Before going into the details of our stay please know that the time of year, weather, occupancy rates and other factors impacted our stay. We arrived on Tuesday, November 30th with the hotel probably less than 20% full and by the time Saturday, December 4th came it was probably over 70%. Because of the low occupancy I think some hours and features of the hotel may not have been available early in our stay. I would suggest checking with the concierge at Aqua if you want specifics on hours or services for the dates you plan to go.
If I could paint a picture of warmth, graciousness, humility and service it would be the faces of the staff at Aqua. Too many hotels and resorts think that building the pools, restaurants and other facilities will make a great resort but they miss the mark by not hiring the right people and thus make a mediocre experience. Aqua has not missed the importance of hiring and developing their people into a superior staff. Excellent service started before my trip when corresponding with the concierge to set up an airport transfer as well as get info on spa and other services. It continued upon our greeting and check in. Yes, they do offer you an incentive to hear the time share pitch but they do it in such a gentle way that a simple “no thank you” concludes the sales pitch. In the gym they always have 2 if not 3 people there to help you with your workout if you want the help. At the pool and beach the staff communicates via an earplug radio so you can ask anyone for anything and they work to fulfill your request immediately. The restaurants, bars and spa were also all the same, gracious and warm. I know many of us who frequent all inclusive resorts may get use to a no tipping policy but there is no such policy at Aqua and the service is well worth the additional cost. I probably spent an additional $150 in tips to the staff and these people are well deserving of the tips. My wife would not forgive me if I didn’t mention the yoga and tai chi instructor Victor. He provided individual classes to her and is someone who doesn’t just teach the classes you can see in his inter-actions with people that he lives what he teaches.
As beautiful as the hotel is aesthetically it still did not match the quality of the staff. The people are without a doubt the best thing about Aqua Cancun.
FACILITIES – GENERAL:
Inside and out the hotel is very impressive. If you like a minimalist and modern feel, or you like “W” hotels, this place is for you. The entry is very beautiful with a calming fountain and pond and there are 2 other large pool/fountains in the lobby area. One to your right as you enter behind the concierge desk and the other to your left in front of Egos Bar. The entire lobby floor area has roughly 30 foot ceilings and stretches near the width of the hotel. Marble (or travertine) is everywhere including all the hallways of the hotel. The grounds are well maintained and as clean as any Disney resort. We received free wireless, I’m not certain if this is for all guests or those in suites so check with the concierge, but there is an internet café area called “B-on” located in the hotel. This is free to use for all guests so unless you need to VPN in for work or some other secure connection “B-on” can work fine for you. There is also a beauty salon in the hotel should you want this service.
As others have mentioned, and Aqua seems to be famous for, is the aroma-therapy in the common areas as well as your room. It really is soothing to have the different smells through the hotel.
FACILITIES - ROOMS:
We stayed in an Aqua Suite and the concierge was also nice enough to show me a Viento Suite. I only saw a standard room while walking by as a maid cleaned the room but this is my assessment of each room type.
SRANDARD ROOM: Is like most high end hotel rooms in styling and is in the range of 350 to 400 square feet. The bathroom is right after you enter the room with a closet opposite the bathroom. The room has the usual flat screen, desk and dresser. You have a balcony that is about 4 feet by 15 feet. On the balcony you get 2 chairs and a small table between them. The railing is glass so your view is unobstructed. You can smoke on the balconies even though the hotel is smoke free.
VIENTO SUITE: As you enter there is a closet in the entry way and is the only closet in the room. After passing the closet you enter the living room which is about 15 feet by 15 feet. There is a love seat size sofa and a couple of cocktail ottomans. Along one wall is a cabinet about 30 inches high that has dresser drawers, mini bar and an iPod player. There is a flat screen TV mounted on the partition wall between the living and bed room. The partition is about 6 feet wide and you can pass from the bedroom and living room from either side of the partition.
As you walk into the bedroom you have a flat screen TV mounted on the other side of the partition so you can watch from bed. The bedroom area has the balcony access. The balcony is about 20 feet long and 4 feet wide. Same otherwise as the standard room with a couple chairs, small table and glass railing with an unobstructed view.
The bathroom is separate from the bedroom with a solid door. (No drapes to separate rooms in the Viento suite like there is in the Aqua). In the bathroom is a free standing tub, 2 sinks, water closet and shower.
Overall I would say the room is in the 700 square foot range.
It's a great room the only odd thing I thought regarding the design is that the closet is in the entry way so far from the bedroom and bathroom. It just seems odd to shower or bathe and then walk to the closet by the front door to get clothes.
With that said it is a BEAUTIFUL room.
AQUA SUITE: As you enter the room there is a large clothes closet on one side of the entry and a ½ bath on the other. I used this closet for my things and my wife used the larger closet in the bathroom for her things. A few steps further takes you into the living room where you have a Bose DVD/CD player, a flat screen TV and an iPod player. You also have 2 love seat size sofas facing one another with 4 cocktail ottomans between the sofas. It's a nice layout. This room is about 25 feet x 15 feet and has a sliding door to the balcony.
There are shears that you can draw closed to separate the living and bed rooms.
The bedroom and bath area is about 30 feet x 15 feet. There is a flat screen TV as well as an iPod player. For furniture there is of course the king bed along with a 4 foot round ottoman and a table with 2 chairs. On the bathroom side of the room is a large and deep free standing Jacuzzi tub that my wife loved. There is a counter with two mirrors and sinks that is between the water closet, which has a glass frosted door, and the shower with a clear glass door. There is a shear curtain you can pull to separate the bedroom and bathroom. The bedroom also opens up to the balcony.
On the balcony we had 3 chairs with a small table to hold cocktails as well as 2 lounging type chairs/recliners. When sitting you can see some but not all of the beach. Each Aqua Suite balcony has a flower bed about 2 feet wide and 2 feet high that serves as the railing which slightly limits the view.
I wish the bed was more of a Westin heavenly bed as it was too firm for my tastes but I slept just fine and I certainly can’t call it uncomfortable. It just took me a couple days to get use to the difference from my bed at home is all.
The entire suite is about 30 feet by 35 feet so the entire room space is a little over 1000 square feet. You can then add another 30 feet by 13 feet for the balcony adding another 400 square feet.
For me the extra price is worth it for the Aqua Suite. I like the extra space so it's worth it for me. I travel a lot alone for business so I'm kind of set in my ways and this gives me and my wife extra space which just makes the trip more enjoyable.
FACILITIES – RESTAURANTS:
SIETA (7): Open for breakfast with a good buffet or ala carte ordering. The ala carte is pretty limited so buffet was the way to go for us. They do cook to order eggs, omelettes, etc and also will make you fresh pancakes or waffles. There are plenty of other items for your standard buffet fare. This is the only restaurant for breakfast or you can order room service.
AZUR: Open for lunch and dinner. To reach Azur you have to walk outdoors to the pool area and it fronts the beach so it has a casual feel. A nice feature is you can also order from the Azur menu for lunch at the pool or beach. The food here is very good for being more of a casual setting. The only negative I can say is that it’s so dim at night you can’t read the menu. The wait staff carries flash lights to help you out.
MB: Open for dinner only and a very nice restaurant. It is on the street side of the hotel but you don’t hear any noise from the street and it has nice ambience. More formal but there were people eating in shorts as well so you can’t call it stuffy. The food is great and don’t be afraid to mix and match your selection. If you don’t like the vegetable selection with the meat you order just change the vegetable selection. They are very accommodating to your needs. I would suggest checking daily if you need a reservation since we found on our last night that the hotel had enough guests that you could only get dinner if you had made a reservation. We ate at Azur as our backup that night.
AKA BAR: AKA is open early in the day for drinks, I can’t tell you exactly what time since I was by the pool, but is the bar for a pre-dinner drink. It’s sits between the MB and Siete restaurants and is situated a bit odd since it’s kind of long and skinny so if you had a group it would be hard to sit together. It’s open to the hallway area between the restaurants. The pool table in the bar does allow for a fun diversion while having drinks.
EGOS BAR: I have to again mention the fact that we were here when there was low occupancy so I hope Egos has more going when the hotel has a lot of guests. The bar is beautiful and you can also go to a balcony that faces the pool and beach. If people gather here I can see where it would be a great bar to hang out. It may have had more going on the Friday and Saturday but we had invitations to some other events in town so can’t say what it’s like on weekends for a crowd and “vibe”. They do have a DJ on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.
FACILITIES – POOL AND BEACH:
Given that it's still slow season the swim up bar and adults only was open during the trip. The rest of the pool area is expansive with plenty of places to lay in the sun or shade. The beds without the canvas tops on them are open as first come first serve. The beds with the canvas tops are 1300 peso’s for the day or included with a suite. If you have a covered bed the pool staff will make the bed for you, add pillows, towels and take great care of you. The attendant will bring other goodies like fruits and sweets to you during the day as little surprises. You also get a 20 minute foot massage included. There are also a lot of beds and lounge chairs on the beach. As noted above when I talk about the staff they are great and service is excellent by the pool or on the beach.
FACILITIES – SPA AND GYM:
The gym is very well equipped with about 6 ellipticals, 6 treadmills and 3 stair climbers. There are about 10 to 12 Nautilus stations and they have free weights also. Then they have another rooms with some cool equipment geared toward light resistance training when doing tai chi and other yoga like movements. There are people on staff in the gym to help with your workout if you wish.
My wife loved the spa and the tour I took thru the spa looked lovely. There are identical facilities for men and women and there are couples massages as well. They tell you to come about 45 minutes early so you do the cold and warm Jacuzzi treatment and then the massage. The whole treatment my wife did for about $200 (including tip) was a bout a 3 hour experience of pampering.
ODDS and ENDS:
Unlike other AI’s they do not have you wear a wristband. I loved this since I think the wristband can look tacky if you go off resort to take part in other activities. In fact we went to an event with women in formal or cocktail dresses and the men in suits and ties and a bright wristband would have been WAY out of place. The trade off is you have to sign for everything at the end of meals, drinks, etc. I also like being able to sign a check, even though on the AI, since we could add a gratuity and not have to worry about the right denomination of USD or pesos for tips.
I was told the night before we left that you can order lobster when you dine at MB even though it’s not on the menu. Any little extras like this should be explained on check-in or given in a welcome kit. Just a little more communication on the options offered there would be nice.
With the limited restaurant and activity offerings at the hotel it would be cool if they had a couple nights where you can sign up for CoCo Bongo or other attractions with other guests. I don’t suggest Aqua going overboard with this but 2 or 3 nights a week with something offsite would be cool. It would be also nice to see them arrange an agreement with a golf course in the area for preferred tee times or rates.
I hope you enjoy your stay as much as we did if you choose Aqua. We will certainly be returning.
- 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 infinity 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