Heading to Cancun for Spring Break, a bachelorette party, or with your party-loving family? Hotels in Cancun’s Hotel Zone cater to these groups with night-long parties, loud entertainment, cheap booze and all-inclusive plans. Of course, there will be crowds of people and mass tourism has caused the city to lose its local culture, but the beaches are some of the best in the world and locals are friendly. Take a look at our expert picks for the best party hotels in Cancun’s Hotel Zone and bring on the frozen margaritas.
This mega-hotel is part of a two-hotel complex, with 1800 rooms, that prides itself on entertainment. The 3.5-pearl property is smack in the middle of Cancun’s hotel zone so those who choose to leave the all-inclusive property will find no shortage of things to do. It’s a family-friendly property, but 14 bars provide plenty of entertainment geared towards adults; those looking for a quiet vacation with the kids may want to look elsewhere, or at least avoid the sometimes raucous party scene at the crowded outdoor pool. Rooms, while clean and comfortable enough, feel like an afterthought at a resort where there is clearly so much thought going into other aspects of the stay. Be prepared for long lines at the 18 on-site restaurants, especially in the high season.
With a gorgeous infinity pool featuring ocean views and two popular swim-up bars, five restaurants serving international cuisine, live entertainment, a great spa, and a wonderful kids’ club, the Hard Rock screams “all-inclusive Cancun megaresort." All rooms feature contemporary decor with rock-n-roll-style twists, open bathrooms with double jetted tubs, balconies with either ocean or lagoon views, and modern amenities -- including flat-screen TVs and iPod docks. It's a solid choice for couples and groups, but should be noted that it can get rowdy at times, especially in the swim-up bar areas.
There’s a lot to like about this 287-room hotel, if you're searching for an all-inclusive experience in the heart of the party-Mecca of the Hotel Zone: three pools with stunning ocean views, lots of dining options, great rooms with high-tech amenities (likeiPod docks and flat-screen TVs), a full spa (not included in the price), a tiny but modern fitness center, and a location right on a gorgeous white-sand beach. However, the hotel lacks the character of smaller, cozier hotels in the downtown area of Cancun. And those not looking for a 24/7 party should consider hotels in other areas.
A child of the '90s, the 617-room, upper-middle-range Crown Paradise Club Cancun is a one-stop shop for budget-friendly all-inclusive vacations. Rooms come with postcard-worthy Caribbean Sea views, marble floors, contemporary (if basic) bathrooms, and private outdoor space (upgrades include in-room jacuzzis and minibars). In addition to multiple pools, a smallgym, spa, and 24-hour spots to grab a bite or a drink, the Crown Paradise is unparalleled in keeping kids of all ages entertained from a baby club, to an enviable kids-only water park, to teens club. There's also plenty of adult-only space for singles and couples, although this is primarily a family hotel. Be prepared for a buzzing atmosphere and a little noticeable wear and tear.
The mid-range Golden Parnassus (not to be confused with the Great Parnassus up the beach) is an adults-only, all-inclusive resort in Cancun's popular Hotel Zone. The hotel's laid-back vibe and friendly staff -- who go out of their way to make sure everyone has fun -- draws many repeat guests. All 214 rooms come with small furnished balconies and marble baths, and the "club" level rooms have extras such as double Jacuzzis, bathrobes and free fruit baskets. The room decor is basic but fresh -- bare walls, neutral tones, and light wood floors. There are five restaurants to choose from, serving fare from Mexican to Japanese, and most guests find at least one they really like. The pool is large, as at most at Cancun all-inclusives, but this one doesn't have a swim-up bar -- a bit of a letdown at an adults-only hotel. On that note, this place can get a bit rowdy, so guests looking to relax in their room at night should ask for a higher floor on the lagoon side of the resort.
Hotel Riu Cancun -- with its grand V-shape and Mediterranean-inspired architecture -- sits on a sprawling piece of beachfront that’s close to pubs, eateries, and shops. The all-inclusive 569-room resort has an impressive dome-ceiling lobby with wrought-iron chandeliers. The beach, though on the narrow side, is beautiful and full of chairs and palm roof umbrellas. While the resort offers three swimming pools including a beautiful infinity pool, sunlight disappears early in the day because of the building's soaring height. There's a buffet-style restaurant, as well as three themed restaurants that require reservations two days in advance. A range of on-site activities includes nightly live shows, a spa, tennis, windsurfing, and nightclub. However,rooms are outdated with tube TVs, worn linens, and stiff beds.
The Temptation Resort Spa Cancun is an adult-only, topless-optional property that caters to 21 and over, uninhibited guests. There is never a dull moment at this all-inclusive resort, which features themed swimming pools and nightly risqué live shows. Fun-seeking singles and couples will find a range of entertainment from provocative games and contests -- like the Miss Temptation competition -- to sexy Temptation Idol karaoke. The color scheme throughout the resort is soothing white and passionate red. The 384 spacious rooms exude a romantic atmosphere. While the beach area is small and lackluster compared to other resorts, the shaded sun beds are a nice place to relax and unwind.
The ME Cancun is a grand, all-inclusive resort hotel set on a beautiful stretch of soft white sand overlooking the crystal-clear waters of the Mexican Caribbean. Located on in the well-developed strip of Cancun's Hotel Zone, this art-filled, upscale property is a self-contained world of excellent dining, lively bars, and well-maintained pools. Although kids are welcome the set-up and vibe aren't particularly family-friendly -- two of the three pools are for adults only, and there's a vibrant nightlife scene. A two-tier all-inclusive plans does mean some guests might be left feeling nickel-and-dimed for extras, and rates are steep even for regular level rooms -- however those willing to splash out for the ME+ experience are in for a treat.