For my money, this is the best value in Cancun, offering a toned-down version of the service and amenities Mexico's most famous resort area is known for. The small cluster of three-story buildings is easy to miss on the first pass, tucked between massive high-rises on one of Cancun's finest beaches. With arched doorways and balconies set among palm trees rising from acres of lawn, it's a breath of fresh air among the mega-resorts dominating the Hotel Zone. Guest quarters, ranging from standard rooms to three-bedroom suites, are among the largest on the island, bright with natural light and furnished in blond wood. All units have either balconies or terraces, and all but the standard rooms have full kitchens and dining areas. The simple style holds up well, which is a good thing since the hotel doesn't update every few years like the big resorts do. It isn't perfect—Wi-Fi is reliable in the lobby but hit-or-miss in guestrooms, and service in the restaurants can be slow—but prices are moderate, dropping into the budget realm during low season. The resort now offers an all-inclusive option, and although the food is generally good, there's not a lot of variety; I'd recommend the room-only plan and sampling some of Cancun's other restaurants. This is a great place for families, with its informal atmosphere, playground, ample wading section in a large, free-form pool, organized kids' activities, and a wide, immaculate beach on protected Bahía de Mujeres.
- Christine Delsol