6 Best All-Inclusive Resorts In Rivera Maya, Mexico

Mexico’s Riviera Maya is home to endless miles of white sand beaches, pristine tropical waters, and some of the best snorkeling and scuba diving there is in the world. With such spectacular features, it’s no wonder travelers flock here to experience the excitement and relaxation for themselves.

Along the Riviera Maya, you will easily find many, many all-inclusive resorts. There are almost too many to count! Some of them stand proudly in more populated areas like Playa Del Carmen, while others are more tucked away along Highway 307, Riviera Maya’s main drag. So how do you pick which is best for you?

If you’re going to go all-inclusive, you gotta do it right! The sheer amount of bars, restaurants, and activities offered at these all-inclusive resorts make them worth every dollar spent. The resorts on this list are some of the best bang-for-your-buck options out there in the Riviera Maya and Playa Del Carmen area.

So without further ado, here are my top 6 favorite all-inclusive resorts in the Riviera Maya area of Mexico. I’ve helped you break them all down based on their most notable features, distances away from the airport, whether the resorts are adults-only or family-friendly, and more!

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6 Best All-Inclusive Resorts In Rivera Maya, Mexico

1. Secrets Maroma Beach Riviera Cancun

Price Range: $$$

Lobby - Secrets Maroma Beach All Inclusive Resort

Located about a 30-minute drive from Playa del Carmen and a 35-minute drive away from the Cancun International Airport, Secrets Maroma Beach Riviera Cancun is perfectly situated on a private beach. Yes, you can expect a private white sand beach to relax at any time of the day! What’s even cooler is that the pool overlooks the fine white sands and turquoise blue waters of the beach. What paradise…

After lounging by the beach or the pool, get pampered at the world-class Secrets Spa by Pevonia. Each spa treatment comes with a complimentary hydrotherapy circuit session which includes the use of a sauna, steam room, and various hot/cold pools.

Spa not your thing? No worries, there are numerous other activities to partake in including playing tennis, basketball, volleyball, mini-golf, as well as doing yoga or archery, taking dance lessons, cocktail lessons, or aqua-aerobics classes, snorkeling, kayaking, windsurfing, and much more. There’s even a dance club on the property for guests to enjoy well past midnight!

Once you get your fill of activity, enjoy top-shelf spirits and premium wines in any of the six bars on the property before heading to dinner at one of the resort’s 9 restaurants. You can expect an international buffet, a cafe, seven a la carte restaurants, and 24-hour room service. What does this mean for you? Around-the-clock gourmet dining!

In terms of the guest suites, all 412 rooms feature thoughtful touches like bathrobes and slippers, free WiFi, furnished balconies, sitting areas, and premium bedding. If you’re looking for easy access to the pool, definitely opt for one of the swim-up rooms.

AT A GLANCE: Secrets Maroma Beach Riviera Cancun

  • Adults only all-inclusive resort
  • 412 suites
  • 9 restaurants, 1 coffee shop
  • 6 bars
  • 14 outdoor pools (2 main pools, various semi-private pools for swim-up suites)
  • 30 minutes by car from Playa Del Carmen
  • 35 minutes from Cancun International Airport

2. Excellence Riviera Cancun

Price Range: $$$

Best Things To Do In Cancun Mexico - Excellence Playa Mujeres

I’m a huge fan of the Excellence Riviera Cancun. This resort (plus the rest of the Excellence Resorts) features peaceful beaches with fine, white sands, several outdoor pools, the most relaxing spa and hydrotherapy area you’ll ever find in this budget range, and ample spaces for relaxation.

The all-inclusive rate covers usage of the 5 pools, 6 hot tubs, as well as food and beverages at 9+ international restaurants and 10+ bars. On top of that, they have tons of scheduled activities throughout the day, so even if you do nothing else around Cancun or Playa Del Carmen, you’re sure to have a lot to do at the resort.

Some examples include group aquatic Zumba, bike rides around the property, poker and casino night, Mexican fiesta buffets, workout classes, free stand-up paddleboard and kayak usage, and nightly entertainment.

The rooms are clean, spacious, and beautifully decorated with light colors accentuated by a light Meditteranean blue. I really do love how they’ve decorated these rooms because I’m always immediately transported into a state of relaxation and tranquility upon check-in. The rooms also come with furnished balconies or patios and four-whirlpool tubs.

 

If you want easy and direct access to the pool and your own personal hammock and daybed on the lawn, opt for the Junior Swim-Up Suite!

You can usually find pretty good deals on Excellence Resorts if you book early enough (often 40%+ off room rates).

AT A GLANCE: Excellence Riviera Cancun

  • Adults only all-inclusive resort
  • 440 guest rooms
  • 8 restaurants
  • 10 bars
  • 5 hot tubs, 6 pools
  • 40 minutes by car from Playa Del Carmen
  • 25 minutes from Cancun International Airport

3. Hotel Xcaret Arte

Price Range: $$$

Hotel Xcaret Arte - Best All Inclusive Resorts For Adults In Riviera Maya
Courtesy of Booking.com

Hotel Xcaret Arte is a new resort that opened its doors in mid-2021. When you stay at Hotel Xcaret Arte, you’re opting for the All-Fun All-Inclusive concept, where “all-inclusive” is defined a little differently than traditional resorts.

A stay at Hotel Xcaret Arte includes unlimited access to the most iconic eco-parks in Cancun and Riviera Maya: Xcaret, Xel-Há, Xplor, Xplor Fuego, Xenses, Xoximilco, Xavage and Xenotes. Together, these parks/activities will add up to 200 experiences of adventure, culture, and a whole bunch of fun!

Moving on to the accommodations themselves, Hotel Xcaret Arte has 900 adults only (includes young adults ages 16 and up) suites inspired by artists. These rooms are all light, airy, and decorated with beautiful, timeless decor. Its eco-integrating architecture blends design and nature in a loving and responsible way, achieving a balance between ethics and aesthetics.

You’ll get to enjoy 9 gastronomic experiences under the care of some pretty big-time chefs in Mexico as well as various bars serving up carefully designed cocktails and coffee drinks. And not only do the restaurants serve delicious food, but the decor and ambiance of the restaurants and bars are drop-dead gorgeous.

On top of the all-inclusive food, drink, park access, and transportation to/from the parks, you’ll also have complimentary access to Mexican artistic workshops including weaving, painting, pottery, dance, and vegan cooking.

With all there is to do on the property as well as in the various parks, you are guaranteed to never have a dull moment. Now that’s what we like to see when resorts call themselves all-inclusive!

AT A GLANCE: Hotel Xcaret Arte 

  • Adults only all-inclusive resort (includes young adults ages 16 and up)
  • 900 guest rooms
  • 10 restaurants, 2 coffee shops
  • 12 bars/lounges
  • 3 swim-up bars
  • 15 outdoor pools
  • 17 minutes by car from Playa Del Carmen
  • 1 hour from Cancun International Airport

You may also like: Xcaret Park Review: Is It Worth The Money?

4. Grand Velas Riviera Maya

Price Range: $$$$

Grand Velas Riviera Maya - Best All Inclusive Resorts in Riviera Maya
Courtesy of Booking.com

Grand Velas Riviera Maya is a top-of-the-line option if you’ve got a bit more budget to play around with. Savor gourmet cuisine from renowned chefs at one of the property’s 8 restaurants, go sunbathing at the beach, lounge at one of the 5 outdoor swimming pools, or get some much-needed relaxation in their top-notch spa.

If you’re a foodie, you’ll be glad to know that one of the restaurants even has its own AAA Five-Diamond award! And if that’s not enticing enough, their spa is also one of the largest in the country! Other luxury perks include butler service, various activities throughout your stay, and non-motorized sports — all of which are included in the all-inclusive price at Grand Velas Riviera Maya.

In terms of the property’s layout, the guest suites are spread across three buildings, one of which is adults-only. All 539 guest suites feature free WiFi, private spa tubs and jetted tubs, as well as premium bedding and pillow menus for that added touch of hospitality.

On top of getting a ton of space (rooms are well over 1,200 sq ft) You can opt for suites with a range of additional features such as private terraces, plunge pools, and unbeatable views.

This hotel is hands-down the most upscale option on this list, but it doesn’t come cheap!

AT A GLANCE: Grand Velas Riviera Maya 

  • Kid-friendly all-inclusive resort
  • 539 guest rooms
  • 8 restaurants
  • 6 bars
  • 3 outdoor swimming pools, 2 indoor swimming pools, 4 hot tubs
  • 20 minutes by car from Playa Del Carmen
  • 45 minutes from Cancun International Airport

5. Royal Hideaway Playacar – Adults Only

Price Range: $$

Royal Hideaway Playacar - Best All Inclusive Resorts In Riviera Maya
Courtesy of Booking.com

The Royal Hideaway Playacar is another one of my top recommendations for all-inclusive, located on the white sand beach on the Riviera Maya, offering an adults-only experience.

The 201 luxurious rooms on the property are surrounded by lush gardens with the added benefit of a private concierge service and endless amenities.

The hotel features 6 restaurants with the most notable dining feature being The Chef’s Table at Ventanas restaurant. In fact, this is the only restaurant on the Yucatán peninsula based on interaction with the chef.

The Royal Hideaway also features 6 pools, all large and with unbeatable views, including 3 relaxation pools and an infinity pool with a waterfall! There is also a spa (5-star spa called The Retreat) and a fitness center, as well as an endless amount of water, fitness, and sports activities offered throughout the day.

AT A GLANCE: The Royal Hideaway Playacar

  • Adults only all-inclusive resort
  • 201 guest rooms
  • 6 pools
  • 6 restaurants and a theater for dinners
  • 4 bars (no swim-up bar)
  • 10 minutes by car from Playa Del Carmen
  • 1 hour from Cancun International Airport

6. Paradisus Playa Del Carmen – La Esmeralda

Price Range: $$

Paradisus Playa Del Carmen - La Esmeralda
Courtesy of Booking.com

Paradisus Playa Del Carmen La Esmeralda is a high-quality, family-friendly resort in the Riviera Maya that features direct access to a wonderful white-sand beach. In fact, it’s one of the best all-inclusive resort options in the area for families!

Kid-friendly features at the property include a pirate ship playground and a kids zone. The little ones will have a ton of fun at the tropical-themed water park boasting three swimming pools, giant water buckets, and five water slides.

The Paradisus Playa del Carmen La Esmeralda also offers a Family Concierge program that includes a private pool and lounge, butler service, a private beach area, and lots of in-room perks that children will love. The Family Concierge rooms are even specially designed to offer superior comfort and greater privacy and are the perfect setting for the ultimate family vacation experience.

Adults need not worry because the resort has its fair share of bars and activities to enjoy! In addition to a great on-site spa, adults can enjoy tasting sessions for fine wines and tequila, develop culinary skills in sushi classes, learn how to make authentic guacamole, dance at a pool party complete with a live DJ and so much more.

And while Paradisus Playa del Carmen La Esmeralda is great for people traveling with families, their sister resort, Paradisus Playa del Carmen La Perla, is a top option for travelers looking for an affordable adults-only all-inclusive resort near Playa Del Carmen. In fact, during the countless hours of research I did for my first all-inclusive vacation planning, La Perla was my second choice behind The Excellence Rivera Cancun!

AT A GLANCE: Paradisus Playa Del Carmen La Esmeralda

  • Kid-friendly all-inclusive resort (for adults only, consider Paradisus Playa del Carmen La Perla)
  • 501 guest rooms
  • 3 large pools, plus a fun water park with a pirate ship
  • 14 restaurants
  • 9 bars, 1 coffee shop
  • 12 minutes by car from Playa Del Carmen
  • 50 minutes from Cancun International Airport


What Is Included At An All-Inclusive Resort?

Each all-inclusive resort is different, but the majority of them function similarly in that the price you pay will often include a double-occupancy overnight guest room, food and beverage, Wi-Fi, daily entertainment, pool use, non-motorized watersports (kayaks, stand-up paddleboards), fitness center and classes, kids activities, as well as any taxes and service fees.

There is typically some sort of private beach that hotel guests can access.

Depending on which all-inclusive resort you go with, some may also offer airport transfers, premium watersports (jet skis, scuba-diving), and unlimited top-shelf alcoholic drinks at the all-inclusive price.


What Is NOT Included At An All-Inclusive Resort?

It is important to know that the term “all-inclusive” doesn’t literally mean you get anything and everything that’s offered at the resort. Here are a few examples of things that typically cost extra:

  • There is usually a premium-level tier of guests that often have their own pool, lounge, and section of the beach. You’ll usually have to upgrade to some type of membership to use these parts of the property.
  • Spas and massages, golfing, and (sometimes) premium liquor usually cost extra.
  • Services such as laundry, transportation, tours and activities, and motorized watersports (like jet skis) are typically excluded.

This is why it’s so important to do your homework before booking a resort. You’ll want to know what their list of inclusions consists of and what their list of extra-cost activities/features consists of. If it’s unclear, simply reach out to the hotel to confirm.


And there you have it–my favorite all-inclusive resorts in the Riviera Maya and Playa Del Carmen area! Each one offers something slightly different and excels at something different. No matter which one on this list you choose, you’re sure to have a fantastic time.

I really hope all the prior research I did in order to get this post out to you has made your all-inclusive resort decision-making process a bit simpler. Happy travels!

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