Cancun Honeymoon Guide
When planning our honeymoon, my only hesitation with going to an all-inclusive resort, was the food. I had heard that most resorts had quantity, but not quality. After researching the Hyatt Ziva resorts, I saw many glowing reviews, so we decided to give it a try. The food at this resort largely surpassed my expectations and I can gladly report that any foodie would be happy here.
One of my favorite aspects of this was resort was that each restaurant had a little appetizer station where you could go choose from a selection of meats, cheeses, salad and other accompaniments. Above is the selection at Tradewinds for breakfast. There is also a breakfast menu to order entrees from, but it was nice to try a bunch of different things along with a main dish. We dined at Tradewinds a couple times for breakfast and a couple times at night. I did not get any dinner pictures, but we found this to be a great option with a large variety of food. It is a steakhouse at night and the steaks we got were cooked as we liked and there were some great side and dessert options
Looking through my pictures, it seems like we took a lot of lunch pictures, but not a lot of dinner pictures. Here is an assortment of dishes we had at Lorenzo’s, an Italian restaurant specializes in pizza and pasta. This was probably our second favorite restaurant next to Habaneros. All the pizza (more like flatbreads) we had were very tasty, as was the risotto we had one night for dinner. This restaurant featured a little antipasto buffet that had so many great marinated vegetables and cheese options. We also loved the beef carpaccio and would each get an appetizer of it every time we ate there. They also had some crazy pizza combinations. like the Il Bosco which had blackberries, nuts and mushrooms. That was a bit weird for us and we found the Arrabiata with spicy salami, garlic and pepperoncini to be the best.
Habaneros was our favorite restaurant and we are lunch here most days. This was an outdoor spot, with some tables in the sand, and some in a more enclosed area. All the tables are in the shade though, so you can still get a nice escape from the sun. For lunch, the main theme is ceviche and tacos. We had not had a ton of ceviche before this trip but we quickly fell in love with it and tried every type. We also tried most of the taco options and they were all very good. I think the Baja Style fish tacos were my favorite as they were perfectly battered and the Al Pastor ones were Andrews. If you like spicy, ask for the ‘picante’ salsa, which was very hot but went great on the tacos. Another favorite here was the Ahi Tuna Tostado, as we are suckers for anything with Ahi Tuna. One more good addition is they have a popsicle of the day, so I grabbed one for dessert often for a nice cool treat. Andrew was more fond of the tres leeches, which was made very authentically.
We went to Habaneros once for dinner. The menu hadn’t seemed as appealing to us, as we aren’t big fans of enchiladas and very saucy Mexican dishes. I ended up getting the lobster enchiladas, hoping the lobster would overcome my normal distaste for enchiladas and Andrew got the lamb stew wrapped in an agave leaf. Mine was not that much different than any Mexican restaurant, but Andrews soup was so good! We did also love the atmosphere at night. It was very quiet and romantic with some instrumental playing softly in the background.
We ended up at Habenros very late that night due to not being able to get into Bastille. This is where my only complaint about the resort it. Bastille is their French restaurant and supposedly the best one. We had heard to go early to put your name in so the first night we did. They gave us a pager and said there was an hour long wait. That was fine because we could take it anywhere in the resort. After an hour and not hearing anything we returned and they said it would be a bit longer. We ended up waiting another hour, and when we went back they still could not seat us. We kept the buzzer and went to Habaneros thinking maybe we would go for dessert if it ever went off. I believe it finally did around 10 PM.
The next day we decided to ask our butler about it. He said he would make a reservation for us so we could get in. Well we showed up and there was a reservation but we still had to wait. After waiting an hour again, we were pretty frustrated as we wanted to try all the restaurants at the resort, and we had heard great reviews of this one. They still would not seat us though! As we were just about to leave angrily, a couple seated at a table of four asked if we would want to join them. So we did finally get to try it but not as a romantic honeymoon experience like we thought.
So the reason for the long waits is that this resort caters to large corporate trips. The couple we sat with were on this trip and it seems everyone on it gets first priority st this restaurant. It is definitely not the best system, as the restaurant was like this every night we were there. We had noticed this big corporate party celebrating outside almost every night. They had a big Staples sign on the beach and had set up a DJ and a dance floor. They were usually wrapping up the party well before we were going to sleep, but if you like to go to bed early, you may want to stay away from the turquoise tower. The music from the beach is very audible even with the patio doors closed.
We were very gracious this couple let us join them and had fun getting to know each other. The food ended up being decent, but not my favorite meal by any means. Neither of us are big fans of French food so maybe we are not the best judge of it. By the time we were eating, we were pretty hungry and also didn’t want to be “typical millennials” taking pictures of our food so we do not have any pictures. I liked the french onion soup, but found the Macadamia Crusted Sea Bass to just be average.
We went to Moongate one night for Hibachi and honestly we should have gone there more than once! This restaurant has hibachi or asian food, so if you want hibachi you are seated by the grill and do not choose anything off the menu, just what type of meat you want. It is pretty standard with a selection of veggies, mixed with rice and chicken, steak or shrimp. However, we were also in the mood for sushi that night so they kindly brought us over a sampler plate to try! Their rolls were pretty basic, but still very well done. They have a full menu of classic Asian Fusion dishes such as Chicken Green Curry or Beef Yaki Udon. Our experience was great service and taste, so I wish we had gone back here a second time.
One of the most fun features of this resort was Pasteles. This is a dessert parlor with pretty much every type of sweet you can imagine! I loved trying the macaroons, truffles and dipping fruit in the fountains, and I am sure anyone else with a sweet tooth would as well. We often filled a little cup of candy up for a midday treat since they have such a huge selection of different types.
There is a full buffet that is open most of the day called El Mercado. We never ate here for dinner since there were so many other options during dinner However, each night, they had a different theme and would serve a specific cuisine. We had had a smaller dinner one night so we stopped by for a snack. This was on Mexican Night, which was fun. They had some very authentic food at the buffet like cactus and mexican street corn. They also had a bunch of vendors selling things and regional musicians and dancers. We also met Eduardo, the Tequila Sommelier that night since he has a big stand he sets up where you can buy tequila. I’ll take more about him and his tasting sessions in the next post, but we loved seeing him throughout the trip and trying his recommendations.
We mainly ate at the buffet for breakfast as they had so many great options. We ended up making our own breakfast tacos and going to the different stations and adding different items. They had a great cheese selection which was fun, and also served delicious mimosas and Bloody Marys. On our last day we got room service and ate it by our pool! This was a great experience, but I did like having a buffet to choose from in the morning the best.
Our least favorite restaurant was definitely Chevy’s. I would not recommend wasting your time here, unless you are in the mood for a milk shake. The food is American style, but this translates to frozen food heated up. The jalapeno poppers were bland, but the burger was much worse. Just your typical freezer burger with random toppings, such as the Betty Boop which had apples and brie. The brie could not save this burger! Andrew got a barbeque plate that was barely average. Luckily at an all-inclusive you do not feel obligated to eat it if you don’t like it! And you definitely shouldn’t as there are plenty of other delicious things to save that stomach space for.
Lastly, one of our other favorite spots was Tres Cervesa’s Brewery. As craft brew lovers, this was a big selling point of the hotel. Any other hotel and you stuck with nothing but basic light beers. We mainly drank cocktails, but it was nice to stop here for some brews. They rotate flavors and weirdly do not name any of them! But we liked everything we had, between the lagers, IPA’s and they even had a farmhouse. The wings here were also amazing. I think we tried every sauce at some point and liked all of them! The Mango Habanero and the Lemon and Black Pepper were our favorites in the end. They also have pool tables, sports games on TV and video games here, so it can be fun to hang out in when you need to escape the sun. Hopefully by the time we go back, they will have started bottling their beers which is in works.
We spent a lot of time eating and drinking here so I could probably go on all day! This resort definitely defied what I had heard about the food at All-Inclusives. Everything was very high quality and the service was incredibly helpful. One thing to point out is that tips are kind of expected, so bring lots of one dollar bills. We noticed most people leaving at few dollars after meals and a dollar or two per drink. You do not have to tip and there were a few times where we ran out of ones and we didn’t have any issues. But everyone was so hardworking, you definitely will want to to give them a little extra! If you are interested in viewing the menus before you go, this site has links to all the menus. We were there for 7 days so we had plenty of time to try everything, but if you are short on time, I would say Habaneros and Lorenzo’s should be top priorities.
Let me know what your favorite restaurant is if you have stayed at this resort! Or if you have been to another all-inclusive, I would love to hear what your thoughts on the food there were.