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Ritz-Carlton Cancun (Mexico) [Master Thread]

Ritz-Carlton Cancun (Mexico) [Master Thread]

Old Aug 20, 14, 10:54 am
  #1  
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Ritz-Carlton Cancun (Mexico) [Master Thread]

Post bar trip to the Cancun Ritz.

One word: wow

This was the best RC experience I've ever had. The service and soft product are unbelievably amazing.

Arrival: Requested a transfer through the hotel. Unless you are a CUN expert you need to have transportation set up ahead of time. Once you exit customs it is a mad house. The first layer of people tell you that they are your driver and will do everything to try to get you to stop and talk to them. Walk past these people to the next layer of people who also claim to be your driver. Get through that layer and you'll see a group of drivers with the respective boards with your name on them, these people are your drivers...

Check in: Did a 5 night point stay for 200k points. Booked in a regular ocean "view" room and was upgraded to ocean front upon check in on a high floor. Apparently the top two floors are the refurbished rooms and are the rooms that you need to request. According to reviews the non refurb rooms are showing some wear/tear. We arrived around noon thus our room wasn't ready until 2:30. This could have contributed to the upgrade but who knows. Sat at the ocean front restaurant and had lunch and margaritas (best margs I've ever had). The front desk agent gave us 2 free drink coupons while we waited for our room. The waiter recognized this and called the front desk every ten minutes for us seeing if our room was ready without us asking him to do so, which was the first example of proactive service.

Room: High floor, refurb ocean front. Ask for a room on floors 7 or 8, those are the refurbished rooms. Amazing view of the crystal blue ocean and ice cold A/C which is a must. Bellman knocks on our door and gave us a bucket of Dos Equis and chips/salsa/guac as a welcome gift with a generic note from the GM, very nice touch I thought. Great big bathroom, separate bath/shower, two sinks, marble etc. Very comfortable bed. Turn down service was nice. After turn down they leave the tv on tuned to some fish under the sea documentary that was clearly filmed during the 90s. Still, I love fish and watched the whole thing.

Amenities: The hotel is clearly old and the layout is very strange. The architect clearly wanted all of the rooms to be able to see the water but with that there is a lot of dead space in the hotel. Lobby is very pretty. Pool is smallish compared to the other pools on the hotel strip. Plenty of lounge chairs for guests. No 3am towel reservation problem that I read about on the JW reviews. Apparently by 6am all of the loungers were "reserved" at the JW. It seemed that you had to be a guest of the RC in order to use the loungers so that might have helped alleviate the mad rush for the loungers. Plenty of beach loungers as well. Cabanas can be rented for something like 120 USD a day.

Restaurants: Blown away with how good the food was. Four different restaurants with different offerings. Breakfast buffet was amazing. Roughly 30USD p/p but it includes all you can drink champagne and the food spread rivals a vegas buffet. No free breakfast for golds. At booking I saw that they were offering packages with free breakfast for each day and daily room credit. In retrospect those were great deals and you should snag them. At night the cabanas can be booked to eat on the beach which they set up with tables and table clothes/lights etc. Great for special occasions, they charge a flat 120USD to eat there on top of whatever you order FYI. Got a hand written thank you note the next day from the chef of one of the restaurants on site where we ate, nice touch.

Prices: Standard for a RC. $8 margaritas, $30 breakfast etc. Though with the soft peso right now you get a little bit of a discount since everything is denominated in pesos there. This is where no forex fee credit cards are your friend.

Service: This is where the hotel stood out. We walked out to the beach with mimosas and one employee appeared out of nowhere to take our drinks and carried them for us on a silver tray. Another employee appeared out of nowhere to place two loungers wherever we wanted to sit, and a third employee appeared out of nowhere carrying a beach umbrella and shovel. They set up your loungers with towels, table, and umbrella. They put a flag on your chair so you can order drinks and food. Throughout the day another employee comes with cold towels, then later another with watermelon or mango juice, then later again with fresh fruit popsicles. They truly go out of their way to try to be proactive and anticipate your needs. They had mangos at the breakfast one day where I ate a bunch. The next day there were no mangos but the waiter placed a plate of mangos in front of me right when I sat down seeing that I ate a bunch the day before. Travel companion was working out and after she finished on the treadmill an employee pops up out of nowhere with a frozen/lavender scented towel for her to cool down with.

Etc: Taxis are great. They have new suburbans to take you everywhere for a flat rate based on distance. However all cabs operate on this flat rate so you're not paying a premium for the suburbans which is nice. Concierge is very helpful to book or point out excursions. No need to pre book a return transfer to the airport, cheaper to just use the suburban on site. But imperative to pre-arrange arrival transfer...

Don't come here expecting a cultural visit, you'll have to drive a good distance to see any cultural sites. The hotels are located on a barrier island (called the hotel zone) and if the employees didn't speak spanish you'd think you were at disney world. I was in desperate need for a break so it was perfect me to just sleep on the beach.

Amazing stay and will definitely go back don't overlook this place when looking at CUN.

Go Gators

Last edited by GNVGator; Mar 8, 15 at 2:07 pm
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Old Jul 25, 17, 3:59 pm
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Join Date: Apr 2017
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Anybody had recent experience to share? I am planning a trip there at the end of the year and want to know others' experiences. I am quite surprised that nobody talks about Ritz Cancun here on flyertalk.
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Old Jul 25, 17, 7:59 pm
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Love this Ritz

Wife and I have spent two vacations at this Ritz, both on Club level in the past five years. Our last trip was last year. We think is one of Ritz's best kept secrets because it never seems crowded. We think what makes this property so charming to us is the staff. They are simply awesome. They love their guests and it shows. I think Cancun is so stereotyped as a party scene many overlook this property. It is not in the party zone. One of the best Club Lounges of all that I've visited. We like to stay on property and rarely venture off. Both of us have such hectic careers and I travel constantly when I get to this resort I never want to leave. Many nights we hang out in the Club lounge, enjoy the hors d'voures and play cards, scrabble or just talk enjoying great wine and the company of other lounge guests. On sushi night I will order something from room service and have it delivered to the lounge. They fine with this and setup our table and make sure it is to our liking. They have a tequila bar every evening from 5-8pm with eight or nine different tequilas plus a special chaser that resembles Bloody Mary mix but is not. I only recognized one tequila last time and I know my tequilas so they have a great sourcing person plus since it seems like it is the liquor of Mexico they do a great job of introducing me to new brands, tastes, etc.

Both pools are nice, one is larger than the other (small one is adults only) but both are small by today's resort standards. Surf is too rough to swim in the ocean but they have great beach and cabana service. The Cabana prices are so reasonable we usually rent one every day. They book us in the same one the entire week and the staff gets to us know real well. By the second day we don't have to ask for anything or specify anything as they remember from the first day what we like/don't like.

We make sure to tip well at the end of our trip as well as daily on the bar/food bill at the cabana. The staff really do a fantastic job so over tipping doesn't even bother me. They earn it every day.

We will probably return to this resort every few years. Now contract this with the Ritz Grand Cayman. So overrated in my opinion with the exception of the Spa which, in my opinion, is one of the best spa's I've ever visited.

Book the Ritz Cancun and enjoy your trip.
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Old Jul 26, 17, 1:45 pm
  #4  
 
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Originally Posted by [email protected] View Post
Wife and I have spent two vacations at this Ritz, both on Club level in the past five years. Our last trip was last year. We think is one of Ritz's best kept secrets because it never seems crowded. We think what makes this property so charming to us is the staff. They are simply awesome. They love their guests and it shows. I think Cancun is so stereotyped as a party scene many overlook this property. It is not in the party zone. One of the best Club Lounges of all that I've visited. We like to stay on property and rarely venture off. Both of us have such hectic careers and I travel constantly when I get to this resort I never want to leave. Many nights we hang out in the Club lounge, enjoy the hors d'voures and play cards, scrabble or just talk enjoying great wine and the company of other lounge guests. On sushi night I will order something from room service and have it delivered to the lounge. They fine with this and setup our table and make sure it is to our liking. They have a tequila bar every evening from 5-8pm with eight or nine different tequilas plus a special chaser that resembles Bloody Mary mix but is not. I only recognized one tequila last time and I know my tequilas so they have a great sourcing person plus since it seems like it is the liquor of Mexico they do a great job of introducing me to new brands, tastes, etc.

Both pools are nice, one is larger than the other (small one is adults only) but both are small by today's resort standards. Surf is too rough to swim in the ocean but they have great beach and cabana service. The Cabana prices are so reasonable we usually rent one every day. They book us in the same one the entire week and the staff gets to us know real well. By the second day we don't have to ask for anything or specify anything as they remember from the first day what we like/don't like.

We make sure to tip well at the end of our trip as well as daily on the bar/food bill at the cabana. The staff really do a fantastic job so over tipping doesn't even bother me. They earn it every day.

We will probably return to this resort every few years. Now contract this with the Ritz Grand Cayman. So overrated in my opinion with the exception of the Spa which, in my opinion, is one of the best spa's I've ever visited.

Book the Ritz Cancun and enjoy your trip.


Thanks for the DP and review. It is nice to hear that you enjoyed it so much that it makes you want to return to the property.


I booked 5 nights on points for the last week for Dec this year and asked about an upgrade to a club level. The concierge tome me that it costs $600 per night to get the upgrade. If it's less than $200 per day, I would go for it but $600 is just too much for me. I think this price has to do with my reservation being during one of their busiest week (new year's eve and new year's day).


After hearing your experience at this Ritz, I am so excited!
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Old Oct 25, 17, 4:03 pm
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Join Date: Mar 2016
Location: North Texas
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I've been contemplating booking a room here for an upcoming stay in April. After reading [email protected]'s review of this hotel I'm almost sold on the extra $200 a night for the club lounge. Decisions decision...
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Old Oct 25, 17, 8:10 pm
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Originally Posted by TyPo311 View Post
I've been contemplating booking a room here for an upcoming stay in April. After reading [email protected]'s review of this hotel I'm almost sold on the extra $200 a night for the club lounge. Decisions decision...
$200 is a good price for the club level upgrade. I was quoted for $350 per night...
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Old Feb 10, 18, 3:33 pm
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Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 33
Why are there not more posts about this property? Very unusual for a high-end hotel here. Family of 4 looking for travel in August. Couple of questions:

1) Apparently with points you can only book rooms with a single king bed and not two doubles. As a result, the maximum room occupancy is 3 people. Anyone ever booked award stay with 2 doubles OR squeezing 4 people into a single king room?
2) How kid friendly is this place compared to the Hyatt Ziva Cancun?
3) Do you have to pay the $40 daily resort fee if you use points? With Hyatt properties you don't have to.

Ultimately our decision may be made for us if we can't get four in a room on points. Will stay at Ziva if this is the case.
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Old Feb 10, 18, 8:26 pm
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Join Date: Apr 2017
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When I was planning a trip to RC Cancun, I faced the same issue. So here's my attempt to help you and others who are thinking about RC Cancun.
My stay: 12/29-1/2 all paid with points.

My impression: It is a nice property, well maintained, and very clean. The bed was comfortable and the food was reasonably priced and decent. The pool is not large (not a big deal, since the ocean is right in front of you). There are many chairs on the beach. But the hotel itself shows age. Most importantly, I did not feel "wow" (not even once during the stay) with regard to the service and the property. It is not 5 star property. 4 star is appropriate. I would not return to this property. I suggest you not to waste points on this property. Lack of reviews and comments on this property was probably because there are people like me who felt that this property is over priced or not worth spending 50,000 points/night.
Most of the reviews on TripAdvisor are great. But if you have stayed at other 5 star properties (in another words, if you are spoiled due to miles & points), you might feel the same way as I did.

Originally Posted by thenumblehigwoo View Post
Why are there not more posts about this property? Very unusual for a high-end hotel here. Family of 4 looking for travel in August. Couple of questions:

1) Apparently with points you can only book rooms with a single king bed and not two doubles. As a result, the maximum room occupancy is 3 people. Anyone ever booked award stay with 2 doubles OR squeezing 4 people into a single king room?

They don't allow you to book 2 doubles with points. I asked many times (maybe 4 times). They might upgrade your room to 2 doubles at the check in but not in advance. If you get a slightly larger 1 king bed room, you can place a Queen size air mattress (brought from home) on the floor. If you are assigned to a regular 1 king room, there is not enough room for the air mattress. As long as you are fine with 4 people in the same bed, they don't charge you.

2) How kid friendly is this place compared to the Hyatt Ziva Cancun?

Definitely Hyatt Ziva. The pool at Hyatt Ziva is warmer and the beach is calmer. Plus, the staff are nicer and more friendly.

3) Do you have to pay the $40 daily resort fee if you use points? With Hyatt properties you don't have to.

I did not know that they charge $40 resort fee (maybe this is a new thing). I did not have to pay the fee.

Ultimately our decision may be made for us if we can't get four in a room on points. Will stay at Ziva if this is the case.

Last edited by lincoln boy; Feb 10, 18 at 8:33 pm Reason: additional info
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Old Feb 10, 18, 8:53 pm
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Join Date: Feb 2013
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Originally Posted by lincoln boy View Post
When I was planning a trip to RC Cancun, I faced the same issue. So here's my attempt to help you and others who are thinking about RC Cancun.
My stay: 12/29-1/2 all paid with points.

My impression: It is a nice property, well maintained, and very clean. The bed was comfortable and the food was reasonably priced and decent. The pool is not large (not a big deal, since the ocean is right in front of you). There are many chairs on the beach. But the hotel itself shows age. Most importantly, I did not feel "wow" (not even once during the stay) with regard to the service and the property. It is not 5 star property. 4 star is appropriate. I would not return to this property. I suggest you not to waste points on this property. Lack of reviews and comments on this property was probably because there are people like me who felt that this property is over priced or not worth spending 50,000 points/night.
Most of the reviews on TripAdvisor are great. But if you have stayed at other 5 star properties (in another words, if you are spoiled due to miles & points), you might feel the same way as I did.
This is a very helpful reply. I greatly appreciate it. It seems sort of gimmicky that they don't allow two double beds on award stays - I can understand at an all-inclusive trying to limit room occupancy due to individual consumption of food/drinks (although at Hyatt Ziva, I'll have to pay extra for my oldest), but what are they losing by allowing families of 4 to stay versus families of 3? It seems a little short-sighted IMO. I appreciate the input about the quality of the property. For a variety of reasons, I think we'll stay at the Hyatt Ziva. Thank you!
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Old Feb 11, 18, 2:25 pm
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Originally Posted by thenumblehigwoo View Post
This is a very helpful reply. I greatly appreciate it. It seems sort of gimmicky that they don't allow two double beds on award stays - I can understand at an all-inclusive trying to limit room occupancy due to individual consumption of food/drinks (although at Hyatt Ziva, I'll have to pay extra for my oldest), but what are they losing by allowing families of 4 to stay versus families of 3? It seems a little short-sighted IMO. I appreciate the input about the quality of the property. For a variety of reasons, I think we'll stay at the Hyatt Ziva. Thank you!
I stayed during one of the busiest week and that might have something to do with not perfect service. My friend stayed at this property from 1/13-1/16/2018 (used sign up bonus certificate) and they were upgraded and seems like they had a great time. so I guess if you are staying during busy season I do not recommend this property. But if you are visiting during off season, you may experience better service.
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Old Mar 31, 18, 9:18 pm
  #11  
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I have been in this Ritz location and in the Hyatt Zilara during my last visit to Cancun. Rooms are more new and fancy in Zilara. Access to the beach maybe better in Ritz. Food and service both are good.If I would have to pick one I would pick Zilara but Ritz offers a good experience as well. Strawberry with chocolate from the room service are a must in the Ritz!!!
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Old Apr 25, 18, 7:39 pm
  #12  
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A trip coming up this May. I'm using two RC reward nights. Do not know what to expect. Look forward to it.

Like to see more reviews of this hotel.

Last edited by RedSun; Jun 1, 18 at 7:55 pm
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Old Jun 1, 18, 8:01 pm
  #13  
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Just back from RC stay in Cancun. We upgraded to corner suite with 3 balconies. The ocean view is just spectacular!


From corner balcony


From side balcony


View from inside the room.
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Old Jun 6, 18, 4:00 am
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I'd agree with Lincoln Boy: While it's a nice, clean hotel, I did not see any sign of "luxury" service or hard product. I still struggle to understand the Ritz-Carlton brand and whether 4* is what they're aiming for, but anyone expecting something like the St Regis Punta Mita would get a very nasty shock here. It's a capable up-market Cancun resort that just happens to have the Ritz-Carlton brand.

My room was spacious and nothing was broken, but unmemorable. I was a bit taken aback to be offered prostitutes and drugs by the hotel driver who picked me up from the airport. I know this is Cancun, but I am pretty sure that I showed no signs of wanting either so maybe they should have been a bit more discrete. Food was good for Cancun (in line with what you'd expect in Mexico generally) and service was capable and enthusiastic which is what you want from a holiday resort.

Probably a good option for Cancun, but it doesn't necessarily fit with my own expectations of the brand (though to be fair, I've seen that with a number of RC properties, so maybe I'm just wrong).
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Old Jun 6, 18, 10:09 am
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Originally Posted by EuropeanPete View Post
I'd agree with Lincoln Boy: While it's a nice, clean hotel, I did not see any sign of "luxury" service or hard product. I still struggle to understand the Ritz-Carlton brand and whether 4* is what they're aiming for, but anyone expecting something like the St Regis Punta Mita would get a very nasty shock here. It's a capable up-market Cancun resort that just happens to have the Ritz-Carlton brand.

My room was spacious and nothing was broken, but unmemorable. I was a bit taken aback to be offered prostitutes and drugs by the hotel driver who picked me up from the airport. I know this is Cancun, but I am pretty sure that I showed no signs of wanting either so maybe they should have been a bit more discrete. Food was good for Cancun (in line with what you'd expect in Mexico generally) and service was capable and enthusiastic which is what you want from a holiday resort.

Probably a good option for Cancun, but it doesn't necessarily fit with my own expectations of the brand (though to be fair, I've seen that with a number of RC properties, so maybe I'm just wrong).
This is exactly how I felt about the property. "It's a capable up-market Cancun resort that just happens to have the Ritz-Carlton brand. My room was spacious and nothing was broken, but unmemorable."
Your summary is very accurate. No wonder there is not much activity in this thread.
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