Privilege Aluxes – Adolfo López Mateos S/N, Centro, 77400 Isla Mujeres, Quintana Roo, Mexico
Privilege Aluxes is a first class boutique style resort located in Playa Norte on the northern end of Isla Mujeres footsteps from one of the Caribbean’s most beautiful beaches, and it has easily become one of our all-time favorite places to stay. Read on to find out why.
Privilege Aluxes, a pristine beachfront boutique resort, offers expansive suite-style accommodations as well as the option of an all-inclusive meal plan. The mix of luxury living-style accommodations and laid back island vibe of Isla Mujeres (read more about Isla Mujeres here) are exactly what we’re looking for when we vacation. We had the *privilege* of living the privileged life during several of our visits to Isla Mujeres, and as always – we simply cannot wait to return.
To Include or Not to Include?
During the initial planning phase for our trip to Isla, we were hesitant to reserve an all-inclusive resort. Although we’ve enjoyed some great all-inclusives in the past, we find that these types of accommodations limit us to the confines of the resort’s walls. We are more likely to plant ourselves at the resort to take advantage of the all-included food and drink rather than branching out and exploring the culture of our current destination. And, let’s face it – all-inclusive resorts aren’t typically known for their award winning or authentic cuisine.
The reviews on the idea of all-inclusives in Isla are mixed. A number of online reviews from repeat Isla guests seemed disheartened to hear of the addition of such resorts on Isla. These long-time visitors enjoy escaping the over-hyped atmosphere of areas like Cancun, and they fear that what people love most about Isla will be swallowed by development and big box resorts.
However, this is not the case with Privilege Aluxes. Our very first stay at Privilege Aluxes was filled with unexpected surprises that really made us feel like we were living the privileged life. When reserving our first stay at Privilege Aluxes, we did not reserve the all-inclusive package; however, upon arrival at the resort we were welcomed with a champagne toast and told that we had been upgraded to the all-inclusive package.
This was a very nice and completely unexpected surprise! Since the all-inclusive plan was not something we had pre-paid for, we did not find ourselves feeling guilty enjoying a meal or drinks off property at one of Isla Mujeres’ many restaurants or bars. We certainly took advantage of all the amenities our newly discovered all-inclusive plan had to offer, which we found were extensive for a resort of this size. The best part of our new found all-inclusive plan is that it wasn’t something we prepaid for. Therefore, we did not let that stop us from exploring all that Isla Mujeres had to offer!
After that, we were hooked! On our subsequent stays at Privilege Aluxes, we opted each time to “include” the all-inclusive plan since we really enjoyed all of the food and drink options at the Resort. The addition of the all-inclusive plan made it completely worth the investment for us, even though we typically leave property for dinner a few nights during our stays.
Arriving to our Island in the Sun
We backpacked our way from Cancun International via public bus transportation to Cancun Central Bus Station with a stop at Mercado 23. From there we traveled to Puerto Juárez and rode the Ultramar Ferry to Isla. You can read more about our experience with the Ultramar and specific details on how you can take trip to Isla Mujeres for the day or week here.
Upon arrival in Isla and for our first stay at Privilege Aluxes, we opted for a scenic walk (at this point we had already walked miles, what’s a few more?) in the afternoon sun down the sidewalk that runs parallel to Isla’s North Beach and along the Island’s main drag. All of our walking made the luxuries of Privilige Aluxes even more enjoyable upon arrival!
On our most recent visit to Isla Mujeres, our stay at Privilege Aluxes included complimentary round-trip transportation arranged through the Resort. Traditionally, this transportation is an additional $53.00 USD per person for one-way and $93.00 USD per person roundtrip, but given the room category we booked (the Resort’s Presidential Suite/Penthouse), this transportation was included in our reservation. Since this was a longer stay in Mexico for us and we were visiting other areas of Quintana Roo, we had a lot more luggage than what we would have on a typical visit to Isla. This transportation service included a twenty (20) minute shuttle-van from Cancun International Airport to Puerto Juarez (location of the Ultramar Ferry) via AGI Tours, two roundtrip Ultramar Ferry tickets, and a five (5) minute taxi from the Port in Isla Mujeres to Privilege Aluxes.
When we arrived at Privilege Aluxes for our very first visit, we were each offered a delicious glass of champagne and a cool towel when we arrived at our home for the week on Isla. We relaxed in the Resort’s lobby and after hours of being off the grid in transit, we finally reconnected with the world via the Resort’s free WiFi. After only a few moments of check-in procedures, we were swept off to our room by one of the Resort’s fantastic bellman who provided a tour of the beautiful Resort and great conversation along the way.
The Privileged Life
The Resort is laid out in an intimate L-shape design where each of the guest rooms overlook either the pool or ocean. The Resort’s pool, spa, health club, open-air lounge, and buffet restaurant are all located within the courtyard of the Resort’s immaculate grounds. In our opinion, there isn’t a bad view to be found when it comes to the rooms at Privilege Aluxes. However, roof top suites offer unobstructed views of the Resort’s beaches, and on a clear day you can easily see Cancun and the surrounding coastline in the distance.
The landscaping is tropical but not overwhelming, and the walkways are wide. The grounds are well manicured, and each morning the friendly landscape crew is working hard to maintain the Resort’s beautiful surroundings.
During the holiday season, the resort staff works tirelessly to decorate Privilege Aluxes for its holiday guests. While many may think it doesn’t feel like Christmas when your sunny, sandy, and poolside, we had the pleasure of staying at Privilege Aluxes during the month of December and over the Christmas/New Years holiday. We thought the staff did a wonderful job of getting us in the Christmas spirit.
When it comes to accommodations Privilege Aluxes offers a number of room categories which can be found throughout the Resort:
- Standard Rooms
- Superior Rooms
- Suite Deluxe
- Honeymoon Suite
- Grand Platinum Suites
- Presidential Suite
For our very first stay at Privilege Aluxes, we stayed in Room 101, and we were beyond impressed when we first arrived at our accommodations. Although our reservation was for a Superior Room, but we were upgraded to a Suite Deluxe.
Our massive room featured a full size “independent” living room with a plush leather pull out sofa, flat screen TV, a small kitchen with refrigerator, sink, a cook-top and ample counter space, and a large dining table. The master bedroom was separated from the living area by large wooden doors, and the bedroom included an enormous stand-alone wardrobe, another flat screen TV, and one heavenly king size bed.
Both the living room and bedroom each featured separate but massive patios that provided views of the Resort’s beautiful grounds. The dual patios were wonderful to relax on with a beverage or two while we caught up on the news from back home thanks to the Resort’s complimentary WiFi. The floor-to-ceiling sliding glass doors of both patios allowed ample rays of natural sunlight into both our master bedroom and the living room throughout the day.
The kitchen fridge was fully stocked with all of our favorite alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, especially bottled water. Housekeeping stocked our fridge daily, and they made sure to pay special attention to the items we liked.
The bathroom featured both a shower as well as a separate Jacuzzi tub along with two sinks and a hidden toilet. For those wondering, Privilege Aluxes guests may use the toilet in the traditional way Americans are accustomed (toilet paper may be flushed and guests are not required to place it in the trash can). For some, this can be a deal breaker. The lack of modern Mexican sewer systems throughout not only Isla Mujeres but also many areas of Mexico requires guests of many resorts, restaurants, bars, and attractions to NOT flush toilet paper down the drain. When you are researching your accommodations in Isla Mujeres (and all of Mexico for that matter), be sure to inquire as to whether or not toilet paper may be flushed or if it must be stored in the trash.
Lavish toiletries were provided in-room, and they replenished daily by housekeeping. The scents were similar to the products used in Spa Mystic, which we really enjoyed. The Jacuzzi tub was the perfect size for a relaxing bubble bath after our long days in the Isla sun. We took full advantage of our jacuzzi tub and enjoyed a couples bubble bath one evening after a long bike ride across the island.
On several occasions, we ordered room service one evening for a late-night snack/dessert which was a special treat. Our order arrived promptly, and the service was excellent. This gave us another opportunity to take advantage of our patios, and we enjoyed our room service al fresco.
The Presidential Suite
During our most recent stay at Privilege Aluxes, we had the privilege of staying in the resort’s Presidential Suite during a very special occasion. Our stay in Privilege Aluxes’ Presidential Suite has honestly ruined all other accommodations for us in that we find it hard to believe any future *hotel room* will have a hard time living up to the incredible amenities these accommodations offered.
This suite includes:
- two full bedrooms each with a king size bed
- three bathrooms each with their own shower, tub and toilet
- one balcony
- a private rooftop terrace
- a hall wardrobe closet
- two bedroom closets
- a kitchen
- a full size dining room
- a living room with two sofas, a coffee table and a 37″ LCD TV
- a rooftop swimming pool
- a rooftop day bed
Every part of the Privilege Aluxes Presidential Suite offers breathtaking oceanfront and pool views of both Playa Norte and the Cancun coastline. For such a large space, there are so many opportunities for natural light to shine through. When we weren’t hanging poolside or lounging on the beach with a few cocktails and making new friends, we enjoyed lounging in the privacy of our private rooftop balcony morning, day, and night.
The only thing worth noting is that the Presidential Suite, like all top floor suites with their own swimming pools, is not a covered patio. Therefore, when it rains or if they are calling for rain that day, be sure to grab any swimsuits, towels, or personal items you may have left on the patio. If you prefer a room with a covered patio, a Suite Deluxe may be a better option for you.
Location, Location, Location
We explored a number of other options for accommodations in Isla before we decided on Privileges. The majority of these hotels were oceanfront; however, they did not have direct access to a *private* beach and simply offered a small plunge pool. Although these hotels were beautiful, and we made visits to a few during our time in Isla, our priority while in Isla was to spend as much time on the Island’s pristine beaches and in the crystal clear waters as much as possible!
A large amount of Privilege guest rooms offer fantastic beach and ocean views, and the ocean is not far from your room. With the resort being located in Playa Norte, it is home to one of the most stunning white sand beaches and the clearest blue water that we found throughout the entire Yucatan Peninsula. Privilege beach is private and only for use by hotel guests. Drink service was provided by the hotel staff, and they did an excellent job of never leaving our glasses empty for long.
After a full day exploring all that Isla had to offer, one of our favorite things to do was to relax beachfront at Privilege very own Beach Club while listening to the acoustic stylings of a very talented local musician. Isla Mujeres is a beautiful escape on its own, but there is nothing quite like beachfront star gazing at Privilege Aluxes.
Housekeeping did an excellent job of keeping our room spotless. I imagine this is quite a task given the size of each guestroom. Our linens were always fresh and if we ever need more of something, housekeeping took care of our every need. Housekeeping was never difficult to get a hold of, and everyone we interacted with was very friendly.
The front desk staff was incredibly knowledgeable on the area. Our first night in Isla we asked for a recommendation from the front desk of where we could find the most authentic cuisine on the Island. We knew the downtown area was very developed and has basically become unfortunately – a tourist trap, and we wanted to avoid areas like this at all costs. We were referred to the home kitchen of a local family, La Lomita, where we experienced the most incredible and authentic meal of our entire trip.
Overall, the accommodations at Privilege far exceeded our expectations! On our very first trip, we honestly didn’t know what to expect, and we were blown away. In all honesty, these guestrooms feel more like a rental property, but with all the amenities we love about a resort. The primary reason we do not enjoy time shares or rental properties like Air BnB is that they are often lacking in things like daily housekeeping, room service, and pools or beaches. The oversize-guestrooms allowed us the best of both worlds which made us feel at home while at Privilege Aluxes and less like we were living out of our suitcases.
- Three climate controlled pools with one swim-up pool bar
- Two secluded and one pool-side hot tub
- Private pristine beach
- Beach Club Bar offers palapa drink service, and beachfront dining for lunch/dinner
- Satay Thai restaurant is an indoor specialty restaurant offering dinner by reservation
- Sabor Buffet offers indoor & outdoor seating with floor to ceiling views of the resorts beach
- A double-sided Pool Bar featuring lunch and cocktails
- The swim-up side of the pool bar allows you to keep cool by the pool and enjoy your favorite beverage.
- The resort side of the pool bar offers table seating for those looking to enjoy the pool bar’s daily lunch menu. We were lucky enough to catch a Mexican-themed fiesta one afternoon at the resort’s pool bar.
- Outdoor lounge/bar
- Room Service
- Golf Cart Rental
- Health club – treadmills, free weights, benches, yoga mats, televisions
- Spa Mystic offering world class spa services
Each of Privilege Aluxes’ three main pools are climate controlled. We’ve visited on various occasions from August through December/January, and the only time we find ourselves skipping the pool is during a rainshower. On rainy days or afternoons, we hit the gym to work off all of those calories we consumed thanks to our all-inclusive plan. Our other favorite rainy day activity is to relax with a couples massage or facial at Spa Mystic.
Spa Mystic offers daily specials throughout the resort. Our Suite Deluxe room was conveniently located within steps of the Spa. However, the Presidential Suite was one of the farthest rooms from the Spa, but we didn’t mind the walk.
Although the weather is practically perfect during most of our stays in Isla Mujeres and at Privilege Aluxes, there were days with a few afternoon showers throughout our stay. One rainy afternoon on our first stay we took advantage of a couples massage offer, and our masseuses took excellent care of us. This was the perfect activity for a rainy day in Isla, and Spa Mystic is just one of the many amenities at Privilege Aluxes.
During our most recent stay, we planned to have several “resort days” during our extended stay. We booked a couples massage with Lillian and her partner, and it was amazing. We were so relaxed and happy that we decided to book another massage the next day as they were offering a two-for-one special! If you have the opportunity to stay at Privilege Aluxes, be sure to keep an eye on the daily spa specials advertised. From that point on, we made a point to walk by the spa each day to see what the offerings were in order to take advantage of any future specials.
We’d like to take this opportunity to clarify a few misconceptions about Privilege Aluxes which we feel has been grossly misrepresented by previous guests.
- “Typical All-Inclusive” – As we stated above, Privilige is not your typical all-inclusive resort, as it is a resort first. The resort just happens to offer an all-inclusive prepaid option to its guests. At no time did we feel trapped in an all-inclusive compound, or that our experience at Privilige lacked the authenticity of our cultural surroundings. Hopefully you can see from our accounts above that our experience at Privilige was just the opposite.
- “The Long Walk to the Beach” – One thing we saw repeated in a number of online reviews for Privilige were complaints about the “long walk from the Resort to the beach,” and how we had to cross a “dangerous road” in order to get to the Resort’s beach. This was perhaps the biggest misconception out there that we encountered about Privilige, and it was absolutely not the case – not even remotely! Fact: You do have to cross a small alley way in order to get to the Resort’s private beach. There is a cross walk provided, and at no time during our many hours of beach going did we even see one golf cart pass through this alley way. The crossing of this alley way never hindered our beach going experience, even on the most inebriated of our days in Isla.
Is Privilege for you?
Even though we had our hesitations at first, we are certainly glad we took the chance on this boutique all-inclusive. With this being our first visit to Isla, we had no idea what to expect when we arrived, but everything about Privileges far exceeded our expectations and certainly made repeat guests out of us!
In our opinion, Privilege Aluxes has set the standard that all other accommodations on Isla Mujeres should follow. This charming boutique hotel’s amazing staff, ample amenities, and gorgeous grounds are what set it apart from its competitors.
We understand that a Resort like Privileges with the all-inclusive option may not suit everyone’s travel style. Maybe you prefer the personalization of a more intimate family owned establishment, the rental of a vacation home with a private chef, or a guest house. Whatever your preference, you can find it in Isla Mujeres! However, if you’re lucky enough to visit this Island in the Sun, we highly recommend you take a chance on Privilege Aluxes and live the *privileged* life.
If you are interested in reading more about our adventures on Isla Mujeres, check out these Isla-related posts:
If you are interested in Isla Mujeres, we found this website run by Isla Mujeres locals and its guidebook extremely helpful: http://www.islamujeres.info/
Have you been to or are you planning a future trip to Isla Mujeres? Let us know about your past or future visits to Isla. We’d love to hear from you!
The comments, opinions, and views set forth on this site are the reflected personal positions of the site’s creators. This site is not an affiliate of Privilege Hotels. The comments, opinions, and views set forth within this site are not the official positions of Privilege Hotels, and they do not reflect the Company’s position.