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“Royal Sands- pros/cons”

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The Royal Sands Resort & Spa All Inclusive
Ranked #18 of 177 Hotels in Cancun
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersSilver level
Reviewed 27 February 2012

just got back from staying at the royal sands. we were scheduled to stay at the royal cancun, but a last minute week popped up in II, and because of all the great comments re royal sands, we shifted over to the royal sands. overall, great move on our part. here's the good/bad-

pros- beautiful place! we checked out the royal caribbean/islander/mayan and felt that the sands was by far the nicest of the royal group. fabulous room- an oceanview villa, totally renovated and so spacious! great staff- very polite and friendly. loved the lunch buffet by the pool- great deal for soup/salad and entree. The market was a plus, and basics were pretty reasonable. reasonable conversion rates. Free morning coffee in the lobby. Also, there's a bus stop right down in front of the building. (For 85 pesos, you can do a quick ride into town. buses are sooo easy.. and safe. Forget the taxi!)

cons- the gym and jacuzzi were located in the spa, which was an additional $12/day. it would've been nice to jump into the jacuzzi after swimming.

The biggest issue we had was with the personal concierge... or the lack thereof. The sands is known for assigning a concierge to each family for guidance, questions or whatever. we never had a concierge assigned until 3 days after we were there. We didn't know about the welcome party, where i presume they inform you of everything being offered during the week. when we went to book a Xel-Ha trip, we found out the sands did their own bus there! Had we known that, we would've booked through the hotel and saved ourselves the extra 2 hours for hotel pickups/dropoffs. Ultimately, it became a joke when anything went wrong... "if we had a personal concierge...". I presume it was an isolated screw-up, but it was upsetting.

Chichen itza and xel-ha were great!! Cancun-discounts.com had a cheap chichen-itza tour, which probably was just as good as the $100 tour. So we didn't get the plush bus or food/drinks! We used the extra $$$ for dinner at senor frogs and carlos and charlies (so fun!)

Even with the concierge issue, we'd go back in a heartbeat!

Room Tip: All have oceanviews!!
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  • Stayed: February 2012, travelled with family
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9  Thank arinn1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Camilo_Royal_Resorts, Community Manager at The Royal Sands Resort & Spa All Inclusive, responded to this reviewResponded 15 March 2012

Dear Guest:

Thank you for your review. Every comment helps us see how we are doing and what areas be improved.

I'm happy to read that you enjoyed your stay at our resort and also that you got the chance to explore the beautiful area surroundings. Regarding your concierge, I already passed a copy of your comments to concierges management and they informed me that they talked to the staff and made sure this won't happen again. Sorry for the inconvenience!

Having said that, I'm delighted to read that you'd stay with us again "in a heartbeat". We'd be happy to welcome you back anytime.

Warm regards from Cancun!

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3,494 - 3,500 of 4,600 reviews

Reviewed 22 February 2012

We booked the hotel because had stayed in their property in Curacao (that I loved). While the rooms are identical to the ones in Curacao, that is about where the similarities end. The hotel is very, very large (the one in Curacao is tiny). It may not be the largest in Cancun or the surrounding area, but it is huge.
Pros:
- Nice and polite staff. We had to change rooms and they could not be nicer. The service is just amazing.
- Good restaurants. Great service, fresh food, etc. - Food and drink service at pool and beach. Again, great service…
- Small supermarket on the site that is open early in the morning until late at night. Great selection for a small market and not expensive coming from the NYC area.
- Good price for what you get. The suites are huge. Nicely decorated. We had a very small TV in one room, but who comes to Cancun to watch TV?
- View from the room. Amazing. The view from our rooms (we switched) were both amazing.
- Very clean beach. The staff clean it every single day and during the day too.
- Safe and secure. You never feel unsafe at all. They have security even on the beach at night. Again, the staff here are great.
- Hacienda Sisal next door is a really nice restaurant with great service. Maybe not the most authentic but really great. Also, the prices are very fair.
- Pools are very nice, clean and large. You can also swim in the evening, as they light them up.
- Nice crafts for young children – although mostly geared toward little girls. The staff are amazing with kids. Tons of energy. Again, the staff here are great.
- Weather. 90’s in February!
Cons:
- The location in Cancun is too far from the attractions such as Tulum, etc.
- The resort (and Cancun in general – with American restaurants, shopping malls, etc.) is sterile and has no feel of Mexico in general. It seems as if the resort could be anywhere in the U.S.A., like Florida. It seems as if the goal of the resort is to avoid having you speak Spanish, eat Mexican food, associate with anyone other than English speaking Americans (or possibly Canadians).
- Expensive area. Everything in Cancun is expensive. In the hotel, they even charge you to have your children do the crafts. With all that you are paying, you would think they could throw them in for free…
- The ocean is very rough. They put up red flags all over and told us not to go in the ocean. At times, they told us we could go in parts, but the water was so rough that it was impossible to allow my children (6 and 8) to swim without me by their side ever second. This is opposed to what the water is like in St. Martin, Curacao where we have visited. I think that if you want to swim, I would not recommend going to Cancun – period.
- Smoking. The resort attracts smokers. Ashtrays are everywhere, which means it is encouraged. Being from the NYC area, this is hard to take. You cannot even smoke in an Irish bar in the NYC area, which is nice for us non-smokers and families who do not want their children to breathe in smoke all day.
- Food at restaurants has no true, Mexican feel. The one by the pool is basically a burger place with “bar food.” The other one does serve Mexican food, but seems to serve mostly Italian. While the food is all good, I think that when you come to Mexico, you should have the opportunity to experience Mexican culture….
- Too far from a real supermarket. There are huge ones all over Mexico – just not near the hotel.
- Traffic and expensive cabs. It can be hard to get around. Also, aside from a few restaurants and the shopping mall, there is not much to walk to.
- The ban on using cash. I think that the resort should put an ATM in the building and give you the option of using cash.

  • Stayed: February 2012, travelled with family
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8  Thank Seeyalaterbuddy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Camilo_Royal_Resorts, Community Manager at The Royal Sands Resort & Spa All Inclusive, responded to this reviewResponded 15 March 2012

Dear Guest:

Thank you for your review! Every comment helps us see what we are doing right and what we can improve.

I'm happy to read that you enjoyed your stay at our resort. Thanks for the kind words towards our staff and facilities!

Tours and transportation to all the area attractions such as Tulum can be easily arranged through Thomas More Travel, our in-house tour agency. They will take you from your resort to the attractions and back safely, comfortably and for reasonable prices.

It is understandable that you find Cancun "americanized" since more than 90% of our visitors come from the USA; however, there are always local options that offer you a true taste of Mexico, such as our popular Cancun Mexican Restaurant "Hacienda Sisal" featuring lively and colorful Mexican Shows as well as mouthwatering Mexican Cuisine.

Taxis can be expensive, depending on your destination. Buses run all across the Hotel Zone and are much cheaper. Nowadays the fleets have been upgraded and most of them come with air conditioned.

The "ban" on cash is actually for your safety and convenience: this way you don't have to be carrying cash around and also, the prices are just the same; you don't get an extra fee for charging everything to your bill and at the end of your stay you can conveniently pay everything at Front Desk.

Again, thank you for your feedback and I hope we can welcome you back again in the future.

Warm regards from Cancun!

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Reviewed 21 February 2012

We have been staying at the Royal Sands for 12 years in a row and we have never experienced anything but a wonderful vacation. Check-in and check-out is always quick and friendly. Our room is always spotless because of our maid service. We have had the same maid for 12 years now and Brenda is super, always smiling and professional.
The entire staff at the resort goes out of their way to make sure that we are happy and enjoying our stay. The resort grounds are always perfect as well as the beach area. Each morning the resort has a crew that rakes up the sea weed and picks up any debris that happens to be there. Each Villa is assigned a personal concierge that is always concerned about our stay and will ensure that if we need anything they will take care of it for us.
As soon as we leave from our week stay we always count the days until we return for our next vacation to our home away from home.

  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled with family
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5  Thank ronandmag
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 February 2012

We have owned both the Royal Islander and the Royal Sands for almost ten years and we enjoy our vacation there every year. The facility and especially the employees are the best we have encountered in all of our vacations around the world. I would highly recommend any of the RoyalResorts in Cancun.

Room Tip: All rooms have ocean view.
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  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled with family
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6  Thank PSalemSutton
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 February 2012

I have a timeshare there. I really enjoy the view of the ocean as well as the close proximity to everything!

  • Stayed: January 2012
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2  Thank dragoneric
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 February 2012

We've gone to the Royal Resorts in Cancun for over 20 years, and the Royal Sands in particular for the last 5. In general, the Sands is extremely well run, has a friendly & helpful staff, excellent rooms & facilities and is beautifully maintained. So as a return visitor year after year my standards are high. After just finishing our visit in "Week 6" 2012, some things seem to be slipping a bit, perhaps due to corporate belt-tightening

1) They only seem to be heating 1 pool (in Phase 2), not the main pool in Phase 1.
2) Service at La Veranda and the Char Hut has become EXTREMELY slow.
3) Wireless Internet is also painfully slow, especially in the evenings.
4) Lights in the rooms are far too dim.

And as always, the "alcoholic" mixed & tropical drinks either have no alcohol or very watered down alcohol -- they are not worth paying for. I even heard a party on the beach calling after a waiter saying "excuse me sir, they forgot to put the tequila in these drinks". No they didn't -- they never do!

Hopefully the hotel ownership can stop "trimming around the edges" so the Sands can get back to a 5-Star rating.

  • Stayed: February 2012, travelled with family
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3  Thank ExpTraveller50
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 February 2012

Stayed here for six nights the first week in January and had a great time! Our two bedroom unit was perfect. Plenty of space for five people. Our view was of the pool AND the ocean. Balcony was huge and we used it to eat breakfast, play cards, etc. Loved the two pools, laundry facility (which is monitored so your clothes are safe--you don't need to stay), had a great time on the tennis courts, at the bar on karaoke night, and used the convenient store, which was quite large and carried a great variety of staples, snacks and liquor. They didn't nickel and dime you like the Casa Magna Marriot down the way. Drinks were more reasonably priced, as was food. Adjacent to the parking lot is a great restaurant that you get a discount at if you show your room card. Tennis courts were free (we had our own rackets) and they even loaned out a boogie board to the kids that was left behind months ago by a past guest who never claimed it. Super family-friendly. Couldn't have asked for more!!

Stayed: January 2012, travelled with family
3  Thank jarat5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Royal Sands Resort & Spa All Inclusive

Address: Blvd. Kukulcan km 13.5, No. 32, Seccion A, Segunda Etapa | Zona Hotelera, Cancun 77504, Mexico
Phone Number:
Region: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Cancun
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#12 Family Hotel in Cancun
#17 Top resorts Hotel in Cancun
#18 On the Beach Hotel in Cancun
#18 Luxury Hotel in Cancun
#21 Romantic Hotel in Cancun
Price Range: $306 - $720 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — The Royal Sands Resort & Spa All Inclusive 4*
Number of rooms: 340
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Royal Sands Resort & Spa All Inclusive, one of the best All-Inclusive resorts in the area, sits at the center of Cancun's spectacular Caribbean shoreline with breathtaking views of white sand and turquoise waters. With a privileged location, five-star luxury, a world-class Spa, tempting dining choices and activities for all ages, The Royal Sands has everything you need for your next Caribbean vacation. Enjoy fine dining, activities and amenities offered by the REFINE All-Inclusive package. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Royal Sands Hotel Cancun
Royal Sands Cancun
Cancun Royal Sands Resort
Royal Sands Resort Cancun

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