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“Royal Sands; wouldn't stay anywhere else!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of The Royal Sands Resort & SPA All Inclusive

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The Royal Sands Resort & SPA All Inclusive
4.0 of 5 Resort   |   Blvd. Kukulcan km 13.5, No. 32, Seccion A, Segunda Etapa | Zona Hotelera, Cancun 77500, Mexico   |  
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Ranked #27 of 179 Hotels in Cancun
Natick, MA
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
75 helpful votes 75 helpful votes
“Royal Sands; wouldn't stay anywhere else!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 23, 2011

After months of trip advisor research, we are SO happy with our decision to stay at The Royal Sands.

The staff at the resort is very friendly and efficient. They're always smiling and so polite. Honestly, everyone from the bartenders to the activities crew were absolutely delightful to deal with. It took about 15 minutes to check us in and assign all 6 of us each a room card. This is used as currency throughout your home resort and other "Royal" resorts. Upon check out we were given an itemized individual bill.

We are a family of 6, and stayed in a 2 bdrm unit in phase 1. Our condo was on the 6th floor and located above where the convenience/grocery store is.(unit 5616). The unit had 2 murphy beds which we used. My sons did complain that they were not very comfortable though. We were close to the store and elevator at the front of the hotel, but still had a fabulous view of the pool and ocean.The unit itself was roomy and clean. The bathroom areas are rather simple and plain, but large. The balcony was fabulous and had plenty of seating.
I truly don't think there is a bad location in the resort. Our children are young adults, so we enjoyed being in the more lively phase 1 pool area.

The Royal Sands is about a block from the Kukulcan mall and a few blocks from La Isla mall. We planned on going to Walmart, but I found the convenience, price and selection at the mini-mart in the resort to be more than adequate.

The beach is wide, clean and fabulous. We went onto the beach around 11:00pm on our first night to watch the conservation crew while they rescued sea turtle eggs. You could actually see the turtles come ashore and lay them. The crew allowed my daughter and I to hold one! ( a highlight of our vacation.)

There's lots of palapas on the beach, but I recommend not waiting past 10:00am if you want your pick of spots. The pool area in phase 1 has lots of seating and some umbrellas for shade, but again, you don't want to wait too long. Despite what anyone says, there's always the early risers that will claim their spots with a towel. I think it would be impossible for the resort to control it effectively, so you just have to deal with it, or be a towel tagger too !
The pool in phase 2 is smaller and quieter, but also less shady.

Daily maid service is provided (Mon-Fri) and they clean everything except the kitchen area. Be sure to clean up the kitchen (dishes etc.) before you check out, as you will be charged a surcharge if they have to clean it. This and other info on the Resort is provided on check in.

You are assigned a concierge upon arrival which is a nice touch. Ours was "Charlie" and he was very nice, efficient and unimposing. He didn't try to push anything on us, and was available for any info/assistance we requested and was just a phone call away. We attended the welcome breakfast and were given drink coupons for the welcome party, and a discount book for some local restaurants.

We used "Entertainment Plus" for our airport transfer and booked a day trip through them as well. We found the "in house" travel company to be a bit more expensive for most excursions and for the airport transfer. Entertainment plus had pretty decent prices for private and public tours, and were trustworthy. I was really nervous after all the stories I'd heard about the "shark pool" of timeshare people at the airport, but they made it very hassle free. Their reps wear very identifiable uniforms and you can pre book on line.

We ate at the Char Hut, Hacienda Sisal (did not see the dinner show, but was very pretty and reminded us of a Disney property), and ordered the "meals to go" service once at the resort, and all were good.

The resort does encourage you to use the shuttle service and visit the other "Royal " resorts and use their facilities and restaurants. They also provide a day tour to the "The Royal Haciendas" in Playa Del Carmen, but we were honestly too busy or having too much fun at our own hotel to tour the others. We loved the location, the service and the beach at The Royal Sands so much, that I can't imagine a better place to stay in Cancun.

I HIGHLY recommend "Savio's" which is in the coupon book the resort provides, and located in the Hotel Zone. It is on the Marina side and the food was delicious, reasonably priced and had impeccable service and gorgeous atmosphere. It is a bit of a walk from the resort, so you might want to hop on the bus. They had a variety of entrees, but feature Italian. They welcomed us with a complementary wine tasting. Be sure to look for "Charlie" the alligator who lives in the marina.
We also ate at "El Fish Fritanga" in the Hotel Zone on the marina side. We had dinner at a table on the sand and enjoyed our meal to the sun setting, under a palapa, complete with white lights and gauze fabric! Great food, service and value. At first appearance the restaurant is a simple taco stand from the street, but be sure to go down the side alley to the beach! It's located a short walk from the resort.

We took 2 day trips; one to Xcaret and one to Isla Mujeres;
"Xcaret" was a great adventure, and I highly recommend you take a whole day to enjoy. We got there at 11:00 and still hadn't seen it all by the time the show started at 7:00pm. Our private tour was 115 per person and it included the "Xcaret plus" package (meal and show) and the round trip private van. There are so many activities and exhibits at Xcaret, but we especially loved snorkeling in the caves.
Isla Mujeres was so much fun and so picturesque. We took the bus to "Playa Tortugas" also known as "El Embarcodero" and took the blue and yellow Ultramar ferry. Their reps were there at the bus stop to direct us over to their departure area. Apparently other slower less efficient ferry companies will try to solicit you. Ultramar takes your picture on the dock before boarding. They try to sell you the pic while on board, and entertain you with a mariachi singer. It was a fun experience in itself. They also walked around and offered passengers rental packages with "Gomar" golf cart rental. We did rent from them at $45.00usd per cart. 2 of my sons rented motorbikes at $35.00 usd each. They had a lot of fun and I recommend it for the more adventurous types.
We ate at "Rooster Cafe" as recommended by trip advisor, and had a great lunch in air conditioning. It was a very cute cafe. It reminded me a lot of a trendy little place here in Boston. It's located on the quieter end of Hidalgo St., which has a beautiful "old world" Mexico feel. The only thing I didn't enjoy about the downtown area is the way you are solicited by the street vendors. I found this to be true of downtown Cancun as well.

I have to say that as a first time traveler to Mexico, I found it to be safe, friendly, reasonably priced and absolutely beautiful. We can't wait to go back!

Feel free to e-mail me with any questions :)

Room Tip: Beautiful views from any room.
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  • Stayed July 2011, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
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USA
Top Contributor
53 reviews 53 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
72 helpful votes 72 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 22, 2011

NOTE to TripAdvisor Members:
I'd like to thank the many TripAdvisor members who take the time to write honest and helpful reviews. It's because of you that TripAdvisor works. And it's because of you that I choose to stay, eat, play where you suggest. Kudos and Thank you!

The Royal Sands Resort, Cancun, Mexico
July 2-9, 2011

Without a doubt, the Royal Sands knows how to please it's members and visitors. You've heard it in review after review, it's the people that make the resort. And it's what I based my decision on to stay there.

The staff at the Royals are fantastic, top notch, and professional. They go out of their way to please and assist you, at any hour of the day. Even when you need maintenance, they are there within 10 minutes of your call. And the staff at the laundry facility will wash, dry and fold your clothes and have them ready for pick up pronto! (and they smelled awesome!)

You do not use cash at the resorts, once you check in you are issued a room card and that is how you pay for your entire stay, no matter which of their resorts you're at! You can also exchange your USD for Pesos at the front desk, they give you really great exchange rates, so it's worth it to change there before you go on your day.

The Room:

Clean, updated and comfortable. Each unit has a breathtaking view of the crystal blue ocean. The balcony is by far the largest I've ever seen, it accesses both the main living area and the master bedroom and has a full table/chair set and two lounge chairs as well. Some have said the resort rooms are dated, I didn't think so. I do think they could 'warm them up a bit' with some colorful deco and wall hangings. Regardless, the rooms were clean and immaculate. The beds were very comfortable, the best I've slept in a long time with comfy squooshy pillows to boot! The kitchens are stocked with everything you need to make dinner in, with a full sized stove, fridge and microwave. One teensy note: a tv upgrade would be great! (they were small and kept getting stuck on channels), but who needs tvs on vacation!?

The Pools:

The resort has two large pool areas, both with swim up bars and food. They'll serve you right at your lawn chair by the pool, out at your palapa on the beach or right in the pool! The bartenders and wait staff go out of their way to please you, and let me tell you, they hustle! Even in hot, humid temps, they're rushing around to get you what you need as quick as possible. Large pool towels are provided for everyone, as well as snorkeling equipment and other sports related rentals, free of charge. There's a recreation center for kids' activities daily and also water aerobics and yoga classes at the pool as well.

The Phase I pool is huge and has a kiddy pool area, plenty of lawn chairs and an adult lap-swim pool extending from the main lobby. There was some sort of party the first day we went to the pool which disappointed us, we had just traveled all that way, unpacked and got our stuff to go to the pool and just go 'aaaah' and relax. However, the party at the pool was incredibly loud, so loud you had to shout to the person next to you. I noticed kids covering their ears, and the DJ was running some sort of bikini/booty contest. Not what we came to Mexico for, it was like we walked into Spring Break in July. We tried to escape to the Phase II pool but couldn't find any lawn chairs because everyone else escaped there too.

The Phase II pool is smaller, but more 'wavy' in shape. The huge palapa houses their swim up bar and cafe. It also has a kiddie area and is more quiet than the main Phase I pool.

The Beach:

The beach at the Royal Sands is flawless. It's like nothing I have ever seen or experienced before. Having been to some really nice Caribbean beaches, this one, by far, will take your breath away. The soft beige sands and warm azure-blue waves are so inviting and fun, you could spend the whole day in the water and not get sick of it. The palapas are just beautiful and were easy to get, with large grass 'umbrellas' to shade the hot sun.

I especially liked the outdoor showers by the beach and the walk-in water steps to get the sand off your feet. Very cool. Another cool thing: I noticed the beach has handicap-accessible palapas, they can roll you right out to paradise!

At night, if you're lucky during the summer months, you'll get to witness a mama sea turtle (ginormous, I might add) come up on the sand and lay her eggs. All of the Royal Resorts have a very nice program to protect and nurse the eggs and once hatched, release the baby turtles back into their habitat that you can take part in. Check out their website for more info.

Restaurants:

We ate several times at La Veranda due to their amazing buffets. Whether breakfast or dinner, their buffets are plentiful and have lots of variety from Mexican dishes to comforts of home type foods. The Sidelines sports bar made it easy for us to catch up on sports scores and even NASCAR races, although we only peeked in, heck, we were on vacation!
But! There are two restaurants of note that you must try!

La Hacienda Sisal: AMAZING food and buffets. They also have a big stage with live performances. We saw the Mexican show the final night we were there, and wow, they really put on a show and spread. (and ps, open bar too).

The Captain's Cove: I'm thinking this is not owned by the Royals, but they do take your room card for payment there, and it's just down the road. It sits on the bay side and is just breathtaking at sunset. A must for a wonderful evening out. Staff was great, food was great, and the ambiance can't be beat. It's a little pricey, but for that special evening out, it's just perfect.

Transportation:

The great thing about the Royal Resorts is that they have 5 resorts in Cancun ( and one in Playa) and you can use their air-conditioned, comfortable buses free to go to their other resort pools and restaurants too. It's like you have 5 resorts in one vacation, thumbs way up for that! They also have an in-house travel agency (Thomas More) that can help you schedule your transportation to/from the airport and to the many sight-seeing adventure tours.

The Spa

Oh... my gosh.. just beautiful and loaded with amenities and services galore. I didn't get a chance to use it, sniff, but I did take the tour and I promise, I will the next time around.

We traded through Interval and had no problems whatsoever. If you're trying to decide which Royal resort to stay at, I would recommend the Sands, it's private, bigger pool/beach area and easier than the others to get to town.

All in all an "A" for the Royal Sands!

  • Stayed July 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Camilo_Royal_Resorts, Community Manager at The Royal Sands Resort & SPA All Inclusive, responded to this review, July 27, 2011
Dear Royal Resorts Guest:

Thank you very much for your comments. I appreciate the time you took to write such a honest and descriptive review. I'm sure it will be very helpful to other travelers.

I'm very glad to read that you enjoyed so much your stay at The Royal Sands. We'll be more than happy to welcome you "home" again anytime!

Oh, and please do let me know next time you plan to visit us, so I can send you some very good Spa promotions. :)

Warm regards from Cancun,
Camilo Olea
Community Manager
Royal Resorts
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Alexandria, Virginia
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 15, 2011

The staff at this resort work very hard to provide a clean, fun atmosphere for every guest. The amenities are awesome, the spa is fantastic and the food is delicious.

I want to especially thank the staff for finding a valuable piece of jewelry that I had left behind and returning it to a family member staying there. The honesty of the staff was without question, and they were very helpful and understanding while helping me find it.

I look forward to my annual visit next year!

  • Stayed May 2011, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brentwood, CA
Senior Contributor
31 reviews 31 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 14, 2011

We were back again this year to our timeshare at the Royal Sands. I LOVE the
" Welcome Home" attitude when we arrive. We arrived loaded with luggage and groceries because we had moved there from the Royal Haciendas. All our "stuff" arrived in our villa quickly where we were greeted by our wonderful maid , Mary Chuy. Our villa was in impeccable condition, including a new HD flat scrren TV in the bedroom. There were also more English TV stations available. The pool area was very clean with new chaises and more straight chairs. The Welcome Party on the pool deck in front of the beach was a lot of fun. We were thrilled to see theTaco Party return to the Sands this year.The Happy Hour prices were better this year, and the restaurant prices seem to have been lowered a bit. The food and service in the Veranda Restaurant is excellent. The very best of all at the Sands is the view from every villa of the gorgeous turquoise Caribbean Sea.

  • Stayed July 2011, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jefferson City, Missouri
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 13, 2011

We loved our rooms, wonderful and relaxing view of the sea. Great service. Cleanest.

  • Stayed February 2011, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 10, 2011

My husband and I just returned from the Royal Sands and we both found the resort to be absolutely beautiful. There is a great deal to do in and around the resort, however if you choose to just relax, the beach is absolutely exquisite (one of the best we've visited) and the pool area is lovely as well. The staff is very attentive, the food is delicious (and reasonably priced) and the resort is gorgeous.

I can't say enough about our experience, but for you doubters out there, perhaps this will convince you...my husband is a virgo (detail oriented, critical and extremely picky - especially when it comes to resorts) and EVEN he LOVED the Royal Sands...enough said!!

  • Stayed July 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cincinnati, Ohio
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 8, 2011

Where do I begin?
I honestly cannot say enough about Royal Sands. Hands down, this was my best vacation ever. All future vacations will be sub par, I'm sure, if they are not at the Royal Sands.

In November 2010, I had the opportunity to visit Royal Sands, because an acquaintance of mine was unable to use their week, and I purchased it from him. Best money ever spent. This was my husband's and my honeymoon we never took.
From the minute I arrived, I was astonished with the beauty, the cleanliness, the decor, the staff, everything the Royal Sands had to offer.

Our room was ground level, beach front, and let me tell you, it was the coolest thing to be able to walk out the back patio to the beach. Although we did get locked out a few times by doing this, our concierge, front desk & maintenance staff gladly helped us out.

The very first night, we had to stay in another hotel since our stay didn't officially begin until the following day, but Royal Sands took our luggage and stored it safely for the night. We then visited the Sports Bar and that is when we met Moises. Little did we know then, he would be one HUGE part in our vacation. Moises was the best waiter ever. Pleasant, helpful and personable. A great person indeed.

The next day, we checked in and met Christine, our concierge. Christine was wonderful, from explaining all the benefits of the resort, to helping us plan our vacation activities and giving us tid bits of information on what to see, what to do, where to eat. Christine was truly a blessing.

Even Olivia in the laundry room. She was exceptional. Switched my laundry, even though it says its my responsibility, she was folding it when the dryer was finished.

I could bore you more with details of my trip, but believe me when I say, future vacations will never be the same. I just returned from a vacation, and while it was wonderful, it wasn't vacation in Cancun, at the Royal Sands.

I will definitely return. Definitely.

Room Tip: If you can swing it, get a beach front, first floor room. Best. Room.
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  • Stayed November 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Camilo_Royal_Resorts, Royal Resorts Community Manager at The Royal Sands Resort & SPA All Inclusive, responded to this review, July 11, 2011
Dear Alison,

Thank you for the kind words about our resort and staff! I appreciate the time you took to write such a detailed review and will be happy to welcome you again to your home in paradise anytime.

Rest assured I've passed along all your praise to management so they can compliment our hard working staff for a job well done. Thanks!

Until we say "hola" next time, please receive my warmest regards.

Sincerely,
Camilo Olea
Royal Resorts Community Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Royal Sands Resort & SPA All Inclusive

Address: Blvd. Kukulcan km 13.5, No. 32, Seccion A, Segunda Etapa | Zona Hotelera, Cancun 77500, Mexico
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Cancun
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#14 Family Hotel in Cancun
#21 Romantic Hotel in Cancun
#24 Luxury Hotel in Cancun
#24 Top resorts Hotel in Cancun
#25 On the Beach Hotel in Cancun
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — The Royal Sands Resort & SPA All Inclusive 4*
Number of rooms: 340
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Royal Sands(R), All-Inclusive, one of the best All-Inclusive resorts in the area, sits at the center of Cancun's spectacular Caribbean shoreline with breathtaking views of white sand and turquoise waters. With a privileged location, five-star luxury, a world-class Spa, tempting dining choices and activities for all ages, The Royal Sands has everything you need for your next Caribbean vacation. Enjoy fine dining, activities and amenities offered by the REFINE All-Inclusive package. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Royal Sands Hotel Cancun
Royal Sands Cancun
Cancun Royal Sands Resort
Royal Sands Resort Cancun

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