Written By: Geoff Millar, Owner – Ultimate All-Inclusive Travel Inc.
This month we are going to begin our tour of the Excellence Group Resorts. Excellence Group Resorts are great upscale 4-4.5 star resorts located in Mexico, Dominican Republic, and Jamaica. We will first take a look the Excellence Group Resorts in Mexico. The Excellence Resorts in Mexico are located in the Riviera Maya, the Excellence Riviera Cancun and 2 of their resorts are located in the Playa Mujeres area, one of Cancun’s fastest growing areas just North of town, the Excellence Playa Mujeres and the Finest. Resort. The Excellence Resorts are all adult only and the Finest Playa Mujeres Resort is a Family resort. They are all located on great beaches. Before AM Resorts was started Excellence Resorts were managed by AM Resorts. When AM resorts came out with their own resorts Excellence Resorts took over management of their own resorts. Just a note, we find that Excellence Group Resorts are not the most agent friendly resorts.
The first one we will look at is the Excellence Riviera Cancun. This resort sits in the Northern part of the Riviera Maya 15 minutes from the Cancun airport close to the small town of Puerto Morales. The focus of the resort is the 3 Rs, Rest, Relaxation, and Romance. The resort has 440 suites divided by regular and Excellence Club Level, the Excellence Resorts Concierge level. It has 6 pools, 10 restaurants and 11 bars. It sits on a beautiful beach. This is one of Excellence Resorts oldest resort, but they do a good job keeping everything fresh and current.
As far as accommodations, as we said there are 440 suites at the resort. All rooms are Jr Suite size or larger. They start at their Jr. Suite Pool or Spa View, then the Jr. Suite Swim-up, and finally the Jr. Suite Roof Top Terrace. This is a unique category that provides a full roof top terrace with a plunge pool, that is heated in the winter. Then they go to their Excellence Club Suites. The Excellence Club provides a concierge level. All Excellence Club level suites are Ocean View. The Excellence Club provides, private check-in, private concierge services, a private lounge, upgraded suite amenities like bath products, mini bar, Premium liquor in your suite, private pool, private beach area, beach bag, newspaper, shoe shine services, fresh fruit and petit fours in your suite daily, and when available, late check-out. The suites in the Excellence level are, Jr. Suite Pool or Spa view, Swim-up Suite, Jr. Suite roof-top terrace with plunge pool, Honeymoon Suite, Honeymoon roof-top terrace suite, and 1 bedroom Imperial Suite. At Excellence Resorts the Swim-up Suites do not have access directly from your patio to the pool but they do have a strip of grass between your patio and the pool.
Dining consists of 10 A La Cart restaurants, one restaurant for breakfast and lunch and a beach grill for lunch as well as 24 hr. room service. Restaurants consist of Italian, Mexican, Oriental, French, a Pizzeria, a Lobster serving Lobster as well as other seafood dishes and, yes, the lobster is included, the Grill which serves grilled items during the day and turns into a steakhouse at night, a gourmet tapas restaurant, a sports bar with snacks, and a crepe station during the day. For your drinking pleasure there are 11 bars to choose from including a swim-up and beach bar, a cigar bar and a juice bar. Vegan menus are available in all the A La Carte restaurants.
Activities abound at this resort. There are 6 pools and 2 of them are heated in the winter and 1 of them has handicapped access. There are a lot of water and land activities to keep guests busy during the day. There are kayaks, paddle boards, snorkeling, sailing, from the beach and in the pool, there is scuba diving instruction, water aerobics, and water polo. On land there is yoga,jogging, Spanish lessons, dance lessons, cooking lessons, theme nights, beach volleyball, bicycles, board games, archery, and pool. There is a 1,900 sq. ft. fitness center and a tropical path good for walking or jogging. There is nightly entertainment.
This resort is great for clients looking for the 3 Rs, Rest, relaxation, and Romance with some activities thrown in at an upscale resort. I would rate this resort 4 stars.
The next resort we will look at is the Excellence Playa Mujeres. This resort sits in one of the newer and fastest growing areas in the Cancun vicinity. It is Playa Mujeres, a gated community just North of the main part of Cancun. This is a mixed use community of homes, condos, and resorts. It sits on a beautiful beach on the mainland just across from Isla Mueres. The resort sits next to the Playa Mujeres Golf Club. The course was designed by Greg Norman and is rated in the top 100 golf course in all of Mexico. Like the Excellence Riviera Cancun, this is an upscale, 4.5 star adult only resort. It was actually the first resort to be built in the Playa Mujeres community. There are now 6 resorts in the area, and more being built as we speak.
The Excellence Playa Mujeres has 450 suites divided into two sections, the main resort section and the Excellence Club section. All rooms at the resort are suites. There are 11 A LA Carte dining choices and one Beach Grill. To quench your client’s thirst there are 11 bars throughout the resort including a swim-up bar and a beach bar. The resort is centered around a beautiful pool area and even has a swim-in Spa. This is a very comfortable resort with a Mexican Hacienda feel.
Accommodations come in two flavors, the main resort and the Excellence Club section, the resorts concierge accommodations. The Excellence Club provides a concierge level. All Excellence Club level suites are Ocean View or Ocean Front. The Excellence Club provides, private check-in, private concierge services, a private lounge, upgraded suite amenities like bath products, mini bar, Premium liquor in your suite, private pool, private beach area, beach bag, newspaper, shoe shine services, fresh fruit and petit foursin your suite daily, and when available, late check-out. The main resort has all Jr. Suites and start with Jr. Suite Pool or Spa View, Jr. Suite Swim-up, Terrace Suite with plunge pool, and 2 story roof-top terrace with plunge pool.
The Excellence Club room categories consist of Jr. Suite pool View, Jr Suite Swim-up. Jr. Suite Ocean View, Ocean Front two story roof-top terrace with plunge pool, remember at this resort the oceanfront category can have an obstructed view of the ocean because there is a row of trees between the building an the beach, Honeymoon two story roof-topterrace with plunge pool, Honeymoon Suite with private pool, Imperial Suit with private pool, Imperial Suite with roof-top terrace and plunge pool.
Dining offers 11 A La Carte options as well as a beachside grill. The options are Mediterranean, Italian, Mexican, Oriental with Sushi, Tapas, Lobster House serving Lobster and other seafood dishes, the grill serving grilled items during the day and becoming a Steak House in the evening, French, and Indian. There are 11 bars on the property including a swim-up bar, a beach bar, a lobby bar, sports bar, juice bar, and a cigar bar. There are two bars reserved for Excellence Club guests.
As far as activities there are a ton of them including a swim-in Spa accessed from the pool. The resort has 7 pools, 5 of them are heated during the winter and 4 hot tubs close to the pools. Land and beach activities include a wide variety of beach, land and water activities throughout each day, including kayaks, snorkeling gear, sailing, paddle board, introductory scuba lessons, aerobics & water aerobics,water polo, fitness, yoga, jogging, Spanish lessons, dancing lessons, cooking lessons, a library, theme nights, beach volleyball, tennis, bicycles, table tennis, darts, board games, archery, & billiards. There is also a fantastic spa and a 3,500 sq. ft. fitness center and don’t forget the golf course next door. There are a wide variety of offsite activities at an additional cost.
This resort is ideal for the client that wants the 3 Rs, Rest, Relaxation, and Romance but, this resort is also ideal for the active couple or group with golf and an outstanding array of resort activities. It is also a short 15-20 minute ride into Cancun with its shopping and nightlife. I would rate this resort 4.5 stars.
The last resort we are going to look at this month is another great Excellence Group Resort. It is their family/adult only resort also located in the Playa Mujeres area. It is the Finest Playa Mujeres. This resort caters to families as well as adults only. The main resort and the Finest Club area is for families and the Excellence Club area is for adults only. This resort has taken off and is one of the most popular in Cancun and the Playa Mujeres area. This resort has 450 suites and rooms, 12 dining options and 10 pools. This resort is great for Weddings and large groups because those, in the group, wanting an adults only and those wanting family can stay at the same resort.
Because of the makeup of the resort there are a lot of accommodation categories. The main resort, for families, is made up of all Jr. Suites starting with the Jr. Suite Pool or Spa View, Jr. Suite Swim-up, Jr. Suite with Private Pool, Family Suite, Family Suite with Private Pool, 2 story Suite with roof-top terrace and plunge pool. The Finest Club is the resorts family concierge section. The fines Club consists of elevated luxury and is designed for guests of all ages. It’s where grownup privacy and pampering exists alongside amenities geared directly to children. In this section the accommodations consist of, Jr. Suite Pool View, Jr. Suite Ocean View, Family Suite consisting of a King bed and a separate bedroom with 2 double beds. Jr. Suite with roof-top terrace and plunge pool. 1 bedroom Imperial Suite with private pool, 3,400 sq. ft Imperial 2 story 1 bedroom Suite with oversized roof-top deck with plunge pool.
Now we go to the Excellence Club section which is adults only. Think of the Excellence Club as a resort within a resort with access to a private bar, pool area, restaurant and 24 hours concierge service–reserved for grown-ups only. In this section we have a Jr. Suite Pool View, Jr. Suite Ocean View, Jr. Suite Swim-up, two story Jr. Suite with roof-Top Terrace and plunge pool, Imperial Suite with Private Pool, Imperial Suite 2 story with Oversize Roof-Top Terrace and plunge pool.
Dining at the Finest consists of 12 restaurants with one restaurant dedicated to adults only. The choices are, the International Buffet, Mexican, Asian, French, Tapas, Seafood, Surf and Turf, Italian, Bistro the Adult only restaurant, Beach grill, Pizza, Sports Bar with snacks. There are actually 16 different bars, say “how much can you drink.” Bars include a swim-up bar, a beach bar, a piano bar, a cigar bar, a chill out lounge and bar, and a bar in the main square of the resort just in case you need a drink in-between the other bars. If all else fails, you have 24 hour room service.
Activities abound at this resort both on land and in the ocean. Finest Playa Mujeres offers a wide variety of beach, land and water activities throughout each day, including kayaks, snorkeling gear, sailing, windsurfing, paddle board, introductory scuba lessons, aerobics & water aerobics, water polo, fitness, yoga, jogging, Spanish lessons, dancing lessons, cooking lessons, theme nights, beach volleyball, tennis, basketball, bicycles, table tennis, darts, board games, archery & billiards.
For the children, a total area of 27,000 sq. ft of children and sports facilities including: a children pool with integrated playground plus a babies & toddlers pool. Children playground. Fountains playground. 3 indoor pavilions by ages: babies & toddlers, children and teenagers. Mini theater. Mini Spa. Food & beverage stations at the kid’s plaza.
This resort is a great resort for everyone, families, adults only, groups, destination weddings. It is for those who want it all in an upscale 4.5 star resort. For those purists that want an adults only resort that is dedicated to only adults this may not be the best choice.
This is our monthly look at another fine all-inclusive resort chain. Next month we will continue our exploration of the rest of the Excellence Group Resorts located in the Dominican Republic and Jamaica. Until then safe travels and good selling.