Arrival: I traveled with my husband and our 11yr old son.
We arrived on the 11th of July at 11:00am, upon arrival we were given a welcome drink and a cold scented towel….very nice. The lobby area and lobby bar are amazing!!! Front desk staff were great. Went over the layout of the resort and the restaurant times and location. We checked in but couldn’t get into our room until 3:00 since check out is at noon, our room was still occupied, not a problem, we walked around and explored a little. We were given room keys at 2:30.
We booked a standard room and I emailed the hotel one week earlier requesting block 60 and an upgrade to a superior room, and they honored our request. We had a king bed and a pull out sofa and a small seating area with table. Also,a balcony with 2 chairs and a hammock. The bathroom was a good size, a Jacuzzi tub and a stand up shower, double sinks. Our fridge was stocked everyday with whatever we wanted. The first day the maid brought us a 6 pack of ice cold beer and soft drinks due to the drinks in the fridge weren’t cold enough yet..nice touch!! Our maid was Carmen and she was great! Made us towel animals everyday. Everyday she made us a new one, by the end of our 7 day stay we had 7 towel animals all over the room….lovely!!Building 60 is close to the beach but a 10-15 walk to the lobby, call for a cart, we did, and they were happy to come get you and bring you back. There is a concierge in every building to exchange towels for you, make dinner reservations for you.. they are there from 8:00am to 11:00pm.
Restaurants and Bars: We made our first night dinner reservation at the sea food restaurant one week earlier and it was also honored, we had a 7:00pm seating. We made all the other dinner reservations every morning around 11:00am for a 7:30 or 8:00 seating, we ate at all the restaurant except the Mediterranean one. Hands down the gourmet was our absolutely favorite!!! The lobster there was the best lobster I’ve had in a long time!!! My son and husband each were offered a second helping..and they gladly excepted! We ate at the breakfast buffet by the pool every morning and it was very good, it changed a little everyday, but we never grew board of the food. The lobby bar–snake bar is a must in the evenings, they have live music playing and its a nice relaxing place and a great place to socialize.
Room service is limited, but we learned by mid-week that you can order anything, we requested cheese sticks and a plate of fries (which was not on the menu) and the request were granted, doesn’t hurt to ask! Room service arrived in about 35-45 minutes every time.
Beach/Pools/Grounds: The pools are very good and there are many to visit. No rowdy or overtaking, its spread out very well…nice flow to where you don’t feel crowed…nice place to relax and catch some sun and watch the daily activities! The lazy river is just that….Lazy! But its also relaxing just to float around, rarely crowed. The wave pool goes off at certain times, probably good for younger kids, my 11yr old grew board of the small waves. There is also a small water park area for kids younger than 10. I heard lots of great things about the kids club.
The beach is nice, crowed but nice. Never had a problem finding a spot whether it was in the shade or in the sun. There is a wait staff that will bring you drinks anytime until 6:00 at the pool and the beach…very nice. The waves were very strong and big during the week we were there, but that didn’t stop us from having fun in the waves…although it was red flagged all week, just be careful and safe and you’ll be fine.
Activities on and off the Resort/Hotel:
We did several excursions during the week. We booked a whale shark snorkeling trip, a 5th avenue guided shopping trip and a snorkeling and lunch full day sail to Isla Mujeres with Olympus Tours in the lobby and booked 2 dives with Dressel dive center on the beach by the Grand. All was wonderful except the full day sail to Isla Mujeres, we were sold this stating we were going to snorkel around the protected marine park and be on a catamaran, as it turns out it was on a very uncomfortable ferry..too large of a boat for 15 people and we didn’t snorkel in a marine park we snorkeled in the path of other ferries and boats that were going to and from Cancun from Isla Mujeres, so the water was somewhat wavy and you could see oil and your skin felt slimy. Just be careful booking things. The whale shark excursion was amazing…awesome!!! Take the sea sick medicine before heading out..you’ll need it…rough seas!!
Other Comments: All in all we had a great trip, the resort is very large, but ask the bell boys for rides and they will take you any where you need to go. Must visit the shopping area on property..the taco place is a must! Very Very Very good!!! Shopping is also reasonable and some prices are a little better the 5th Avenue shopping. Also, try the coconut ice cream above the pool bar…very good also!! The staff all over are very friendly! We tipped one’s here and there and left a few ones for our maid. The bell boys we tipped at the end of our trip, the bar staff at night in the lobby we tipped every night.
I took a lot of pics, I can share them with you and answer questions, don’t hesitate to ask, I don’t mind to help out!!