Just Back: The Grand at Moon Palace Cancun

The Grand Swim-up suites, which open directly onto a pool, have balconies with chaise lounge, chairs & table.
These suites also come
with a double whirlpool.

Luxury Travel Advisor just got back from a stay at The Grand at Moon Palace Cancun, a luxury “resort within a resort” set within a complex that also includes the Sunrise at Moon Palace Cancun and the Moon Palace Cancun. The Grand, which just opened in 2017, has a ton of options for families, making it a good fit for travelers with young children.

The Grand has 1,316 rooms and suites. We stayed in one of the resort’s suites, all of which have double whirlpool tubs (close to the balcony to take in views of the grounds, pool or beach); 24-hour room service; a complimentary welcome bottle of wine; and double sinks in the bathrooms. Other nice touches include plenty of charging ports, as well as a spot to plug in your smartphone or tablet to stream your own movies or TV to the suite’s flat-screen TV. (Free Wi-Fi is available throughout the resort, with good signal strength.) 

The top-tier suites, though, are the Grand Swim-Up Suites. These open directly onto a pool that meanders beside the building in which they are housed. These suites sleep four, including children ages four to 17, as well as a maximum of one infant ages zero to three. 

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Habibi, one of the 10 restaurants at the Grand, specializes in Lebanese cuisine.

Also a good bet for families are the resort’s Grand Family Deluxe suites, which have an Xbox / DVD player and a selection of Xbox games and DVDs upon request in the kids’ room, L’Oreal kids bath amenities, kid-sized slippers and robes and a minibar with treats like chocolate milkshakes, juice, soda, water and chocolates. For the adults, there’s a private balcony, a king-size bed and a double whirlpool tub. These suites can sleep up to six guests, in addition to a maximum of one infant.

A highlight of our visit was the resort’s Awe Spa, which is adults-only — although children are allowed in the beauty salon. The design of this space seemed less clinical than other spas we have visited in the past, with fun touches like star-like LED lights in the steam sauna, opalescent tiles throughout most of the public areas and flowing curtains descending from high ceilings to section off the loungers. The spa pool, with in-water bubble loungers and a number of fountains, was a particular treat. We hear that a standout treatment is the Kukulcan Massage, an 80-minute, four-hand massage inspired by Mayan traditions. Guests can make spa reservations after they arrive on property, either with a Palace Resorts Vacation Planner or via the Palace Resorts app. 

Next to the spa is an atelier that hosts “master class” experiences. For example, a class with a facialist helps guests learn to develop treatments and beauty regimens based on their skin type. Across from the spa is a spacious fitness center.

Outside, we were able to visit another draw for the kids: the resort’s new water park, which just opened this year. It has a splash zone, a wave simulator, a lazy river and three waterslides, with another three on the way. The water park is built around an indoor play area, which kids and adults can access through an innovative quick-drying machine — inside, activities such as laser golf, a ropes course, a sports simulator and bumper cars are available.

Other indoor activities include the Wired Lounge — once teens-only, the resort recently opened it to adults as well after a number of guests had asked for the opportunity to spend some time in it with their kids. This lounge is home to a number of arcade games and gaming consoles, as well as gaming PCs, plus a theater where kids and adults can play games on a light-up floor.

The Grand at Moon Palace Cancun has nine outdoor pools, which includes the Unique Day Club, shown here. It’s an adults-only pool area with a live DJ and cocktail, hookah and appetizer service.  

For adults needing some time separate from the kids, there’s also the Unique Day Club, an adults-only pool area with a live DJ and cocktail, hookah and appetizer service. When we visited — just before noon — there was a remarkable lack of crowds, with a number of cabanas and loungers available, giving the space a very relaxed vibe. In fact, none of the pools at The Grand felt crowded, even though the resort was at or over capacity during our stay.

In terms of dining, we got to check out Habibi, an excellent Lebanese restaurant. The owners of Palace Resorts originally hail from Lebanon, and the attention to detail shows here in the mezze (small plates) menu, which offered course after course of cold and hot spreads, traditional Lebanese bread, sausage and spiced meats. 

All told, the resort has 10 restaurants and 12 bars — of these, we’re told that the JC Steak House, developed through the resort’s recent, exclusive partnership with Certified Angus Beef, is the most in-demand. There’s also Le Chateau, a French, adults-only restaurant with a dress code; Cielito Lindo, serving contemporary Mexican cuisine; and Jade, an Asian restaurant. The steakhouse, Le Chateau, Cielito Lindo and Jade all require reservations, which are bookable through the app.

The dining experience doesn’t stop with the restaurants. We were also able to tour the resort’s Chef’s Kitchen space, which offers a number of experiences for guests. Here guests can learn to make meals based on the resort’s restaurants (paired with wine), or take in a wine and chocolate pairing. These experiences also require reservations. 

By night, guests can gather for drinks in the resort’s indoor bowling alley, or check out the Unique nightclub. Unique alternates open nights with Noir, a nightclub at the Sunrise section of the resort, so that guests interested in a club experience can hit the dance floor every night. A free shuttle bus runs between the lobbies of each of the resort complex’s sections, although guests from the other two sections are not allowed to access the Grand. The Grand Theater also hosts a diverse nightly lineup of live shows. 

The Wired Lounge has a number of arcade and  console video games.

For destination weddings, the resort’s pastry chef, Antonio Bachour, and his protégé, Marelis Teran, have created a number of creative offerings, ranging from traditional tier cakes to cake pops and a special donut wall display. The Preview Paradise promotion gives couples a free two-night stay during which they can meet with wedding planners and suppliers, as well as take part in food and cake tastings. Couples who sign their contracts and place the deposit in a 15-day time period from their visit receive an automatic $500 credit, which can be applied to wedding extras, food and beverages. 

The resort recommends that advisors with special requests contact Palace Resorts’ inside sales team at 877-782-5018. Cindy Gongora is the inside sales manager for the Eastern region, while Lisette Yi is the inside sales manager for the Western region. Enquiries regarding destination weddings should be directed to [email protected]  

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