I visited the Villa del Palmar Cancun a couple of months ago with Anabeth, Candice and Mindy and we had a great time! When we were trying to decide where to go, we researched a few different places in the Cancun area and ultimately decide on the Villa del Palmar because Mindy had stayed there before and had a wonderful time; plus, it was a close distance to the airport and within our price range. I didn’t know a ton about the property prior to our visit and I wanted to share a review of our stay at that property. So, let’s jump in!
How to get to the Villa del Palmar Cancun
The Villa del Palmar Cancun hotel is about a 30 minute drive from the Cancun International Airport. While you can organize a transfer from the hotel, it seemed to be at least double the cost of grabbing a car at the airport.
Coming out of the terminal at the Cancun airport, there were plenty of opportunities to grab a Super Shuttle. I’ll be honest, I was a little skeptical of using this service as I have used them in the US and had to spend hours driving around the city dropping others off. But, in Mexico it was a totally different story! I paid a total of $80 USD for a round trip ride in a private van to and from the hotel. The car on the return trip to the airport showed up earlier than scheduled and got us to the airport with plenty of time to spare.
After talking to the other girl’s on the trip, they ended up paying a similar amount to grab a taxi rather than the Super Shuttle. So either way, I think it’s about the same. My only caveat to that is if you have a larger group, the Super Shuttle may be more cost effective because it’s a full size van that could easily hold 8 adults; whereas the taxi was a sedan and could only hold 4 adults with less space.
Take the Super Shuttle, you won’t be disappointed.
All Inclusive vs. A la Carte?
In my previous experiences going to the Yucatan Peninsula, I’ve always stayed at all inclusive resorts. More often than not, that ends up being the more cost effective option. When we were looking a properties, I was dead set on doing that for our trip because I thought it would be cheaper and it’s convenient not having to pull out your credit card or see how much a certain item actually cost you when you sign the receipt.
After we decided to stay at the Villa del Palmar, we decided not to do the all-inclusive because it was an extra $100+ per person per day. I’ll be honest, I went with that plan a little skeptical. I think it worked out for this trip, but I think I could have gone either way. Let me break it down, so you can decide what would work best for you.
Our hotel package included the breakfast buffet daily, which was amazing! We were able to drink unlimited mimosas, choose from a wide assortment of traditional American and Mexican breakfast options (tortas, anyone?), including the most delicious pastries and chocolate milk.
Since breakfast was already included, we only needed to pay for our lunch, dinners and any drinks we may have ordered that day. On average, lunches ordered poolside or at any of the restaurants ran about $15 per person. One day I had the fish tacos poolside and paid $13.
For any alcoholic drinks, we paid about $8 per drink. Depending on how much you plan to drink, this is where I would truly evaluate whether or not you will drink enough to make the all inclusive package worth it. For this trip, we weren’t planning on drinking a ton (a few drinks a day), so going a la carte was more beneficial. But, for other trips where I would drink a bit more heavily, I would probably go with the all inclusive package.
In terms of the largest meal of the day, dinner, I would say we paid approximately $30-$40 in food which was often times at least an appetizer or dessert and an entree. One night I indulged in a smoked octopus which was out of this world and about $55 with dessert and a drink. On the first night we were there, we went to the sushi restaurant which cost about $40 a person with drinks since we split a lot of different things. Dinner is definitely the most variable cost and you can eat economically for about $20-$25 per person or add more and the price will increase.
Outside of the pool, beach and delicious restaurants, one of the other things I loved about this resort is they had an onsite market where you could buy everything from soft drinks, liquor, fresh fruit and even sunscreen. Often times these onsite stores are extremely expensive, but I found the prices to be extremely reasonable. I think we bought some soft drinks for about $1.25 and even bought a bottle of Don Julio Tequila for about $18 (which we made cocktails and took to the pool). And if you book a one bedroom or two bedroom suite, you have a full kitchen with all of the essentials to cook for yourself. If we were staying longer than the weekend, I could have seen us buying a few things from the market and making a dinner together.
Cost Breakdown + Overall Thoughts
If I added up the price of one day’s worth of meals, I probably spent about $85 which is a little bit less than the $100 per person per day cost of the all inclusive package. Here’s a breakdown:
- Breakfast: $0 (included in the room rate)
- Lunch: $15 (tacos poolside + bottled water)
- Afternoon: $16 (two drinks by the pool)
- Dinner: $55 (entree, dessert, glass of wine)
I do think I was cognizant of the cost of drinks and didn’t have as many poolside cocktails as I probably would have had if I wasn’t think about costs. Although it’s probably better for my health in the long run that I didn’t drink a ton while on vacay, but
I would recommend getting the all inclusive package if you plan to have multiple drinks throughout the day or if you don’t want to have to think about the cost. Otherwise, stick with the a la carte option.
Beach + Pool at the Villa del Palmar Cancun
What is a weekend in Mexico without lots of time spent in or by the water? For me, one of the most relaxing things in the world is laying on the beach with the sound of waves crashing nearby, pina colada in hand while reading a great book that I just can’t put down. Maybe I’ll throw an afternoon siesta in there for good measure, too.
Let’s start off with one of my favorite parts about the Villa del Palmar Cancun – the pools. Yes, you read that right. They have multiple pools which means there are lots of areas for you to dip your toes in. From the main pool (which we spent most of our time in and I’ve featured a lot in this post), to the Children’s pool, adult pool on the other side of the property and the unique water bridge pool, there was no shortage of water space.
One of the most disappointing moments of our trip is when I realized the infinity pool that was advertised all over their website was only accessible by those with a certain membership tier or type of room they booked. While it wasn’t a huge issue in the long run, it would have been nice to know this before we booked the resort because I had envisioned myself lounging in the infinity pool, looking out to the beach and ocean
I have to be honest with y’all, the beach at the Villa del Palmar Cancun left a lot to be desired. Between the significant amount of black seaweed which was/is a problem in all of Cancun, to the cement drop off from the beach to the water, to the lady who got stung by a stingray on our first day, I avoided the ocean after that. While I know two of those things are just a part of Mother Nature, I was extremely disappointed in the cement drop off. To me, this means there probably wasn’t a beach on this part of the coast previously and the beach was man made. I honestly still enjoyed my time at the pool but would have loved to be able to savor some quality beach time.
While most of the pools had lots of room for everyone staying at the resort, I was disappointed in the beach and that I was not able to use the highly advertised infinity pool. Overall, it was a good experience, but this may have swayed my decision if I knew both of these things before we booked.
what room type should you get?
Whenever I book hotel rooms for my vacations, I always struggle with which room type is the best choice. Do I need more space or less? (and my indecisiveness does not help this at all).
After staying at the Villa del Palmar Cancun, I would highly recommend getting a one or two bedroom suite, depending on your group size. By choose the suite life, you have a living room, full kitchen and separate bedroom(s). Since there were four of us on this trip, we snagged a two bedroom suite which had three separate rooms, 3 bathrooms, an in room washer/dryer and four beds (2 doubles in the first bedroom, a king bed in the other bedroom and a murphy bed in the living room).
It was the perfect amount of space for all of us to comfortably stay (with all of our stuff). And I can’t tell you how much the extra bathroom saved us when we were all trying to get ready after a day at the pool. Plus, having a full size freezer and refrigerator allowed us to make chilled (and delicious) cocktails while we were getting ready.
Overall, the amenities and the rooms were fantastic! I just loved that we had some extra space to chill and were able to have some cold water/not water 😉 easily accessible.
I had such an amazing time hanging out with these amazing gals and the Villa del Palmar Cancun was a wonderful place for us to hang out, live our best lives, shoots lots of great photos and get to know each other better. While the beach left a lot to be desired, there was enough pool space for us to enjoy ourselves and work on our tans.
What other questions do you have about the Villa del Palmar Cancun?