The hot place to stay in Cancun: Playa Mujeres all-inclusive resorts

Walkway at the TRS Coral Playa Mujeres all-inclusive resort
TRS Coral Central Garden Photo Credit: Ben Duffy

Most people looking to vacation at an all-inclusive resort in the Yucatan Peninsula are usually looking at either Cancun or Riviera Maya, but there is a third option available. Playa Mujeres all-inclusives have been built like crazy lately, and it’s easy to see why: Plenty of land, great beaches, and still fairly close to the airport.

New resorts aplenty

Until 2018, there were only a handful of all-inclusives in Playa Mujeres. Since then, 10 Playa Mujeres all-inclusive resorts have opened, most in the past year:

  • Grand Palladium Costa Mujeres
  • TRS Coral (adults-only)
  • Catalonia Costa Mujeres
  • Riu Dunamar
  • Riu Palace Costa Mujeres
  • Planet Hollywood Beach Resort Cancun
  • Majestic Elegance Costa Mujeres
  • Paradisus Playa Mujeres
  • Atelier Playa Mujeres (adults-only)
  • Estudio Playa Mujeres

Expect even more all-inclusives to come in Playa Mujeres in the next 5 years, even with the likely travel slowdown ahead thanks to the coronavirus, as many upcoming Playa Mujeres all-inclusive resorts have already started construction.

Amazing beach and minimal sargassum

The Playa Mujeres all-inclusive beaches are generally fantastic. While the water is not as turquoise as the Cancun Hotel Zone, Isla Mujeres does it a huge favor by blocking most of the sargassum that you can find in Cancun and Riviera Maya.

Additionally, most Playa Mujeres resorts offer snorkeling nearby, and if you do a day trip to Isla Mujeres on a small boat tour (rather than the ferry), they will often stop for snorkeling on the there or back.

If you are a beach person, Playa Mujeres all-inclusive resorts are an amazing option as the lack of sargassum means they have the nicest beaches and ocean near Cancun.

Resorts unconstrained by space

All-inclusive resorts in the Cancun Hotel Zone often feel a bit small as many have tight footprints they need to work with. On the other hand, all-inclusive resorts in Playa Mujeres have much more land to work with, so buildings are spaced out a bit, pools are often larger, and there is plenty of beach frontage so you can easily have a front row view of the water from your beach chair.

Expansive pools are also par for the course here, with most resorts having multiple pools available of all sizes. The Grand Palladium Costa Mujeres main pool is over 2,000 sq meters (22,000 sq feet!), but they also have a more tranquil infinity pool overlooking the beach if you want something a little smaller.

Main Pool at the Grand Palladium Costa Mujeres, a Playa Mujeres all-inclusive resort
Sunset at the Grand Palladium Costa Mujeres Main Pool | Photo Credit: Palladium Hotel Group

Closer to the airport than you think

Despite being a bit North of the Cancun Hotel Zone, Playa Mujeres resorts are only 30-40 minutes from Cancun International Airport as Highway 307 bypasses the hotel zone to get straight there.

The other positive the route between Playa Mujeres all-inclusives and the airport offers is multiple supermarkets (Superama, Chedraui, etc.). If you are taking a private shuttle, you can ask your driver to stop to pick up a quick item or two and as long as you promise to be quick, they generally won’t mind or charge more for that (although I recommend leaving a bigger tip as well for them).

On our last trip, we grabbed 6 bottles of Corralejo Reposado tequila for ~$11 USD/bottle, which for us was great as it costs $30-$40/bottle here in Pennsylvania.

Our Corralejo Sextuplets from our last trip to Playa Mujeres

The takeaway

There are gorgeous beaches, amazing pools, and a beautful jungle setting in Playa Mujeres that is unmatched by most resorts in the Cancun Hotel Zone or Riviera Maya. While there isn’t a lot to do off resort that’s close by, if you are planning to spend most of your time on the property, it’s tough to find a better place near Cancun than a Playa Mujeres all-inclusive resort.

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Ben Duffy
Ben has visited all-inclusives for years, enjoying the ability to watch the ocean from a Bali Bed with a fresh margarita in hand and not a care in the world
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