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Meagan Drillinger, Contributor
With thousands of miles of coastline and world-famous beach towns bookending both sides of the country, Mexico regularly draws travelers from around the globe seeking sun, sand and relaxation. It’s no surprise, then, that the country has perfected the art of the all-inclusive. In Mexico, all-inclusive resorts have evolved to match the modern-day traveler; rather than offering the same cookie-cutter experience at hotel after hotel, the best all-inclusive resorts in Mexico are so thoughtfully curated, it’s impossible not to find a property that feels tailor-made for you.
Whether you’re seeking a hushed romantic hideaway or a wellness experience complete with sound baths and vegan cuisine, Mexico has an all-inclusive resort to match. Our top overall selection is Excellence Playa Mujeres, an all-suite resort on an idyllic beach in Playa Mujeres. For luxury lovers, it’s hard to top Grand Velas Los Cabos, with its incredible ocean views and fine dining. And for those with little ones in tow, a family vacation at Nickelodeon Hotels And Resorts Rivera Maya is bound to be unforgettable. Below, we’ve rounded up the best all-inclusive resorts in Mexico for every type of 2023 trip, all of them prime for unplugging, rejuvenating, or dialing up the energy.
Best All-Inclusive Resort In Mexico Overall: Excellence Playa Mujeres
Excellence Playa Mujeres
Who Will Love It: Fun-loving foodies who appreciate an all-suite resort on a picture-perfect beach
All-Star Amenities: More than a dozen restaurants and bars, oversized suites; spa; one of the best beach fronts in the Mexican Caribbean
What Not to Miss: An Excellence Club worth splurging on due to its upgraded perks and amenities
Location: Playa Mujeres
It’s difficult to choose just one all-inclusive resort in Mexico to be the best of the best, but Excellence Playa Mujeres is an undeniable contender thanks to its ability to score outstanding marks in almost every single area. Sun worshippers will swoon over the powder soft stretch of bone-white sand. Wellness gurus can tap into a menu of revitalization at the Miilé Spa, complete with a hydrotherapy circuit and steam rooms. Foodies have their pick of more than a dozen restaurants and bars, including cuisine from Italy, Mexico, India, Thailand, and beyond. It’s not only a resort that has a little bit of something for everyone, but it’s a resort that does that little bit of something exquisitely. No matter what your vacation vibe is, Excellence Playa Mujeres certainly lives up to its name, and the dreamy, idyllic Playa Mujeres community just north of Cancun is what a Mexican Caribbean dream is made of.
Best High-End All-Inclusive Resort In Mexico: Grand Velas Los Cabos
Grand Velas Los Cabos
Who Will Love It: Low-key couples and families who love a stunning pool scene, spacious rooms, and fabulous food
All-Star Amenities: 35,000-square-foot spa; Champagne butler
What Not to Miss: A sensorial dining experience at Cocina de Autor
Location: Los Cabos
It’s hard not to feel like a VIP the minute you check into Grand Velas Los Cabos, an all-suite resort that truly pays attention to the details. A Champagne butler greets you with a complimentary glass to toast your arrival before leading you to one of the property’s 1,100 square foot suites boasting ocean views and private terraces. For those looking for next-level opulence, the property’s Grand Class Corner Suites in particular boast a jaw-dropping panoramic ocean view along with private plunge pools on the terrace.
It’s not an all-inclusive vacation without some pampering, and the 35,000 square foot SE Spa is the perfect place to do just that. One of the largest spas in the region, it includes a seven-step water ceremony as well as a menu of locally-inspired body treatments, massages, facials, and educational workshops. Guests won’t want to miss the cuisine at Grand Velas Los Cabos, either. Dinner at Velas 10 is unforgettable, but the meal not to miss is the eight to 10-course tasting menu at Cocina de Autor. Make sure to nab a reservation.
Best Boutique All-Inclusive Resort In Mexico: Mahekal Beach Resort
Mahekal Beach Resort
Who Will Love It: Those who don’t want to choose between a beach vacation and the energy of downtown Playa del Carmen
All-Star Amenities: Prime beachfront in Playa del Carmen; Beach House King Plunge Pools
What Not to Miss: An alfresco dinner at Fuego Restaurante Y Cantina
Location: Playa del Carmen
Mahekal Beach Resort gives guests the best of both worlds: not only is it perched on one of the longest stretches of beachfront in Riviera Maya, but it is also just a few steps from the buzzy energy of Playa del Carmen. The boutique all-inclusive resort features a collection of palapa-topped bungalows in different settings, from beachfront to poolside and jungle, as well as Beach House King Plunge Pools that guests will never want to leave.
The resort is fully all-inclusive, but guests do have the option to opt out of the plan if they would rather make room to enjoy the lively restaurant and nightlife scene of Playa del Carmen, which is just around the corner from the resort. Still, the walls of the resort create an oasis-like atmosphere that feels worlds away from the non-stop action of the city. It’s the perfect boutique all-inclusive resort for visitors to enjoy the luxuries of beach living, as well as soak up the energy of downtown Playa.
Best All-Inclusive Resort In Mexico For Families: Nickelodeon Hotels And Resorts Riviera Maya
Nickelodeon Hotels And Resorts Riviera Maya
Who Will Love It: Energetic families with a love for character encounters, waterparks, and lots of entertainment
All-Star Amenities: All oceanfront, swim-up suites and the largest waterpark in Mexico
What Not to Miss: The six-acre Aqua Nick water park with seven water slides, a Lazy River, and plenty of character encounters
Location: Puerto Morelos
Meet every child’s dream come true: a real-life escape into the world of Nickelodeon—slime, SpongeBob, and all—combined with plenty of opportunities for parents to relax and enjoy as well. Nickelodeon Hotels & Resorts Riviera Maya is a wonderful all-inclusive resort for families, with prime Riviera Maya beachfront access and an interactive, highly immersive family fun energy. The all-suite resort takes the Nick extreme to the max—think Patrick-shaped chairs, Ninja Turtle graffiti, and the official Nickelodeon Place hub, complete with a signature Character Breakfast and the official Club Nick.
The star of the show at the resort is Aqua Nick, the largest water park in Mexico with seven waterslides and a lazy river, with unlimited entry included in the room rates. Families also flip for the Main Stage, where a weekly roster of shows and performances bring families together, all inspired by the famous game shows from Nickelodeon—yes, you may even get slimed. Adults can catch a break of their own behind the doors of the tranquil Náay Spa, a 4,200-square-foot oasis of tranquility, including a couples suite, sauna, and steam rooms.
Best All-Inclusive Resort In Mexico For Romance: Beloved Playa Mujeres
Beloved Playa Mujeres
Who Will Love It: Couples looking to disconnect from the world to reconnect in blissed out luxury
All-Star Amenities: Couples-only suites; three swimming pools and four Jacuzzis; a sprawling spa
What Not to Miss: An oceanfront dinner under the stars at El Mar
Location: Playa Mujeres
Beloved Playa Mujeres was created exclusively for romance. The couples-only resort sits on a sugary stretch of sun-bleached sand in the quiet, dreamy Playa Mujeres area just north of Cancun. Aside from the spacious suites with in-room jacuzzis or outdoor plunge pools, the powder soft sand and oceanfront dining, or the tranquil (and spacious) spa, what’s wonderful about Beloved Playa Mujeres is that couples can be as active and engaged, or secluded and private, as they desire.
Active couples can choose from wellness workshops and yoga classes to paddle boarding, sailing, kayaking, and cooking classes. And for those who prefer to stay low-key and one-on-one, the resort’s spacious suites include either in-room jacuzzis or private pools—perfect for alone time. Guests have a selection of restaurants and bars to choose from, but one of the best is the oceanfront, toes-in-the-sand experience at El Mar. And, of course, couples should plan to book a day at The Beloved Spa for its famous hydrotherapy circuit and menu of treatments and rituals.
Best All-Inclusive Resort In Mexico For Groups: Hyatt Ziva Los Cabos
Hyatt Ziva Los Cabos
Who Will Love It: Groups of friends or families whose interests run the gamut
All-Star Amenities: Seven restaurants; swim-up suites; floating fire pits; the KidZ Club & Water Park
What Not to Miss: An on-point pool scene with a vibe that suits everyone in the party
Location: Los Cabos
Group travel can notoriously be difficult to plan, with so many different personality types to please. But with nearly 600 suites overlooking the legendary Playa Azul in San Jose del Cabo, Hyatt Ziva Los Cabos is the resort to book for travelers that need a little bit of everything. This all-inclusive does its best to make sure that everyone in the party feels like they’re coming home—plus a few added surprises for flair and panache. The hub of activity at the resort is undoubtedly its pool scene, from the massive freeform pool practically strewn with lounge chairs to the adult-only swim-up bar and the sprawling KidZ pool and mini water park with five slides and two water dump buckets. For those whose ideal vacation involves bringing it down a notch, a day of reprieve at the two-story Zen Spa, with 15 treatment rooms and a salon, is just what the doctor ordered. And when it comes time to pick an afternoon activity, your group will have plenty to choose from: the property has a robust fitness and sports program, with volleyball and basketball courts, lap swimming, a fitness center, workout classes, and yoga.
Best Spa & Wellness All-Inclusive Resort In Mexico: Palmaïa, The House of AïA
Palmaïa, The House of AïA
Who Will Love It: Spiritual seekers and wellness worshippers craving a secluded, sanctuary-style retreat
All-Star Amenities: Oceanfront swim-up suites; a jungle-shrouded spa; plant-based menus; private beach; therapies for the body and mind
What Not to Miss: A series of in-house retreats with various themes centered around wellness
Location: Playa del Carmen
There are spa and wellness resorts, and then there is Palmaïa, The House of AïA, a premiere spa and wellness resort that takes well-being to the next level. Much more than a resort with a great spa, Palmaïa, The House of AïA incorporates wellness—both body and mind—into every aspect of its design and purpose. The word of the day here is intention, and travelers will have no problem setting one at this tranquil hideaway with numerous classes, ceremonies, and rituals to partake in, including yoga underneath palm trees, drum circles, sound healing, group meditation, tarot, and more.
Alongside its commitment to wellness, the 234 thoughtfully designed suites at Palmaïa are cruelty-free, meaning they are free of any animal and animal-tested products. The resort also uses zero plastic bottles and solar panels, as well as other renewable forms of energy. The spa at Palmaïa, The House of AïA is much more than a menu of treatments: it’s an entire journey. Featuring glass walls in a jungle setting, you can take in the lush views during your treatment, then take an invigorating swim in the on-site cenote.
Best Beachfront All-Inclusive Resort In Mexico: Live Aqua Beach Resort Cancun
Live Aqua Beach Resort Cancun
Who Will Love It: Travelers for whom without a beach, there is no vacation
All-Star Amenities: Aqua Club for elevated amenities; Harmony Spa
What Not to Miss: Succulent ceviches and fish tacos at the beachfront; toes-in-the-sand Sea Corner
With more than 5,000 miles of coastline in Mexico, it’s difficult to narrow down the very best beachfront all-inclusive. But if what you’re looking for is a consistently perfect stretch of beachfront (plus all the trimmings), Live Aqua Beach Resort Cancun is certainly at the top of the list. Kissed by lapping, turquoise-colored waves and peppered with languidly swaying palms, this beach is the stuff Mexico postcards are made of.
Add to that an intimately sized luxury all-inclusive with several pools and more than 10 restaurants and bars, and this is much more than a beautiful slice of real estate. The resort has 371 rooms, all with ocean views, as well as Aqua Club rooms, which come with additional privileges and considerably more space. The thoughtfully curated spa has teamed up with luxe skincare line Natura Bissé and features 12 indoor treatment rooms and four outdoor rooms, as well as steam rooms, saunas, jacuzzi, and a Temazcal.
All-Inclusive Resort With The Best Views In Mexico: Villa del Palmar at the Islands of Loreto
Villa del Palmar at the Islands of Loreto
Who Will Love It: Travelers looking for luxury and seclusion
All-Star Amenities: Five outdoor pools; 18-hole golf course; a 39,000-square-foot Sabila Spa and Wellness Center
What Not to Miss: Hike up to the 17th hole on the golf course for one of the most jaw-dropping views in Baja
Location: Ensenada Blanca, Baja California Sur
A cult following of loyal devotees have been singing the praises of this stunningly beautiful all-inclusive resort for years. Limited direct flights into Loreto means that this resort is usually only known to people along the west coast, as well as southwestern U.S. cities. But it’s high time they share the wealth of beauty this resort has to offer, because the views truly are that incredible.
The 4,500-acre resort is within a gated community surrounded by slate-colored mountains, overlooking the indigo-colored Sea of Cortez. Perched overlooking the Bay of Danzante, the views from Villa del Palmar at the Islands of Loreto are a mix of towering mountains wrapped in puffy clouds, and a bay speckled with conical-peaked islands as far as the eye can see. The remote atmosphere of the resort, coupled with its all-inclusive amenities, are what make this one of the most unique all-inclusive resorts in Mexico. A new $42 million renovation at the resort resulted in the addition of 158 new rooms, as well as a new penthouse and oceanfront suites that overlook the bay.
Best Adults-Only All-Inclusive Resort In Mexico: UNICO 20°87° Hotel Riviera Maya
UNICO 20°87° Hotel Riviera Maya
Who Will Love It: Design lovers
All-Star Amenities: A stunning spa with hydrotherapy rituals
What Not to Miss: Brunch & Bubbles at the 20.87 signature restaurant
Location: Riviera Maya
Halfway between Playa del Carmen and Tulum, tucked on its own curve of beautiful white sand beach, sits the adults-only palatial playground UNICO 20°87° Hotel Riviera Maya. This beautifully designed resort with roughly 400 rooms, all of which boast ocean or partial-ocean views, is the perfect balance of sleek and rustic. Rooms on higher floors are blessed with deep soaking tubs, while those on the ground floors are all swim-up suites. No matter the room, each one features two of the most deliciously comfortable bathrobes—an amenity totally worth the mention.
Guests can choose their own adventure at UNICO 20°87° Hotel Riviera Maya. Those who want a party atmosphere will have a blast by the pool, where DJs spin daily during the many different afternoon parties. And for adults who want to lay low, the resort has plenty of quiet corners to steal away to, including the spacious suites, the decadent spa, or the quiet stretch of beach.
All-Inclusive Resort With The Best Amenities In Mexico: Hotel Xcaret Arte
Hotel Xcaret Arte
Who Will Love It: Travelers who never want to be bored
All-Star Amenities: Round-trip airport transfers; unlimited theme park access; on-property art workshops
What Not to Miss: A treatment in the cavernous spa, with secret cove treatment rooms and plunge pools tucked in cenote-themed caves
Location: Playa del Carmen
All-inclusive resorts are not short on included amenities, but certain resorts take that concept to the next level. One of those resorts is the impressive Hotel Xcaret Arte. This sprawling, all-inclusive, adults-only resort has 900 rooms, a seemingly endless selection of restaurants, and a strong emphasis on both relaxation and activities—all of which are included. With so many different things to do and places to play, this expansive resort never feels overwhelming.
Guests stay in one of five distinct “casas,” all of which serve as mini boutique hotels-within-hotels. In addition to the multitude of restaurants, pools, and art-themed workshops included in the rate, Hotel Xcaret Arte also includes round-trip airport transfers, an in-room mini bar, and unlimited access to any of the theme parks under the Grupo Xcaret umbrella. These theme parks include everything from zip lining and water parks, to cultural shows, fire performances, sensory experiences, and much more.
All-Inclusive With The Best Pool: Grand Solmar Pacific Dunes Resort, Golf And Spa
Grand Solmar Pacific Dunes Resort, Golf And Spa
Who Will Love It: Couples and families seeking relaxation
All-Star Amenities: Swim-up pool bars; infinity pools and hot tubs; outdoor movie nights; activity lagoon
What Not to Miss: The Tamma Wakoe Couples Massage at the spa
Location: Cabo San Lucas
Grand Solmar Pacific Dunes Resort, Golf And Spa is an all-inclusive resort that takes its commitment to guests’ pool time seriously. Its oceanfront infinity pool, complete with a palapa-topped swim-up Tide Bar, a selection of in-pool dining tables, and stunning beachfront views, is perfect for families. A second, adults-only pool offers much more tranquility, featuring in-pool chaise lounges and a front-row seat to explosive purple and orange Pacific Ocean sunsets. Adult guests can dine at the property’s adults-only Sunset Bar, which serves cocktails, wine, and a decadent sushi menu.
The heart of the action happens at the activity pool. This lagoon-shaped pool is perfect for active travelers; it’s large enough for both kayaking and stand-up paddle boarding. A rope swing and water slide provide endless entertainment for kids—and maybe even an adult or two. Whether you choose to spend your time at Grand Solmar swimming or just lounging by the water, there’s no better place for a poolside getaway.
Why Trust Forbes Vetted
The Forbes Vetted travel team has researched, written and published dozens of hotel guides featuring destinations across the globe. The travel section is overseen by Vetted’s senior travel editor, Astrid Taran, a 7-year industry veteran who’s visited over 30 countries. The writer of each of our hotel roundups is handpicked based on their area of expertise, whether they are area locals or avid travelers who have visited the destination frequently—and all have bylines in other reputable travel publications. Further, this story is regularly checked to ensure that all prices and information are as current as possible. It was last updated in October 2023.
About Meagan Drillinger, Your Mexico All-Inclusive Resorts Guide
Mexico has been more than a beat to me over the past 10 years—it’s been, quite literally, a second home. My adventures across Mexico have taken me from northern Baja to southern Chiapas, from remote beaches to pulsing cities, from dusty backpacker routes and hostels to the high thread counts and Champagne bars at the best resorts in the country. Today I call Puerto Vallarta my second home when I’m not off on assignment. My life as a travel writer has also taken me beyond Mexico and across the borders of Europe, Asia, Africa, South America, Central America and Australia. I spend more than half the year on the road, with my passport and my carry-on as my most prized (and only) possessions. In addition to writing for Forbes Vetted, I am also a contributing Mexico editor for Travel Weekly magazine. You can find more of my work in Travel + Leisure, Afar, Lonely Planet, Business Insider, and others.