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The Ritz-Carlton, Cancun 4.5

Hotel Zone, Cancun, Yucatan Peninsula

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This hotel has undergone significant renovations.
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Review Summary

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Pros

  • Gorgeous beachfront location in the Hotel Zone
  • Modern, serene, and elegant rooms all have private, ocean-view balconies
  • Big marble bathrooms with deep soaking tubs and separate showers
  • Luxe, classical European decor in common areas
  • Two ocean-view swimming pools and a hot tub, surrounded by loungers
  • Fine-dining and casual dining options include Mexican and sushi spots
  • Full-service spa, well-equipped fitness center, and exercise classes for a fee 
  • Ritz Kids program and variety of activities for a fee
  • Free parking

Cons

  • Some complaints regarding lack of pool attendants
  • Some wear and tear is visible
  • Fee for Wi-Fi (unless at Club Level)
  • Fees for tennis courts and group exercise classes

Bottom Line

The 365-room Ritz-Carlton, Cancun is a luxury hotel with gorgeous modern style and a beachfront location in the Hotel Zone. Renovated in 2015, rooms are elegant, contemporary, and serene, outfitted with beach-inspired hues, swish marble bathrooms housing separate showers and tubs, and furnished outdoor spaces -- all with ocean views. While the resort is undeniably grand, it's surprisingly unstuffy. A plethora of on-site features include two ocean-view swimming pools and a hot tub, sunbeds along the soft white sand, spa and fitness center, kids' club, and variety of top-notch dining -- from fine-dining Mediterranean to casual beachfront Mexican. The resort's romantic and luxurious vibe is ideal for couples looking to splurge, but those wanting an all-inclusive package should consider the adult-only Hyatt Zilara

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Scene

Romantic, luxury hotel with mix of elegant classic and modern style

The Ritz-Carlton brand is iconic, known for its luxurious and classy atmosphere. This Ritz-Carlton, Cancun is no different, though some guests have complained of some visible wear and tear -- think the building exterior -- and a lack of pool attendants. Still, common areas are dressed to the nines with stately European decor that includes glittering chandeliers, rich fabrics, fine wooden furniture, and interesting artwork. Lots of marble, a quiet atmosphere, and its setting a bit back from the road continue the exclusive, high-end feel. Rooms, however, received a much-needed renovation in 2015, and while still elegant, they have a more modern, beach-inspired look. Despite the resort's grown-up sophistication, during our visit, the property was filled with young guests that included a group of friends, which helped prevent the Ritz from feeling stuffy. The vibe is upscale but informal, and most guests tend keep to themselves. 

As there are no all-inclusive packages, party-minded travelers are absent here. Couples wanting a luxury all-inclusive experience should look to the nearby Hyatt Zilara or Le Blanc Spa Resort, both of which are adult-only. Families wanting a more kid-friendly atmosphere may prefer the four-and-a-half-pearl Moon Palace Golf & Spa Resort.

Location

Beachfront property off the main drag of the Hotel Zone

The turnoff for Cancun's The Ritz-Carlton is located around KM 14, off Returno del Ray 36. Clearly marked from the main road, the hotel is set back a bit, allowing for a private garden setting. The resort is directly on the powder-soft sandy beach, allowing for unobstructed views of the unbelievably vibrant blue sea. There is not much within walking distance from the hotel, though there are a few restaurants across the main road (five-minute walk) serving Argentinian and Mexican dishes. Those who want to rent a car or jump in a taxi will find the all of the shops, restaurants, bars, and attractions the Hotel Zone has to offer within a 25-minute drive. Outdoor and underwater adventure spots Xcaret and Xle-Ha are about an hour drive, while popular ruins like Tulum and Coba are one-and-a-half to two-and-a-half hours away, respectively. Cancun International Airport is about a 20-minute drive from the resort. Nightlife spots such as Senor Frog's and Coco Bongo are a 10-minute drive.

Rooms

Bright, modern rooms, all with ocean-views balconies

The 365 rooms and suites received a much-needed renovation in 2015, replacing old-fashioned decor with bright and modern furnishings. Their serene, beachy look includes contemporary wood furniture, silver-blue accent walls, armchairs, and patterned carpet, and elegant decor accents. Floor-to-ceiling glass windows and doors let in light and lead to furnished balconies, all of which have ocean views. Club Level Rooms are located on Club floors, and have free Wi-Fi (daily fee for other guests) and access to an exclusive lounge. Spacious marble bathrooms have deep soaking tubs, separate rainfall showers, toilet rooms, and dual marble vanities. There are well-presented toiletries, as well as bathrobes, slippers, and toiletries. Additional standard amenities consist of minibars, Nespresso machines, desks, iPod docking stations, flat-screen TVs, safes, and ironing facilities. 

Features

Ocean-view pools, excellent food, beachfront casitas, and live entertainment

Attentive and personalized service aside, the Ritz-Carlton Cancun has details down pat. Certainly the highlight is direct access to the beautiful beach with powdery soft sand and turquoise waters. Loungers and umbrellas line the beach and cabanas are available for a fee. Overlooking the ocean are two swimming pools -- one much larger than the other -- and a small hot tub. Shaded sunbeds are available here, but some past guests have complained of insufficient pool attendants. 

A full-service spa has a detoxifying sauna and typical treatments like massages and facials, plus, with a Vichy steam room and showers and variant temperature plunge pools, it's especially equipped for water ritual treatments. Although not large, a gym is well-equipped with modern machines and free weights. Tennis courts and group exercise classes such as yoga and salsa are available for a fee. Guests can also participate in the release of baby turtles at certain times. In addition to a kids' club full of daily activities and adventures, the hotel has a special menu just for kids' tastes (including healthy options). Baby amenities such as baby soaking tubs, cribs, changing tables, and bottle warmers are all available.

Local bands play certain evenings in the lobby lounge, where there is also a piano, but entertainment is largely relaxed. The lobby lounge is an upscale yet casual bar setting where customers have their choice of cocktails and freshly prepared sushi. Other restaurants include the gourmet dinner spot, Fantino, which is popular for its Mediterranean fare and tasting menu), and more casual eateries El Cafe Mexicano and the pool/beachside Caribe Bar and Grill. Club Level guests are invited to special chef's table tastings, as well as to the Club Lounge with a revolving variety of beverages. 

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Address

Retorno del Rey 36, Zona Hotelera, Quintana Roo, Cancun 77500, Mexico

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