As I promised here is my trip report. A little background info. For those that don't know Cancun Baby, I planned a week vacation starting August 16, 2003 with my sister and her oldest son (9 yrs.) and my only daughter (7 yrs.). This was going to be our first vacation together as adult women and we decided we wanted this to be a bonding experience for not only us but also our two kids. I live in Central America and she lives in upstate NY. We see each other about every 2 years. With the kids in mind and after 'millions' of hours on this computer we chose Crown Paradise.All I can say is WOW!! We arrived by bus since we are only 5 ½ hours from Cancun. That was a great value. It cost us $17.50 each way for the Premiere Line. The bus was way too cold and we were prepared with sweatshirts. We left the Chetumal, Mexico border at 12:45 AM. Yes AM! And went traveled through the night. By the time the kids woke up we were in Cancun. We were so excited and anxious to find our hotel. Then we realized what would we do when we get there. We took our time getting our luggage and we got a taxi to the hotel. When we got to the hotel we were getting there with most of the staff. No one was up. The bellboy laughed and took us to check in, when we reached the counter the front desk clerk said, 'Mam, I need your keys to check out.' We said we just got here. She laughed. Then I thought oh hell, we can't get our room until 3 p.m. The front desk clerk looked at us and said we have your room ready we were advised of an early check in but not this early, but we will help you out. They got us a room in the new tower at 7 AM. I was too siked. Keep in mind, no tip yet. Now, while I was checking in my sister was reading the comment book and was giving me a look like 'I am going to kill you, these comments are awful and we are booked here for a week.' I just smiled and we checked in and got to our room. It was perfect for us. We had two double beds, which were quite comfortable, we had a balcony with a somewhat view of the ocean. We figured we had to weigh the good with the bad. We don't have a full view but how much time do we plan spending looking out at the ocean and then here we are at 7 a.m. with a room or we can wait for 8 hour with our two anxious kids. We took our room. My sister loved the bathroom with the movable makeup mirror. Use the safe, it is there for that. Everything was really nice. The new tower is excellent. All right now, Day 1: We went down and had breakfast. The buffets have everything imaginable and I ordered an omelet, tamales and went to town. I had a smoothie and fruit and then I had to say, SLOW DOWN it's not going anywhere. Everything was so yummy. The kids got their kicks ordering pancakes in the image of Mickey Mouse. We were already impressed. We decided to head to Walmart via the bus. Now I have to tell you I LOVE THE BUS SYSTEM in Cancun. We would hop on and hop off. No trouble. Never waited, you have to love it. We bought the kids boogie boards for the beach and beach toys; we got some other knick-knacks and headed home, you see I am calling our hotel home already. We spent the rest of the day at the beach. The water is so blue and clear and the waves are great, there is an undertow but nothing to fret about just be careful. Our kids loved the sea more than the pools. That night they checked into the kids club and had dinner there and they were going to a kids disco, Insomnia for a few hours. My sister and I had made reservations that same day for the Fisherman. It was just fun. We dressed up and had wine and ordered food we never ate before. It is really ritzy and we were still hungry after our 5-course meal, so we just headed to the buffet for fajitas and my favorite sushi. We decided to sneak in on the kids at the disco and they were having a ball. The kids club opens at 9 am and closes around 10 pm. We were able to sign a waiver that our kids could leave with out us getting them. They were big enough and we always had a meeting point. It worked out well. Day 2, we hung out by the main pool. Got seats around 8 am and played lazy. We did do water aerobics and lounged around. Now, there is a killer Japanese restaurant only opened from noon until 5 p.m. Check it out. We fell in love with this place. We tipped the entire staff before we left. They treated us like queens. This was by far our favorite place to eat. The kids did the burgers, wings, and nacho thing all on their own. I hung out at the outdoor bar; they spoiled me with their ' mas poison'. All the drinks were so good. I have no idea what people complain about. Relax, smile, speak your Spanglish and everything will be wonderful. That night we had dinner at Wayne Boots, a serious MUST DO! The kids loved it with the mechanical bull and clown. The food was great. We had ribs, steaks and the steak was cooked exactly how we like it. That day we turned in early because we were spending the next day at XEL-HA.Day 3 We did the all inclusive Xel-ha through Brant. Now, mind you I checked around for deals and we saved $45 dollars booking through Brant. That is the other must but will get into that later. Xel-ha was great but we were disappointed with the snorkeling. I have snorkeled in better sites and I guess we were spoiled living in Belize with the second largest barrier reef, but the coral is so alive with such a variety of fish. The kids enjoyed it and we snorkeled way too long. Before we realized it is was time to eat and that we did. I had drinks, we ate twice and the kids got to know the icecream vendors on a first name basis. It really is the easiest way to go with kids. That night we went to meet Brant Boston at OK Maguey. What a fun restaurant, they have live music and they come and sing at your table. We got our 2 x1 cards that night, it is important to note, that in order to use two cards you have to ask for two checks first. The food was good and so were the drinks. Brant is a great guy, you have to get the card and meet him. As we rolled our way to the bus stop we realized that we would have to walk around the hotel a bit because we couldn't go to sleep on a belly that full. We rolled into the Rumbero Club that had live music for kids and adults. They had a bar in there and everyone was jamming and having a good time. This is truly a family vacation getaway.The next couple days we did a lot of shopping and hanging out at the pool. We had all these trips planned but the kids just wanted to do the kids club and then hang out at the beach. We also has a lucky suprise there was a batch of sea turtles born outside the hotel and they allowed the guest to hold them and ask the enviornmental people questions. A major highlight for all of us. We never got bored with the food but we did get enough of the nightly entertainment. It is somewhat cheesy and the best shows are those that are not performed by the staff. Even our kids got enough. Also check out the gift shops, I found key chains priced cheaper than what I bargained for and a lot of little things are right there. We did go out to Lorito Joe's for the seafood buffet, which we enjoyed, and the nightly visit of the lagoon crocodile, which ate more lobster than I did. (Everyone was throwing his or her food out to him.) We found a coupon on the net for 20% so use it.We got our maid a little gift (a small change purse) and place $5 US in it the first day. That is all it took. We made a mess everyday and our room was spotless with flowers and the towels in forms of animals. The kids would leave her chocolate and a dollar or two. Little things can make the world of a difference. Remember to smile, try the different food, try to speak basic Spanish (hello, please, thank you). I watched how these people work and truly appreciated all the service they gave me. I will return, this is a family vacation. I am not sure if I would take my honeybun on a trip here but when we have our next family reunion it will be there. Look around for vacation packages and take your time when booking a trip. I booked my vacation package through the internet with Heidi at ********** . She was super efficient, answered all my questions, went out of her way in getting me my documents way in advance and best of all, she matches prices. So I found a package that was sold out and she not only matched it she under priced it and bamI had the vacation of my life so affordable. If anything, drop her a line or check out her site.My sister and I figured the people that wrote the crappy comments were people that would be hard to please anywhere. As you can tell we loved this place and highly recommend it.I lived on so many of these forums for months and want to thank everyone for their advice.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.