miguel Ojeda Arsuaga, general manager, at 011-52-998-891-4110, ext. 4000 or [email protected].
The second stop was another Palace Resorts property, Le Blanc Spa Resort, Cancun. Where Beach Palace is geared mainly toward singles and friend getaways, Le Blanc has "couples" written all over it. In fact, the all-inclusive, adults-only resort is made up of about 90 percent honeymooners.
There are five room categories here. Our favorite was the Royal Junior Suite. We saw room #315, which is just one of 26 Royal Juniors, and we actually recommend booking it over the Presidential Suite, although we didn’t see the Presidential Suite or the Governor’s Suite. Why? The bed is located in the center of the room, and the windows, which offer great ocean views and excellent light, are both in front of the bed and to the left.
The spa was also quite impressive. Hands down, the best room at the 19-treatment-room spa was the “BlancDior,” or the master spa suite. This room comes with all the essentials, from a sauna and steam room to couples' massage beds. The price includes a two-hour minimum treatment, aromatherapy and a bottle of wine.
Agents looking to book Le Blanc should call Reservations Manager Lourdes Ancona at 011-52-998-881-6000 or [email protected].
Hyatt Cancun Caribe's Regency Suite
The next stop on Travel Agent’s Cancun hotels tour landed us at the Hyatt Cancun Caribe. The 296-room property is made up of three different buildings. The room categories are Standard Rooms, Premiere Suites and Regency Suites, which are further subcategorized. The property is ideal for families and couples.
We loved room #2304, a Regency Suite. It has a small balcony with a great ocean view and a Jacuzzi right behind the bed. We also loved room #2308, also a Regency Suite but with a terrace. The best part of this room was the whirlpool on the terrace, which overlooked the ocean. There are two pools on the property. Agents should call Sofia Cervantes, marketing coordinator, at 011-52-998-883-3606 or [email protected].
Perhaps one of the best resorts we saw during this trip to Mexico was in the fairly new resort destination of Playa Mujeres. Just 15 minutes to the north, this area was part of Cancun until a few years ago, when it was separated into an adults-only destination. (Many people still consider it to be part of Cancun). Here, we saw the much talked about La Amada resort, which may well be one of the most involved projects the Cancun area has ever seen.
The project probably won't be fully launched until February, but there was enough to convince us that this was a gem in the making. The hotel portion of the overall project, which also includes private residences and a 170-slip marina, is made up of about 109 rooms. The spa, which has 17 treatment rooms including four spa suites, is open to non-guests as well. The only drawback here is that the resort will house only two restaurants when it opens—but a third will most likely open shortly after, with more to follow.
The best room is the Owners' Suite. There is only one of these. If this room looked so great while unfinished and in the dark, which is the state in which we saw it, we can only imagine how incredible it is going to be when it is done. It is a two-bedroom suite and there is a Jacuzzi located right in front of the window of the master bedroom. As the suite overlooks the ocean, the views are amazing.
40 percent of the rooms, including the Owners' Suite, have plunge pools. We also saw one of the 14 Swim Up Suites, which have a pool located literally right outside the back door of the room. A Jacuzzi is also tucked away in the back of the room, facing the window and offering great views of the pool. Agents should call David Munoz, marketing director, at 011-52-998-872-8566 or [email protected].
The expansive pool at Aqua
Our next and last stop of our one-week hotel tour in Mexico landed us at Aqua resort. Travel Agent didn’t get to see many rooms (they were all booked due to a last minute group booking), but we can tell you about the room we stayed in. Room #3027 is a standard room, but it could have been a suite at most of the other properties we visited during the week. It had a balcony with a oceanfront view.
Aqua is a very classy resort that focuses on every aspect of all senses, from the tastes of the different cuisines to the scents of the different parts of the hotel. For example, if you closed your eyes in our room, you would have thought you were in a spa. The resort describes itself as “barefoot luxury,” meaning the resort is very casual yet maintains luxury standards. It offers cooking classes for children, eight pools (all with different temperatures) and theme weeks. During the popular Chocolate Week, everything from chocolate-flavored spa products to actual chocolate are offered throughout the resort.