10 Cancun Resorts and Hotels That Offer a European Plan

Photo courtesy of The Ritz-Carlton, Cancun
By Kristin Busse, Cancún Local Expert

Cancun’s Hotel Zone is home to some 100 resorts, most of which are completely all inclusive, which means the price of your room includes meals, drinks and entertainment.  Many visitors love to travel on an all inclusive plan, but others prefer to take the European plan (ep) route, which means the price only includes a room and possibly a continental breakfast. This gives guests an opportunity to experience the local dining scene.

The Fiesta Americana Grand Coral Beach is located just steps from Cancun’s Party Center, which boasts nightlife, shopping and dining. This resort is practically perfection, from the rooms to the restaurants to the pool and beach. The Krystal Cancun and Cancun Clipper Club are all also located adjacent to the Party Center. Cancun Clipper Club is a great option for budget-conscious travelers, as is the Holiday Inn Cancun Arenas.

The Westin Lagunamar Ocean Resort is a superb choice for those wishing to go non all inclusive as many suites have kitchens. At sister resort Westin Resort & Spa guests can also choose a European plan for the duration of their stay.

The Ritz-Carlton and both of Cancun’s Marriott resorts, the JW and the CasaMagna are other excellent options for those who prefer to travel on a European plan.

10. Krystal Grand Punta Cancun
Photo courtesy of Krystal Grand Punta Cancun Facebook

The Krystal Grand Punta Cancun is located in the heart of Cancun's Hotel Zone, just steps away from the Party Center, restaurants and shopping. The Krystal's pool area and beach are gorgeous and the views from the oceanfront rooms are spectacular. Guests will enjoy a spa, a fitness center, six restaurants, a pool-snack bar, a lounge-terrace area and a swim-up pool bar. The popular Mexican restaurant, Hacienda el Mortero, is included in the all-inclusive plan. The resort offers facilities for meetings, conventions and weddings. Visitors can choose between all-inclusive or European plan.

9. Hotel Cancun Clipper Club
Photo courtesy of Cancun Clipper Club Facebook

This resort is located smack in the middle of Cancun's Hotel Zone at km 9 across from the convention center on the lagoon. This is the perfect place for travelers that want a budget vacation with a European plan. Continental breakfast is included with your stay. This small hotel is within walking distance of shopping, dining and nightlife. There is no all inclusive option available at the Cancun Clipper Club but there is a restaurant on the premises that serves breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks and beverages. Three types of rooms are available; Standard, Suites and King Size Studio.

8. Holiday Inn Cancun Arenas
Photo courtesy of Holiday Inn Cancun Arenas Facebook

This 220-room property is located on the beach in Cancun's Hotel Zone, but it is also very close to downtown Cancun, which makes it a great homebase for checking out restaurants, nightlife, and shopping in both sections of town. Holiday Inn Arenas is one of the few pet-friendly properties in Cancun, accepting dogs under 22 pounds. There are three restaurants, a pool and a fitness center available. Guests can purchase the all-inclusive meal option or opt for the European Plan, which does not include any meals or drinks. There is a bus stop in front of the hotel for easy access to shopping, restaurants, and attractions.

7. Krystal Cancun
Photo courtesy of Krystal Cancun Facebook

The Krystal Cancun is just steps away from Cancun's Party Center and shopping and dining and even a bus stop if you do want to venture further from the resort. The hotel boasts three restaurants, three bars, a panoramic pool with swim-up bar and a dreamy beach complete with Bali beds. Visitors can choose from a Standard Guestroom, Deluxe Oceanview, Family Suite, Krystal Club Room, Romantic Room, Junior Suite, and the Master and Presidential Suites which have their own pools. The resort offers the Krystal Kamp Kids Club for little ones, a spa and a fitness center. Guests can choose between all inclusive or European plan.

6. The Westin Resort & Spa Cancun
Photo courtesy of Westin Resort & Spa Cancun Facebook

The Westin Resort & Spa Cancun is located at the far end of the Hotel Zone at km 20. With its gorgeous beach and four pools, guests will always find a place to soak up the Caribbean sun. The resort is home to the Heavenly Spa, WestinWorkout Fitness Studio, outdoor lighted tennis courts and an indoor-outdoor kids club. All six of the hotels dining establishments provide ocean views. The Westin has eight, that's right eight room categories including Deluxe, Balcony, Royal Beach Club, Junior Suite, Royal Beach Club Ambassador Suite, Parlor Suite, Master Suite and the Royal Beach Club Presidential Suite.Guests can choose between all inclusive or European plan.

5. Marriott CasaMagna Resort Cancun
Photo courtesy of Marriott CasaMagna Cancun

Travel magazines, like Travel & Leisure, often rate Marriott CasaMagna Cancun Resort as one of the best hotels in Cancun. This AAA Four Diamond resort has 450 guest rooms & suites (416 guest rooms and 34 suites) and is very popular with families. Some of Cancun's finest restaurants and a great sports bar are inside the hotel, or next door at JW Marriott Cancun. Well-appointed guest rooms have pillow-top mattresses and duvets, to help guests can relax and unwind, while on vacation. The hotel has a children's pool and a kids club (there is a fee for this), which has supervised activities for children age 4 to 12 years of age.

4. JW Marriott Cancun Resort & Spa
Photo courtesy of JW Marriott Cancun Facebook Page

This upscale resort is great for families, couples, or singles. The pool area is lovely, the rooms are well-appointed & nicely decorated, and the staff is outgoing and attentive. All guest rooms and suites have an ocean view. Guests that book a room or suite on the club level will have access to the hotel's exclusive Club 91, where they can enjoy a complimentary breakfast buffet each morning, as well as complimentary cocktails, non-alcoholic beverages, and snacks that are provided throughout the day. In addition to the bars, restaurants, and delis at JW Marriott, guests also have access to the restaurants and bars at Marriott CasaMagna, the hotel's sister property, located right next door.

3. The Ritz-Carlton, Cancun
Photo courtesy of The Ritz-Carlton, Cancun

This elegant beachfront resort is one of Cancun's finest hotels and it has received the coveted AAA Five Diamond Award each year, for more than two decades. Ritz-Carlton properties are known for their outstanding service and that's exactly what you'll find at The Ritz-Carlton, Cancun. You'll definitely be pampered from the moment you arrive, until the the end of your vacation. There are plenty of shaded areas, around the pool, where little ones can play without risk of sunburn and, on the beach, there are covered beach villas, which have lounge chairs, a beach bed, and a hammock. It's the perfect spot for a family to spend a day on the beach, since there is plenty of space to relax, nap, sunbathe, or sit in the shade. While this hotel does not offer non-stop activities around the pool each day, it's still a wonderful place for families that wish to have a low-key, relaxing vacation, at a luxury, beachfront resort.

2. The Westin Lagunamar Ocean Resort Villas, Cancun
Photo courtesy of Westin Lagunamar Facebook

The Westin Lagunamar is located just across the street from the largest outdoor shopping and entertainment center in Cancun, La Isla. Spacious, richly furnished studio, one-bedroom and two-bedroom villas feature ocean views, provide full kitchens and furnished balconies, hand-selected art and other distinctive touches. There are plenty of ways to stay active, be pampered or simply relax. Creative chefs tantalize guests with dishes inspired by traditional Mexican cuisine and international influences, while bar and lounge menus feature original cocktails and old favorites. They also offer the Westin Kids Club with supervised activities, minigolf and water activities. The hotel provides a baby sitting service, barbecue area, business center, a bar, an on call doctor, a game room, high speen internet, 24 hour room service and a spa.

1. Grand Fiesta Americana Coral Beach Cancun
Photo courtesy of Grand Fiesta Americana Coral Beach Cancun Facebook

Grand Fiesta American Grand Coral Beach Cancun is located in the heart of Cancun's Hotel Zone, just steps away from the Party Center, on a calm, white sand beach with turquoise blue water. Grand Coral Beach is one of Cancun's largest, oldest and most prestigious hotels and is constantly improving in order to give guests the high level of comfort, elegance and service they have come to expect from this family-friendly resort. The pool is huge and the lobby, absolutely gorgeous. The cuisine served in the hotel's five restaurants (including AAA Five Diamond Le Basilic) is excellent and a step above what you will find in almost any all-inclusive resort. The property is also home to a ethereal world-class spa. First class all the way, without that snobby feel, the Grand Fiesta American Grand Coral Beach Cancun never disappoints.