My husband and I are fairly discerning travelers and have been to many of the nicer all-inclusives in the Cancun and Riviera Maya areas. To name a few, we have stayed at Royal Hideaway, Zoetry, Iberostar Grand, Sun Palace, Moon Palace, Aventura Spa Palace, Excellence Riviera Cancun, Secrets Silversands, and Live Aqua.
We arrived via private transfer (Best Day) and were greeted promptly with cold cloths and coconut milk followed by a warm neck wrap and a flower while we sat to check in. We asked at check-in regarding upgrading to a room with something more than a French balcony. We were told there was a junior suite available and they were more than happy to show it to us. The room did not have a very nice view as it overlooked an abandoned property; however we were quite tired from our early morning flight and seeing that this room appeared completely clean and ready immediately, we decided to take it. (It was not eligible for use with resort credits). We returned to the front desk and finished the check-in process and were told they needed 20 minutes to “check amenities”. They asked us to go talk to guest services to learn about our credits while we waited for the room. We knew about our credits from staying at other Palace properties but decided to go get this out of the way since we had no room yet. They showed us a map of Cancun to show us where the other Palace properties were even though we had told them we have been to the area over 30 times. They tried to get us to go to Moon for the “vacation club” spiel which we declined. So no map, tour, or explanation of LeBlanc, but they showed us a map of Cancun (not so 5-diamond-ish).
We went to lunch and then camped out in the lobby waiting for our pager we had been given to go off. My husband checked in with at front desk once again – no, still not ready. We sat and waited and waited. Finally the bellhop noticed us there and said he would go personally check. He came back and told us it was ready and he would meet us with our bags.
It was a total of 2.5 hours after we had arrived when we finally were able to go to room. The only difference from when we first saw it to see if we wanted the upgrade and finally being granted access was that there was now a bottle of red wine and a letter welcoming us and telling us of the beach bag we could use during our stay and then take home as a gift. It is hard for me to understand why it took 2.5 hours to add a bottle of wine to the room but the worst part was the letter wasn’t even addressed to us – it had another guest’s name on it, and secondly, there was no beach bag (again, not so 5-diamond worthy). (Also we later found out that the Chi hairdryer in the room did not work. When we made the butler aware, he immediately replaced the hairdryer and brought us a beach bag.) After we received our luggage, we were told by the bellhop that our butler would be there in 10 minutes to explain everything to us. We waited about 30 minutes but he never showed up so we unpacked and got ready to go to the beach. We needed hangers but weren’t going to waste any more time after already 3 hours spent between getting into room and waiting around for someone to not show.
We did not know where the spa or gym or any of the restaurants were located. It is not a huge property so it was easy enough to figure out. I am not sure if the butler would have explained any of this had he shown up.
On the topic of the butlers, we had at least 5 or 6 during our stay. They kept switching them around. We never really knew who our butler was. When we needed anything, they did it promptly and professionally. However, I wish we could have had some consistency so we could establish rapport instead of the daily “changing of the guard”. The one butler we had more than 1 day and really appreciated was Hugo. He brought us extra pillows when needed and set up aromatherapy when we requested it.
Even with upgrading to a Junior Suite, the room wasn’t as spacious as other places we have stayed. We had one small French balcony with standing room only which overlooked the lagoon and then another balcony with two chairs and a small table. We knew going into it that the room wasn’t going to blow us away. It was sufficient though.
The rooms contain Chi hairdryers and Chi hair straighteners. They use Bvlgari products – shampoo, conditioner, shower gel, and body lotion. There are bath salts and also Chi bubble bath for the Jacuzzi tub. There is a dental kit with an extra toothbrush and toothpaste should you forget yours. There was also a shower cap, sewing kit, and shoe polishing sponge. They do not replace the shampoo and conditioner when you run out. I had to call both times, once for each. When we had stayed at Sun Palace, they always put extras in your room so you had backups but not here.
The first two days of breakfasts and lunches were pretty disappointing. At breakfast, there was only one chef manning the omelet station and there were always 6 people in line at any given time. The items on the buffet such as pancakes and waffles were cold. For lunch, nothing was hot either and there was a lot of “sameness”. The third day, we walked down the beach to have lunch at Beach Palace just to try to get something hot. The lunch was so much better there! Everything was hot and there was more variety. I also did not have trouble getting drink refills as I did at LeBlanc.
Mid-week we tried the terrace on the 3rd floor outside of LeBlanc stage for breakfast. There are great views up there and our server was superb. However, food is obtained from the buffet so the pancakes and such were still cold if not colder since they had to be brought up from the lobby level. When I made management aware of issues in this area, I feel that they listened. They added a second chef at breakfast and the foods were now hot. Lunch buffet foods also were hot by the 4th day of our stay! And the fresh grouper at lunch that they grill for you was delicious.
The dinners were really good at the French but our favorite was the Italian where we ended up eating 3 times. Manuel was our waiter two of three visits and he was outstanding. On our last night, we told him we were a little sad to be leaving the next day and he had us switch tables to one with rose petals in the shape of a heart and told us we would be served a special meal not on the menu. And when it was delivered by Manuel and Chef Adrian, it indeed was special and the most delicious meal we had all week (and we had several very good to excellent dinners). We really appreciated this extra effort and it made our last night complete.
The pools are lovely and have plenty of room to spread out, one thing we liked here better than Sun Palace. When we were here though, they were chiseling away at the edge of the infinity pool to make the water flow over the edge to make it a true infinity pool. They were also chiseling away at the floor of the area next to the towel hut (where they store magazines and suntan lotions). The chiseling noise was annoying and we went over to the activity pool on the opposite side of the building – over there they were sandblasting paint off of the building. We settled for that as it was not as annoying as the chiseling. I do not deduct points from the resort for this – it is low season and maintenance needs to be done at some point.
The pool service here was exceptional – 5-diamond for sure!! Omar greeted us with towels daily and asked us where we wished to sit. He would not allow us to lay our own towels out on the chairs. He positioned our umbrella and set up an ice bucket of waters for us. We had Jeanette every day for our server. We loved her! We could not accept drinks nearly as many times as she would offer, but we greatly appreciated her checking on us. She was delightful to talk to. She noticed me shivering one day after we had some rain and it got windy and offered me a cappuccino – always thoughtful and anticipating what we might need. She’s a stellar employee.
The spa and spa treatments were very nice. We greatly enjoyed the experience and thought our therapists were very skilled. The spa itself is gorgeous.
We really liked the LeBlanc Stage bar to watch a game and to enjoy fresh fruit martinis. Michael, the bartender there, was so friendly and made great martinis!
In summary, anything that went wrong was remedied. I wasn’t sure some of the items that went wrong really should have at a hotel of this caliber. However, once management became aware of the issues, they were on top of them. They sought us out multiple times. The public relations staff seemed appreciative of the feedback and apologetic of any shortcomings. Right up until the time we were outside to meet our transfer service to depart for the airport, Public Relations (Leslie) came to ensure we had had an enjoyable stay and asked if we would return. We likely will due to employees like her, Jeanette, and Manuel who could not do enough for us. Though there are many other places to see, there was something special about LeBlanc mainly due to the incredible staff members. I hope this review is helpful to others considering this fine resort.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.