Dreams Cancun or Casa Magna?

Old Jan 7th, 2007, 09:03 PM
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Dreams Cancun or Casa Magna?

Planning to take the family to Cancun in June. We're in our early-mid forties and kids are 12 and 14 y/o girls.

This will be our first trip to Mexico, and we're trying to decide if we want to go all inclusive or not. Wife and I are not big hard liquor drinkers, but enjoy a few beers on vacation. Wife and kids are a little picky about food, but not too bad.

What criteria do you use to decide between AI and non-AI? From the pricing I'm getting, it looks like the cost is about $325 per day for AI for the four of us - seems like wash, but then I'm committed to eat at the resort. What's the advantage?

As for the two resorts we're considering, they seem to get consistently good reviews, and the pictures in Expedia look great. Any other similar resorts we should consider? If we go non-AI, additional restaurants within walking distance would be great.

Thanks for any info you can provide.

Tom
fullsail is offline  
Old Jan 8th, 2007, 04:36 AM
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Hi!
I have been to Mexico with teenagers twice and we love the all inclusive for a couple of reasons. The kids don't want to go to a nice restaurant and we like to so we split up a couple of times. The kids like the "independence" and we like a dinner or two alone. It also take the feeling of getting nickel & dimed out of the picture. It's still fun to go into town for lunch which is cheaper than dinner so you're still experiencing the local culture and fare. The kids also thought it was cool to order room service and not have to pay for it!! Have fun!
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Old Jan 8th, 2007, 07:17 AM
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I'd probably choose the Casa Magna myself, it is a beautiful hotel and has just been completely redone. Also, check the Marriott website, the CM often has an all inclusive option.
That said, Dreams does look like one of the more family friendly and appealing resorts in Cancun, so I think you're on the right track...
Also, don't discount some of the restaurants in Cancun, it's got some great ones, and that's 1 reason we've never done all inclusive. The other is that the all ins often seem more crowded...
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Old Jan 8th, 2007, 01:24 PM
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I agree w/Frankie there are so many choices of restaurants and for that price you are paying you can eat anywhere. Go to Casa Magna it is a nicer hotel and it's located at the Marina where you and the girls can walk around. Many restaurants there. It's about a 15 min cab ride into town. I never liked A/I just not for me unless I was in an isolated place. Good Luck Oh by the way the Marriott does have all inclusive and they do have very good food but I wouldn't even do it there.
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Old Jan 10th, 2007, 07:57 AM
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Thanks for all the replies. The comment about the Casa Magna being in the Marina District brings up another question - are there restaurants and/or attractions within walking distance? I know the resorts offer a variety of eating options, and I'm pretty happy to spend a few days in a lounge chair, but I'm just wondering what else might be within walking distance. The idea of never getting in a bus or cab has some appeal. Thanks!
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Old Jan 10th, 2007, 08:07 AM
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I have an idea Butsey might've been thinking of the Casa Magna in PV. That Casa Magna is in the Marina, Cancun doesn't have a Marina.

The Cancun Casa Magna is in the middle of the hotel zone, and there are a few good restaurants within walking distance. However, to get to the busy part of the hotel zone, you'll need to take a taxi or bus. The bus is super easy, runs all the time and costs 60 cents.
Dreams will be closer to the bars/entertainment. But it's very easy to get around the hotel zone of Cancun.
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Old Jan 11th, 2007, 08:14 AM
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Sorry missed Cancun in your question, Frankie was right I was thinking P.V. Have been to Cancun and stayed at both hotels Even though CasaMagna is a much nicer hotel Dreams is in the best area for the girls, there is more within walking distance there.
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Old Jan 28th, 2007, 11:27 AM
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fullsail,

I have not been to Marriot CM, but have been to Ritz and other AI's on Cancun's Hotel Zone. I have also stayed at Dreams when it was the Camino Real.

Anyway, for what it's worth, here's my opinion:

1) I would say that AI's are better for younger children (mine are now 11 and 9 and have experienced Ritz, Fiesta Americana CB, and one AI in Cancun. The nice thing about the AI with children is that the kids can eat and drink whenever they want and you don't have to worry about the money situation all the time. They come and go as they please when they are hungry and they don't have to ask Mom and Dad for the $.
2) AI's are (in my opinion) more kid friendly and geared for the couples with children. This is only an opinion, but I beleive you will see this over time if you compare enough AI resorts to non AI resorts.
3) Now, let me state that the nice thing about Dreams is that there are two pools and two beaches. Therefore, there will be plenty of available chairs, beach area, etc. Also, Dreams has a unique feature on both their North and East side beaches. They have naturally formed breakers (rocks) that are located approx. 100 yards away from each beach. Why is this important for kids? Well, most Hotels have pretty good size waves crashing along the shoreline and when it is windy, it may be impossible for the kids under five feet in height not to be toppled everytime they enter the water. Therefore, with the rock walls at Dreams, the waves crash away from shore and this creates a pool effect along the beaches, i.e, calm waters. Thus, the kids can snorkel, wade and swim without the task of fighting the surf. I think this is a huge plus that most travelers do not consider when traveling with the little one's.

In summary, I beleive you will like Dreams, not only for it's AI offerings, but also for it's location and layout. If you look at a picture of Dreams hotel from Google Earth or posted pics on Tripadvisor, you will see what I'm talking about.

Hope this helps.

Best,

Frank
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Old Jan 30th, 2007, 04:44 PM
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I agree with Frank444.
I have traveled with my grandchildren and AL is the way to go. They loved it and we loved it. If they don't care for something they ordered you can always order something else and not worry about breaking the budget.
From what I have read on other sites, the Children love Dreams and you get to relax too. it's close to shopping and many restaurants if you want to try something different. And the water is calmer on the North side of Cancun (top of the seven)
Have a great vacation and enjoy your family.
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