Finding family-friendly resorts that kids, teens, and adults will all enjoy can be a bit of a challenge. The Grand at Moon Palace has some of the best amenities that I’ve ever experienced at any resort. Read on to find out more about this all-inclusive resort in Cancun, Mexico and everything you need to know to stay comfortably with your kids.
I’ve never taken a long trip in December before, usually because we are so busy with holiday festivities. It was a welcome break for our family this year and I would definitely do it again. Cancun is a five-hour flight from Calgary but many airlines fly direct, which is a must for when I travel long distances with my kids! The Grand at Moon Palace is located 15-minutes from the Cancun, Mexico airport, on the secluded shores of the Carribean Sea. Transportation to and from the airport can be arranged through your stay, although car seats are not provided. It’s totally up to you as to whether or not you bring those or not!
Upon arriving at the property you’ll immediately notice that The Grand is GRAND and it’s obvious that they spared no expense when creating this property. This 123-acre, 5-star resort holds 1,300 rooms but is so spread out that it will never leave you feeling crowded. When you stay at The Grand, you have access to the other Palace Resorts, like the connected properties: The Nizuc and The Sunrise. Children stay and eat for free when booking a room with adults! If you are a fan of the nightly entertainment then you’ll be pleased to see the number of quality shows offered in the evenings. The 9 pm start time was too late for our kiddos so we weren’t able to stay up to watch any!
Family-Friendly Resort in Cancun
Imagine waking up, ordering room service, stepping out onto your patio, and right into your swim-up pool. With all of these amenities, it’s a wonder why you even need to leave your room! Building 89 is a great and quiet option for families and swim-up suites are available for west-facing rooms. I promise it’s worth every penny to upgrade. If you have children that nap, you can tuck them into their air-conditioned bed and spend the afternoon relaxing in the pool, just outside the door. Most rooms accommodate 4 guests (one king or two doubles) so if you have a larger bunch, you will require connecting rooms. You can also request a crib or an extra bed for your room. The rooms are spacious, clean, and comfortable. Fully-stocked mini-bars are also part of your all-inclusive stay. There are pop, juice boxes, and snacks in your room.
Food and Service
The absolute selling feature of this resort is the unbelievable quality of food and level of service by the staff. They are friendly, polite and attentive. There are 16 restaurants located on the property plus a large Grand Buffet with nightly cuisine themes. The breakfast buffet was my favourite and we never got sick of the food. When traveling with kids, especially ones that may be a little picky like mine, food can be an issue. The Grand Buffet has a children’s station with kid-friendly foods like french fries, chicken bites, pizza, fruits, and vegetables. The pool-side menu also offers great options for children, and you’ll find a kid’s menu at most hotel restaurants. Some places do have dress codes, so pack a collared shirt and pants for your boys.
The Grand at Moon Palace has truly thought of everything. Download the Palace Resorts App to customize your trip and place orders using the Room Service, Concierge, and Dining apps. Choose from their pillow or room aromatherapy menu. Order more red wine when your mini-bar needs to be restocked. Use the map to locate whatever you’re looking for in the resort. It was one of my favourite things about the resort. We ordered room service almost every day and easily accessed the photographic menu options to place our order.
The Water Park
The Water Park at The Grand looks amazing but please know that this area caters mostly older and taller riders. You have to be 5’3” to ride any of the tube slides and at least 52” to ride the carpet slide. With the smaller watersides removed, my kids were really disappointed that they weren’t able to do much in this area. There is a lazy river with a shallow part and a small wave pool around the corner. Flow Rider surfing and knee-boarding is also located in this area and the height restrictions are more lenient so you might feel like giving it a try.
Unfortunately, the children’s splash park was completely boarded up and non-operational at The Grand. And to our even greater disappointment, all of the waterslides for kids have been completely dismantled. I didn’t receive an answer as to whether they would be rebuilt. We loved The Grand but this was definitely the missing piece for our family.
There are 9 pools around The Grand, four of which are heated. You won’t have any trouble finding loungers and the pools are not overly-crowded which I totally appreciated. We loved the Cabeno heated pool. Good tip: if your child requires a life-jacket then you’ll need to bring one from home as there are not any available at the resort. Bring your own floaties from home too as they carry a hefty price tag in the gift shops.
The Nizuc Water Slide
If you are looking for more spots for your kids to enjoy, take a 10- minute walk to the next door Nizuc pools. There is a two-story water slide there with minimal height restrictions. My boys were both tall enough and I was even able to double with them. The pool is COLD but hopefully they won’t notice.
The Sunrise Splash Park
A 20-minute walk to the Sunrise resort offers a splash park that will surely keep your kids occupied. There is a pirate ship with a giant splash bucket, multiple small slides, and water sprayers. Don’t forget, you can order drinks and food throughout these hotels with your Grand wristband.
Since the property is quite large, anywhere can be reached by taking advantage of the golf cart chauffeur system. There are different lines (like a train!) so check out the maps at each shuttle stop to decide where you’d like to go. The wait for shuttles can sometimes be long so we found it quicker to walk. There is also a coach bus that travels from lobby to lobby. The Grand also has bikes that can be used to roam around the hotel and everywhere you go is accessible if you have a stroller!
The Playroom is a really fun option for kids. This area is also a Kid’s Club where you can sign your children in and out so that they can be left under the supervision of the staff if they are 4+. Please note, the downstairs area with arcade games, mini-golf, Parkour, and climbing structure is only for ages 8+. If your child is younger than 8, then they can use the smaller upstairs area. It didn’t work well for us as childcare because my boys are ages 6 and 8 and didn’t want to be separated. I spent a lot of time supervising them but they had so much fun. Also, if you have a child looking to try the Parkour course, don’t forget their running shoes! There is also an arcade in the main building, complete with ice cream parlour.
The beach was a beautiful area that was well-groomed and clean. Over the past few years, an abundance of seagrass has become a problem but during December, it was not an issue. The sand is soft and light coloured. There are multiple, chairs, hammocks, and cabanas located at various places on the beach. It’s a quiet place to relax and unwind to the sound of crashing waves. Don’t miss a stop at the Coco Beach bar between 12-3 every day!
Pool: La Cabano
Snack: Guacamole and Chips by the pool
Lunch: Walk-up pizza from the pizza oven at the La Cabeno pool
Dinner: Italian or Japanese
Drink: Coconut drink from the Coco Beach Bar
Coffee: Caramel Frappuccino the Boulangerie
Dessert: Macarons and ice cream from the Boulangerie
Room: Swim-up room in the 89 building
Best kept secret: Mini-bar and room service requests from the Palace Resorts App on your phone
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