A couple of weeks ago, Ed and I headed off on the very long journey to Cancun in Mexico for our honeymoon. We flew with Thomas Cook and stayed at the absolutely incredible adults only Secrets resort in Playa Mujeres.
Our week long stay was simply amazing, and if it wasn’t for my intense fear of long haul flights and the anxiety attack I experienced on our flight back home, I would go there again in an instant.
In fact, if we ever took the kids to Cancun, we would go to the neighbouring hotel Dreams, as it was also lovely and, being newly built, it was also in immaculate condition.
I wanted to talk about why we enjoyed our trip so much, and the things that really stood out for us about the Secrets and Dreams resorts.
I have been to all-inclusive hotels in the past, but this was a whole other level of luxury. Almost everything Secrets has to offer is complimentary, and included in the rate of the stay itself.
When we arrived, we were handed a glass of champagne, and a freshly baked cookie, and shown to our room where the concierge pointed out the in-room mini bar which was restocked daily with bottles of water, soft drinks and beers (totally free of charge), and the iPad which allowed us to order room service 24 hours a day, again without charge.
Drinks and food are all complimentary, and rather than being limited to one buffet option, Secrets (and its sister hotel Dreams) have a huge variety of restaurants to choose from, each with different cuisines, some a la carte, some buffet, and all of them complimentary throughout your stay.
The only additional restaurant charges we came across were if you wanted to order a bottle from the premium wine list, although glasses of house wines, and all other drinks (including premium spirits and every cocktail imaginable), were available with meals and from the bars during opening hours. A limited selection of alcohol is also available from the room service menu, and is again complimentary.
The entertainment programme is complimentary, and there are also on-site watersports including boat hire, which simply requires a refundable deposit, meaning you can always find something to keep you busy during the day if you want a break from sunbathing or the pool.
There is a golf course on-site, which is free to use as such, but a fee is charged to hire the golf buggies, and this is mandatory. You will also need to pay a hire fee if you haven’t brought your own clubs. This does make the price fairly expensive, and Ed decided not to play a round for this reason, which was a shame.
The spa is also an additional cost, and I must admit, the prices were fairly high and a little off-putting, even if you factor in the money-off coupons they provided us with at check-in. We opted not to use the spa, but this didn’t detract from the quality of our stay, and if you were looking to have a specific treatment during your stay, they had offers available on the iPad daily, which would make it more affordable.
From the minute we set foot on the resort, to the moment we left, we were treated with the utmost care and attention. Nothing was too much trouble, no request was overlooked. Everything was done with a smile, and it seemed genuine, which I haven’t always felt in other hotels.
The staff look after you throughout the resort, from the front of house team in the lobby area, to the drivers who will take you to and from the different areas of the resort in the golf buggies.
The restaurant staff will guide you to your table, pull out a chair, and ask you if you would like anything to drink, even if you have arrived with a drink in hand already. They will guide you through their menu, help you with your order, and check everything is ok, and whether you would like more of anything. Without asking, water will be topped up, and plates will be cleared.
Around the pool, staff will be happy to bring you drinks from the bars, meaning you don’t have to move a muscle, if you so wish. The entertainment staff will cajole you into joining in, but lightly and without making you feel uncomfortable or forced, should you not wish to take part. If you do take part, they will take the time to get to know you, and smile encouragingly if you feel nervous or unsure.
The maids work tirelessly to clean the rooms during the day, and provide an optional turn-down service during the early evening as well. If you need anything at all, it is available at the touch of a button using your in-room iPad, which also houses a huge amount of information about all aspects of the resort, the sister hotel Dreams, and the local area and all it has to offer.
As I’ve mentioned, there are a huge variety of restaurants available at Secrets, and indeed at their sister hotel Dreams, which you have full access to as a guest. The majority of restaurants do not need a reservation, although during busy periods, they may need to put you on a short waiting list. However, the Japanese restaurants are extremely popular and these do require a booking in advance to avoid disappointment.
I am a bit of a fussy eater, and so we didn’t try all of the restaurants during our stay, but those we did eat at we enjoyed. There is a mix of cuisines including Italian, French, and of course a couple of Mexican restaurants. One of our favourite meals was at the Brazilian restaurant at Dreams, where we were able to enjoy food from the buffet selection before being presented with a variety of meats at our table.
There are also a couple of buffet restaurants, which offer a real variety of options if you and your travel companions have different tastes in foods, which is the case with Ed and I. We really enjoyed a meal we had at lunchtime in the main buffet restaurant at Secrets, and our breakfasts there each day.
The service at all the restaurants was impeccable, and we felt very well looked after throughout our stay but especially during a meal on our second to last night, when I experienced an anxiety attack and was unable to stay for the food we had ordered. The member of staff at the Mexican restaurant at Dreams was so kind and caring, and called for help from the concierge team at the hotel as soon as we said we wouldn’t be able to stay. He went above and beyond what we would have expected from him, and we made sure to return and thank him the next day for his kindness.
We ate at the Italian restaurant a couple of times during our stay and I liked the food, although we did find the menu a little limited and the portions fairly small compared to other restaurants on-site (we mainly returned a second time as I wasn’t sure about the menu at the neighbouring French restaurant).
There is definitely something for everyone, including more laidback lunchtime options such as nachos, burgers, hot dogs, tacos and pizza available from the poolside bars.
There’s even a pop-up food station which offered foods from different nationalities on an almost daily basis – the burger I had from there one day was delicious, and I enjoyed it on my sun lounger next to the pool whilst listening to live music from a reggae band – perfect!
If you do struggle to find something you would like to eat in the restaurants, or are simply not feeling up to going out, the room service menu offers everything from pastas and salads to steaks, chicken and fish dishes and individual pizzas, which I had a few of during our stay and absolutely loved.
The only thing I would have liked would have been the option to takeaway food from the restaurants, which as far as I know wasn’t possible (and would have been especially useful on the night I had my anxiety attack, as we had been looking forward to our meal and didn’t get to eat it), and I wasn’t too keen on the desserts whilst we were out there (cheesecakes especially are not like they are in England), and we usually skipped dessert, which is not really an issue when there’s so much else on offer.
The entertainment team were brilliant during our time at the resort. Carlos, in particular, worked tirelessly to get people involved and his water Zumba and quizzes in the pool always had lots of people taking part. He had such charisma, and we definitely noticed a difference when he wasn’t around for these activities.
There was also a daily aqua aerobics class and both water and beach volleyball, which got quite competitive!
As well as Carlos and his team, there was a daily schedule of events around the pool and across the resort ranging from lessons in Spanish, Cigar making and Tequila tasting along with plenty of live music poolside.
In the evenings, there were a range of different traditional acts to watch including a fire show and a mariachi band. One night there was a silent disco, which was hilarious to observe!
Dreams also had a lively entertainment programme, as well as their Rock of Ages show (which had to be booked in advance and for an additional cost), which I believe finished for the season during our time there. We didn’t go along, but heard good things from those who did.
It has to be said, the resort is stunning. Set within a natural reserve in Cancun, with its own private beach overlooking the Isle of Mujures itself, Secrets and neighbouring Dreams boast a beautiful setting for a vacation from the rest of the world.
As I’ve mentioned, we didn’t feel the need to leave the resort once during our stay, but we could have done had we wished, with plenty to see and do in the area.
We were more than happy to stay in the resort and simply lie back and relax, with drinks and food available whenever we wanted them.
The pool is lovely and large, and we never felt crowded, even during the busiest times, and we enjoyed taking photos overlooking the sea in the infitity style pool.
We also headed down to the beach a few times for photos, and to go to the beach bar complete with swings instead of stools, and for a boat trip on our last full day.
During our buggy rides to and from the lobby, Dreams and Secrets, we found ourselves deep within a jungle of vegetation, and it was a brilliant experience from start to finish.
I truly would recommend a trip to Secrets Play Mujures for anybody looking to visit Cancun. I haven’t ever experienced a trip quite like it and I felt 100% safe during our visit, even after hearing of shootings on the beach.
Not once did I feel at risk, even with armed guards patrolling on the beach, if anything this simply made me feel safer, and in today’s world, I think it’s near impossible to find a destination without some form of threat unfortunately.
We stayed in a junior garden suite, which was lovely and perfectly suited for our stay, but if you are looking for something even more luxurious, their swim up and ocean suites looked incredible!
We paid for our trip ourselves, with a little help from my dad as a wedding gift. All opinions and photos are my own.