My kids really don’t need anything for Christmas and I always hate spending money on a bunch of toys that they will lose interest in after a few weeks. So this year we decided to do a family Christmas vacation to Cancun, Mexico! This was my kids first time out of the country and first visit to the beach. Needless to say, they were SUPER EXCITED!
We booked the Family Suite at Dream Sands Cancun Resort & Spa. If you follow the blog, I decided that Family Suites were the way to go after our trip to San Antonio (See A Working Mother’s Guilt and Summer, San Antonio edition). Family Suites are two connecting rooms, one room has two beds for the kids, a king size bed in the other room and a bathroom in each. A bonus to booking the Family Suite at Dream Sands is the room option upgrades your experience to the “Preferred Club”.
The Preferred Club gives you special concierge services, extra room amenities, private lounge and beach access. Some extended family traveled with us to Cancun that didn’t have the Preferred Club access so I was able to compare the differences.
The Preferred Club experience starts with check-in. You are greeted in the lobby by concierge that takes you to the private lounge for check-in. The private lounge hours are from 7am – 11pm. The lounge has self-serve food, a full bar, computer access, and concierge. At check-in the bartender brought us two glasses of champagne and offered the kids drinks and snacks. I appreciated the private lounge for check-in and the concierge letting us know about everything the resort had to offer. The lounge is located on the same floor as the upgraded rooms so it’s convenient, but overall, the private lounge is not worth paying for an upgrade. In our 5 night stay I visited the lounge once to grab a margarita and a snack while I was waiting for my family to finish getting dressed for dinner. There are so many bar and food options throughout the resort that we really didn’t feel the need to go back to the lounge.
All of the resort rooms have minibars that are included as part of the all-inclusive deal. The minibars in the preferred rooms have soda, beer, small bottles of liquor (tequila, whiskey, and rum), juice, Pringles, and M&M’s. The standard rooms also have minibars but with only beer and soda. It was nice to have the snacks and drinks for the kids and be able to make your own cocktail in the room, especially if you want a stronger drink than you can get at the resort bars, but not a necessity. The resort has 24hr room service and it takes them no longer than 30 minutes to arrive. So you could order snacks and drinks right to your room, any time. The Preferred Club rooms also include a nightly turn-down service. I loved the service but my husband didn’t see the point. For turn-down service the house keeping came in to tidy-up, turn-down the bedding, place chocolates on the pillow and cold water on the night stands. I thought it was a very nice touch after a long day to come back to a clean room and ice cold water.
The Private beach access and special concierge is really where the upgraded Preferred Club experience comes in handy.
There’s concierge all over the beach and Dream Sands has plenty of staff so we never had to wait for service, Preferred area or not. The difference in the Preferred Experience is the private beach access. The exclusive beach area includes hammocks, private beach side Jacuzzis, canopy beds, and lounge chairs under umbrellas. The concierge was always right there to provide premium drinks, answer questions, and occasionally bring out fresh fruit and other snacks while you relax on the beach. We sat in both areas of the beach during our stay. The private area of the beach had a luxurious and relaxing vibe vs the public area that was more of a party atmosphere great for people watching and mingling.
So those were the only differences of the Preferred Club compared to the normal service. As I said earlier, our room selection came with the upgraded experience of the “Preferred Club” but I don’t think I would get the upgrade if I was just booking a standard room for a family vacation. The resort’s customer service is so efficient that the upgrade really isn’t needed. I will say if you are looking for a romantic get-a- way or just want to relax on the beach and read a book then the Preferred Club is definitely for you!