I just came back from a family vacation (with good friends) in Mexico. With six small kids between us, fun on these breaks is all about keeping them very busy through many different activities (so that the adults can find some relaxation). We decided to try an all-inclusive resort called the Cancun Palace because of this.
Neither my wife nor I are big fans of any all-inclusive getaway. Although my experiences are limited, we've found that while the food is plentiful, it usually is also substandard. On some Caribbean islands, service always comes with an attitude (see Almond Beach in Barbados for this). And, although this will certainly come off as snobby, the level of clientele sophistication (that would be hotel guests) and overall ambiance within these beach front facilities typically leaves something to be desired.
That's why we were all pleasantly surprised with our week in the Cancun Palace. Here's what made it a success for us.
For starters, the resort was new, contemporary and even a tad luxurious. And, the food (at pretty much all five different themed restaurants) was very good. That, in itself, made my wife's trip.
All the other basic wants and needs were positive as well. Employees were very happy and always attentive. The facilities, from tennis courts, to fitness center, to the pool and beach were all well-manicured and taken care of. Most importantly, with the exception of the lobby ATM machine, everything always worked. We loved that. I managed to keep a little more cash in my bank account, to boot.
There is one factor that really stuck out at me, though. And, that's why I'd recommend this place to any family. Even with a very affordable price, the Palace never chose to nickel and dime us on a hundred little items (like most resorts tend to do). So, we weren't paying extra for top shelf alcohol, or offsite excursions. With the Palace, all-inclusive really means that everything is included. From what friends have told me, that is very rare indeed.
If I had to use one phrase to describe the Cancun Palace it would be consistently very good. (Here is a link to them on Trip Advisor) Nothing about our experience was bad or even mediocre. As the days went by, we could feel just how hard this superior resort tried to make its guests' vacation great. As I went into this vacation, my expectations were set fairly low so as not to be disappointed. Every once in a while, it's nice to be so surprised the other way.