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JW Marriott Cancun Resort & Spa
Photograph: Courtesy Booking.comJW Marriott Cancun Resort & Spa

The 11 best hotels in Cancún

From ritzy beach retreats to family-friendly resorts, pamper yourself at the best hotels in Cancún

Written by
Luke Waterson
&
Lori A May
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If you're looking for one of the best hotels in Cancún, you might find that it's hard to choose—the resort town is brimming with fabulous accommodations (as the country's hottest resort town, it's sorta their thing). For a sure bet, the popular Zona Hotelera is a long, sandy isthmus where resorts of all sizes and styles line the streets with quick access to some of the best restaurants in Cancún, not to mention the city's best nightlife. For luxury seekers, Isla Mujeres offers an escape from the crowds (with an expected price increase) while those hoping to immerse themselves in city life will find a number of great hotels in Cancún proper. What we're trying to say is: you've got options

To help you find your ultimate getaway, we’ve selected the absolute best family and adult-only properties that range from secluded retreats to all-inclusive playgrounds. Plan on checking the best things to do in Cancún off your list after a restful sleep at one of these top hotels.

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Best hotels in Cancún

With a top spot in the middle of the Zona Hotelera, the Hard Rock Hotel doesn't just tick all the usual megaresort boxes: it does so with originality. As an all-inclusive resort, you'll get endless dining and unlimited beverages along with nightly entertainment and beachside amenities. Contemporary rooms have coffeemakers, spa tubs, furnished balconies, and on-brand decor that brings a rock-and-roll twist. Add in a highly regarded spa, fitness center, five restaurants, an infinity pool, and two swim-up bars and you’ve got yourself a great resort hotel. And surprisingly, in a resort zone where adult-only hotels are common, the Hard Rock Hotel is child-friendly with a great kid’s club and waterslide.

Smack-bang in the middle of Zona Hotelera, JW Marriott’s Cancún resort is one of the snazziest spots on the sun-soaked strip. With large, bright rooms and exquisitely decorated marble bathrooms—not to mention a Mayan-themed spa and a full fitness center—the complex is definitely geared towards luxury travelers and couples seeking exclusive beach breaks (although families are welcome, too). And if you need to get away from the spring breakers and the bustling beach, the hotel is near the Museo Maya de Cancún, a stunning museum that houses  some of the world’s most important Mayan artifacts.

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At the north end of Zona Hotelera, this sleek adult-only complex takes TLC to a whole new level: we're talking butlers who pack up your clothes and pool attendants who will bring you iced towels. The hydrotherapy pools will soothe your aches and pains while on-site Pilates classes will strengthen your core. Smartly designed suites off two-person whirlpools that look out on either an adjacent lagoon or on a stretch of beach that's considered to have some of Cancún’s best sand. If you've got the budget, this is where to spend it. 

South of the Zona Hotelera and one of the closest resorts to the airport, Cancún’s Moon Palace Resort boasts one of the best golf courses in Mexico, designed by the legendary Jack Nicklaus. With more than a dozen restaurants and first-class facilities for children (there's even an arcade room), the property is so large that golf carts are required for traveling in between certain areas. If we had to pick one fault? Although the resort is on the beach, the sand is just a tad nicer over in Zona Hotelera.

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Living up to its name, this adult-only all-inclusive sits by the gorgeous white sands of Playa Mujeres, a slightly quieter abd more refined area than Zona Hotelera. Here, suites have Jacuzzi tubs and private balconies (or even rooftop patios) while some sport their own plunge pools. With a dozen restaurants, numerous pools, a fitness complex with wellness offerings, and a spa to bolster the appeal, it's certainly one of the most luxurious options on an exclusive hotel strip.

While it's the more affordable option to its sister property, JW Marriott, this Cancún resort doesn't skimp on quality or amenities. More than ten restaurants cater to international taste buds while the must-try Sacbé Beach Shack focuses on traditional Yucatán favorites. The massive heated outdoor pool overlooks the Caribbean, as do the guestrooms and suites. Kids have plenty to do with on-site activities, while adults can take up a game of tennis or kick back with a mezcal pairing experience.

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7. Live Aqua Beach Resort Cancún

Conveniently located across the street from La Isla’s shops and open-air eateries, Live Aqua Beach Resort is a relaxed all-inclusive adult-only paradise with miniature Zen gardens in every room. The resort leans on subtle aromatherapy to immerse guests in a rejuvenating retreat, with wafts of eucalyptus and citrus guiding visitors from their elegant guestrooms onward to a collection of seven heated swimming pools. Nine onsite dining venues offer everything from ceviche and sushi to Mediterranean and Latin menus—this is a booking for all the senses. 

This high-end resort is ideal for those willing to open their wallets in order to escape the crowds: it comprises just 35 luxury suites with features like canopied beds, therapeutic showers, large balconies with whirlpool tubs, and a minimum of 46 square meters of space. For a unique twist, two gourmet restaurants offer French-Mexican or Swiss-Northern Italian cuisine. It’s one of Cancún’s most expensive (and lavish) resorts in one of the city's most exclusive spots, perched peacefully on an isolated peninsula on Isla Mujeres.

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One of Zona Hotelera’s older resorts, this is among the easiest on the wallet while still offering superb family amenities that make it one of the best all-rounders for vacations with kids. You'll find all-inclusive dining, family suites, children’s clubs for all ages, and plenty of entertainment like mini-golf, bicycle tours, water-slides and even a rock-climbing wall. All in all, this resort makes for a fun, laid-back stay for families.

If you’ve come to Cancún for hedonism, the Temptation Resort is calling your name. The slick, sultry resort was designed to resemble the curves of the human body (not surprisingly, it has an adult-only, topless-if-you-want policy) that's rounded out with cheeky indulgences like aphrodisiac cocktails. The latest addition is a 109-room Tower by Temptation, designed by leading industrial designer Karim Rashid—located north of Zona Hotelera, this hotel is guaranteed to push all the right buttons.

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