An opulent oasis with impeccable service and magnificence: My keep on the new Waldorf Astoria Cancun

In relation to accessible Caribbean escapes, it’s laborious to beat Cancun. From the Japanese Seaboard, you may board an early morning flight and be ingesting margaritas together with your ft in powder-white sand by lunchtime.

As winter rolls round, it’s key to have just a few tropical locations in your radar that mix solar, sand, comfort and a dose of luxurious, ideally paid for with factors.

There’s been a flurry of Hilton lodge openings in Mexico, however the 173-key Waldorf Astoria Cancun, which lastly debuted in early November, has generated essentially the most pleasure. Because the second Waldorf in Mexico (the opposite is the Waldorf Astoria Pedregal in Cabo), it guarantees to set a brand new normal for luxurious motels alongside this well-liked stretch of Caribbean shoreline.

A world other than Cancun’s Zona Hotelera with its rowdy spring break picture, it is geared to vacationers searching for a serene oasis, however inside putting distance of Cancun Worldwide Airport (CUN) and all of the famed points of interest of the Riviera Maya — an idyllic shoreline, Mayan ruins, sacred cenotes, Michelin-star delicacies and world-class spas.

However, wouldn’t it stay as much as all of the hype? Right here’s what my expertise was like on the Waldorf Cancun:

Fast take


Between lush mangrove forests and (fairly) undeveloped white-sand shores, the five-story property’s public areas and visitor rooms marry luxe styling with supreme performance. The Waldorf’s signature Jazz Age glamor is reimagined with modern Caribbean aptitude — motifs, work, sculptures and ornamental touches — all designed to replicate the ocean setting.

The design is putting, from the glass-walled foyer every thing cascades to the Caribbean sea. The 2 superbly landscaped infinity swimming pools — magical when illuminated at night time — are amongst Cancun’s best.

What instantly distinguishes this property, nonetheless, is the impeccable service, which fits above and past even by Waldorf requirements. It’s not an overstatement to say that after a two-night keep, all of the bellboys, entrance desk employees, concierges and bar employees that I would encountered all actually did know my title.

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Getting there

The Waldorf Astoria Cancun is 10 miles (round a 25-minute drive) from Cancun Worldwide Airport (CUN), 19 miles south of the Lodge Zone. After exiting Freeway 307 (the primary highway that runs alongside the Riviera Maya to Chetumal on the Belize border), it’s round an eight-minute drive alongside a mangrove-fringed highway.

A taxi from the airport (Completely satisfied Shuttle, USA switch, Tremendous shuttle) will price round $60. To keep away from solicitation and trouble exterior Cancun airport’s arrivals corridor, you may prepare a pick-up upfront via the Waldorf’s transportation service (Iconic) that gives one-way, meet-and-greet, transfers in an SUV for $125 (as much as 4 passengers).


Reserving particulars

Each room on the Waldorf Astoria Cancun has an ocean view and options both an outside soaking tub or plunge pool. Low-season charges begin at round $572 per night time for the standard Ocean View Room (675 sq. ft), however you may count on to pay round $800 throughout peak season (and greater than $1,000 throughout the holidays).

If you wish to indulge, improve to a Swim-Up Pool Room (from $773 per night time) with a chief location close to the seaside and infinity swimming pools. For Hilton Honors members, reward redemptions begin at 95,000 factors per night time.

Normal room charges for my mid-November keep have been $575 per night time, plus charges and taxes that added one other a number of hundred {dollars} so my whole for 2 nights got here to $1,517. I used to be capable of save nearly $600 off my keep by benefiting from Hilton’s bonus level shopping for promotion. I purchased 95,000 factors ($950) and obtained 100% bonus factors. So, the 190,000 factors accrued coated my two-night keep. Since I used to be staying at three Hilton motels throughout my six-night journey, I additionally signed up for Hilton’s double keep factors bonus, which gave me a pleasant earnings increase.

A number of Hilton Honors cobranded bank cards provide members free night time certificates to use to stays, some as a part of their ongoing advantages and a few as a particular perk you may earn by spending. Cardmembers earn a free night time certificates with the Hilton Honors American Specific Surpass® Card after spending $15,000 on qualifying purchases in a calendar 12 months with the cardboard. The identical is true of the Hilton Honors American Specific Enterprise Card, although you may as well earn a second free night time certificates after hitting $60,000 in purchases with the cardboard in a calendar 12 months. Lastly, the Hilton Honors American Specific Aspire Card confers cardmembers with one free night time certificates yearly after renewal and an extra one in the event that they spend $60,000 or extra on eligible purchases in a calendar 12 months. If you happen to earn these certificates, it is best to have the ability to apply them to stays on the Waldorf Astoria Cancun when there’s 95,000-point availability.

The knowledge for the Hilton Aspire card has been collected independently by The Factors Man. The cardboard particulars on this web page haven’t been reviewed or offered by the cardboard issuer.

Standout options

  • The service is phenomenal — heat, intuitive and on level: pool employees appear to thoughts learn your each want.
  • All rooms have ocean views and outside soaking tubs or plunge swimming pools.
  • Rooms are richly appointed with marble, leather-based and tropical woods in order that even the base-level rooms are luxurious, spacious and user-friendly.
  • Haute delicacies at Malpeque the place entrees and sides grilled “al carbón” (the ocean bass was excellent) keep away from fussy shows and let delicate flavors shine.
  • The 2 oceanfront infinity swimming pools are stunning and interspersed with palms and foliage to supply privateness and seclusion.


  • With restricted eating choices and on-site facilities, it feels extra like a contained, luxe metropolis lodge than a world-unto-itself resort.
  • For greater than a weekend keep, you’d doubtless wish to head to Cancun for extra culinary selection.
  • With comfortable white sand and turquoise water, the seaside is gorgeous, however should you stroll a couple of minutes south, a clutch of older buildings and development particles detract from its idyllic vibe, in addition to seaweed mats (a typical downside alongside this coast from Could to October).
  • Past the pool and seaside (with nonmotorized water sports activities), there’s actually nothing to entertain kids or teenagers.

The vibe

The Waldorf Astoria Cancun’s emblematic Peacock Alley foyer bar leaves a blinding first impression. Behind magnificent cedar doorways, a pearl-inlaid Artwork Deco clock is flanked by hovering columns of grey marble and ocean-inspired chandeliers. Space rugs with blue swirls, curved sofas and round white-marble tables all appear to move towards the ocean.

Within the firm of private concierges, arriving company disperse to extra intimate, secluded nooks off the primary reception space or linger over welcome cocktails on curved armchairs and plush sofas in muted grey and beige tones.

Within the outside lounge areas, a extra Caribbean vibe holds sway with decorative water options, giant terraces dotted with palm timber and the fixed sound of cocktail shakers on the palapa-style pool bar.

At breakfast, you may count on to rub shoulders with company getting back from seaside yoga, ingesting inexperienced juice of their athletic garb and, within the night, eating on the splendid seafood at Malpeque — the epitome of tropical magnificence.

The Room

My room (506) was on the fifth and high flooring, round a seven-minute stroll from the foyer alongside a carpeted, very robustly air-conditioned hallway. Aside from the Peacock Alley foyer bar and the lodge’s different eating places, its public areas, whereas good-looking and alluring, give the general really feel of a lavish, supremely snug metropolis pad, stateside, quite than a tropical retreat.

At check-in, company are supplied with a bracelet that acts as each a door key and an online portal (there is a QR code on the reverse facet) for data on lodge facilities, together with room service menus.

The nice and cozy greeting from my private concierge within the foyer continued to my visitor room within the type of a bottle of tequila and a message saying, “welcome house,” ready on the desk.

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Ground-to-ceiling home windows open onto a big, furnished terrace with a built-in soaking tub and views of the 2 infinity swimming pools and the seaside extending all the way in which north to Cancun’s lodge zone.

My room felt rooted in a conventional Waldorf aesthetic, with hints of Artwork Deco within the geometric patterns, curving couch and nightstands, and a subdued grey, beige and blue shade scheme with pops of gold.

Ornamental objects and furnishings are impressed by the ocean setting and Indigenous craftsmanship — whimsical tapestries, coral-inspired sculptures and a driftwood-style armoire that housed the minibar and Nespresso maker.

From the crisp white linens on the beige, leather-framed mattress to the marble-tiled lavatory and fluffy robes and slippers, every thing felt luxurious and thoughtfully designed.

Spanning one facet of the bed room, the lavatory was spacious, opulent and sensible. A separate gray-tiled bathe unit opened onto the deck with a built-in soaking tub.

Two marble vanities with oval mirrors set in shimmering mosaic tiles have been separated from the bed room by a wood screen-style wall mounted with a flat display TV.

Food and drinks

Breakfast was served à la carte within the brasserie-style Chaya. With polished grey marble tiles, black-and-white furnishings and a dramatic white sculpture within the entrance, there was a sultry vibe. Throughout my keep, most company dined beneath swirling followers on the surface terrace, which was separated from the pool space by a wall of palms and foliage.

The menu featured breakfast classics with a Mexican twist — lobster omelet ($940 Mexican pesos/$49), eggs Benedict with crab and chipotle hollandaise ($460 pesos/$24) in addition to extra virtuous acai bowls ($300 pesos/$15) and smoothies ($240 pesos/$12), all ready with regionally sourced produce. I ordered avocado toast drizzled with lavender agave syrup and topped with poached eggs ($390 pesos/$12) which was flavorful, completely proportioned and artfully introduced.

For lunch, the modern cantina, J’AO, served basic and nouvelle Mexican fare that is also ordered from the poolside palapa. In addition to a choice of tacos, there was vegan ceviche ($320 pesos/$17 ) and cactus salad ($320 pesos/$17).

Like most company, I opted to remain poolside and ordered the tasty (however not wonderful) fish-of-the-day tacos ($520 pesos/$28) — native sea bass seasoned with tomatillo tatemado (spicy tomato salsa). The spotlight was the eagerness fruit margarita ($360 pesos/$19) made with Don Julio and Cointreau.

Far and away essentially the most memorable eating venue was Malpeque. Helmed by acclaimed chef Roger Stewart, it focuses on fish and seafood — served sashimi type or just grilled “al carbón” — in a tropically stylish eating room.

Inside, there was a buzzy vibe from the dynamic open kitchen, however the most effective tables have been exterior on the terrace, alongside a dramatically illuminated reflection pool, the place easy white chairs normal from pure fibers and cozy rattan sofas have been surrounded by shows of Maya-inspired ornamental objects and artifacts.

The “crudo” appetizer part of the menu featured tuna tiraditos ($610 pesos/$31), hamachi ($660 pesos/$34) and seafood towers for 4 folks ($3,600 pesos/$185). Signature entrees included entire fish-of-the-day for 2 folks ($1,900 pesos/$99) and chargrilled octopus ($690 pesos/$36).

I ordered the grilled sea bass ($890 pesos/$45) with a facet of entire roasted cauliflower ($260 pesos/$13) that was topped with pistachios, pomegranate and tahini sauce — it might fairly simply have been an entree in itself. The costs have been on par with a flowery restaurant in Chicago…and completely price it.

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Facilities and repair

The lodge gives a every day calendar of wellness-focused courses, together with yoga, meditation and pilates on the white-sand seaside in entrance of the lodge. By 10 a.m., nonetheless, the motion facilities on the 2 giant, multi-level infinity swimming pools the place wood loungers and daybeds with plush white cushions are shaded by parasols.


Every time I orbited the pool, I used to be instantly greeted by employees eager to arrange solar loungers and supply towels, ice buckets with glass-bottled water and a menu for the pool bar, JA’O. Throughout my keep, there wasn’t a single second after I needed to search out a employees member for a drink, a towel, water…something, actually.

Whereas the lodge isn’t geared towards households — there’s no youngsters membership, programming or designated youngsters pool — there have been a whole lot of households having fun with brief pre-Thanksgiving breaks. The solar-heated (and surprisingly heat) shallow swimming pools are nice for older kids. The eating places all characteristic youngsters’ menus and the employees appeared to go above and past to make them really feel welcome.

Sybarites will love the cenote-inspired spa. Tucked away from the primary constructing, amid a riot of foliage, it felt just like the lodge’s interior sanctum and a serene place to linger for just a few hours quite than simply pop in for a therapy.

At MX5,480/$283 for an $80-minute (Swedish, conventional or aromatherapy therapeutic massage), costs are astronomical, however in step with what different lodge spas are charging alongside the Riviera Maya. Therapies are impressed by Mayan cleaning and purification traditions and deploy therapeutic stones and occasional chanting.

The health middle has a handful of working machines and ellipticals, a rowing machine, stationary bike and free weights, all going through image home windows with foliage views — it is quite like understanding in a greenhouse.


Out and about

I’d count on that for many company, two or three days of rest and pampering on the lodge is greater than sufficient. The Waldorf’s wonderful concierges can prepare excursions or automotive rent (round $90 per day) to discover past the gates.

The area is studded with Mayan archaeological ruins, sacred cenotes (sinkholes) and small cities and villages. There’s additionally excellent snorkeling and diving alongside the Nice Maya Reef close to Puerto Morelos, or a ship journey away in Cozumel.

Round 90 minutes south, Tulum’s Mayan temples are dramatically sited alongside a shocking arc of Caribbean shoreline. The city itself can also be price visiting for its thriving restaurant scene, distinctive boutiques and boho vibe.

Associated: Right here’s what you’ll want to find out about attending to (and staying in) Tulum on factors

Cobá (round two hours southwest) is among the Maya Route’s extra immersive archaeological websites. With steep, jungle-cloaked pyramids — together with many who have not been absolutely excavated — it appears like a misplaced world. Chichén Itza — one of many New Seven Wonders of the World — and lesser-known Ek Balam are additionally possible for day journeys (round 2.5 hours west)

Hidden beneath thick jungle, a brief drive from Tulum, Gran Cenote is an otherworldly spot the place snorkeling amongst fantastical stalactites and stalagmites in crystal-clear water is a one-of-a-kind expertise.

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The Waldorf Astoria Cancun caters very nicely to vacationers with mobility challenges. Ramps, which lead all the way down to the swimming pools, eating places and beachfront, are all superbly built-in with the lodge’s design.

Visitor rooms and eating places all have broad doorways to accommodate wheelchairs. Stroll-in showers are geared up with handrails and a wood bench and user-friendly mild panels by the bedside additionally management the drapes. There are audible alerts, visible alarms and braille indicators within the hallways and elevators.

Take a look at

The Waldorf Astoria Cancun is an opulent oasis that feels a world other than Cancun’s overdeveloped seashores and raucous get together scene.

Peacock Alley’s grandeur and lavish styling is straight away balanced by the nice and cozy welcome and real curiosity from the employees — service was flawless.

For a two- or three-day winter escape, targeted on poolside rest and pampering, the lodge ticks a whole lot of packing containers. Because it does not really feel like a real resort when it comes to its scale, facilities and focal factors, it really works nicely as a bookend to an extended journey or a base for exploration. If I had stayed longer than two nights, a automotive would have been essential to broaden my culinary horizons and add just a few cultural and leisure excursions into the combo.

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