Written By: Geoff Millar, Ultimate All Inclusive Vacations
This month we are going to look at the resorts in the all-inclusive division of Hardrock Resorts. Hardrock all inclusive resorts started when they approached Palace Resorts about rebranding some of their resorts as Hardrock All-Inclusive Resorts. The brothers that controlled the Palace Resorts did not agree on doing this so one of the brothers kept some of the Palace Resorts and the Palace Resorts name. The other brother took the rest of the resorts and signed an agreement to rebrand them as Hardrock All-Inclusive Resorts. It started with the Hardrock Punta Cana which started out as the Moon Palace Punta Cana and over the years, grew from there. They now have 5 resorts. All Hardrock resorts offer top shelf alcohol, free WIFI, 24 hr. room service, up to an $1,800 resort credit, a fantastic spa, and nightly entertainment.
The first Hardrock All-Inclusive we are going to look t is the Hardrock Punta Cana. As stated this resort started as the Moon Palace Punta Cana. It has now developed into one of the top all inclusive resorts in the Punta Cana area. This is a very large resort with the largest casino in the Dominican Republic as well as its own golf course. It has 13 pools, and 9 restaurants and 9 bars. Accommodations range from an over 7,000 sq. ft. 3 bedroom suite to the standard almost 800 sq. ft. standard Caribbean Suite. As all Hardrock resorts they have a solid music theme throughout the resort. As far as dining there are 9 choices made up of Italian, Caribbean, Brazilian, Latin American, Pizza, Steakhouse, Asian, 2 deli style restaurants, a buffet, and an Ice Cream Parlor for that after dinner treat. As far as bars there are 9 bars including a nightclub and 4 swim-up bars. As far as activities there is a jack Nicolas designed 18 hole golf course, a mini golf course for the whole family, an arcade for the kids. Since Hardrock is music oriented they have top named music talent concerts throughout the year. They even have a music lab where you can learn to play an instrument. This resort is a wonderful 4 star family all inclusive with activities and dining for the whole family. Remember to let clients know it is a very large spread out resort and the beach is OK but not the best in the area.
The next resort we will look at is the Hardrock Puerto Vallarta. This resort used to be the Puerto Vallarta Palace Resort. It is about ½ hour north of the town of Puerto Vallarta in Riviera Nayarit, formerly Nuevo Vallarta. It sits on the best beach in the Puerto Vallarta area. This is a very nice mid-sized resort in a beautiful area. I like Puerto Vallarta because it gives you more of an authentic Mexican experience than most of the other Mexican resort areas. This resort sits in an area of about 10 very nice resorts on a 13 mile long beach. As do all the Hardrock resorts it sports a rock and roll musical theme. As stated this resort is a mid-sized resort with 348 rooms and 6 dining choices. One this to watch out for is that most of the rooms do not have a walkout balcony but have what is considered a Romeo and Juliet balcony with a sliding glass door and a railing. Dining offers a variety of cuisine such as Asian, Italian, Mexican, Brazilian, Pizza, a deli, and great buffet. As far as activities they have a great kid’s club and what they call “The Cavern” which is a family friendly game zone with Xbox, air hockey, pool table, board games and much more for the whole family. The resort has 2 large pools with a swim-up bar and pool service as well as a separate kids pool. The beach is fantastic for swimming and watersports such as snorkeling, kayaking, and relaxing on the beach. On the land there are a ton of kid’s activities as well as golf for the adults at the nearby Flamingos Golf Club.
This is a great 4 star resort for those families that want a good mix of relaxation and activities in a great beach location.
Next let’s look at the Hardrock Cancun all inclusive resort. This active family all inclusive resort sits on the main section of Cancun beach close to the shopping and nightlife of Cancun. As all the other resorts the theme here is the Hardrock rock music theme. As with all resorts on the main beach of Cancun, the beach is beautiful, but the water can be quite rough and not the best swimming area for small children. This resort is a very nice AAA 4 Diamond mid-sized resort. It is ideal for families that want an active family resort with a lot to do for all members of the family. Rooms are everything from standard rooms with Lagoon, Ocean view, and Ocean front views and up to 2 bedroom suites. The resort has allergy free rooms that provide extra cleaning services, so the rooms are 99% allergy free. As far as dining there are 6 restaurants and a buffet serving Asian, Italian, Caribbean, International and a Pizza parlor. They not only have 24 hr. room service, but they have a special kid’s menu. As far as activities the resort has 2 pools with 2 swim-up bars along with a kid’s pool in the kid’s club. The kid’s club has a variety of supervised activities both recreational and educational. There is also a music lab where everyone over the age of 12 can participate in music lessons and playing in a band. Water sports from the Beach are limited due to the roughness of the water. There are independent companies on the beach that provide jet skis and parasailing at an additional cost.
The next resort we will look at is the Hardrock Riviera Maya. This resort was the old Palace Aventura/Spa resort. It is located in the Riviera Maya south of Playa del Carmen. This resort is designed with 2 different sides, the All Inclusive Hardrock Riviera Maya Resort, the family side, and the Heaven at Hardrock Riviera Maya resort. This side is the adult only side of the resort. This makes it a great resort for weddings where there will be adult guests as well a family guests. The wedding can be held at one resort but satisfying both types of guests. It must be noted that although the resort sits on the ocean it does not have a beach on the ocean due to the fact that the coast in this area is very rocky and not conducive to having a beach directly on the ocean. The beaches are located on 2 large manmade lagoons fed by the ocean. This resort is a large resort and it provides a lot to do for families and adults. The resort has rooms that have everything from resort views to ocean views. It has rooms from standard rooms to multi-bedroom suites, some named after famed musicians. Dining is split between the Family side of the resort and the adult only side of the resort. On the family side there are 7 restaurants serving, Italian, Mexican, Asian, Brazilian, a café serving pastries and a variety of coffees, and a great International Buffet. There is also snacks served by the pool with their pool drink and snack service. In the Heaven adult only side of the resort there are restaurants serving French, Italian, and Latin American. On both sides there is always 24 hr. room service. Activities are in the forefront of this resort. They have the usual Kayaks, snorkeling, and swimming. The resort has a family pool a kid’s pool and a great beach on a large lagoon. In the Heaven side there is an adults only pool, a lap pool, and a cross current pool as well as a great beach on a large lagoon. As far as resort activities there is a kids club and a tween club with a ton of age appropriate activities for all ages starting at 4 yrs. Old. Their newest activity is Woodward providing a 22,000 sq. ft. facility that houses Skateboarding at a skate park, BMX scooters, trampolines, Cliff jump into a pit filled with foam pieces, a springy cheer and dance floor, land snowboarding and land skiing, and a video room. There is an extra charge for participating in the Woodward experience.
This is a great AAA 4 Diamond family and adult only resort that is great for active clients and families as well as destination wedding where adults only and families can stay at the same resort yet have separate areas.
Hardrock also owns an upscale Adult only resort called UNICO Riveria Maya. This is a different All Inclusive experience where clients can relax in luxury when they want but partake in the variety of activities. The resort has a very upscale Mexican feel. It sits on a very nice beach is a beautiful part of the Riveria Maya. As far as accommodations the smallest room is in excess of 600 sq. ft. and go up to a 1,996 sq. ft. 2 bedroom villa. All rooms have either a spa tub on the patio or a swim-up patio. As far as dining the resort has 5 upscale dining experiences including, Mediterranean, Mayan, Asian, steak & fish, a European Deli, and an upscale buffet. Eating here can be not only a function but an experience. As far as activities you can have a variety of included activities for only a 20% service fee. These include spa treatments, off-site tours, and golf. The resort includes free WIFI, 24 hr. room service, 3 bars with mixology lessons, and nightly entertainment. Watersports include sailing, kayaks, paddleboards, and pedal boats. At the resort you can also have a butler to make sure everything is scheduled and organized so your clients can spend their time participating or just relaxing. I would rate this resort 5 star and it would fit the client that wants to be pampered and relax but have a wide variety of activities when the mood strikes.
This concludes our tour of Hardrock All Inclusive resorts. These resorts would fit the client that is looking for relaxation mixed with activities. All the resorts except for UNICO have a musical theme in design and feel with a wide variety of activities for the whole family. I would rate these resort 4 stars except for UNICO which I would give a low 5 star rating.
Next month we will take a look at another great all-inclusive chain. Until then good selling.