Earlier this month, my new husband and I left DC for a blissful 10 days in Cancun, where we stayed at Secrets The Vine.  Secrets The Vine is a AAA Four Diamond Unlimited-Luxury® Adults-Only all-inclusive resort, and they definitely went above and beyond to earn that reputation.

Check-In/Check-Out

Check-in at Secrets is at 3pm.  We arrived at 11am, so of course our room wasn’t ready.  Despite all that, I would describe our greeting as a positive experience.  We were greeted at the door with cool towels and a glass of champagne.  The lobby was beautiful, with high ceilings and marble floors.  There was a big glass floor to ceiling wine cellar (it is, after all, “The Vine”), and a grand piano that they often had someone play in the evenings.  Although our room wasn’t ready, we were shown to the changing rooms, where we were able to change into beach clothes and use all the resort facilities until check-in time.

Check-out was a breeze.  Secrets allows you to use a “hospitality room” if you end up having time to spare after your check-out.  This was a plus for me because I like to get in as much beach time as possible before leaving for the airport, but I don’t like to hop right on the plane without taking a shower first.

The Room

Our room was beautiful!  Every room is non-smoking, with Italian porcelain floors and teak wood furnishings. All rooms and suites have super comfy beds with custom headboards, a sleek private terrace or balcony, luxury bathroom wrapped in white glass, and complimentary mini-bar.  Because we were on our honeymoon, the turn-down service included rose petals, chocolates, and a bottle of red wine.  The building is shaped in a way that all rooms and suites can see the ocean, but because we were also close to the beachfront, our view was amazing!  Room service is included in the Unlimited-Luxury® package, so we enjoyed breakfast on our terrace almost every morning.

The only complaint I had about our room is that the AC units for the hotel were below us, and very loud.  Any time we were outside on the terrace or just wanted to relax in the room with the door open, we had to deal with the loud noise.  Minor complaint, I know, but something to keep in mind.  Ask to be on the other side of the building if you decide to pay it a visit — you’ll still have an ocean view!

The Food

The resort has 7 restaurants and 6 bars/lounges that cover a variety of local and international cuisines, so you’ll never have a lack of food or drink options.  Room service is also available around the clock, and there are servers waiting on you at the pools and the beach.  All the restaurants have delicious food, but our favorites were the steaks at Blue Water Grill, and the Peruvian style duck at Sea Salt Grill.   Also worth a shout-out are the short-rib nachos on the beach menu.

Keep in mind, this is an all-inclusive resort, so you have 24 hour access to unlimited gourmet food and top shelf drinks.  Heaven!

The Beach/Pool

The beaches in Cancun are amazing!  The water is blue and warm, although the waves are pretty strong, so don’t expect to go out into the water for a relaxing swim.  The beach/pool staff were always nearby to refill your drink or bring you some food, or adjust your umbrella and bring fresh towels.  If you’re not a beach person, there are 3 beautiful infinity pools on the property, also equipped with plenty of servers to bring you food and drinks.

Activities

Housekeeping delivers an activity schedule for the following day along with their turn down service every night.  Daily activities include yoga, water aerobics, afternoon DJ at the pool, wine tastings, cocktail mixology classes, and live nightly entertainment.  There is never a dull moment!

Overall Thoughts

We loved it!  Secrets definitely had amazing food, drinks and service.  The staff was really attentive, and they went above and beyond to make our stay wonderful.  The one downside is that they push really hard, especially for your first few days, to sell you extras.  We were always being approached to buy a bottle of wine, romantic dinner on the beach (why pay an extra $200 to eat on the beach like we can’t just post up there with food whenever we want?), spa treatments, you name it.

The staff will also try to convince you to upgrade to the “Preferred Level”, which has its own infinity pool and “exclusive” access to the Steakhouse and Mediterranean  restaurant and top shelf liquors.  What they won’t tell you is that regular guests also have access to the pool and the restaurants, and all the bars provide the same liquor.  If you stop by one of the bars and they don’t have the brand you’re looking for, they will gladly go get it from somewhere else.

Aside from the sales pitches and the loud AC units, I was really pleased with our stay.  We will definitely be back for an anniversary or birthday in the future.  What about you?  Where is your favorite beach resort?  Leave it in the comments!

Related Posts:

Honeymoonin’ (pt 2):  Highlights From Cancun

3 Things to Consider When Booking an All-Inclusive