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“Great place to stay in Cancun” 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 #20 of 177 Hotels in Cancun
Saline
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
“Great place to stay in Cancun”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 6, 2013

We have been coming here since 1999, and it is consistent in the high standards of the Royal Resorts! Impeccably clean, maintained, and concerned about providing a great experience for the guest. You will not be disappointed. You can do as much or as little as you like! We like to be "beach bums" and also enjoy the water aerobics classes!

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 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.
Cristóbal G, Community Manager at The Royal Sands Resort & SPA All Inclusive, responded to this review, April 10, 2013
Dear Guest,

Thank you for taking time to post about our resort.

We appreciate your kind words and we find them very rewarding. We always strive to provide high levels of satisfaction in all of our customers and we're happy to learn you enjoyed your vacation with us.

We hope to welcome you again soon during your next visit to Mexican Caribbean.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,875 reviews from our community

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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
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (565)
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Regina, SK
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 5, 2013

I will start by stating we are not owners at The Sands or any Royal Resort. We have rented each year since 2005.
This year we only stayed one week instead of the normal two or three, for the reasons I am going to mention.
The hotel is extremely clean and well maintained, as are the pool areas and the beach. The staff amazing. The location in Cancun excellent. However, the villas (rooms) are in dire need of upgrading. The main thing they have done since 2005 is to replace the old TV's. The units need a major facelift including all appliances. The bed and bedding are poor quality - sheets, bedding and pillows are terrible, the bed hard but not the worst I have been on, however, the mattress cover has plastic on the underside - not pleasant. Balconies are large but again newer furniture would be nice. Only amenities supplied for non all inclusive guests is kleenex and a hair dryer. Kitchen, coffee filters, salt & pepper and dishwasher detergent.
As is the case each year we are there they do not follow through policing "chair hogs" - to get a beach palapa you have to be on the beach by 7:30 - 8:00 am and at approximately the same time around the pool. There are very few people at either location - just towels (some of which, stay unused until late in the morning, watched one this year someone arrived at 3:30 using one of 5 chairs). They have security people writing room numbers down but that is the end of the effort. We have had a security person put up umbrellas for us (for which we tip), later in the morning. We are on vacation, and I do not think one should have to be up and out of their room earlier than they are at home to go to work.
This resort is now a mixed timeshare and all inclusive resort - yes it does work, however, I think the timeshare owners are getting less, such as no take out counter and we felt the food portions were smaller and far less selection on a day to day basis in the Veranda restaurant (mostly buffet in the evening). I would require more variety and more activity at an all inclusive hotel. And, because this is a timeshare you might have to change rooms if you are staying over a Saturday with the possibility of having to check out at 11 am and no check in until 4 pm (they will let you move your belongings to a room that isn't made up - which is helpful but not very plesant) so, you lose a good portion of your Saturday.
I would rate this property at a good 3 1/2 stars.

Room Tip: Phase II is quieter. High floors have a better view but balcony can be windy.
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cristóbal G, Community Manager at The Royal Sands Resort & SPA All Inclusive, responded to this review, April 10, 2013
Dear Guest,

Thank you for taking time to post about our resort.

We are always listening to our customer's feedback and yours won't be an exception. Rest assured we'll make sure this comments are read by the appropriate channels so that our service may improve. As you noticed: we have a policy regarding the misuse of beach and pool chair. Thank you for letting us know that's an area we can improve, we'll continue to enforce this policy. Our resort is a mixed use resort and does lend itself to a few challenges, however, we always strive to provide top quality service and we regret you didn't feel this way.

We sincerely hope you enjoyed the rest of your vacation in Cancun.

Warm Regards.
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Palatine, Illinois
2 reviews
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed April 4, 2013

I would not recommend this hotel for many reasons. #1 The decor is outdated, #2 the WiFi never worked, #3 there is no evening entertainment at all, #4 the service at the bars and restaurants was terrible, and the list goes on and on. We purchased the all-inclusive package for our family and were terribly dissappointed in the lack of service/respect we received. For example, I tried to order a drink at the bar and was told to go and sit by the pool and someone would come and take my order. We waited over an hour for someone and then finally had to flag down a server to come. I tried to get a drink of water at 10:10am at the swim up bar and the server told me they were not open yet, but the hours of operation of 10am - 5pm. It took so long to get food delivered and even sometime we sat at a table at the restaurant on-site for 15-20 minutes before we were even addressed by a waiter. I love all-inclusives, but this is not the place to go. One other thing, is the wait staff track every single drink and item you order so you are always dealing with receipts/bills. You could never just go up and order something, they needed your key card. This was a pain because my kids could not order at all - only the adult with the key card. The all-inclusive will not survive at this hotel.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Illinois
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 2, 2013

This was our first time staying at the Royal Sands. My parents-in-law are owners here and at the Royal Islander. Loved our stay here. Resort is clean and well kept. Friendly staff, beautiful beach and amazing blue ocean! Will be back!!!!! Only complaint is the horrible WiFi. Service kept dropping and Internet speed when you can connect was slow and spotty. They really need to invest more to improve this. There are so many owners who stay at the resorts for extended periods of time and they should be able to have good WiFi!!!

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Murrieta, California
1 review
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed April 2, 2013

This hotel is very clean and quite nice...room are not five star but very decent. The pool and grounds are well maintained. The Beach is pristine which is the only thing that kept us feeling ok about our vacation.

If you are wearing the all-inclusive bracelet be prepared to be treated like a 2nd class citizen!!!! You will be ignored and given terrible service. The whole idea of having to leave your room key and essentially open a tab every time you want something is horrid. A few times we ended up going off to the beach and then back to our rooms, forgetting to close out our tab at the bar...then having to go get a new key from the front desk and feeling like we were a huge inconvenience. At the beginning of one day my daughter wanted to get a Shirley Temple and I gave her the key so she could go get one. She told them our room number and left the key. Twenty minutes later I went back to get myself a drink and they said there was no key under that room number or name! The worst part was I was made to feel as though I was lying...noone offered any help other than to tell me they didn't have my key! Really? that makes me feel really secure, I am a single woman (widow) travelling with my 12 year old daughter and that key gives access to my room (which you always have to tell whenever you give the key). I am pretty sure I was charged plenty extra when I checked out because of my key being left at the bar once or twice because we got distracted with enjoying our vacation...not remembering to close our tab. It's not worth arguing over the extra hundred dollars or so we were charged because I didn't keep every single one of the yellow receipts (especially in the beginning because I had no idea how this was all going to work). So...lesson learned...guard your room key!

We were going on a tour and had to leave at 7:25 am and wanted to just grab a quick to go coffee and pastry. You can't just go into the buffet and take a muffin and coffee to go quickly...you have to wait (and I mean wait!) then open your tab and hope the waiter brings back your check in time. The morning we left our transfer shuttle was at 7:25. We arrived at the restaurant at 6:55 and were told we had to wait 10 minutes until they opened (after being ignored and asking). I bought the inclusive package not for any value...my 12 year old daughter and I would hardly maximize this, but I wanted her to be able to get what she wanted when she wanted and not feel she was putting the staff out!!!!

I chose this hotel because it was voted number one family resort but for an almost 13 year old there is nothing. The kids club is for up to 12 but there is nothing for older kids.

I was told as well that all non-motorized watersports were included...there aren't really any! You can reserve the sailboat but that's it. My daughter asked about the boogie boards but was told there was an extra charge. I don't mind paying but don't say its all-inclusive when it's not.

Also, there is no onsite snorkeling, you have to take a tour. They have the gear but there is nowhere to snorkel, at least that is what the staff at the activities center told us.

I agree with other reviews as well, don't dare ask to order from menu, you are expected to always go with the buffet and help yourself! I always tipped because I felt I would be treated even worse if I didn't which is a sad state of affairs. I paid good money for an inclusive, package, tipped as well...to be treated badly. Maybe I'm spoiled, we are Hilton Diamond Members and Hilton Grand Vacation Club members and generally go to Europe and Hawaii. This was my first experience with all-inclusive and Mexico and probably my last!

On a positive note? The service and food at Conquistador Restaurant at The Royal Hacienda was great...thehe only time I actually felt like a welcomed and valued guest. Oh, except that when we finished eating and asked about the shuttle (back to our hotel) outside the entrance we were told the next one wouldn't be til 10pm (it was 8:20!!!). So we had to walk 3 miles. This is not a big deal since I am a runner and my daughter an athlete but wasn't sure how safe this may be.

Room Tip: lower floors have better access to pool, higher floors nice view.
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Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
luanda
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 1, 2013

Once again I spend a week at the Royal resorts, this time at the Royal Sands in Cancun.
The Villas are great, very comfortable and everything that you need, the staff is wonderful, friendly and always smiling, but the food continue to be horrible, when you are not an owner you can only book as all inclusive, the buffets at lunch are really bad, you have beef, chicken and fish and all taste the same, and is not a good taste. The fruits and vegetables are tasteless, at dinner also the same bad food if you order a la carte you may get something ok.
The Restaurant for dinner close at 10:00 so if you arrive at 09:30 you cannot eat, I think this is too early for a holiday resort.
The room service has better food, but 4 consecutive days I order Flan and there were no flan, the excuse is that as the place was fully book the run out of it, Probably they need a board meeting to authorize to do and extra couple of flans per day,
The sodas and beer that are including on the all-in are water ice and some color.
I still trying to understand what is that make a hamburger a premium dish which require that you have to pay extra, I ate one night at La Hacienda, the food was great, the service was wonderful but again for a Guacamole you have to pay extra, is not a big amount but really in Mexico Guacamole is a premium food???
Everybody that I spoke was complaining about this additional charges, why don’t charge the daily rates with 10 or 15 dollars more and cover this , they will avoid the complains and probably make money.
Internet, not existent, as I knew that I did not worry but my kids tried and tried and tried just to get frustrated,
For the all-inclusive you need to have a bracelet and your room card, this is very unpractical, I believe that with the bracelet should be enough, but no you have to have both if you want the service. but my daughter lost hers at the sea so we reported and we were told that if somebody used we will be charge US 105 per day, that they don’t have a way to cancel it, so when I ask the question how somebody can use it if they require the bracelet and the room card, nobody can give me and answer, as she lost the second day we were there, we were expose to a $ 500 plus expense, as nobody used we were not charge.
And the last one, We arrived in a Saturday late at night everything was perfect but Sunday Morning around 7:45 our phone ring , a girl call to say hallow and try to schedule an interview, of course I knew that this interview is to try to sell you a place in the resort. Of course the fact that she wake up us fade away any chance of us buying something from her.
Again, I will go again to any Royal resort the, rooms, the beach the staff is fantastic, and I will bring some snacks with me to survive the food

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Palatine, Illinois
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 31, 2013

We stayed at the Royal Sands during the last week of March 2013. This was our first experience with All Inclusive, which in our opinion was not really All Inclusive as we felt we kept being told that certain things were an up charge, ie. canned beer, Bananas Flambe at dinner etc. it just went on and on. We noticed that the owners/timeshare guests were given taller drinks in decent plastic ware instead of disposable plastic cups. As stated in a previous review we also felt insulted by this. We were told that all tips were included. This was a joke as we found out from several timeshare owners that the workers only get 2% of what we spend for their tips. Once we heard this we upped our tips and started getting treated a little better by the wait staff and bar staff.
The overall grounds are beautiful and very well kept. Workers were constantly sweeping, cleaning, scrubbing the grounds. Rooms were very spacious~ w had a 1 BR suite w/ king & Murphy beds, a full kitchen. Beds comfortable, maid service during the day and night were good.
Resort has few options for eating & bars for evening enjoyment. We ate every morning at the Veranda/buffet, which was good. Most evenings we ate at Hacienda Sisal, on property, very good food & service. After 2 evenings of enjoying Bananas Flambe aka Bananas Foster at Hacienda Sisal, on night 3 we were told there were not available, after my husband questioned
this, viola the waiter appeared ready to prepare this excellent dessert table side.
My husband was treated terribly by the front desk staff one night when we came back to the Royal Sands by cab,he was looking for change to tip the taxi driver & we were told they had no change whatsoever., when he questioned this they WERE VERY RUDE to him. We were however, told when we checked in that we could exchange US currency for Pesos at any time.
The Sports Bar there was a joke. Not enough help and food ordered was not what received. I ordered a turkey pannini with mozzarella cheese. I got a cold turkey sandwich on a sub roll and they served me a plate of fried mozzarella sticks on the side. We sent all of our food back that evening and headed straight to Hacienda Sisal. This bar as were most of the bars at the Royal Sands were very understaffed. This fact was confirmed by several time share owners that we talked with that have been down at The Royal Sands for 12 years of spring breaks. Captain's Cove also part of the All Inclusive was good but not as good as Hacienda Sisal.
Lunch at the pool bars and Char Hut were fine. We loved the cheese/chicken quesadilla's and the chips & guacamole. Beach was pretty and the water the most beautiful blue water I have ever seen. Wondered why there was no hot tub at this resort. Overall our trip was fine, had it's positives and negatives, tho we doubt we would stay at The Royal Sands again in the future.

Room Tip: Rooms on the south side are quieter but more of a walk to the main pool. Did not mind the AC noise...
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 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.
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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:
#15 Family Hotel in Cancun
#19 Luxury Hotel in Cancun
#19 Top resorts Hotel in Cancun
#20 On the Beach Hotel in Cancun
#21 Romantic 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):
With a breathtaking beach location, a world-class Spa, tempting dining choices and activities for all ages, The Royal Sands has everything you need for a week of Royal relaxation.The Royal Sands® sits at the center of Cancun’s spectacular Caribbean shoreline with breathtaking views of white sand and turquoise waters. Enjoy fine dining, activities and many other creature comforts with 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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