Choosing a resort in Cancun or the Riviera Maya can be a daunting task. With so many choices, doing the research to find the perfect hotel can feel longer than the getaway itself. And now that Cancun has grown into a large city in its own right, the kind of travellers who come to this area of Mexico are more varied than ever. Fortunately, I was recently introduced to Oasis Hotels & Resorts, a group of 6 properties that offers something for everyone.
Whether you are a young traveller looking for a fun resort with plenty of nightlife, a family searching for a kid-friendly all-inclusive vacation, or a couple looking for a luxurious, romantic getaway, Oasis resorts have a property geared to your tastes. Here’s a summary of each and what they have to offer.
Urban Alternatives: Oasis Smart and Oasis Oh! Hotels
Not every traveller is looking for a beach property, so if you are looking for a hotel in downtown Cancun instead, Oasis has not one but two choices for you, depending on what brings you to the city.
If you are in Cancun on business, Oasis Smart could be the perfect choice for you, as this affordable hotel is centrally located and offers convention rooms, a business centre and hotel amenities perfect for the business traveller. And since business runs on caffeine, there’s no need to leave the hotel for your coffee fix: there’s a Coffee & Me café right on-site that is one of the perks (pardon the pun) that you’ll find at all the Oasis properties.
When the business is done for the day, there’s also a large pool on the property that is tucked away from the outside world and the perfect spot to enjoy a little down time.
Connected to the Smart hotel and sharing the same café and pool is the Oasis Oh! Hotel, a modern, urban option that caters to the 18+ crowd. The Instagram-worthy décor in the hotel reflects its youthful, artsy vibe, and there is a funky lounge and art gallery with collections that change regularly.
For adults who want a downtown Cancun hotel that is the perfect base for exploring the city and the surrounding area, Oasis Oh! is a great choice.
Family-Friendly Fun at the Grand Oasis Palm
If you are travelling as a family and are looking for a beachside resort with something for everyone, the Grand Oasis Palm in the heart of Cancun’s hotel zone definitely has families figured out.
In addition to a beautiful sand beach, there are several pools on the property with large shallow areas that are perfect for kids of all ages. And when it comes to accommodations, besides the 380+ rooms available there are also a few of the rooms specifically set up as family suites, with a ‘grownup room’ on one side and colourful, playful décor in the adjoining kids’ room.
Kids and adults alike are sure to find plenty of dining options as well with 16 restaurants and 10 bars on the property, serving everything from traditional buffets to creative fusion cuisine like Maki Taco (a tapas-style Japanese/Mexican restaurant).
The Grand Oasis Palm’s kid-friendly amenities go above and beyond in their Kiddo Zone which comes with everything a child could want. There’s a playroom that any princess would envy, a video game suite and theatre, kid-sized kitchen for cooking up fun treats, splash pools and even lounge chairs perfectly scaled-down to suit little guests.
Certified child care workers make sure there’s plenty to keep the kids occupied, and there’s a full-sized Pirate Ship moored beside the resort that takes families out for cruises on the ocean.
You don’t have to have kids to come to the Oasis Palm, but if you do, you can be sure the little ones will have as much fun on your vacation as you will.
The Nightlife Never Stops at the Grand Oasis Cancun
Cancun is still a favourite destination for young adults, especially during university and college break, and the Grand Oasis Cancun has always been a popular all-inclusive choice for this crowd, not just for its spectacular beach, but also for the entertainment options on-site.
Whatever your age group or taste, you are sure to find something here that satisfies your idea of fun, whether that’s a beachside bar with live DJs, live music acts with name-brand performers, Vegas-style shows or theme parties. And speaking of Vegas, the Grand Oasis is also the only hotel on the strip with a casino on the property – the Red Casino.
Physically, the Grand Oasis Cancun is the largest Oasis property, with a meandering pool (the longest in Latin America!) winding through tropical gardens and palm trees. There are ponds filled with koi, and even the occasional peacock wandering the grounds (peacocks are a favourite of the Oasis owner). And with 17 restaurants and 15 bars to explore, you might run out of time before getting to try all of them.
There are 3 categories of rooms on the property spread out in several buildings: the more affordable Oasis Lite, the Grand Oasis, and the luxury Pyramid category if you want to spoil yourself with included perks like a private beach with Bali beds and concierge service, or dinners at some of the resort’s top-rated restaurants (Careyes is #1 on Trip Advisor). You’ll also have access to an exclusive private check-in and upgraded rooms and amenities.
Regardless of which category you choose, be sure to catch the Red Circus show in the Pyramid’s glass-topped atrium – a colourful evening spectacle that is not to be missed.
Indulge in Romance at the Grand Oasis Sens
If you’re looking for an indulgent adult-only experience, you’ll want to consider the Grand Oasis Sens, a 21+ all-inclusive resort located on one of the most beautiful stretches of Cancun coastline.
Grand Oasis Sens is definitely a resort that will appeal to couples, with plenty of romantic diversions and activities, whether it’s a fine dining experience at one of their renowned restaurants, (Benazuza, Black Hole and Sakura Sunset are all ranked in the top 5 on Trip Advisor), a spa treatment at the Sensoria Spa or an upscale wine-tasting for two at the Box Bar.
The white sand beach here is beautiful, offering plenty of opportunity for long walks up and down the coast, or if you’re a pool person, the swim-up Wet Bar is a perfect alternative for lounging and soaking up the sun.
Or if fun in the pool is what you’re looking for, the Grand Oasis Sens staff host poolside activities and even a weekly foam party in their topless-optional pool with live DJ and dancers.
If you really want to take the romance to a higher level, the resort’s Sian Ka’an luxury category offers upgraded inclusions and rooms with private plunge pools or jacuzzis and beautiful terraces overlooking the ocean. Sian Ka’an guests also enjoy a private beach featuring Bali beds with bar service, so you can literally spend all day – or night – in bed!
Relaxing and Luxurious Calm Awaits at Grand Oasis Tulum
If the word ‘vacation’ is synonymous with ‘relaxation’, there’s no better place than the Grand Oasis Tulum on the Mayan Riviera, whether you are travelling as a family or as grown-ups. The resort is laid out on beautiful tropical grounds, with 3 categories of guest rooms (Lite, Grand Oasis and Sian Ka’an) which all have access to a protected beach. The beach here is ideal for swimming or snorkeling, thanks to an off-shore reef that keeps the waters near the beach calm and filled with colourful fish.
The Grand Oasis section of the resort consists of multi-room units built around family-friendly pools and there’s even a small Kidd-O club with its own swim up pool ‘bar’ for the little ones.
The Sian Ka’an side of the resort has a modern, all-white aesthetic and premium options for its all-adult guests, including a luxurious sun terrace with private lounge, exclusive restaurants and premium bars, and beautiful room options that include tiered terraces, plunge pools and ocean views.
Whether you are enjoying a massage out on the pier, or paddle-boarding amongst the fish in the beach, an escape to the Grand Oasis Tulum will leave every guest who visits feeling rejuvenated.
“Oasis Loves You”
One of the most important steps in planning a great vacation is choosing the hotel or resort that is right for you. Oasis Hotels and Resorts understands this, and their 6 resorts in Cancun and Tulum strive to deliver something for every type of traveller.
It’s their way of living up to their tagline, ‘Oasis Loves U’, and providing a getaway that you will love as well.
Jane Canapini and Henk Geurts are the husband and wife team behind GrownupTravels.com, a website offering inspiration and information for travellers 45+. They believe that “the best souvenirs are stories”, and while Jane obsesses over uncovering the unique and the boutique around the world, Henk focuses – literally – on capturing the photos of their travels.