More about La Amada Hotel
La Amada "the Beloved" 10+ Star
Words cannot explain how amazing this hotel is. I have been to more then 52 countries, stayed at premium hotels around the world and this is by far the best experience I have had to date. Where to begin….we stayed in room 333 on the 4th floor of building 3. It was an ocean view room, and I have to say that it was all that it claimed on the website and more. The room had bar area with a fully stocked mini bar, and shelves with wine glasses. Excellent area to store things. We went to Wal-Mart and stocked up on wine, water and drinks for the week. We also brought a collapsible cooler with us, to take drinks to the beach during the day. The room was spectacular! It went far beyond any other 5 star room/property I have seen. The hotel is small, but perfect in every way. During the time that we were there, there was only about 40-50 guests, and although a very low occupancy, the hotel was staffed as if it was full. We took a walk around the Excellence next door but La Amada beat it hands down! La Amada was more modern and much more exclusive. For the price even with paying for food and drinks, we saved money by not going all-inclusive ~ I would stay at La Amada over Excellence any day.
The service at the grill as well as Aroma was fantastic, and at par with any fine dining restaurant in NY or LA. The food at Aroma and wine list was great, and the Executive Head Chef, Juan Garcia has done an awesome job in preparing a menu that is unique but classic and modern at the same time. Combinations of fruit, chocolate with meat and fish was fantastic. Innovation at its best! Prices were very good with appetizers around $9-12 and entrée’s from $15-$25. Wine menu was great, but unfortunately on the first night 3 of the 4 bottles that we liked were not in stock, however; the server was very quick to point out some excellent alternatives. The service was attentive but not over-bearing and all the servers had excellent English and smiles.
The management of La Amada, are hands on. Hector, food and beverage manager, and Jean Francois, GM (who I got to meet on numerous occasions) were always around the hotel working with the employees and meeting the guests. I have not seen such attentive management in all of my travels.
Now on to the SPA….if you are staying at the La Amada you MUST go to the spa~ the infrastructure of this spa cannot be missed. The water area, with a full Turkish bath, thermal pools, ice room, sauna, massage circuit is amazing, and is included free of charge with any spa service. I went to the spa on 3 occasions and would have booked more services if time allowed. The staff very attentive and make you feel VIP every moment.
We very much enjoyed the lounge beds on the beach and by the main pool at the beach. Service with impeccable with a beach/pool concierge coming by each morning to ask how our night was, if everything was good with our room, and if we needed anything. About every 30 minutes a server would be around to see if we wanted drinks or food. I would like to say a special thanks to Ana at the Grill, David and George at Aroma.
My partner used the Gym each day, and it very well equipped with every piece of equipment you could imagine. They have a personal trainer there named Gorge and he is the nicest, most dedicated employee. He and my partner became quite good friends, and we are looking forward to going back to see Gorge again.
The facilities at La Amada are only going to get better as time goes on. The Marina is almost finished and being a sailor myself I could not think of a better place to have a condo. It is state of the art, and a must see. They will have a restaurant and shopping around the Marina soon ~ which will bring more visitors and business to the area.
The beach at Cancun is almost totally gone now, and Play Mejerues area will not be a secret for long. The beach is fantastic and we spent most mornings there. It is long and you can walk forever, also because of Isla Mejeres, the waves are small and the water calm, and good for swimming ~ do not listen to anyone who talks down about the beach! You have NO WORRIES!
After 4 nights and 5 days at La Amada, we went on to stay at Aqua Cancun. This is also an amazing hotel, with great service, but again it does not compare to the La Amada. We were disappointed that the Aqua did not hold up to the service that was provided at La Amada, and we had wished that we didn’t spend our whole vacation at La Amada instead. After La Amada, I am unsure that I will find a hotel that will live up to my new set expectations.
I want to send a big heart felt thanks to all the staff and management at La Amada. You are putting on a world class act ~ And I cannot think of one thing negative to say. Keep up the great work, and I look forward to seeing you all again in the fall.
Quiet relaxing 5 star resort
We just got back from La Amada and it was incredible! If you are looking for quiet relaxation with 5 star service, then this is the place. I am a very picky traveler, and like a really nice resort. We stayed in a penthouse suite which was amazing. Huge terrace and clean and bright room. The service here is amazing. The staff is so friendly and helpful in every way. It is a boutique hotel with few restaurants, so if you're looking for nightlife or anything, this isn't it. The entire property is really beautiful. The beachfront casitas looked really nice as did all of the rooms. The spa is gorgeous. Use it! I am not an all-inclusive traveler, I don't care for that. The prices at La Amada were not at all bad. Dinner was reasonably priced with large portions. The breakfast is really good also. Everything was great. I have no complaints. Every staff member was so accomodating in every way. Our room was serviced twice a day. It was hard to leave this place. I would say that it is best for a little getaway. I would definitely go bak to La Amada. Simply gorgeous!
Exotic luxury - LOVED it
Looking for a romantic getaway that's not too far from New York, yet different enough to make you feel truly 'on vacay'? You have found heaven! La Amada was everything the website promised and more. A relatively new hotel (it opened in February 09), the rooms still have that 'new' smell to them, but proximity to the white beaches, cleanliness of the pools, whirlpools and the best spa I've ever been to, made this an unforgettable experience from the word go.
Our bed had a rose-petal-shaped heart mapped out when we got there, and the whirlpool had a lit candle and flowers floating in it...I like the personal touches!
Pina Coladas were tops (trust me, I had many to make sure that the high quality was consistant), rooms are spacious, bathrooms are gorgeous (think a shower the size of my New York apartment!) and the service is outstanding.
Best part of La Amada is that it is removed from the Cancun strip - 20 minutes north of Cancun - so you truly feel like you are in paradise, which you are, of course, at La Amada!
I think I was in Paradise
Get to La Amada while you can! While there were a few minor kinks that need to be worked out, it won't be long before it is really expensive and hard to get a room. La Amada set the bar for every five star vacation I will take in the future.
The ultimate pros were the amazing spa, incredible food, and impeccable rooms. The spa had an Aqua Vida cirucit that is complimentary (for now). It takes an hour to go through different dipping pools, showers, and steamrooms to detoxify and relax your body. Do this the first day, followed by a body massage. You will be relaxed the entire trip.
The food was incredible and very resonably priced for a five star hotel. The breakfast is all you can eat buffet and menu. Compliments to the Chef!
The rooms were very spacious and modern, but most importantly, the SHOWER. Oh my gosh, the SHOWER! Enough said.
The pools were perfectly heated and the beach beds were very comfortable. Also, the service and drinks at the pool were great. My favorite was the Strawberry Colada.
The cons were the lack of nighttime entertainment and location. Although we wanted to find a place away from the crowds, there was nothing to do after dinner except Thursday night. I would highly reccommend attending the bonfire event. Although it is $60 per person, the "Surf and Turf" dinner was the BEST that I have ever had and well worth the price. The ambience of the beach bonfire and live music was just right and very romantic. I wish they would have had something similair on Friday or Saturday night.
La Amada is pretty far from everything, so it was an expensive cab ride to go anywhere else. The Excellence is next door, but it costs $100 to attend their events.(not worth it)
Also, because the property is new, the water from the jacuzzi tubs was sometimes discolored, due to the new pipes
Be prepared to relax. This is not a resort for busy bodies that always need something to do. La Amada will force you to relax. It was my paradise!
We just returned from a 4-night stay at La Amada. Our room was one of the "penthouse" suites. It was everything we had hoped for in spaciousness and amenities--wonderful bed, two seating arrangements, dining area, desk, huge bathroom, and an additional half-bath, and a kitchen with full sized refrigerator, sink, 2 element cooktop, and microwave. The kitchen had a generous supply of china, glassware, silverware, pans, and an electric kettle for almost instant boiling water,
The balcony was the best. Under roof were a table and chairs and one round sun bed, and in the sun were two more round sun beds, plus a rectangular one on the platform with the plunge pool.
The view of the ocean was a little disappointing, as we overlooked another lower building between our building and the beach.
One of the reasons we went to La Amada was to compare it to the Excellence next door, where we had gone last year. We wondered about the overall expense, the quality of food and drinks, and the service. We found:
1. Right now, the overall cost was almost exactly the same as regards to paying for food and drinks versus the all-inclusive.
2. The quality of the food at both places was very comparable, but with many more options at the Excellence.
3. The drinks at La Amada were far superior, with more emphasis on fresh ingredients and more experienced bartenders.
4. The helpfulness, congeniality, and training of the staff at La Amada was the best we have encountered anywhere. We especially liked the ability to request the specific time we wanted for housekeeping to clean the room, and that time was honored every day.
At the time of our stay (March 19-24) we were told that the hotel had about 20% occupancy. That certainly contributed to the quiet and serenity of the place. However, most guests gravitated to the pool area adjacent to the Isla Grill bar--so there was a little more opportunity to strike up conversations and meet people there.
One of the reviews mentioned that they thought that it wouldn't be a good place to bring children. We were surprised to find that many of the guests had, in fact, brought their young children. The average age seemed to be 4- 5 years. All were well-behaved and well-supervised and it was delightful to observe.. It gave the place a pleasant "family" atmosphere as opposed to the more general rowdiness of an "adults-only" all-inclusive.
We take vacations to relax and do nothing but read, enjoy the sun, watch the ocean, eat well, and drink fruity tropical drinks. We also enjoy meeting people from different parts of the country or the world. Right now, La Amada fulfills many of these preferences, but not all. The emphasis seems to be on elegance and privacy.
A good example is "Carribean Night" which is every Thursday at 6:30 on the beach. A bonfire on the beach. Dress casual. Sounds like a party, right?
The bonfire was fabulous--huge logs flaming in a ring of lava rocks and casting shadows on the sand. It was surrounded by a ring of the big round sofa/sun beds. There was live music.
But impeccable waiters brought us one elegant elegant glass of sangria, served us tiny elegant canapes and then we retired back to the restaurant for dinner--tuna carpaccio, beef filet with beautiful grilled shrimp, and a mousseline with passion fruit, tamarind, and a chocolate garnish. Everything was excellent, but very formal. I was expecting reggae and beer and jerk grilled on the beach!
Breakfast at Aroma was wonderful, lunch at Isla Grill was very good, and dinner at Aroma was very elegant and delicious but each meal was only available in the one place. The only option to this arrangement was room service. And to utilize the very nice kitchen in your room would have required provisioning it starting with basic salt and pepper.
A tip: To enjoy the wonderful French press in the room, take your own coarsly-ground coffee. The coffee provided is the little standard "sealed in the filter" bag that is meant for the miniscule drip-type machines normally found in hotel rooms. (We always take a zip-lock bag of our favorite so we enjoyed the French press a lot.)
Another tip: If you want to pick up something for drinks in your room, skip Costco and have your driver take you to "La Europa" across the street from Sam's Club. Huge selection and manageable quantities. (We cannot recommend highly enough our driver Leo with Cancun Transfers. He would have found us anything or taken us anywhere!)
Our first experience at an all-inclusive was a Ritz-Carleton in Jamaica. We thought it couldn't be topped. But both the Excellence Playa Mujares and La Amada compare favorably. We loved the floats and the "lazy river" and the activities at the Excellence.
The room and the Staff at La Amada were by far the best anywhere. With a few more options for food and some available shopping on the complex La Amada could be our preference.
Great Hotel, Great Service, away from everything
The hotel, service and beach were all 5 stars. The food was very good but after 3 or four days the menu never changed and the selections got old fast. There are only 2 restaurants one open during the day and one at night. The hotel is located 25 minutes north of Cancun. If you are looking for a relaxing place to stay the La Amada is great. If you are looking for a "party" I would stay somewhere else. The only nightlife at the hotel was a 3 person band at the bar. If you want to see anything else in Cancun you will need to rent a cab.
Amazing Hotel + Amazing Staff = Amazing Experience
La Amada was just fantastic and exceeded my expectations in every way. The staff was respectful, gracious and helpful at every encounter and the hotel (rooms, restaurants, pools, grounds, spa, gym) was exquisitely maintained and designed, down to the smallest details. It has a very modern feel with a lot of off-white and sand colored stone, white linens + furniture, and geometric design.
I loved staying here and found it incredibly relaxing. I highly recommend using the spa facilities- they are gorgeous! Hammam, sauna, large pool open to the outdoors, water jets and showers, heated stone loungers...I honestly couldn't believe I was allowed in there without charge! My boyfriend and I would go to the gym for a quick run and then relax in the spa area. What a great way to pass the time! The spa prices for massages and such were a little pricey for me since I got used to the Mexican peso, and are above average for American prices. Think Bliss Spa prices, $100+.
Another way we passed the time: EATING. The breakfast was literally the highlight of the day. I would park myself at a table, and basically eat everything available at the cold buffet (fruits, smoothies, cheeses, meats, pastries, bagels, yogurt...) and order an entree off the breakfast menu. My boyfriend and I would do one American breakfast with one Mexican breakfast and that was really great. The chef is amazing, and as such, the dinner was remarkable.
The rooms are a great size, which include an enormous bathroom shower (with bench and wonderful aromatherapy products), leather sofa, flat screen tv, huge bed, and of course, the indoor/outdoor hot tub. We stayed in an ocean view suite which had a great view, and from what I saw, the casitas look even better. I was shocked that more people weren't staying there, though I did enjoy having the hotel being mostly quiet and private. It is pretty small in the grand scheme of things. I believe La Amada has 120 rooms total and they are spread out into 3 main buildings and maybe a dozen casitas. If you are looking for a quiet, elegant and relaxing vacation, this place is it.
beautiful place, excellent service
We stayed at La Amada from 4/24-4/30 for our anniversary. We highly enjoyed our experience. We've done a bit of traveling but usually on a tighter budget, and this was our first trip to Mexico. So keeping that in mind, here's our breakdown:
Accommodations: We stayed in the junior suite--the smallest one. It was huge and gorgeous. Tile floors, jacuzzi with glass door opening to the balcony, all-marble bathroom with multiple shower heads, LCD TV, iPod dock. Plenty of closet space for us. The ice machine in our building never worked during our stay, but we didn't mind walking to the next one over.
Service: Twice-daily maid service with turn-down service at night. No complaints there. Any call for more house bottled water or towels was met rapidly.
Grounds: The layout was beautiful and we loved the pools. The beach was well-cared for. The only negative here was that there were some large round chairs in circular enclosures that would have been nice to enjoy if the grass was not overgrown all around them. That was a surprising contrast to the extreme care they seemed to take with the rest of the property. Really not a big deal, though, there was nothing close to a shortage of chairs or loungers on the beach or at the pools.
Beach: private beach in front of the hotel. Most of the days the red flags were up but we did a little swimming anyway. Couldn't make use of the non-motorized watersports for that reason, though. Couldn't have asked for a better beach.
Restaurants: Only one restaurant in the evening, and La Amada is a good 20 minutes from Cancun, so not the best in regard to options, but the restaurant itself, Aroma, left nothing to be desired, in our opinions. We ate there 3 of the 6 nights and were impressed with each different meal. The chef seems to be very creative. I was most impressed by the chile relleno with pomegranate and walnut sauce. Very very tasty. On Wednesday night they presented 'Table de l'Hote,' in which the chef presented samples of 3 original desserts and 5 original dishes, along with two mixed drinks, all involving peppers in some way. Very creative and very tasty. The Isla Grill is nice. The food is about average, the service excellent. The breakfasts at Aroma are wonderful. The breakfast bar was free for us and was always more than enough, even without a hot entree.
Concierge: We used the concierge service extensively, and they were very, very helpful. No complaints about their helpfulness. However if you are interested in doing a trip, do your own research. We let them book a trip with Selvatica and after talking to them we expected to do ziplines, mountain bikes, swimming in a cenote, and scuba diving. It wasn't until we got there that we found out Selvatica had multiple varieties of trips and ours only included half of those options. We were still happy with the trip but would not recommend relying solely on the concierge's information.
Spa: We didn't splurge on massages but we did get to experience the Aqua Viva treatment and were very impressed. It was very unique and extremely relaxing. We highly recommend doing at least that. We also participated in a stretching class that was brutal, but we did it right before aqua viva, so it paid off.
Overall value: At the prices La Amada was charging when we went, we considered it a huge bargain. It's very quiet with few guests, which was an upside in terms of relaxation and service but a potential downside in that we didn't get the dance classes and organized activities that an all-inclusive would have. However we managed to stay busy and were never bored. It's far from Cancun, which I considered to be more a negative just because of the time of transportation (like to the Hotel Zone or through to Selvatica or Chichen Itza--we had to pick up people all along the way, we were the first and last to be picked up/dropped off each time). We are glad we stayed there and feel we got the best for our money and for our needs at this point in time.
Now I give you into Paradise
My wife and I went on our honeymoon (and to another couple's wedding at the Fiesta Americana Coral Beach) to La Amada from May 28 to June 1, here are some observations and thoughts on the resort. I chose this title because it kind of summed up the weekend: while the place was amazing, our experience was littered with a host of awkward interactions with the staff. When we first got there the reception clerk told us that we had a "$500 resort credit". DONT BE FOOLED. What she was trying to say, we later learned, was that we had a $500 LINE of credit opened. This was annoying because we were very excited at the thought of having $500 to spend (obviously) and it was something that only got cleared up because we inquired further by asking some of the staff who spoke better English about it. This was typical of our vacation: while La Amada was extremely nice, they almost tried to trick you into spending more money at times which is a seedy activity I don't normally associate with a 5* resort. BIG POINT: ALWAYS INQUIRE FURTHER, the first thing you heard is probably not accurate. Also, when I was booking the spa treatment, they tried to book us for the 80 min massage ($80 more per person) after I specifically asked for the 50 min massage. Just little tricky stuff like that was really annoying and made the vacation more stressful.
When we were there the occupancy went from ~10-15 when we first got there to ~25-35 guests when we left. This set up kind of an awkward situation where you would see all of these people constantly at breakfast, dinner, etc. but you never really got to know any of them. This was a major problem with the resort as it has NOTHING to do really. I asked about multiple activities that they had listed in the resort guide in the rooms, but they often didn't understand what I was asking or simply said they didn't know what I was talking about. Again, this particular thing was not a problem for my wife and I because we like quiet vacations and spending time with just each other, but if you want situations where you can interact with other humans that might be a problem..
1. Rooms. A+. We got the junior suite and it is pretty big with a nice balcony and a Jacuzzi. Some things that weren't great in the room: the water that filled up our Jacuzzi was ALWAYS brown. Really, really nasty, but other than that the room had an insanely comfortable king bed, a shower to die for and comfortable furniture. Maids were inconsistent with the cleaning (i.e. some days they did a great job, other days they would just not come in but once), but overall the rooms were phenomenal. NOTE: I can't figure out why, but the staff never upgraded us. I would never complain about the room we got, but it seemed a little bit weird that with 30-40 guests max in a resort that could easily hold 200+ that the staff never upgraded anyone, especially a couple on a honeymooon. It would have been a really easy way to make the stay unforgettable, but it didnt happen. This is kind of a metaphor for the service there: it is very good, but they almost always make you pay for it, even when its not clear that you should have to pay (doesn't apply to upgrade situation, but I think you catch my drift).
2. Amazing beach. You really can't get a much better beach than this. If you're like my wife and I (we brought our own drinks to the beach everyday) just remember NO GLASS ON THE GROUNDS. We had an insanely awkward encounter with one of the staff members who simply approached us on the beach and stated, "we....... we have a problem.... a big problem". I thought we were about to get kicked out of the hotel or something, but all he wanted us to do was put the beer in a plastic tall glass from the Isla Grill restaurant. He really should have been more relaxed about that as we clearly dont care whether our beer is in a plastic glass or the bottle and this is not "a problem," but I understand that's just that we dont speak Spanish (honestly really wish we did while we were there).
3. Food. Very good. Being from New Orleans my wife and I are very distinguishing about what we think is good food and while Aroma (the dinner restaurant) doesn't rise to the level of the best restaurants we've eaten at in NOLA, it was very, very good, I would rate it 4.5*. Juan Garcia really has put together an impressive menu and we would STRONGLY recommend choosing from the Mexican dishes portion of the menu as the stuff we had from the main menu was good, but not great.. However, every appetizer we tried (2 per night x 3 nights) were all excellent, especially the scallops and the bisque. Also, room service was very good and we LOVED the ceviche. Really recommend getting that. Breakfest Buffet was spectacular. It was a real highlight of the trip because we always planned on eating lunch, but would eat so much at breakfast that we didnt have room until dinner. Highly recommend the meats with the salsas that the chef makes: SO GOOD!
*Another awkward situation: this hotel was kind of bad at creating these. One night at dinner the waiter apparently forgot to charge our bill for the wine (more on their horrendous handling of the wine in a minute). We paid the bill, thinking nothing of it because they had screwed up the wine two nights in a row and figured they were giving it to us for free because of this. The next day, after we got back from Tulum (highly recommend seeing btw), the captain on duty that night came up to me in the hallway and asked me to pay for it that night at the restaurant! Full disclosure, I ended up paying because I'm sure that would have come out of someone's salary who couldn't afford to pay for it, but still, that is an incredibly rude thing to do. This was not my mistake and badgering me about it in a common area is hardly what I would expect from a 5 star resort. ALSO, they consistently served us chilled red wine, specifically two cabs. I hate to be a snob, but seriously? Red wine does not taste good at 40 degrees and there was never was any attempt to make up for the mistake. Again, just very bad form on what was otherwise a great selection of South American wines (esp. the red Chileans).
4. THE WORST MUSIC EVER: What can I say about the music at La Amada that hasn't already been said about Yoko Ono? I really can't put it into words. To make a long story short, the music is all white-washed classics from the 80's and 90's as sung by a throaty, creepy Bjork-esque singer with an acoustic guitar and bongo drums. If you want to hear the worst version of "welcome to the jungle", "purple rain", or "dont cry" please by all means, sit at the tables for a few hours. And its the same music. Every. Goddamn. Day. The music sucked far beyond my expectations and was, by far, the biggest downside of the resort. I would have appreciated ANYTHING besides that insufferable crap coming on while I was eating. I can't believe more people haven't complained about this.
5. Staff extremely awkward. Maybe this is just the language barrier, but whoever trained this staff needs to calm down on forcing them to say that everything they're doing is a "pleasure". Its impossible to just talk to one of the employees without being give a host of cliché lines they've obviously been programmed to speak. I personally would rather have people just be genuine and normal rather than overbearingly in my service. I constantly felt bad for them (and really, really, awkward as well). Also, on days where we were taking the car out to sight-see, we would get hounded by the valet that we didnt valet the car and who accused us of trying to skip out of the bill (which makes no sense because they HAVE my credit card, I mean what was I going to do, dispute the charges?). Again, not so much that the staff was rude or anything, but just very awkward and without sufficient command of English to clear up routine issues without over-reacting with phrases such as "this is a problem", instead of just asking us to do what they wanted. I think the hotel manager must be some passive-aggressive French guy who told them never to tell a guest to DO anything.
6. Spa. Aqua Viva treatment=sublime. Would highly recommend it, very relaxing. We also got the La Amada signature massage and while it was good, we both agreed that it wasn't $130 per person good. We've had better massages in Point Clear, AL and New Orleans to name a few, but the massuses were very nice and did a good job, just nothing special that one would expect at a 5* resort.
All in all, we loved our time at La Amada, but there were numerous occasions where we were put in awkward situations by the staff. I really do think this has more to do with OVER training the staff than the opposite. We would definitely go again, but would condition the trip on La Amada agreeing to put some variety into their music.
Wished I could have stayed longer
Brand new, beautiful, relaxing, first class hotel. Fine, knowledgable and attentive staff without overkill. Great restaurant with good service. This hotel has only been open a couple months and once everything in the hotel is completely open it will be a complete 5 star hotel. Laid back elegance at the spa as well!