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My husband and I vacationed at the Moon Palace Sunrise during the last week of February, 2003. It was a lovely resort and we highly recommend it. First, though, I have to tell you that if you are considering booking with Apple Vacations, you might want to think again. The plane ride from Phila. to Cancun was fine, although it took four hours due to weather conditions and military no-fly zones. We realize that couldn't be helped. The way home took 13 hours from the time we left the hotel until the time we landed in Phila.
The Apple reps were about 1/2 hour late picking us up at the Moon and then when we arrived at the very crowded Cancun airport, there was no representative at our gate even though we were told by airport personnel that our plane would be an hour late. Well, our plane was about 2 hours late and when we finally boarded, they let us know that we would be making a stop in Baltimore to drop off about a dozen passengers. Before take-off, the pilot announced that we were now over the weight limit with our extra passengers and luggage and we sat on the runway for another hour and a half while they removed 6,000 gallons of fuel from the plane. We finally took off and had a normal flight to Baltimore. In Baltimore, we all had to get off the plane with our carry-ons, collect our luggage(which took about 30 minutes to start coming down the beltway),go through customs, recheck our luggage and wait another 40 minutes to get back on the plane. Once we landed in Phila., the luggage, again, took a long time coming to us. We were scheduled to land at 4:30 in Phila. and it was 11:00 by the time we could get our luggage. I would consider another tour company or no company at all. The Moon Palace is very close to the airport and taxi's are everywhere. Charters can add stops at the last minute and the whole ordeal was very annoying.
Having said that, I'll move on to our wonderful vacation. The Moon Palace Sunrise is a huge, well-kept, well-run, fun resort. The rooms were a nice size with plenty of space, the refrigerator was well-stocked with plenty of water and soda. There are also bottles of water everywhere around the resort. They gave you about 5 or 6 beers every two days, but we ran out of that pretty quick. The beds are hard, but we had no trouble and slept great. The jacuzzi was a lot of fun, very big, and the maid left new bubble bath every day. The bathroom was fine. The marble shower was huge and had great water pressure. There were little bottles of mouthwash, lotion, shampoo, and soap that were replenished daily. There was an iron and ironing board in our room which came in handy. The TV had a few stations. No movies to pay for or anything like that. We were on the third floor which we loved. The walk to the lobby and restaurants was long, but we considered it our exercise for the day.
The restaurants were OK. Don't go pick this resort for the food. A few nights we just ate dinner at the Lobby Bar. They had tacos, fajitas,ect. There was no line and the food was pretty good there. The buffets seemed all the same after a while. Service in the restaurants and at the pool was excellent. There was always someone asking you if you needed anything. The lobby bar had live entertainment every night and we enjoyed that. The disco was also a pleasant surprise. They played a lot of music from the 80's and 90's and there was a very nice crowd there.
The beach was as bad as other people have said. We love the beach, and I truly thought people were exaggerating when they complained about it in other trip reports. They weren't! It looked pretty, but the water was murky, the seaweed was thick, and the bottom was soft. No one was in the water swimming. If this is important to you, go somewhere else. The tractors were sweeping the beach all day, trying to collect the seaweed and it sounded like a construction site. The pool was great. They keep it clean and if we were there by 8:30 or 9:00 in the morning, we could get a good spot. They played music most of the day and we enjoyed it. A few times people were complaining because someone took their towels. If you leave your towel on your chair, put your shoes or book on it to make it harder for someone to swipe it. They charge you $20.00 for each towel that you lose and they are very strict about it. Unfortunately, people who lost their towels were just stealing from other people. They really need to address that problem.
The drinks at the resort were a little weak, but the bartenders were happy to add more alcohol if you asked.
They had a very large gift shop with everything you might need; toiletries, lotions, souveniers, swimwear, jewelry, medicine, snacks, sunglasses,ect. and it was priced reasonably. That is where you can buy a phone card to call home. It was a little less than a dollar a minute and easy to use. After you buy your card, go up the escalators in the lobby and make a left at the top. There are three phones on the wall and they are the ones you use to call home. Sometimes there was a line, but other than that, it was no problem.
The weather was hot and sunny every day and there was always a breeze. Ladies, remember your hairspray. The walk to the restaurants for dinner was definitely a hair challenge.
One downside of this resort is its size. Because of the large number of guests, you didn't get to know the people who worked there and you kind of felt like you were part of a herd shuffling through the dinner line or waiting for a bus to town. If you don't mind the lack of imtimacy, then we would highly recommend this resort.
Thanks to Marie for this trip report...