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Reviewed January 18, 2010

This is a great new hotel with an excellent location, nice facilities and (unusually for Cancun) a capable and helpful staff.

The facilities are excellent - beautiful pool area with infinity pool and plenty of chairs even on a busy day; nice rooms with kitchenettes (ours looked out over Mayan ruins to the ocean); and new and well-kept common areas.

It's the perfect location in Cancun - basically at the center of the island and right across the street from La Isla shopping center, which has several good restaurants and a nice, Venetian ambiance with canals to stroll along. The beach is very nice there as well - though it does appear that there's been erosion from the hurricane a couple of years ago.

Finally, I was very pleasantly surprised by how trouble-free and pleasant the whole experience was. Often in places like Cancun something goes wrong that leaves one with a bitter taste. Although we had two separate reservations (one booked through United Vacations and one separately booked through the Westin website), they had the rooms together and ready when we arrived. Little things like that make a big difference,.

One last point: restaurants in Cancun are pretty unexceptional and overpriced. One place we liked was a little Mexican place called Santa Marisco, about 100 yards south of the hotel on the main drag. It was good, cheap, and even had a rare bit of Mexican atmosphere.

All in all, I'd strongly recommend the Lagunamar.

  • Stayed: December 2009, traveled with family
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6  Thank CamboIII
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 16, 2010

Just got back from a week's stay at Lagunamar.

Here are the Pro's.....

1. Room- we had a villa (very nice) It came with a small kitchen and we should of went to a large supermarket to take advantage.

2. Staff- very good. Very polite and hard working.

3. Food- very good....

4. Drinks- a little light for the price. Wine over priced and poor.

5. Beach- Nice....a drop off to the water but that's the hurricanes fault.

Here are the Cons:

1. One of the elevators broke on this first day. We walked five flights a day to our room. Elevator never fixed.

2. When it rained one day...the ceiling in the computer room collapsed...we lost the internet for a week,

3. Pool- very very overrated. Upper pool not heated. Ocean is a lot warmer than pool. Sitting around the pool...forgetabout it....not enough chairs.

4. Layout of hotel- terrible...if you want an actual chair to layout...you may be viewing the towel hut.

5. Gym- awful...it's 2010...this hotel need to step up and build a decent gym.

If you go here- bring a soft cooler and buy $1.50 beers at the hotel market or you can pay $4.50 for the same beer from a waiter. Many guests went to the local walmart and bough water, beers and a cooler.

Stop at the duty free and buy wine and scotch. The wine selection in Cancun is very poor and very very over priced. 600% mark-ups.

To save money on day trips or fishing- the hotel will credit you $150.00 to hear their time share presentation. Pay the money and avoid it. First they are pushy and than they try to use guilt so you will buy a lame time share.

Would we go back? No. Are we sorry that we chose this hotel? No

Hope this helps!

6.

  • Stayed: January 2010, traveled with family
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3  Thank Krav1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 14, 2010

Location - Middle of the hotel zone, across from La Isla (outdoor shopping mall with many restaurants - recommend Thai Lounge) and a short walk from indoor mall (also many restaurants). For a family or large group that doesn't want to rent cabs or transportaiton every few hours, the location is ideal.

Beach - The beach has just been re-dredged and is quite amazing. Gorgeous white sand that spans 200-250 feet. Typical Mexico, they create this breathtaking beach and then allow construction traffic to use the strip as a highway for transferring goods, equipment and personnel down the sand. Having traveled with 3 children under the age of 4, we were constantly having to pickup or run to get kids playing on the beach that were in the way of the impending traffic. Would you believe that many times almost the entire beach had to vacate to accomodate a tractor hauling a 150 foot iron drain pipe?...absolutely ridiculous. Obviously, the Westin has nothing to do with the beach highway as it is Mexican government property but thought it was worth mentioning.

Facility - The pool and surrounding area are phenomenal with a fun water slide, separated kids pool (gradual depth decline), swim-up bar, solid pool-side restaurant and in-pool tile lounge chairs. The lobby is quite unorthodox but stylish...small and lacks any substantial in-door gathering area. The Kids Zone itself is quite nice with one room full of a ping pong table, foosball, wii and another for art projects, board games and movies...but the staff at the kids zone was non-existent, virtually transparent and were more concerned playing their own foosball tournament than interacting with the kids. The resort also has an outdoor playground complete with to live, pretty freaky overweight rabbitsfor the kids. I was very unimpressed with the workout facility...during our stay two of the three elipitcal machines were broken as well as 2 of the 5 treadmills...during our entire 6 day stay there were substanial A/C related leaks in the workout room...the staff's solution was to let the water pool and every few hours wipe it up with a towel. FYI, phase 2 of construction appears to be on hold and does not at all interfere with the facility.

Staff - All of the staff speaks english. The restaurant staff (ate at the pool, Oceano) overall was very good and quite attentive (rare in Mexico) but the hotel staff were non-responsive and at time rude. Our check-in took 25 minutes because of various issues not at all having to do with our reservation. One of our four rooms had a malfunctioning a/c unit that was producing a very high pitch noise...it took 4 phone calls (finally the last one to a manager) and 10 hours to even have an engineer up to the room. The housekeeping service is superb...very thorough and accomodating.

Restaurants - Already discussed that the restaurant staff was quite good at all of the places. The food at Oceano, poolside and breakfast buffet were all 4 star...typical of what you would expect from a Westin. The facility also does have a snack shop which has raw meat which can be grilled on any one of the available (very nice) outdoor grills...nice touch.

Overall - The resort is very nice...certainly not the best (also priced acoordingly) on the strip and definitely not on par with a Westin in a US major metro area. I do feel the value is strong considering the price of between $200 - $250 a night. My biggest frustration is that with a few changes, this resort could be phenomenal but at this point, it is only worth three stars.

  • Stayed: January 2010, traveled with family
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1  Thank Wrldisyroyster
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 13, 2010

1st time to Cancun, own in the Bahamas,(Harborside), been to Westin in Hawaii. In comparison, Cancun less flight time and airfare cost less, Cancun is as nice as Bahamas and Hawaii however unless you know Spanish forget talking to the maids. We asked for dish towels, dishwasher detergent, various items numerous times never got them. Room at check in was not ready waited atleast 2.5 hours. We were in a Studio room for the first 11 days- 2 adults and 2 adult kids room does work if you want to save money. There is room for a roll away by the washer and dryer you just have to lift if up everyday if you want it out of the way. Next 7 days we had the whole unit 2 bedroom lockoff, friends came and stayed plenty of room for the 6 of us, again the room was not ready as promised until 5pm. Lot's of off-site excursion activites: Xel Ha is very nice and fun takes about 2 hours to get there. Jungle tour is fun and snorkeling was good. Coco Bongo's is worth the experience great show, Charter fishing boat trip: rough water spent 3.5 hours sick 2 others in the group also got sick. Casino located in Kukulcan Mall, 5-10 minute walk.
Can't go without saying the pool is definately nice and yes it's COLD, hard to get a chair unless you go down every morning by 7am which is against the policy but they don't enforce it and should! People put stuff on chairs but don't come down for hours and are never at them. Ocean is actually warmer than the pool. Staff was all nice but lacked management. Assuming because there is so many food options off-site (Johnny Rockets, Chilis, McDonalds, Starbucks, Planet Hollywood, Outback, Bubba Gumps, Pat O'Briens, Rain Forest, Hard Rock, Carlos & Charlies, Jimmy Buffets Margaritaville, Chocolate Factory to name a few) the 2 restaurants are not busy and are quite expensive. ($82.00 for 3 hamburgers and a quesadilla with 4 soft drinks) Breakfast buffet is good but again costs 280 peso's (22.00 US) used the grill a few times, they are cleaned daily, took the busses everywhere everyday very convenient. Stayed in building 2, nice views and location. Cancun seems very windy was there 18 days had good weather but windy and cloudy alot.

  • Stayed: January 2010, traveled with family
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2  Thank JDFarmerBob
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 12, 2010

My primary concern in booking this property was related to the construction of 'Phase-2' right next door, which adds about another third in size to the complex. Don't worry about it....it's almost completely out of sight / out of mind. It appears that 90% of the exterior work is complete. In fact, they appear to be proceeding at a snail's pace on the interior work now, but this meant there was absolutely no noise at all coming from the site.

The existing main facility is beautiful, and new in appearance. I am only nit-picking in mentioning a few design quirks: any line at the check-in desk obstructs movement through the narrow lobby, the elevators are 'hidden' behind corners, and the pool bar has ONLY swim-up seating.

The last item relates to my only major beef with the Westin--the pool is cold! When we were there in January, temperatures were below average, but still plenty nice (mid 70's to low 80's). Lots of people were basking in the sunshine around the pool. But in five days, I'd say we saw maybe a dozen people in total ever venture into the water. It's not freezing, and you probably could get used to it, but it definitely 'takes your breath away' when you first go in. The ocean is warmer! That's unfortunate because it's one of the larger, more beautiful pools I've seen at a resort. I bet the energy cost to run the eight fountains in the upper pool 24 hours a day would be enough to heat the water to a decent temperature. I'm sure it must get warmer in the summer time though.

The 'vibe' at the property is on the quiet / relaxed side, probably because of the time-share / ownership factor. Not a lot of partying at the pool-side bar (as at many all-inclusives) and the main restaurant was usually deserted. As others have mentioned, there's no problem with bringing your own drinks down to the pool. I'd give the staff a B+.

The Westin's location is a definite plus--great beach on one side, and probably the nicest plaza / mall in Cancun ('La Isla') across the street on the other side. There are two Mexican restaurants in the back (next to "the world's smallest Hooter's") with nice (but not fancy) outdoor seating areas adjacent to the lagoon. The service and food at both were very good, better than at some more expensive places we visited on the strip.

Most people staying at the Westin seem to make the pilgrimage to WalMart to load up their kitchenette for the stay. Since your room probably won't be ready until 4 PM or later, a good plan would be to check you bags in the lobby, change $20 US into about $250 pesos, and go out in front of the hotel to catch the R-2 bus for the 25 minute ride to WalMart. The bus fare is $7.50 pesos each (driver will make change, but it not be the right change if you're not paying attention). Watch for some car dealerships on the left side of the road. Get off when you see the GM / Chevy dealer. WalMart is about a block behind that.

For what it's worth while you're shopping....the rooms have fridges, convection micro-waves, toasters, blenders, can openers etc. Also, the Westin has some very nice gas grills if your inclined to throw your own burgers or steaks on. Each room has a washer and drier too (the maid's provide detergent). While I'm at it, each room has a nice Bose CD player, but there is no MP3 input. Free wi-fi too!

Another vacationer gave us a good tip: when you're done shopping, bypass the taxi stand near WalMart's exit, and instead walk across the parking lot to hail a passing taxi--it'll cost less (about $100 pesos). Tell the driver you want to go near the Plaza La Isla to avoid confusion (the Westin HOTEL--not the Lagunamar-- is way down at the south end of the strip).

Final tips: Keep the bottom part of the Mexican customs form when you arrive at the airport--you'll need it when you depart. Also, the Westin concierge will probably call you at home before your stay and offer to set up transportation to / from the airport. We made our own reservations with Best Day right on their web site, for half the cost. They were well organized and on time. If you use them, go to 'station #60' when you exit the airport terminal upon arrival (you'll see the signs). Have fun!

  • Stayed: January 2010, traveled as a couple
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9  Thank Probe&Drogue
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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