Cancún + The Riviera Maya

Hotels in Cancún + The Riviera Maya

Families love this resort, which keeps the focus on fun, poolside vibes: the infinity-edge main pool has a swim-up bar and hosts fashion shows, and kids can hit the waterslide or splash around in their own, shallow space.

Mexico’s Riviera Maya is known for its sprawling resorts, but the new, 27-room Acanto Boutique Hotel proves that low-key simplicity also has a place on the Yucatan peninsula.

Forget everything you thought you knew about Cancún all-inclusives: this glam adults-only gem blows all your preconceptions out of the water. For a start, the food is top-notch.

After a nearly $100-million facilities upgrade in 2012, Cancún’s beachfront Moon Palace resort is putting a little luxury back into the all-inclusive model.

Ana y Jose, named after its founding couple, has 24 spacious rooms placed throughout the lush property, which faces a quiet, white sand beach about four miles south of the fortressed Mayan ruins of Tulum.

Years of environmental study preceded the 2008 opening of this all-inclusive resort, which occupies 326 acres of privately owned, painstakingly protected rainforest.

The winning Mandarin formula—exemplary service, forward-reaching design, a first-rate spa—has taken root in a pristine Mexican coastal environment. Acres of mangrove forest, including an on-site cenote, surround a lovely—albeit small—stretch of powdery sand.

Behind a stark urban façade, another world unwinds in slow motion, reminiscent of a scene from the Swiss Family Robinson: wood-and-thatch dwellings, screened by banana trees, form a quadrangle crisscrossed by rustic stairs and wood-railed balcony porches.

Mahekal Beach Resort, situated on the sun-dappled Riviera Maya in the Mexican state of Quintana Roo, was formerly the Shangri-La Caribe, deriving its name from author James Hilton’s vision for utopia.

You can actually swim with parrot fish and manta rays in lagoons. You can also hike tropical trails, picnic under a palapa, and sack out in a hammock.

Since relaunching in 2007, Live Aqua has become the alternative all-inclusive for those who crave Cancún but loathe the razzle-dazzle.

Waterfront views and a Swiss-Italian restaurant on a 4-mile island off Cancún. 

Room to Book: All rooms have terraces and hot tubs;  spacious Junior Suite Deluxe accommodations have outstanding views of the Caribbean.

La Vita e' Bella has direct beach access in a secluded setting near Tulum.

Wellness is so integral to this 14-acre Riviera Maya property that its signature Endless Privileges experience includes Hydrothalasso pool and cold plunge access, anti-aging diagnostics, in-room massages, and wellness consultations.