Wow! I had read good things, and the Excellence lived up to its name, ten times over!
Where to start?
Rooms-- The rooms are exactly like you see on the website-- no tricks of photography where you get there and wonder "where could they be standing to take this?". Gorgeous and comfortable. Our favorite part-- the lounger on the patio that easily fits 2 people (and we're not small people :) ) for daily naps. The napping bed of happiness!.
The shower was great-- the rain shower and the handheld-- the window was a little weird but it fogs over and is fine. The toilet was our only less-favorable thing, but we figured out between running water, and asking the other person to step out onto the patio for a minute, we were totally fine. The bed is VERY high, and I slept great-- it's a firm mattress, but with all the sun and fun and food, you just pass out from happiness.
Turn-down service was lovely, and I liked the daily "newsletter" that is delivered, with a separate little weather card (you could do tiny origami with it?).
Food-- GREAT! We ate at every restaurant at least once (we went for 11 days, there's 8 restaurtants, so we doubled up) and tried the room service as well. Our favorites were the Mexican restaurant, the Grill, and the Italian restaurant. We drank the water at the restaurants (super-ultra filtered and tested) and had drinks with ice-- no issues. Use bottled water to brush your teeth (as per their recommendations) and you can totally relax and enjoy yourself.
Drinks-- it's worth mentioning that they serve top-shelf alcohols, which I was totally impressed by. They don't skimp on the booze in a drink, but they also don't cheap out on the mix either-- some places we've been, you just know that the mix is costing more than the alcohol and the drinks are un-drinkable, but not at Excellence. And they can get creative too, so just ask for what you'd like, or give them a hint (like, something with banana and kahlua? presto, we got a "cheeky monkey" or something). Great service.
Service-- GREAT! Everyone was so nice, and really efficient! We're not used to that in some resorts, and I was blown away by how everyone was totally on the ball. One day, they couldn't reach us for our wake-up call, and they came to the room and knocked until we answered. We had a light out in our bathroom, and they fixed it right away. We needed Concierge help with our shuttle service on the way back, and they totally took care of everything. Waiters and bartenders got to know who we were and were so super sweet and welcoming-- I loved Perla at breakfast with her shining smile, and Oscar on the beach who took such good care of me :D on my birthday, and Angel at the Mexican restaurant on our first night really set the tone for our whole vacation.
Entertainment-- the shows are pretty amusing-- yes, the Michael Jackson show (thursday I think) is really good, as was the 70's/80's show-- I loved the dancer who does the Madonna song, she was so great! I have no idea how the dance club is, since we were so tired by 10pm we just went to bed after the evening's entertainment :)
Other stuff-- yes, there was some "saving" of chairs around the pool and beach-- what can you do but play along. Our first week, the resort was very quiet so we didn't have to do this, but in the last few days, there were more people, so we just worked out a system of whoever got up first, went out and got the chairs, and then came back and we went for breakfast. Sunup/sundown was pretty early, so we were on the beach by about 8 or 9am at the latest, and you could feel that it was time to head in around 3pm-- napping on the patio bed for a bit, then dinner, then the show... We were SOOOO relaxed, it was great.
Atmosphere/facilities-- GREAT!-- the grounds are beautiful, and my husband kept commenting how well everything was laid out, how it seems really well planned to ensure your comfort and enjoyment, and everything was really convinient for us (we were in building 8, right in the middle of everything). Perfectly designed, and the fit-and-finish was done to a really high standard that we appreciated. Everything was really well maintained. The gym (I did manage to get in there a couple times) was awesome-- every machine you could want, and tv's, water, towels, and everything was new and well maintained.
Security is great-- you go through 2 checkpoints to get to the actual hotel building (you are NOT in downtown Cancun at all-- about 30min north of the airport I think, but totally on your own, no other resorts around.
One thing I really LOVED-- no one bothering you for time-shares on the beach! The beach is still public/federally owned, but since we were so far away from other resorts, there wasn't a single vendor (time share shill, hair-braider, necklace seller) to bother us at all. Just our waiters, and a lifeguard.
They do have a condo office if you are interested, but not a single person asked if we wanted to talk to them-- the office is near the shops and it's up to you if you want to talk to them or not.
Tours-- we've been to Cancun before, and found the local tours to be fun, so we had the hotel hook us up with a Chichen Itza tour (run by A-line, but we didn't really choose that). It was a great day-- it's sort of a drive away, but the tour operators made it fun and we passed the time quickly, with a stop for shopping, then the site, then a cenote swim (sink-hole) if you wanted to, and there was a stop in there for lunch too.
My husband also did the "learn to scuba" trip with the onsite water-sports operators, and that was first rate as well-- we did the pool learning stuff, and then he went out for a 2hr trip (45 min of diving)-- I bailed, but he said it was great, and bought the pictures and was totally happy with all the service and the instructors etc.
Overall-- AMAZING! Best resort we've ever been to (and we've been to Riu, Iberostar, Club Med (still love them for having lots of activities) etc). I definitely recommend this resort and will be going back and checking out other Excellence locations!
- Also Known As:
- Excellence Playa Mujeres Hotel
- Excellence Playa Mujeres Hotel Playa Mujeres
- Excellence Hotel Playa Mujeres
- Playa Mujeres Excellence Hotel
- Playa Mujeres
- Excellence Playa Mujeres Cancun
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Luxury adults-only resort nestled among seven swimming pools on a powdery white sand beach, in a community that boasts a spectacular Greg Norman signature golf course. This jewel of Cancun sets a new standard of luxury for all-inclusives with finely tuned amenities such as one-of-a-kind accommodations including two-story rooftop terrace suites with a private Hydro-Spa pool, meticulous service, gourmet cuisine, an exquisite spa and the signature Excellence Club. ... more less
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