Grade 3.9 out of 5 Stars
The Paradisus Cancun is an all-inclusive family-friendly resort that is located in the main tourist zone. This resort is part of the Melia chain, so you know it packs a punch. This is an established resort in the tourist zone and has gone through pretty significant renovations in 2017 as well as the preceding years.
This is a really sprawling resort, if you look at the aerial shot below you will get an understanding of the sheer size of the resort. With 663 rooms in the resort, it’s one of the biggest resorts in Cancun. The resort caters to families and adults and can be whatever type of vacation you want it to be.
One of the biggest hesitations we have with resorts of this size is the consistency of service and the quality of food that can be provided for such a large group of people. When we stayed we were in a Reserve room junior suite with an ocean view. Our review is an honest recap of our experiences at the Paradisus Cancun.
Located in the main hotel zone of Cancun, this is the perfect location if you’re looking for a dual-threat holiday of partying and relaxation. It’s also a short 15-minute drive from Cancun International airport and a 5-minute drive from the main shopping area in Cancun, so it’s a prime location.
There is a frequent bus route that runs along the main road just in front of the resort, so it’s very convenient to get into town from here. There are also a range of restaurants that are a short taxi ride or walk away, but given the offering here at the Paradisus there will be no need to leave the resort if you don’t fancy it.
- Paradisus Cancun is one of the largest resorts in Cancun and because of its size is one of the more popular resorts for conferences, so if you’re looking for a boutique hotel this is not the option for you.
- The resort does a good job at separating visitors based on the type of vacation you are looking for. If you are going to party then you will most likely be spending the majority of your time at the North end of the resort. If you’re a family all the kids areas are at the south end of the resort. So this resort really does cater for all vacation experiences.
- If you want to stay where all the action is happening then we suggest requesting a room in tower 3. This is the main area of the resort where all of the restaurants are located and all of the shows take place.
- We rented a Bali Bed for one of the days we stayed. It cost an additional $50, but was well worth it. We got to use the bed for the full day and it comes with a really nice seafood platter and bottle of champagne which can be ordered once during the day.
- Throughout the resort there were timeshare sales people that were constantly trying to make a sale. It was a little annoying at first, but we learned to get very efficient at dodging them and they got the vibe after a few days.
- One of the things we really liked about the Paradisus is that they are an eco-conscious resort. From paper straws, reusable plastic cups and the option not to have your towels changed. The resort makes a concerted effort to cut down on its carbon footprint. They will also give you drinks in a reusable cup, so we recommend bringing one with you.
- If you plan on getting a room with reserve status then make sure you make the most out of the personal butler service. The butler can book you into restaurants, the spa, if you need drinks by the pool. You can reach out to your butler. It’s a great feature and make sure to make use of it.
Once you enter the main lobby you will be greeted by a really impressive atrium-style lobby and bar. The sheer size of the resort will hit you once you see the main atrium. There is lovely vegetation draped from the ceilings and it gives off some lovely tropical vibes.
As we were staying in a reserve room, we had a separate check-in area. We waited a few minutes for a member of staff to become available, but we were given a welcome drink as we waited. The check-in process was pretty quick.
The thing that we didn’t appreciate was that we weren’t given guidance on what was included as we were staying as reserve guests. We would have liked an overview of the additional benefits we could reap as reserve guests. We had done lots of research before going, so we knew the lay of the land, but regardless the staff should be communicating the features clearly at check-in.
Once we arrived at our room we were greeted by our personal concierge/butler Ceci. She was super nice and couldn’t be more helpful. Having this service was great as Ceci could help organize restaurant bookings, which made our lives a lot easier.
Is this a child friendly resort?
Yes, this is definitely a child-friendly resort with one section of the resort designated to families. There is a decent amount of things to do with the kids as well as a great kids club that runs throughout the day. The kid’s zone is the kids club at the Paradisus and runs daily for kids aged between 5-12 years old. There is also a baby zone for children aged 1-4, so they really have all age groups covered.
With four main lagoon-style pools there is more than enough space to enjoy a relaxing dip. This isn’t the type of resort where you will be able to find a corner of the pool that is solely yours, but there is enough space to find a sun lounger for the day.
There is a well-equipped gym which was actually pretty decently sized. It has all modern Technogym equipment. There are free weights, machine weights, and loads of cardio equipment. It is well enough sized that no matter what time of day you go, it shouldn’t be too busy. Also included in the all-inclusive package is access to non-motorized water sports.
There is a 9 hole par 3 golf course that is directly linked to this resort, so if you’re just looking to get out and hit a few balls then this is a nice amenity. If you’re looking for the full golf experience then you are going to need to go outside the main hotel zone.
Golf Puerto Cancun is located just a 25-minute drive away and is a pretty decent course. It’s in between the main hotel zone and the town of Cancun, so it’s very conveniently located. It’s a par 72 public course and is kept in great condition. The course boasts a wonderful island-style green finish on the 18th. Green fees range from around $100-$200 depending on the time of year and time of day you play.
Things to do during the day
The entertainment team was good. There were a lot of options throughout the day. If you like fitness there is a wide range of classes. From CrossFit, yoga, pilates, and boot camps there will be a fitness class for everyone. There were also some cultural experiences such as sushi-making classes, Spanish Lessons, and wine tastings, which were very enjoyable.
Things to do during the night
During the evenings there is a slate of entertainment put on by the staff. From themed shows, local music, silent discos to name a few. There was nothing majorly unique about the entertainment, but it was nice to pull up a chair and grab a drink while you watched the evening. If you have been to an all-inclusive before you will have experienced all of this.
If you have visited Cancun before and specifically stayed in the main hotel zone you know that the beaches located in this area are not the best. Due to the fact that they are on a peninsula and there is very little protection from the wind and current. The waters can be very choppy and have a strong current.
The beach also tends to get quite a bit of seaweed accumulated on the shoreline. The staff at the Paradisus work tirelessly to keep the beach pristine, but they are fighting a losing battle.
The beach isn’t actually a private beach, so there are sometimes people coming up to you to sell things, which is a little bit annoying.
The Yhi Spa is the offering at the Paradisus Cancun. Although we did get a massage we did take a look through the facilities. There is the typical hydrotherapy run that is available to guests at the spa.
Overall though the facilities felt a little worn, which took away from the luxury feel. Although the spa treatments are definitely on the pricier side, we did hear from other guests that the quality of the massages was very good.
We had very few complaints on the level of service at the Paradisus Cancun. The wait and bar staff were very attentive. The food came out quickly and the bar staff had a great knowledge base of all the different cocktails we like to order when vacationing.
The housekeeping service was a little hit and miss. This was one of our hesitations before coming to a resort of this size was that the personal touches and consistency would be a miss.
We have to give a shout-out to our personal concierge Cici. She was super helpful in making sure that we had the smoothest holiday possible. From helping us to book local golf courses and transportation to the golf courses. To look after our dinner reservations on a daily.
Overall, the resort was very clean. We traveled pre-covid but would be confident that the resort is well prepared to make their guests’ experiences as safe and enjoyable as possible. There was no rubbish around. Tables, glasses, and used towels were cleaned in a prompt manner and the staff was always making sure that the place looked immaculate.
Booking during Covid
Given that the Paradisus is part of the Melia group there is a robust plan in place to make sure that guests visiting during these uncertain times are protected. Included in the cost of your reservation are the following elements
Free Antigen before you depart
Customers staying a minimum of 3 nights whose country of origin requires a negative Covid-19 test to return home, can take a free antigen test in the hotel administered by independent laboratories with qualified medical personnel.
Free Travel Insurance
Meliá offers free travel insurance for stays in our hotel, covering health problems caused by Covid-19 for bookings up to December 31, 2021. For more information, see the Travel Safe with Meliá powered by SOS INTERNATIONAL page
These coupled with the increased cleaning precautions can give you the peace of mind that the resort is doing everything in its power to enable you to have a safe and enjoyable vacation. Before booking be sure to double-check their website to make sure that these benefits are still in place.
The room sizes at the Paradisus are definitely on the smaller side. We were staying in a deluxe junior suite and they are only 431 sq. ft in size. If you don’t plan on spending much time in your room, I wouldn’t let this worry you, but if you like to relax in your room and have a drink in the evenings the rooms can feel a little cramped.
The design and aesthetic of the room we were in was good, but we did notice on the website that if you booked a normal junior suite, the rooms looked to be older. By the looks of it, by booking a deluxe suite you will get a recently refurbished room.
The room choices are effectively broken down into 5 options.
The room is on the smaller side coming in at 431 sq. ft, but it is still a little bigger than a normal hotel room. This standard of the room is going to come down to whether or not you get a renovated or old room. So, we would recommend going with a deluxe suite. The bed in the room was very comfortable.
These suites are a tiny bit bigger than the Junior suites. The main difference between them is that with a deluxe suite you get an updated room.
Coming in at 646 sq. ft, this room comes with a separate bedroom, lounge, and a really well-sized balcony. If you get an ocean view room, these are the perfect spots to chill out for the day.
This suite is massive, coming in at 1,432 sq. ft. It has a separate bedroom, living room, kitchen, and three terraces. These rooms are pure luxury, but that luxury does come at a premium.
The largest suite at the resort, this room is sprawling coming in at double the size of the Governors suites and nearly 5 times the size of the standard room. If you’re looking to ball out, this is the suite for you.
Price Range + Packages
What’s included in the all-inclusive package
The majority of food, drinks activities are included in your all-inclusive package. There are a number of upsells throughout the resort that cost extra, but 90% of the things that you see will be included. There is one fine dining restaurant “Tempo” that is not included in the package. This place isn’t cheap either so if you plan on dining here, bring your wallet.
There is also a mini-bar included in the rooms which are part of your package. It’s a pretty limited mini-bar with sodas, beers, water, and some snacks. This is refreshed daily.
Food + Restaurant Options
Given the size of the resort, you would expect the Paradisus to have a large restaurant offering and with 9 restaurants you won’t be disappointed. The food at the Paradisus was pretty good for an all-inclusive, but there were times you could really taste and feel the mass-produced element of their food offering.
Our biggest pet peeves with the restaurants weren’t actually the standard of the food. It was the air conditioning situation. Due to the fact that most of the restaurants are located within the atrium-style area. The air conditioning for most restaurants is pretty non-existent. There are only a handful of restaurants that had a decent temperature.
We did leave out some of the restaurant options as these were poolside food options that all had similar choices and were pretty consistent. There were a few standout dining options which we will detail below.
Ranking the Restaurants
This contemporary Mexican restaurant is open for dinner only and serves up some great local dishes. The Paradisus hit it out of the park with their Mexican offering. For some reason, for a lot of the all-inclusive resorts we have visited, the local food always seemed to disappoint, but we were glad that the Paradisus didn’t fall into this bucket.
The food was fresh and well cooked and there were a number of local dishes that we tried that were new to us at InspoVacay.The roasted pork leg was our highlight with the Seabass being a close second.
This Asian-style restaurant is located in the atrium area of the main building. It serves up a mix of dishes from all around Asia. The setting is really nice in the open-air feeling atrium, although the heat can sometimes be an issue. The standard of food was very good. We only tried the sushi when we ate here and it was really fresh and of good quality. This was one of the restaurants that made you feel like you were eating in your local Japanese restaurant.
- Lemon Fish (Formerly Fuego)
Described as a mix between a burger boutique and Peruvian “Nikkei” style offering on their website, we were keen to try this place. This restaurant didn’t disappoint and our experience was quite good. The octopus here was very good and there was a wide mix of seafood options.
We did visit this restaurant before it was rebranded to Lemon Fish, but by the looks of the menu, it looks like it’s exactly the same restaurant, just with a new name.
This was a lovely restaurant. We ended up eating here on two occasions and the food and the staff were on form. Capella is an Italian-American restaurant with all of the traditional dishes with the main focus on pizza and pasta dishes. The pizzas here were actually legitimately good. You could taste a high level of execution in the preparation of the dough.
- Sante – Formerly – La Palapa (Reserve Guest Only)
It’s wonderfully located by the water with great sea views that make your dining experience a little bit more special. Serving up a multi-cultural array of cuisines we were relatively impressed with the standards of food at this restaurant. The tuna burger and ceviche were our favorites.
- Malva Food Bazaar
The main buffet area of the resort. This is the restaurant you will most likely be eating the majority of your meals. There’s a wide range of choices on offer here including a bakery with fresh-baked bread every morning, and a specialty smoothie and juice bar. For lunch and dinner, select from world-cuisine stations that serve up salads, meat, fish, and vegetarian and vegan options.
- Blue Agave
It’s an adults-only spot that is a mix of tequila and mezcales. This is a casual bar setting where they have a nice menu on offer. This is one of the few spots with decent air conditioning available, so for that alone, it’s a good choice. This is actually a great spot for lunch where taco Tuesday is every day at this spot.
Sal Steak Cave (Reserve Guest Only)
Although we didn’t eat here, we did check out the menu and asked some of our fellow guests about their experience. The overwhelming feedback was that the food at this spot was top-notch. The quality of the steak that this restaurant used was really good. At the time we visited it was included in the all-inclusive package if you were a reserve guest, but by the looks of the website, all guests now have to pay a surcharge for it.
Bars and Drinks Offering
With 5 bars dotted throughout the resort, you are never too far away from a drink. We found that the bar staff was really good here. They were great at whipping up imaginative and delicious cocktails.
Our favorite spot to grab a pre or after-dinner drink was the Kanna beach club. With stunning views of the ocean and some very chic seating areas. This is the perfect spot to watch the sunset from.
Is the Reserve Status Worth it?
Similar to most all-inclusive resorts there is a premium club option that offers a range of premium benefits at an additional cost.
The priority check-in is actually pretty decent, given the size of the resort. If you are arriving at a peak time it can be a bit of a wait to get checked in, so the reserve status comes up trumps here.
The personal concierge/butler was really helpful. Again given the size of the resort there is a need for bookings in the majority of restaurants. It’s very helpful to have the concierge to be able to make bookings for you the day of, opposed to having to walk to the restaurant and put your name down. It’s the height of laziness, but a nice feature and pretty much guarantees you a table.
Overall, the reserve status is worth it based on our experience. The personal butler was a really handy service and was worth the additional cost alone. When you couple that with the exclusive restaurants, bars, and the ability to make specific requests for your mini-bar it makes a reserved room well worth the additional 10-15% cost.
Although tips are stated to be included in the cost of the all-inclusive. It’s customary to tip for all drinks and food throughout your stay. Typically when we stay at all-inclusive resorts we tip $1 USD per drink and $5-$10 for food. This amount will depend on the meal and obviously the quality of service.
If you’re looking to be in amongst all of the action, then the Paradisus Cancun is a good choice. From a price point perspective, the Paradisus is a competitively priced option for the quality of stay that you get. We don’t think that the resort lives up to its 5-star rating, but it’s a solid 4-star experience. The aesthetic of the rooms and parts of the resorts are still a little outdated, but this can be avoided by booking a Deluxe Room that is competitively priced.
The food, service, and experience throughout our stay were good, but not great. There are definitely more complete offerings in the area, but for its price point, we believe it’s a bit of a deal.
Q. Does Paradisus Cancun offer a shuttle service from the Airport
A. Yes, a shuttle service from the airport can be requested. They do advise that you ring before your trip to check availability. Your best bet is to get a taxi, it’s only a 15-20 minute drive, so it should only cost around $20 USD.
Q. Is parking available at the resort
A. Yes, parking is available for guests and it is complimentary
Q. Is Wi-Fi included
A. Yes, Wi-Fi is available to you in your suite as well as throughout the resort.
Q. What local attractions are there?
A. There’s a huge amount to see and do in Cancun and the local areas. If you’re keen to get away from the hustle and bustle of the main town of Cancun and make the most of the cultural and natural beauty of the area then we highly recommend checking out the Chichen Itza, which is around a 2-hour drive from Cancun.