Just back from Royal Cancun

Old Sep 22nd, 2007, 04:07 PM
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Just back from Royal Cancun

Still preparing trip report but happy to answer any Qs.
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Old Sep 23rd, 2007, 02:47 AM
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We're going to Royal Cancun next weekend. I keep hearing that the beach is terrible. Is it true? What room did you stay in? Did you get a gold card? Any heads up?
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Old Sep 25th, 2007, 08:26 PM
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The beach is not TERRIBLE, don't worry. It's eroded but you can still have your cabana on the beach and take a dip in the ocean, though the water was pretty rough the entire week we were there and I wasn't able to do any serious swimming in it.

We were in an outside corner suite, 701, a very nice room away from the noise at night. If you want a quiet room during the day, book a room on the spa side (higher room numbers up to 41); if you want a quiet room at night, book one on the Pelicano's side, next to the Gran Caribe resort (lower room numbers starting with 01).

Glad we got a gold card, only had to sit through a 5-minute talk, and it gave us 10% discount at the shops and in the spa. Plus you'll get the famous "pillow menu" with your Gold Card, although we got the pillows we wanted (therapeutic) by asking housekeeping for them as soon as we arrived.

People do reserve their cabanas, so find one you like and plunk your stuff on it when you get up in the morning.

To keep room cool enough, make sure your ceiling fan is on high, PLUS keep the AC fan, which is a button control, on high also. People complained about the weak AC, but with both fans on high & the AC on coldest setting, we were good for the week (and my husband loves a cold room).

We were disappointed in all the restaurants except for Spice (the buffet). Asiana had very mediocre Japanese food; Maria Marie had exactly one Mexican dish on the menu; Tapas was really bad and a very limited menu, if you could call it that -- pretty much canned spam-type stuff on white bread. I'm not kidding! Your room key gives you access to the Gran Caribe next door - you might want to go there for some restaurant variety. My husband liked using the gym there for additional equipment, too. Spices, the buffet restaurant, had good variety and we ended up having almost all our meals there.

We're not drinkers and my husband had his own wine Fedex'd down to the resort, so we can't really comment on the drinks, but the main bar in the lobby looked really well-stocked.

We hardly ever showered in our room -- at the end of the beach day we'd both go to the spa, get some steam, and shower there. They'll give you a locker, robe, and slippers and all the toiletries you need plus hair dryer. You can also leave lots of toiletries home -- in our room we had body lotion, shampoo, conditioner, soap, toothbrush, toothpaste, and shaving kits, plus you could use the mouthwash and antiperspirant at the spa (the jacuzzi rooms), too.

Bring lots of small bills to tip the waiters, chambermaids, beach assistants, and service people there, they are wonderful, always cheerful and helpful, and truly appreciated even a small tip. You can use American dollars but I recommend buying pesos at your bank or at a bank there because the exchange rate at the hotel sucks and they'll tell you they're out of dollars when you try to change your pesos back to dollars at the end of your trip. I was told the resort workers prefer pesos because the hotel gives them the same lousy exchange rate on the dollar that they give guests.

My most important tip would be to get your hands on a room map (I can email you a PDF of it) because the hotel has online check-in where you can select your exact room from the ones that are available. This is one of the best features of any hotel we've ever stayed at and one of the reasons we booked there. I don't think we'd go back because the atmosphere was just too croweded and Cancun-y for us, and the entire resort is designed for looks, not for function. But that online check-in is a great feature.

Any other questions, just ask. You helped me start my trip report that way!
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Old Oct 3rd, 2007, 09:13 PM
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Could you please e-mail the room map you have. We are making reservations in the next few days, for Dec. It would be helpful to have a copy of the map. Thank you so much. e-mail to: [email protected]
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Old Oct 7th, 2007, 12:04 PM
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Me, too, can you email me a copy of the map at [email protected]?

Many thanks!

You said you had to listen to some "speech"? was this a promo for something?

If the royal Cancun was too touristy, is there another area of Cancun that you would reocmmend that is quieter?

Many thanks again!
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Old Oct 9th, 2007, 04:23 PM
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Hi, I just sent you the room map. Check your spam folder in case my email landed in there. The pitch we had to listen to was no big deal at all. It told us a lot of things we already knew about the resort, available activities, how the gold card works, a warning about timeshare sellers, etc. It was painless and only took about 5 minutes.

I've been looking into where to stay if we go back to the area. I think the only place I'd stay in Cancun itself would be Le Blanc. I visited it and got a brief tour around the place and it was very peaceful and lovely. The bellhop told me that even when it's 100% booked it feels empty.

As for other areas, I've looked into Puerto Morelos but haven't found the right kind of resort for us there yet. However, I visited there years ago on a business trip and I liked the town very much. It seems more like a real place and not a tourist trap. We looked into Maroma, near Puerto Morelos, but I've read recent stuff that its peace & quiet was ruined by a new place next door that attracted all the jetskis and beach activities that we're trying to escape.

I also looked into Isla Holbox, which is off the north coast, but I think it's a bit too rough for us at this point. It's probably going to be the next big destination in the Yucatan.

It seems that every other resort website I go to in the Riviera Maya, even the so-called romantic ones, has the same photos of volleyball in the pool and long rows of beach beds like a sardine factory. It's a turn-off to me. We're now looking into Hidden Beach Resort, near Akumal. It's a little farther down on the map than we wanted and it's au naturel, which we've never done before, but the atmosphere sounds quiet and adult. The beach is too rocky for swimming but I understand you have access to El Dorado Seaside Suites next door, which has a real good pool for swimming and other great amenities.
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Old Nov 21st, 2007, 10:03 AM
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Key Gal:

Thanks for the information, I actually just used the online check in about an hour ago and it was really cool. Agree that it is a great tool.

I had read nothing but stellar reviews everywhere I looked (expedia, travelocity, couple other travel sites) and this was the absolute first I'd read giving any negative responses. Most notably, we paid attention to the food comments from others because having been to a couple of all-inclusives that can be a real down fall. All others before had provided very positive responses..

we leave on Friday, hopefully they've ditched the spam and whitebread..

we have never been to cancun, like generally like going to less touristy places also but do drink and plan to take full advantage of that.

Rooms were nice ? everything else ok other than the food ? do you need to make reservations at the restaurants ? did you do room service and have any luck ?

thanks. Bob
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Old Nov 21st, 2007, 10:05 AM
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OH, and can you tell me the best way to get to the hotel from the airport ? Would rather not stand around to save 10 bucks but also don't want to get ripped off.

thx.
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Old Nov 21st, 2007, 05:10 PM
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If you're looking for a peaceful place in Cancun, there are definitely some. Usually all inclusives are more crowded and touristy. We've stayed twice at the JW Marriott, 1 time on the club level, and both were great visits, really nice. We've also stayed at the Royal tower at the Gran Melia, which was very private and peaceful. The Marriott Casa Magna is also very nice, and the LeMeridien and the Ritz are also beautiful.
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Old Dec 3rd, 2007, 02:13 PM
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Just got back.. also open to Q's.. Very beautiful, but very unhappy about a couple things also..
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Old Jan 14th, 2008, 09:25 AM
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I would love to hear what you liked and didn't like about Royal. Any tips for the resort? How was the food?
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Old Jan 14th, 2008, 09:30 AM
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Could anyone email me a pdf of the room map? [email protected]

Thank you!
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Old Mar 4th, 2008, 01:56 PM
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ledtau -

What were the high and low points? We are scheduled to visit in May and I am getting nervous about some recent negative reviews on Trip Advisor.

Thanks!!
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Old Mar 18th, 2008, 09:47 AM
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HIGH POINTS: Good food in the main (buffet) dining room. Wonderful beds. All rooms have oceanfront balconies. Online check-in allows you to select specific room. Spotlessly clean and pretty rooms and public areas. Good gift shops on premises. Large free-form pool includes one dedicated lane for swimmers. Beach concierge has free magazines, sunscreen, water for when you run out. Pretty good service in all areas except lobby concierges and reservations people - VERY understaffed when we were there.

LOW POINTS: Bad feng shui - feels crowded even when half empty. Grounds & hotel are poorly designed, difficult to navigate, lots of obstacles everywhere you turn. Beach is eroded. Can't get away from loud music or loud guests. Beach cabanas are ineffective against sun or heat and are all on top of each other. Very American atmosphere, did not feel like a getaway to us - we could have been in Las Vegas. If you like that atmosphere, you'll love Royal Cancun.
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Old Mar 18th, 2008, 10:02 AM
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p.s. My main impression was that in many ways the place is beautiful and impressive, but it's more for show than function.
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Old Mar 19th, 2008, 06:41 PM
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Two more high points of Royal Cancun: The working staff - waiters, porters, beach & pool attendants, chambermaids - were superlative, warm, went out of their way to please. And the spa area on the lower level, one for men, one for women, was really great. It's cool inside with showers, lockers, a huge jacuzzi, steam & sauna rooms and cold plunge pool. In the morning there are two huge coolers of fruit and vegetable juice, in the afternoons they switch to iced herb tea. A really delightful respite from the heat & sun and noise.
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