There are multiple high-rise hotels along the beachfront strip known as the Zona Hotelera in the bustling travel destination of Cancun, but Grand Fiesta Americana Coral Beach stands out with its appealing balance of luxury accommodations and family-friendly offerings ranging from tropical pool settings, a deluxe spa, as well as two unique interactive dining experiences.
One of the biggest perks of Grand Fiesta Americana Coral Beach Cancun is that each of its 602 rooms offers a drop-dead gorgeous view of the stunning ocean as well as the lagoon-style pool spanning the length of the property. While the deco in some of the high-end suites may feel a bit dated (the property is planning an update shortly), the magical swirling hues of blues outdoors makes up for it and sets the stage for the relaxed and pampered vacation ahead.
Luxury rooms begin with Junior or Master Suites: expansive accommodations featuring marble floors and private sitting areas as well as ample terrace space furnished with reclining loungers tables and chairs. Rooms are a soothing neutral tone accented with bright turquoise pillows that perfectly match the gorgeous ocean view. For those seeking more pampering, there is the Grand Club Level, located at the top of the resort. This premium level offers access to the VIP Penthouse lounge with breath-taking panoramic views, a club concierge, VIP check-in and check-out, an assortment of beverages and snacks as well as three culinary presentations throughout the day. Exclusive Grand Club services and amenities are also extended at the Grand Beach Club & Sundeck with a separate lounging area on the beach fitted with premium padded chair lounges and beds thoughtfully divided into a family area (outfitted with shaded cribs for infants) and an adults-only section, for those seeking to snooze in the sun. There are two presidential suites available on either end of the resort. Dignitaries and movie stars are said to have graced the almost 5,500 square foot deluxe penthouse space which comes complete with an expansive wraparound terrace, private pool, oversized suites, and full kitchen.
Cancun’s Most Private Beach | Seemingly endless stretches of sand embrace the Caribbean on Cancun’s most secluded beach. Framed by swaying palms, the sprawling swimming pool offers three palapa-covered swim-up bars featuring specialty frozen cocktails and pool-friendly meals like shrimp cocktail, burgers, and guacamole. There are lounge chairs everywhere and if you are lucky, or arrive early enough to claim them, there are some Instagram-worthy chairs wading in strategic shallow levels of the pool. Friendly attendants supply cozy coral-colored towels and bring iced water to keep guests hydrated under the hot sun. The pool is a child’s paradise with numerous waterfalls, spouts, fountains, and even a volleyball net, it winds and curves alongside the property offering space and creating multiple areas for those who want to swim, play, have a drink or a light bite to eat, or simply sit and chat on the ledge.
Beachgoers will find the resort to have calm water, thanks to the island of Isla Mujeres, which sits directly in front, serving as a barrier to undercurrents that are prevalent elsewhere in Cancun. Traditional water sports such as kayaking, snorkeling, jet skis, and paddle boards are available to guests. During high season, complimentary paddleboard lessons are offered twice weekly, as well as a paddleboard yoga class, three times a week.
Dining Experiences Unlike Any Other | While the resort offers the traditional restaurant, booking dinner at two of their restaurants, the upscale contemporary French Le Basilic and the gourmet Mexican La Joya, proved to be unique and entertaining experiences worthy of the entire trip.
Le Basilic Art and Dinner Experience | One of only a few restaurants in Mexico to hold the AAA Five Diamond distinction, Le Basilic offers a French-Mediterranean menu under the guidance of Chef Henri Charvet of Paris, who holds the title of Maître Cuisine de France. Chef Charvet blends the freshness of local products with his French culinary techniques. The food is delicate and exquisite, beginning with an amuse bouche composed of a trio of octopus ceviche, cream of pea soup, and fried cheese puff, then followed with decadent dishes like foie gras ravioli, filet mignon, and duck breast.
The restaurant also offers an extensive wine list, including some excellent local Mexican wines.
Perhaps the most memorable part of the meal is the “art comes to life” experience, with Leon Alva, a prolific Mexican artist who has had over 40 solo and group exhibitions in cities like New York, Miami, Osaka, Geneva, Düsseldorf, Frankfurt, Havana, Montreal, Bologna, Paris, and Mexico City. Guests are asked to create one squiggle with a marker on Alva’s blank canvas at the beginning of their meal, and watch, as their meal progresses, how Alva takes a single line and transforms it into a stunning work of art by the meal’s end.
A Full-immersion History in Mexico with a Captivating High-tech Dining at La Joya | Equally impressive is the Ultimate-Video Mapping Gourmet experience offered at the resort’s La Joya Restaurant, simply referred to at The Table. Dinner at The Table is a culinary and sensorial journey through the history of the Yucatan Peninsula since prehistoric times to the present day including the splendorous Mayan civilization, all of which is seamlessly synchronized with an 8-course dinner pairing of Mexican fare.
The one-of-a-kind dinner, which launched in February 2018, is served in a private dining area on a custom-built, 16-person communal table that displays vivid video depicting the journey of the country’s mesmerizing past, with narration and music to add to the multi-sensory culinary experience. Executive Chef Sergio Zárate informs guests about his vision for each dish as it is served, explaining the inspiration and local items used in creating the dish which is quietly placed in front of each diner by individual servers, one assigned for each diner to ensure the most seamless and simultaneous experience.
“Grand Fiesta Americana Coral Beach Cancun is renowned for delivering superlative dining experiences and world-class service,” said Alberto Gurrola, the resort’s Managing Director. “We’re thrilled to be among the first in the world to offer this one-of-a-kind dining event at La Joya. Our hope is that each guest leaves the experience with a deeper understanding of Mexico’s celebrated history.”
Chef Zárate carefully curated a multi-course tasting menu designed to complement each of the eight historic time periods portrayed in the virtual presentation. From the Yucatán Peninsula’s fiery volcanoes and the dawn of the Maya civilization to the arrival of the Spanish conquistadors and the birth of the Mexican Colonial era, each captivating chapter allows guests to savor a singular unique dish paired with thoughtfully selected cocktails, wines, and artisan beer. Menu highlights include Blue Crab Chilpachole made with guajillo chili and burnt tortilla; Venison Tzi’ik featuring a traditional venison salad and regional citrus jelly; Cacao Braised Short Rib served with vanilla poached lobster and beurre blanc; a Five Spice “Churro” with sweet potato and milk cream cakes and more.
La Joya’s immersive dining experience is available by reservation on Friday and Saturday evenings at 9:00 p.m. and costs $115 per person, taxes and services included. Additionally, guests who book the resort’s Grand Club “Unlimited Experiences” all-inclusive package, can dine one time during their stay.
Prior to this extraordinary experience, make sure to begin at La Joya’s Tequila Tasting, a complimentary experience to anyone dining at the restaurant. The tasting includes an in-depth explanation of the history of tequila, as well as its sister spirit, Mezcal, along with proper drinking techniques and unique pairings that will surely leave you with a newfound appreciation for Mexico’s favorite drink.
Relax at Coral Beach Gem Spa | No luxury holiday is complete without a visit to the spa, and Grand Fiesta Americana Coral Beach Cancun does not disappoint. The 40,000-square foot spa is inspired by gemstone therapy and features an exclusive 10-step hydrotherapy circuit that includes an aromatherapy steam room, clay steam room, ice room, sauna, and refreshing rain shower. There is also a pebble maze pool with varying warm water jets as well as an indulgent “pool of sensations” – a full-sized co-ed pool filled with bubbles, floor geysers, water cascades, and neck jets.
This is all in preparation for the guest’s individual treatment, which will take place in one of the spa’s 26 treatment rooms. Treatments include their signature massages like the Seventh Wonder Massage, an 80-minute treatment using seen quartz stones placed on the corresponding seven chakras of the body or a Mayan Jade Four Hands Massage where two therapists work in rhythmic synchronicity using jade stones which are revered in Mayan culture as the “sovereign of harmony.”
Something for Everyone | Families looking for a kid-friendly vacation destination will be thrilled with this resort, not only because of its expansive, fun pool area but also because of the state-of-the-art Kids Club on the property. Coral KidZ Club is a 50,000-square foot high-tech kids club for children ages 3-12. With more than 40 indoor and outdoor activities, the club offers individually designed zones for various age groups and features cutting-edge technology and hand painted artwork. Kids can enjoy special activities including arts and crafts and hands-on cooking classes led by the resort’s Executive Chef.
Whether you are longing to relax and be pampered or are looking for a place bursting with fun and plenty of distractions for the entire family, Grand Fiesta Americana Coral Beach fits the bill for both experiences and everything in between. The outstanding service and cordiality of the entire staff makes each and every guest feel welcome and well taken care of, and, for those able to step away from the lovely beach and pool offered, both the interactive dinners and the spa are well worth the trip.
| Photos courtesy of Grand Coral Beach Cancun