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“I don't get it....” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Live Aqua Cancun All Inclusive

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Live Aqua Cancun All Inclusive
4.5 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Boulevard Kukulcan Km. 12.5 Zona Hotelera, Cancun 77500, Mexico   |  
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Ranked #2 of 174 Hotels in Cancun
New York, NY
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
23 hotel reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
69 helpful votes 69 helpful votes
“I don't get it....”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 6, 2013

LIVE AQUA - I don't get it!

I wish that I could report that our stay over New Year's eve at Live Aqua was as positive as other reviewers, but we did not have a good experience. Maybe it's because it was during New Years and maybe they needed to cut some corners? While the grounds are well kept, the rooms clean, and facilities modern, we found the food, service, and attention to detail to be mediocre at best and definitely not worthy of a luxury rating. We will not be back, nor will we recommend this hotel to friends. Given the many options in Cancun, there are other hotels that provide a higher caliber of service and quality for the same price point.

This was the most disappointing aspect of Live Aqua and the biggest deal breaker for us. The restaurants all serve the same kind of food. Plenty of meat, chicken, fish, and veggie dishes nicely presented but usually in a bland, overly salted sauce or marinade that lacks flavor or uniqueness. After trying most of the restaurants, we settled on the remainder of our meals at "Siete" buffet which resembled slightly higher end, mass produced, cafeteria food. True there was something for everyone, but even the pizza tasted like microwaved cardboard. (How can you screw up pizza?) The breakfast options were plentiful including an omelette station, but the eggs tasted funny, as if they were powdered or from a mix or carton. Waffles, French toast and pancakes were all stale, and pastries didn't seem fresh. Even the coffee tasted funny. None of the prepared dishes really tasted like they should have. There was plenty of fresh fruit, yogurt, cereal cheese and bread to satisfy.
Lunch options are also plentiful, but nothing was flavorful/fresh. Even the hamburgers and french fries at the pool were over processed and bland. Fish tacos on the beach were a great novelty, but not particularly special or unique. Aqua gets a POOR rating when it comes to food. Even as I type this on the plane ride home, my stomach is churning.

It was a total waste of money to upgrade to the club level since we didn't elect to get a suite. You get nothing other than a guaranteed room on a higher floor (5th floor or higher) and access to an "exclusive" room with appetizers and drinks that, in truth, could be obtained at any other location in the hotel. There were some premium beverages available there (Kettle One, etc) so if you're a finicky drinker, you might appreciate this upgrade. The appetizers were served on fancy spoons and had great presentation, but they were not very appealing. In short, skip the Club upgrade. It's not worth it.

It's terrible, inconsistent and unreliable. We complained to the concierge, and it seemed like they were accustom to the complaint. It did not improve.

The grounds are immaculate and beautiful and I suppose this is the best part of the hotel. There are several pools and each is maintained at a different temperature which is nice. There is plenty of room to swim around and you don't feel like you're on top of the other guests. The problem is that there is a major shortage of chairs and "beach beds" and if you travel during peak season (like we did) you will have to get up very early to get them. By 6:30am most of the chairs were taken. In my opinion, guests should be guaranteed beach chairs. This isn't the case. The gazebo beds are available for rent ($60) which I found to be a rip off.

For the most part, the staff is very friendly and willing to help, but the service is not efficient, including on the Club level. They were unable to make reservations for us for the New Years dinner which seemed like a simple request thus we missed the cut off and had to eat at the buffet. We also had requested our room be cleaned in the morning rather than afternoon which never happened. They are unable to print boarding passes at the Club Concierge. All these are minor requests that aren't a big deal, but its just an example of how even the small requests failed to get honored. The irony of their "your wish, my wish" slogan is laughable and was the running joke of the trip.

Well appointed, though small compared to the other hotels at which we've stayed. The bathroom has a nice rain shower and separate bathtub. Plenty of hot water. The fridge is under stocked with a few soft drinks, a few cans of beer, and a bag of potato chips. This pales in comparison to the other all-inclusives we've stayed at that have more variety and quality. The bed is very comfortable!

Adequate, though since we stayed during peak season, it was difficult to get a treadmill in the morning (15 minute wait). The chlorophyll water was a nice touch.

This is not a bad hotel, but given that they pride themselves as being a luxury resort, they fail miserably and it is incredibly misleading. Since it gets such a high rating on Trip Advisor I expected more.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 2 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
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ManagerAQCU, General Manager at Live Aqua Cancun All Inclusive, responded to this review, January 8, 2013
Allow me to thank you for taking your time and sharing this review. Your feedback is very important for us and it is my regret that we were not able to meet your expectations in the area of food and beverage. As a luxurious all inclusive resort we aim to personalize not only our service but our cuisine as well, in an effort to suite different tastes and preferences of all our guests. I was very much concerned by your review and disappointments you faced during your stay with us. I do want to ensure you that all your comments were followed up and we are working hard in order to avoid any lowering of our standards or inconveniences for our guests in the future.

I would like you to be sure that we are always remain at your services and should you like to put in contact with us for any assistance or further information, I am at your complete disposal, we all will be very grateful to have an opportunity to welcome you back and present to you the significant improvements in F&B area.

Warmest regards,
Alfredo Santamaría
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Gaithersburg, Maryland
Top Contributor
57 reviews 57 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
36 helpful votes 36 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 5, 2013

Live Aqua
My wife and I booked a last minute trip to Cancun to celebrate New Year’s Eve/New Year’s Day and we really looked at Trip Advisor for advice as you haven’t failed us yet. This review will be lengthy as we find the reviews so helpful, especially when trying to make a decision quickly. We only stayed at Live Aqua for 4 nights and tried to see as much as we could while we were there while still relax at the same time. We ate at every restaurant and hit every pool (hard work but we’re givers like that). We’ll try to provide information on all of the general questions that we had when we booked and we never able to get answers on the forum or from the hotel itself.
Short version: Some minor hiccups along the way but overall the hotel is amazing and you will not be disappointed. We rarely visit the same place twice and have plans to go back there as soon as possible. Food, service, facilities, everything made for a perfect, quick relaxing vacation. We would recommend this place to anyone. We are a married couple in our 30s but saw all ages and types of folks at the beach and bar. We think anyone would be comfortable here. If you are looking to relax with a cocktail by a beach or pool, look no further. Just book it. This turned into a second honeymoon we had such a wonderful, relaxing time.
We have been hesitant to hit AI’s in the past but this does not follow the AI stereotypes. (we hit our first, Couples Negril, in May was were pleased but we think Live Aqua is little bit better, but also a different type of resort/vacation). Word of caution: if you see a $400 resort credit in a package deal, skip it. It is not a true $400 credit but rather discounts equaling $400 on additional services (spas, beach cabanas, upgraded food etc). We asked about this credit when on the hotel reservation line and with US Airways line and were told the $400 credit could be used for additional costs, no one mentioned nor was it written anywhere there was a specific use breakdown until we got to check in. This was an annoyance but we made the best of it.
Transfer from Airport to Hotel: We had a transfer service through our vacation deal booked through US Airways vacations. It was a shared shuttle via Best Day travel and ride was smooth as we only had to stop at 3 other hotels before making it to Live Aqua. We waited 15 minutes at the airport for our van. A/C, nice driver, etc. It would have been nice to know this was a shared shuttle before booking (it just said an airport transfer was included) but this was not a crisis. No problems on the way back to the airport either.
Check-in: We arrived at 3:00pm and we booked an Ocean-View room. At first, they only had us staying to the Jan. 2 but thankfully we had out confirmation printed out and the email in our phone saying Jan. 3 We had booked an Ocean-view room but then we were told that they did not have any rooms available in that class so they offered to put us in a ‘Garden-view’ room with an offer of two 50-min massages. We found this annoying since we booked and paid for an Ocean-View room and they said they could see what we could do. Needless to say this wasn’t how we wanted our vacation to start and really worried if this would be a trend in Cancun or at the resort. Thankfully it wasn’t but first impression was not great. Meanwhile, other guests are getting hand massages and drinks and we are standing there trying to figure out what to do next with very little guidance as to what to do. After about 15 minutes, they said we could get into a garden room with the free massages and then go into an ocean room for the last day of our stay. That was not going to happen (keep in mind the cost of two massages does not come close to the cost of the difference between and ocean room and a garden room for three nights).
After getting a hold of a manger, we were finally able to sort things out. Finally they got our booking corrected that we were to stay for 4 nights and got an ocean view room with 2 queen beds instead of a single King bed. This whole ordeal was a lot of wasted time and a crappy way to start a vacation, but thankfully the rest of the trip was great. Meanwhile, while they were trying to settle our room we got a short hotel orientation explaining the restaurant times and going through the map of the resort . We did get an invitation listen to their ‘vacation club-timeshare offer that really made us feel uneasy. We just said no right away and they didn’t bring it up again. Our room was not going to be ready for a few hours, so we killed some time by scheduling our departure shuttle (we received instructions from our driver to do this when he picked us up) and making dinner reservations for the next few nights (there were only a handful of slot available for New Year’s Ever night at this point).
At this point we were starving so we decided to explore a bit until we could get into our room. As we walked down to the pool/beach area it started to sink in that the resort truly is gorgeous. The view from the main walkway past the infinity pool right into the ocean made us stop in our tracks.
We sat down for lunch at Azur on the beach and after the first bite of food, my wife and I were so happy that we chose this location. Amazing what some good food and a little wine can do. But we started to relax and by the time we ate our late lunch our room was ready. The service was great and we started to feel better.
Room: Ocean-View Mezzanine Rm 1407. It was near the end of the hallway away from the open air lobby and elevator so it was quiet at night in the hallway. The room did have two (2) queen beds instead of a single King, but the view made up for it as it looked into the courtyard below and we will post photos from our deck as it was nice to wake-up with that view. It was long and narrow but a good size. Bathroom had a separate tub and glass door shower. The hair dryer is small but not worth bringing your own for a beach trip. (we stuck to carry on only for this trip). Beds were insanely comfortable and the room had an aromatherapy burner in it that was a nice touch. A mini bar (all included) had beers, sodas and some snacks. Great room and the view was worth fighting for. There is an in-room movie and popcorn service that’s included but we did not use it.
Location: The hotel is in the “hotel zone” and right across the street from a main shopping mall. Going to a mall is something we would NEVER do on a vacation (we live in a major metro area with plenty of malls) but after our check-in mess and a later dinner reservation we just wanted to get off the resort for a while. The mall is actually really nice and a good way to kill an hour or so. Very touristy with a Hooters and a Planet Hollywood etc, but it is an open-air mall on a lagoon so just nice to walk around and people watch (we heard four different languages in a six-foot span). Some souvenir shops in there too. It is not a must-see but not bad either. There is also a bus that will take you all along the tourist zone and up to the major bars. We didn’t take this but it ran pretty frequently based on what we saw out the window.
Food: Overall, great food and strong drinks. No watered down slushy messes here. Some misses, which can be expected, but really we have eaten at some fantastic restaurants and some meals here were on the same level. Service is fantastic as well. Inlaa’kech and Hidden Garden are the only restaurants that you need reservations so we booked them once get there. We also had to book ahead for their special New Year’s Menu as all restaurants were offering the same menu, it was just up to us to pick which location we would like to eat after before the beach party for New Years.
Sunday Lunch (Azur Cafe) This was our first lunch. We choose to try some of the food on the buffet and try some food from the menus. Items on the buffet we liked- Fish in red sauce, Pork Ribs and we enjoyed the tuna tartar and calamari from the menus. All of it did not have the mass-produced taste or quality you would find at a buffet. All of it was delicious.
Curious though why the hotel keeps red wines cold. Our Cab. Sav. was served nearly ice cold and it just tasted strange.
Sunday Dinner (Inlaa’kech- Reservation required, and upcharge cost of $60 per person, we used our food credit for this): This restaurant is not included in the all-inclusive price so you get more private service and food options (i.e. lobster, lamp chops, filet mignon, etc.) You know you’re in heaven when you talk to the waiter about not being sure which entree to select and he tells you well just have both so my wife had a rib-eye and lobster tail and I have the NY strip and lobster tail. Note- they were out of the filet and lamb chops as we had the late (9:30) reservation and said there were many people there for the holiday. We can understand that to a point but it also gets a “really? are you kidding?” but nothing to ruin a reputation over. The steaks were cooked more medium –well than medium but still very tender, but the lobster tails were huge and grilled but still tender and overall a very good meal. It is important to note how beautiful the restaurant is as it’s hidden from the hotel walkways by a collection of mangrove trees trussing over the dining room and feature pool. You can’t even tell it is a restaurant when you first walk by it. The pool inside was empty during our dinner, which just became funny as we were basically eating next to a big empty hole. But didn’t spoil the evening. if we did not have a food resort credit to use, we are not sure we would have opted to eat there and not sure we would go back because the other restaurants are so great and already included.
Monday Breakfast (Siete Buffet): We were seating next to the window looking out onto the pool area as we sat decided which drink we wanted to start our New Year’s Eve off with: Mismosas! Fresh juices and coffee flowed freely too. The buffet is divided into three (3) stations on one side: Mexican- salsa, mole’, empanadas, and tacos; Sweet- French Toast, waffles, and crepes; Omelet stations. On the other side of the aisle you have a selection of fresh fruit, bread and pastries, juices, granola, etc. There is even a staffed smoothie bar. My wife also learned that can order ‘off-the-buffet’ as she got smoked salmon and capers each morning. If you can’t find something to eat here, there is a serious problem as there is any breakfast food you could imagine. Everything was very fresh and delicious, most of the main breakfast items were made right in front of you, yet there was never a huge wait for food. Totally a great way to start each day.
Monday Snack (Sea Corner- beside the Shore Club Pool) Fresh Guacamole, seafood ceviche and with a menu like that we had to just order one of each and work our way down the menu. Loved the seafood tacos and fried fish taquetos. Small portions were perfect for a snack instead of trying to get through a huge plate of food. Great flavor and seasonings, nothing is bland here. Does it get any better than eating chips and guacamole, drinking a margarita on a beach in Mexico? nope.
Monday Night Dinner (MB-Special New Years Dinner): The almond/ foie gras soup was tremendous and we had the option of a salmon or filet option for diner and again I could not decide so waited offered that I could have the salmon with a side order of Filet. My wife had filet with grilled shrimp. We did have red wine with dinner and we chose to try the Merlot and it was room temperature so the taste was perfect with the steak dinner. The decor was very modern and we had a seat with a view into the kitchen and we were not disappointed with the choreography of the chef’s in the kitchen. Fantastic service and a great meal. Never in a million years would we think we have experienced this at an AI.
New Years Party on the Beach- Very special night and one that we will both not forget. Half of the beach was setup for a cocktail party and we decided to take one of the several open beach beds setup along the edge of the dance ‘floor’ in front of the stage. At 10:00am they started with a special ‘Mayan’ ritual/ dance that were special for the region. Very professional and love the dancing/ music. Flanking the stage they had screens that showed various images from New Year’s Celebrations in New York and around the world. (Anderson Cooper/ Kathy Griffin views from Times Square along with the countdown til Midnight.) They have a live singer, whose name we did not catch but he is huge in Brazil as all the Brazillans on the beach went nuts when he got introduced. Then cue the music and DJ/ Dancing till 2:00am, and remember that all of this was going on the beach with an open bar with Champagne/ taco bars/ other appetizers and dancing. There were even fireworks at midnight. We were so happy and impressed with this party. None of the other hotels up the beach close to us had anything like this. It was amazing and we were so glad we did not go off to one of the usual Cancun bars. We had a fantastic party at our doorstep. The crowd as great and the dancing didn’t die down for awhile. Again, servers waited on you hand and foot. Drinks never went empty and bottles of water were always close at hand. They even gave out bags of grapes at midnight, going along with a Mexican tradition.
Tuesday breakfast: Siete again. MB also has a breakfast option but after a quick cruise through it, it looks like the same food so we just stuck with Siete.
Tuesday lunch: Burger from Shore Club. It was okay but should have stuck with tacos. Sea Corner is really the best place for a beach lunch.
Tuesday snack (Sushi Station): We tried a few rolls for a lite snack before our late dinner reservation and were rather happy with the quality. We tried the BBQ, California, Tempura Shrimp and Philadelphia rolls.
Tuesday Dinner (Hidden Garden- Reservation Required): This restaurant specialized in tapas type entrees and a cheese fondue appetizer. We were happy with the tapas but really excited about e fondue appetizer. It was a creamy combination of swiss/manchego and cheddar cheese in a mini bread bowl. You just simply cut away from the bowl and see the cheese ooze out. Again the atmosphere of the restaurant hidden among the mangrove trees and plants with a waterfall feature we were sat beside made the evening memorable. The tapas are very small (they are supposed to be) and each little bite was better than the first. It was great to leave a meal satisfied with great quality food versus stuffed with so-so food. Very impressed.
Tuesday Night Drinks (AKA Bar): This bar sits outside of the MB & Siete Restaurant and looks directly into the sushi station and pool table area. A nice simple bar and if you ask nicely for a scotch they might pull the black label scotch from under the bar instead of the red label they have out. They have the tequila tasting at this bar during the afternoon. Great place to grab a drink.
Wed: Breakfast Room service. We had an early pick up for our trip to Chichen Itza so we opted for room service (included) versus heading down to the buffet. It came right on time and omelets, etc were all great. (my wife ordered an egg white omelet with no problem).
Wed: we did lunch off the resort and dinner was at Azur on the beach again. Delicious sea bass and fillet, along with a ravioli appetizer. Fantastic service for our last night continued the trend. There was a dinner buffet along with a dinner show on Wed night. We caught the tail end of it that included some gymnastic type show. The buffet had a wide variety of foods from buffalo wings and tacos to cotton candy for dessert. We opted for a sitdown meal for our last night instead.
Thurs: enjoyed breakfast at Siete before heading off for the airport.
ETC: Cafe/ Deli Boutique (The Hidden Gem of the resort) Cafe lattes, smoothies, cookie/ cakes and my wife’s favorite (chocolate on a stick) just because. Seriously, just some amazing milk or white chocolate on a stick like a lollipop. We ever took a few cookies and macaroons for our day trip to Chichen-Itza for a light snack. There are also some other desserts and Panini available there but we never tried them.
Egos Bar: After-dinner bar with house music and lounge seating. We only stopped in once into this bar but it seems nice for a gathering with friends after dinner. There is a dj and dancing in this bar on some nights.
Shore Club Pool and Swim up Bar: All of the pools are heated but this one is the smaller of the pool areas and offers the swim-up bar and more music while you sit there and get some rays or talk with visitors/ neighbors from FL, NC, GA, etc. As you empty glass hit the deck, Alexandra and staff where there to offer another as you didn’t even have to tell her your previous order as she knew what you had. First day we just reserved two chairs looking out to the beach, but the second day I was able to reserve one of the free beach beds with a umbrella beside us to save us from the sun’s rays and just sit in the shade and enjoy the breeze and drinks. Drinks are strong and plentiful. The staff caters to every need. There are no drink menus, so know your cocktails of choice before you go. Mojitos and margaritas were fresh and delish, and did not taste like syrupy junk. You can order food right at your beach chair too. My wife, on a pure whim, just asked if she could get some chips and guacamole and less than 5 minutes later it was there.
The main infinity pool is amazing and the water is tremendously warm. We spent a little bit of time there on our last full day after our Chichen Itza tour. We could have spent 10 days at this hotel and never been tired of it.
I did notice on the forum reviews that the beach/ pool chairs get reserved early on so I did go down before 8:00am to get a prime chair or beach beds at the Shore Club (the area around the swim up bar pool) every morning. At that time I would say that 75% of the loungers were reserved by various books, magazines and other towels. We spent 95% of our time just relaxing on the beach. Great view, great weather.
You can rent beach or pool cabanas for an extra cost but even if our resort credit ($30 off an $85 cabana) we saw no need for it. It would have been nice but we enjoyed ourselves with out it.
Beaches: The flags were Red every day we were there so we couldn’t enjoy the beach and ocean as much as we wanted to but we did go out and kept close to the shore as the life guards wanted us to remain in a small area so we could keep an eye on us as a group. We jumped in the waves and made it out to a sand bar about 100 feet from shore were the water was only about knee deep. Water was that amazing blue and warm. The sand was nice but we would have to put it as the 3rd nicest beach we’ve been to behind 1) Anguilla and 2) Negril, Jamaica. Again, though, it is a gorgeous beach on the ocean.
Gym: We did hit the gym Monday morning before breakfast and it was nice with 4-5 treadmills and 3-4 working elliptical machines. There is a small free weight area with two benches and then there are several weight machines if you wanted to do circuit training. There is a smaller enclosed area off of the main treadmill area for abs/ stretching. Towels and water bottles are plentiful and staff is eager to bring you something if you catch their attention in the middle of your workout.
Spa: We did take advantage of our $85 resort credit and did the ’day-pass’ feature that allows you to take advantage of the spa sauna/ Jacuzzi/ steam room and whirlpool combination with intermediate dips into a ‘cool’ pool to relax your senses. My wife got a coffee ritual scrub/body wrap thing that she says was amazing. The interior of the spa is very dark and relaxing. A day pass ($20) is great way to see the spa without having to pay for a whole treatment.
Other details: The service was unbelievable and we did end up tipping a lot more than we anticipated. We did use the computer center that is located beside the concierge/ excursion center to print out our boarding passes and book our off-site tour. We looked a head of time into a private excursion to Chichen-Itza and we did find out that it was over $100 cheaper to book away from the resort groups. (review on that to come but it was worth every penny). Wi-Fi worked best in the rooms and I never got a signal outside the resort on the beach or restaurants.
Another fun fact (not to ruin the surprise) but there are three beautiful resident parrots of the resort. They come out for a little while each afternoon flying around and for photos. A great little addition.
If you have read this far, you are probably really looking at booking a trip to Live Aqua. It was an expensive trip and we tipped more than we normally would but over a holiday and after such a great experience it was really worth it.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne, Australia
Senior Contributor
39 reviews 39 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 5, 2013

My husband and two teenage children spent a week here 11th Dec - 18th Dec. Being from Austraila we are used to beautiful fresh produce and gorgeous beaches. The Live Aqua was no disappointment. As all the reviews state the place is terrific. The staff are so friendly and while not required to tip, we did so for such great service. The food was of great quality and the facilities such as pools and adjoining areas, restaurants, and all parts of the hotel were great.

My teenage son (17yrs) played beach volley ball and made many friends during the week and came back to us each lunchtime starving and tired after hours of fun. My daughter and I made great use of the pool and beach which were cleaned each morning and there were enough sun loungers for everyone. We loved the little hot dog stand and the paella and burritos that were available around the pool at lunchtime. We ate here a few times as we did not, or could not fit a full luncheon in at one of the restaurants every day. We did love the Azur beachside restaurant and Fernando was exceptional with his service. The shrimp cerviche was light and delicious and a favourite. Breakfast was the standard big hotel buffet and not much you couldn't get there. Dinner at one of the 3 ones to chose from have terrific food. One night we just went to the Sushi bar for a plate or two of freshly made sushi and had a drink or two at the bar and that was a good alternative to a full on sit down meal.

The place was wonderful as an adults only resort. We came a very long way and although I have 3 children myself it was lovely to be in such a sophisticated environment with no crying babies and in the time we were there no outrageous drunks as most people appeared to be mid to late twenties and up professional or older couples looking for R & R.

Had a fanatastic masage and while we did this my husband and son went to the Selvatica tours. Basically zip lining over the jungle then quad biking through the jungle. They loved the adrenaline rush and they recommended it throughly. We also organised a day trip to sights through Cancun With Me. Read my review about this but I cant recommend this highly enough.

Overall as you can see we loved it and the all inclusive rate was fantastic for us. Feeding teenagers is always a huge cost when travelling especially when they are sporty boys. Our son loved his independence at the resort, and was known to order a burger at 11pm via room service AFTER having a full dinner and drinks with us earlier in the evening. If you love clubbing both my kids were offered trips to the nightclub zone but there was a $50 charge but "free drinks".

Back in Australia now and here we are discussing whether we venture back to Cancun with more of our family for our next holiday Dec 2013.

Room Tip: We had a ocean view 3rd floor room. We decided against the terrace room although they are bigger I b...
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  • Stayed December 2012, 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ManagerAQCU, General Manager at Live Aqua Cancun All Inclusive, responded to this review, January 8, 2013
I would like to express my gratitude for the time you have taken to share this review and the valuable comments you’ve provided in it. I have no doubts that your review will be of a great help for many travelers while making their decision to visit Live Aqua Cancun. Thank you for the warm words regarding our team, service, food and general relaxing atmosphere, which we try to provide to our guests.

We are looking forward to welcome you back on many future occasions, which we will be happy to make very special for you.

Warmest regards,
Alfredo Santamaría
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 5, 2013

This is a really nice hotel and its staff is fabulous. It’s the nicest hotel I’ve stayed in in Mexico (but it’s been a long time since I was there). I also travel a lot for work and stay in very nice hotels and using that as a standard, I can still say this hotel is very nice. So everything I say below should be read in this light – this place is really nice.

1. Tennis – first, there is some confusion about tennis here and in Mexico. This place has two tennis courts on site. You can pay $50/hour to play with a local pro. I played with Ludo twice. He’s the coach of a local college team. He’s a really nice guy and a good player. He’s a little older, so he doesn’t have a young pro’s range. But he’s a good player and fun to play with. You can make reservations with him through the concierge and it’s worth it if you have no one to play or are looking for a lesson. Also, even though TSA lets you bring your racquet on the plane, in Mexico on the way back, you can’t. The hotel has lousy racquets you can use. If you play/pay Ludo, he will lend you one of his, which are good. The hotel also has terrible balls, but Ludo brings balls.
2. Solo travel - I went alone and was probably the only solo traveler there. Virtually everyone there is a couple. In fact, various staff members seemed surprised that I was alone. But in the end it didn’t matter, as the staff is eager to please anyone in any way necessary. If you do travel alone, you should know though that you will really be alone – couples don’t really want to hang out with you (and vice versa) so you could go the whole time in solitude. Pretty nice, actually! å
3. The hotel is pretty luxurious. It is very clean, and it is constantly being cleaned. (That said, they only changed my sheets 1x in a one week stay, and it wasn’t like there was a “save the earth” card saying they shouldn’t – they just didn’t.) The maid service does a nice job and cleans nooks and crannies. The pools are wonderful (although not all heated) and the service/staff are fantastic – all nice, cheerful, happy to please, and seemingly genuine.
4. The beach is fabulous: clean, quiet, few merchants. Great. I saw some complaints about lifeguards in other comments – there was a lifeguard there at all times when I was there, so I’m not sure what those people are talking about.
5. The hotel has a serious shortage of beach chairs at the pool. If you don’t get one by 8 am you won’t get one – people get down there as early as 6/6:30 am to put stuff on the chairs and then barely use them. It’s a real problem, unless you join the arms race.
6. The internet connection is abysmal and sporadic. The hotel could use more English language TV stations and maybe some movie options. Weird, because you’d expect that given the level of luxury they are providing, but no.
7. All rooms view the Caribbean.
8. The spa is good. It’s a little overcrowded, but the massage and facilities were very good. They seem to be a little overwhelmed though – I think they gave me some other guy’s robe at one point.
9. The food is plentiful and good enough. I’m a food snob, so I have high standards. But I never went hungry and everything was at least decent, with some things good.
10. I didn’t get a hand massage when I checked in, but I also wasn’t pitched a time share.
Overall, this is a really nice place and I can’t imagine there being places much if at all nicer in Cancun.

Room Tip: The rooms are spacious and nice. I was pretty close to the elevator and didn't hear it.
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 5, 2013

I love Mexico. My husband and I have been there twice before and always leave wanting to go back. Live Aqua was our first disappointment. While it was pretty and the staff was attentive, it was lacking in so many important areas.
First off, check in. From reading other reviews, I guess there was a way to pay more to get a proper check in...but should you have to? We arrived early and were told we had to wait 2 hours for our room. That was fine. They hand you a wet towel and a glass of warm iced tea but you are standing in the lobby with your bags and no way to carry the towel. We obviously looked confused because a concierge came over and said, "Did you get info about the hotel?" After we said No, he walked us over to some chairs and then the time share speil began. We kept saying we weren't interested after the hard sell. Then, amazingly, our room was ready.
The room was nice. great view. But they fill the entire hotel and rooms with aromatherapy that is a bit overwhelming. It burns your nose if it is on longer than 15 minutes. And if you happen to drift into an area that has a scent that is unappealing to you-yikes. There was also a pubic hair in the tub that I left there and was still there when we checked out three days later. So the tub wasn't cleaned at all. The free mini bar consisted of a stale granola bar, a bag of chips and a piece of chocolate, some cans of beer and soda. Every other hotel we stayed at had wine, bottled water and alcohol. Even a welcome bottle of wine would have been nice.
We came for New Years Eve and when we arrived they told us there were no openings for dinner because everything was booked. So we had to go to the casual buffet for dinner. I wish that when we signed up they had offered us a reservation for any of the nicer restaurants instead of leaving us to eat cafeteria food for our special night. We also asked what events they had planned for that night being New Year's eve. No one could tell us. Not the concierge, not the front desk not the restaurant staff. We were told, "maybe there is something on the beach." BOO In fact, other than casino night, there wasn't any entertainment. No singers or music. Nothing to do at night at all.
I also did not have one good meal at Live Aqua. The best restaurant MB was impossible to get into. We ended up going at 9:30 one night and had terrible service. While the restaurant had the most choices on the menu, my food was cold and nothing amazing. And there wasn't a wine list. I read someone say that there was. We had a choice of merlot or cabernet for reds and that was it. At other all-inclusives, you can have a bottle of wine with dinner. It felt like I was at a low end party house with boxed wine. The final night we went to the Tapas and Fondue restaurant. AVOID THIS RESTAURANT. We were so excited. They only have 3 seatings so we were relegated to the 9:30 slot. When we got there, it was pretty empty. We sat for about 20 minutes before someone came over. The menu is in 3 parts. The first (Fondue) gives you a choice of three fondue options. But it really is a tiny bread bowl with cheese. No dipping utensils, no fruit, no bread chunks. NOTHING. We used our folks to rip the bowl apart but it was nothing like a fondue. The second was the salad course. Basically a tasting of humus on three tiny toast points the size of a toothpick. We realized by watching the other tables that the rest of the meal just came. You couldn't order which tapas you wanted. The waiter just showed up and said, "octopus?" and then he would put a tiny quarter size tasting on your plate. ....then you wait until he comes back with another quarter sized option. I had one bite and then 10 minutes later he returned with two more bites. This went on. By 11 PM, I had only had 3 bites of food. Then a waiter would come by and say,"did you already get the octopus?" They weren't even keeping track of what Trader Joe's frozen appetizer we had been given. The table behind us left long before the end of the meal and we followed. It wasn't worth sitting another hour to be fed whatever they happened to be walking by with.
And on our last day, we also got a phone call to our room and another sell regarding time shares...She actually said, "it's not going to be a good day to sit by the pool..." and then it was beautiful and 80 degrees. Shameless

I do not recommend Live Aqua. you can do so much better.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ManagerAQCU, General Manager at Live Aqua Cancun All Inclusive, responded to this review, January 8, 2013
First of all I would like to thank you for taking the time to share your comments of your recent stay with us. Although many travelers find Live Aqua Cancun to be a great place for romantic and relaxing getaway, with excellent food options and outstanding service, I do understand that the concept of our hotel does not suit your kind of lifestyle.

I would like to extend my sincere apologies for the inconveniences you had during your stay. I assure you that the circumstances you described are not typical with the high standards that we strive to provide. We take pride in creating memorable experiences for our guests; to hear what you went through is completely unacceptable. Our Guest Service Manager and our Food & Beverage Manager have received your feedback and we are working on improvements that will allow us to meet all the expectations of our guests.

Hopefully you will give us an opportunity to host you in the future, please do not hesitate to contact me directly and I will personally make sure your next visit with us will be without any incidents.

Warmest regards,
Alfredo Santamaría
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sao Paulo, SP
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 4, 2013

It was our second time at this hotel and the more we stay there the more we need to come back. All the people there are friendly and simpatic, especially Fernanda, Marcelo and Geremias from Aqua Club. Denia and Andrés (pool) were also fantastic with us and our seven friends. We're coming back at the end of this year for sure. Not simply the best resort in Mexico, but one of the best in the world! The best vacation ever. Congratulations Live Aqua you're the best.

Room Tip: We've stayed at first in an ocean view bedroom and it was great, but after we've managed to...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York
1 review
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 4, 2013

This was our 3rd time to Cancun. We had previously stayed at the Le Blanc Spa, which we love. La Banc required a 5 night stay through New Years so we went with a cheaper option in Live Aqua. After reading good things on this site, we decided to make a reservation.

That being said, we have to say we had a "so-so" experience at Live Aqua.

First the GOOD: Hotel is beautiful. Has a spa, serene feeling complete with "Enya" type music when you walk in. We prefer this over the party atmosphere of other hotels. And it is Adults Only -- which is a must! Everyone is extremely friendly. Room was nice with a great view of the ocean. Pool was fine, and warm which we like. There were other pools that were a little cooler so it was nice to have a variety. Great little beds around the pool to fall asleep in, and someone always seem to come by to see if you needed anything: drink, food or to put up an umbrella. They had a grill by the pool which would do some specialty food every day. Probably the best thing I had the entire trip was a spicy fish that was cooked on the grill. The bars were pretty good as well, especially the one downstairs between the restaurants Siete and MB, and MB was definitely the best meal we had.

The BAD: Not a great greeting when you arrive (Le Blanc makes you feel so special when you get there and are so informative about what's going on). I will say, the hotel is a little confusing, you arrive on the 3rd floor and the pool and restaurant were on the 2nd floor. We really didn't get a lot of info from the front desk and concierge about where everything was so we were a little lost. We also got the "time share" thing from the concierge which is a big "no-no" for us. The deal was we would get a free massage if we listened to some pitch about a property. Boo. And we also arrived on New Years Eve, and no one seemed to know what the evening's activity would be: "I think something on the beach..."

Food, how ever plentiful, at Live Aqua leaves a lot to be desired. We first ate at "Azur" which was the poolside restaurant. Many different options but most of it bland semi buffet style. You could order from a menu but it was very limited. Where was the great Mexican fair? We live in NYC and our Mexican restaurants are excellent; and spicy, not bland. "Siete" was also a buffet style restaurant which we ate at on New Years Eve, but, again, mostly bland food. It all seemed to taste the same. "Siete's" breakfast was much better since you could have a "made to order" omelette as opposed to the soggy cold eggs at the buffet. "MB" was by far the best of the bunch. Great atmosphere and the food had flair and artistry. But, on our last night, our dining experience took a nose dive. We went to the "Hidden Garden fondue and tapas". Absolutely terrible. Took forever for us to get service. The so-called fondue was a tiny bread bowl filled with cheese. Nothing to dip into it. And the tapas came one or two at a time! The waiter would come by with a plate and offer us a cheese croquet or squid on a cracker and then we wouldn't see him again for 10 minutes. So we'd eat the tiny cracker and then wait!!! I think the idea of tapas is that you get a small plate of several things that you and your other half can try, and the plates should all come together -- it is dinner after all. If felt more like a cocktail party where you're waiting for the hors d'oeuvres to come by on a napkin. We kept waiting 10-15 minutes for 1 tapa! After an hour and a half of waiting we finally left before the dinner was even over. Ridiculous.

Like I said before, the pool is nice. Great temperature in the main pool and it looks very scenic with the infinity pool, but to get chairs you need to be up at 7am. Not sure why. Maybe there just aren't enough of them. Can't remember doing this at Le Blanc, but we were definitely having to wake up early at Live Aqua to make sure we had a good spot.

Also, there weren't a lot of activities. Especially at night. Going to Mexico in winter means that it gets dark around 5pm and if you aren't going to the spa, you are looking for things to do. They did have a "casino night" which was fun. You would play with fake money and the person with the most would get a prize at the end of the night (we actually won!). But, that was only one night. At Le Blanc, there always seemed to be something going on at night whether it was a jazz trio or a singer or even a magic show (I know, sounds cheesy but we had a good time). At Live Aqua, there is a big mall across the street, but going there once was enough. Just wished there were more things to do, especially since the restaurants are mostly bad.

The rooms were nice, great view of the ocean, but after we reserved a king bed we, of course, get two beds. And they say there's nothing they can do. Well, I reserved one, so why don't we have one? No real help there. Even though the rooms seemed clean, my wife did find hair in the tub that never seemed to get cleaned.

Overall, we did have a nice time at Live Aqua, but it was nothing really special. And the restaurants need a serious upgrade. We've vacationed in Paris, Italy, South Africa, New Orleans and Napa, and we love food, so with the restaurants being so bad here at Live Aqua, it really dampened our experience. On our previous trips to Cancun, we both said we couldn't wait to come back to Le Blanc. It just felt like a special place. Unfortunately, we can't say the same about Live Aqua.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Live Aqua Cancun All Inclusive

Address: Boulevard Kukulcan Km. 12.5 Zona Hotelera, Cancun 77500, Mexico
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Cancun
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Luxury Hotel in Cancun
#2 On the Beach Hotel in Cancun
#2 Top resorts Hotel in Cancun
#2 Spa Hotel in Cancun
#4 Romantic Hotel in Cancun
#4 Business Hotel in Cancun
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Live Aqua Cancun All Inclusive 4.5*
Number of rooms: 371
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Live Aqua Cancun, a welcoming place, where being is the first part of feeling. Your senses work together. It's a prism of colors, eclectic rhythms, and seductive details. Enjoy the fusion of idyllic days and energizing nights. It is a monument to your arrival to this Cancun Spa Resort. This sophisticated beachfront resort lies along white sand beaches, across the street from La Isla Shopping Mall and walking distance from some of the best restaurants and shopping malls in the city. Exotic drinks, barefoot luxury and activities overlooking the resort's 8 infiniti pools are just part of the exquisite details within our All Inclusive concept. Music worships you at every step, with changes in rhythms that match the emotions you feel and the space around you. The sound is never the same, but always relaxing, exciting and harmonic. Arriving, leaving, just belonging makes you sigh with peace. The Aqua aroma seeps into every nook and cranny up to the sky, down to the sea. Return to yourself. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Live Aqua Cancun All Inclusive Hotel Cancun
Cancun Aqua Hotel
Aqua Hotel Cancun
Fiesta Americana Grand Aqua

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