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Ask Joanna

Welcome to the Ask Joanna section of Royal Resorts News.


Hello, my name is Joanna Green. I have been the Royal Resorts Communication Manager for over eight years and a Cancun resident for over 20! Instead of a newsletter owners comments and questions will be posted on the web site So if you have questions about Royal Resorts, the Mexican Caribbean and the Yucatan, please let me know and I will endeavor to answer them for you.

Rental or sale postings will not be accepted. Furthermore, please bear in mind that in some cases queries will also be answered via email and may not appear in the forum. Please use common etiquette. Be courteous to your fellow net surfers and avoid insults or offensive material: as is standard procedure on these postings, offensive posts will not be answered. That said, have fun and let me know what you think!

Comments (2595)

  • Joanna Green

    Dear Thomas,
    Thank you for writing to Royal Resorts News. The Refine All-Inclusive package at The Royal Sands is optional for Royal Resorts members regardless of how they are staying at the resort, i.e. in their own villa, renting a unit or exchanging it through I.I. or RCI. I am assuming that you will be coming down for Thanksgiving in 2015 with your family. If this is the case then the All-Inclusive package will be optional for you and the occupants of your villa.
    However, if you will not be not traveling with your family for Thanksgiving week in 2015 and are exchanging your week at The Royal Cancun so that they may stay at The Royal Sands the rules are as follows: If a Member of Royal Resorts exchanges their week(s) and gives it to a non-member third party via a Guest Certificate, said Guest will have optional access to the REFINE All-Inclusive Package. This policy is only valid if the Royal Resorts Member uses a Royal Resorts week for the exchange.
    In contrast, if you are exchanging the units you have at a different resort company so that your family can stay at The Royal Sands and you will not be present, the policy is as follows: If a member uses a week that is not one of their Royal Resorts membership weeks so that family and friends can stay at the resort without them, purchase of the Refine All-Inclusive package is mandatory. Only one Guest Certificate per Royal Resorts membership agreement is allowed. In other words, for each week owned, one Guest Certificate can be given to a non-member who will have optional access to the REFINE All-Inclusive Package.
    I hope that this helps. You can find more information on the Refine All-Inclusive package, rates and rules at

  • Joanna Green

    Dear Kris:
    Thank you for writing to Royal Resorts News. Visit the Royal Reservations website at for rentals at The Royal Caribbean. You can search using the online booking engine, type in the dates you are interested in and the number of people in your travel party and the rates available will be listed. There is an online chat service or you can also call to talk to one of the travel specialists: Toll free from US & Canada 1-888-838-7841, From Mexico 01-800-888-7744 or from the Rest of the World 1-954-736-5841.
    I hope that this helps.

  • Joanna Green

    Hi Frances:
    Thank you for writing to Royal Resorts News. If you are a Royal Resorts member and have rented a villa, yes, you can pre-register as you have in the past. Log in to the Members Area of with your member ID and password and click on Membership Services in the Menu bar. Scroll down to the Pre-registration service and click, then follow the instructions and you are good to go.
    I hope that this helps, please let me know if I can assist you with anything else in the lead up to your stay.

  • Joanna Green

    Dear RT:
    Thank you for writing to Royal Resorts News. The members log in is working however, we have been experiencing some Internet problems in the last few days which have been disrupting some of the online services at times. I suspect that this is the case and recommend that you try again. If you still have a problem please let us know.
    I hope that this helps.

  • RT Cerniglia

    I have been trying to log onto the member’s login on The Royal Resort website for the past week and have been unsuccessful. It says the web page is unavailable. Is there an issue with the member’s login?


    I have rented a villa for the month of Feb. could you please tell me if I can pre-register, as I have in the past?

  • Kris

    Is it possible for “non Members to search weekly rentals for the Royal Carribean?

  • Thomas Smith

    Hi Joanna,
    I am a owner at the Royal Cancun. I have space banked with II that unit as well as two other time share units I own that are not Royal Resorts. I just requested an exchange for two of the space bank units for my family for thanksgiving week 2015. There were two units available at the Sands however the agent told me they were all inclusive unitts. My question is since I am a owner at Royal Cancun is it mandatory to have all inclusive if I make the exchange into the Sands?

  • Joanna Green

    Hi Alita:
    Thank you for writing to Royal Resorts News.
    I am glad that you enjoyed your meals at La Trattoria and at Los Murales and El Conquistador. I have shared your comments with the Restaurant Management team.
    With regard to the Argentinean wine you liked, I checked and there are two red wines on the menu from Argentina. They are both Malbecs from the Mendoza Valley and the wine labels are Las Moras and Terrazas.
    I hope that this helps and that you are able to find them in your hometown.

  • Joanna Green

    Hi JJ,
    Thank you for writing to Royal Resorts News. I apologize for the delay in getting back to you. If you haven’t already done so I recommend that you check at the Thomas More Travel desk, the minimum age for children at Xplor is five. There are four activities: rafting and swimming in an underground river through caves and you wear helmets and life jackets at all times and literally float along; there are exits every 100 meters if your daughter decides that she wants to get out of the water. The jungle jeep ride is in a vehicle with belts and helmets and the driver must be over the age of 18. The zip line circuit is the one that you might want to ask about. You wear a helmet and a harness and there may be special ones for children, I’m not sure about that. The highest point of the zipline circuit is 45 meters but you don’t have to do the whole thing. It is possible to zipline between two of the towers and then exit.
    I hope that this helps and that you are enjoying your stay.

  • Alita Small

    Hello Joanna:
    Hope you can provide me with the info I would like to have. We just got back from our annual two week vacation at the Haciendas and Royal Cancun. Ate at the new La Trattoria restaurant at the Royal Cancun and it was excellent. I ordered a glass of pino noir from Argentina., it was excellent. I have looked for a wine menu from the restaurant but cannot bring one up to view. I would love to know the name of the wine that I ordered and am sure if I saw the menu I would know which one it was. I would like to know the name of the Argentine wine. Hope you can help me wiith this information. Best wishes to this new restaurant it is right up there with the Los Muralos at the Haciendies, the El Conquistador at the Islander, we loved dining at all three during our recent stay, the best restaurants, our hats off to the Royals Resorts for fine dining.

  • JJ

    Dear Joanna
    My wife and I will be staying at the Royal Caribbean Nov1 -7 with our 7 year old daughter. We were thinking of going to Xplor for a day and wanted to know if it is a suitable outing for a 7 year old?
    I appreciate any insight you can provide.



  • Joanna Green

    Dear Anna:
    Thank you for writing to Royal Resorts News. Visit and log into the Members Area using your Royal Resorts ID and password. In the menu at the top of the page you’ll find a tab called Membership Services, scroll down and you’ll see a section called Renting your Villa with information on the rental program. You can enroll your lock off in the online rental program managed by Royal Club Vacations or download the PDF form available on the page and email it to Royal Club Vacations.
    I hope that this helps.

  • Joanna Green

    Hi Mike:
    Thank you for writing to Royal Resorts News. I’m so glad that you enjoyed the charro beans at Paco’s Tacos. I requested the recipe from our Executive Chefs and they were happy to oblige. I hope that you enjoy them. BUEN PROVECHO!

    Please note that this recipe may make a large amount of Frijoles Charros, you may have to reduce the amount proportionally or invite family and friends to try them.

    140ml corn oil (maize oil)
    47g garlic
    141g sliced bacon
    340g chorizo sausage
    293g onion
    227g cooked smoked ham (leg)
    275g green bell pepper
    232g red bell pepper
    238g tomato
    34g cilantro (coriander)
    40g epazote (you should be able to get this at a store stocking Mexican herbs and spices)
    3.4kg of beans in their cooking liquid (frijol bayo – bay beans, not the black or kidney beans)
    15g Knorr chicken stock cube
    15g salt
    3g freshly ground black pepper

    Chop the garlic, onion, bacon, chorizo, green and red bell peppers, tomatoes and pork. heat the oil in a pan and add the garlic and onion, stirring constantly, then add the bacon, chorizo and fry until golden. Then add the bell peppers, tomato and ham and cook for five minutes. Add the beans and their cooking liquid. Add the chopped cilantro and epazote and simmer for a few minutes. Finally season with chicken stock powder, salt and pepper.

  • Joanna Green

    Dear Marilyn:
    Thank you for writing to Royal Resorts News. I followed up on this for you and regret to inform you that the custom-made bathing suit service is not available at The Royal Haciendas and it is not offered at the Gift Shop in The Royal Sands at this time.
    I hope that this helps. Please let me know if I can help you with anything else in the lead up to your March vacation.

  • Joanna Green

    Hi Diane:
    Thank you for writing to Royal Resorts News.
    I apologize for the delay in getting back to you. I recommend that you visit the Thomas More Travel desk at The Royal Cancun as they have many exciting new tours and activities available and sometimes offer discounts for members and guests or special promotions on selected tours. The Thomas More Travel website is if you would like to start looking at tours.
    Xplor Park is a great option for zip lining and has the longest circuit of all the parks in the area. I loved swimming and rafting along the underground river, for me it was the highlight. A visit to Chichen Itza is a must and as excavation and restoration is ongoing, there’s always something different to see at this UNESCO World Heritage Site, voted one of the World’s New Seven Wonders in 2007 in an online poll. Thomas More Travel offers the classic Chichen Itza trip and has several other options too, and of course trips the other famous archaeological sites in the area such as Tulum, Coba, Ek Balam and Uxmal. They offer horseback riding on the beach and if you enjoy snorkeling, ask about trips to Puerto Morelos, Akumal and a new one to Xcacel, a pristine beach designated as a sea turtle sanctuary.
    I hope that this helps and that you enjoy your vacation. If you would like any additional tour recommendations, I would be happy to tell you about some of my favorite places. I have also forwarded your question to Thomas More Travel too and if I receive additional information I will send it to you.

  • Joanna Green

    Dear Don:
    Thank you for writing to Royal Resorts News. The Alamo Rent a Car contact person at The Royal Haciendas is (Christina Garcia). Tel. +52 984 151-8565. This information has also been sent via email.
    I hope that this helps.

  • Joanna Green

    Hi Susan:
    Thank you for writing to Royal Resorts News. I am happy to hear that you enjoy your annual vacation so much at The Royal Islander and last year at The Royal Sands and The Royal Haciendas. Also, thank you for your kind words about Grand Residences.

    I have forwarded your comments about the Royal Resorts Signature Club membership to the program manager for her to investigate and see what happened. I am sure that you will soon be receiving the membership package.

    I hope that this helps. Please let me know if there is anything else I can assist you with in the lead up to your next vacation.

  • Mike W

    We are currently in our second week here and staying at the Islander this week. We had some OUTSTANDING charro beans at Pacos Tacos the other night. Any chance we could get the recipe? I do not see it on the list of recipes available on your website.

    It had something “different” in it that I really liked and am trying to identify.


  • Joanna Green

    Dear Kathleen:
    Thank you for writing to Royal Resorts News.
    I apologize for the delay for getting back to you. I did forward your comment to Resort Management for them to take into consideration as they make improvements to the resort and would like to thank you for telling us about the incidents that you have seen.
    I hope that this helps.

  • Joanna Green

    Hi Mr. Hemenway:
    Thank you for writing to Royal Resorts News.
    The schedule is as follows:
    The Royal Haciendas to Playa del Carmen: 10:15 a.m., 11 a.m., 12 p.m., 1 p.m.
    Playa del Carmen to The Royal Haciendas: 11:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m., 1:30 p.m., 3 p.m.
    (small fee applies per person)

    The Royal Haciendas to Playa del Carmen: 5:30 p.m., 6:30 p.m.
    Playa del Carmen to The Royal Haciendas: 6 p.m.
    The afternoon service is complimentary.
    Departure times are subject to change and guests can check them at the Front Desk. Reservations are required to use the shuttle and can be taken care of at the Front Desk. Royal Resorts members may reserve the same day and non-member guests the day before they wish to use the shuttle. A reservation number will be provided and will be requested when boarding. Service is subject to availability. All passengers must be seated, no standing.
    I hope that this helps.

  • Joanna Green

    Dear Reg,
    First of all, I must apologize for the delay in responding to your query. I am afraid that there aren’t any storage lockers on site that you can rent to store your Cancun gear, however I seem to remember that a former member of staff at Royal Resorts may offer this service locally and am investigating. If I find any additional information I will contact you.

  • Marilyn Onderdonk

    I would like to get custom made bathing suit since I know they do that at the Royal Sands. When do they do them at the Royal Haciendas
    since I am coming in March.

  • Cristobal Galindo

    Hi Reg. Right here.

    If you want to see more comments, at the bottom left of this page you will find a links saying “older comments” Just click on it and it will display more comments each time.

    Warm regards.

  • Reg Beene

    Where are all (2560) of the “Ask Joanna” comments available to be seen?

  • Joanna Green

    Hi James:
    Thank you for writing to Royal Resorts News. Yes the restaurant is open.

  • Anna Lettang-Visioni

    please let me know where to find form for renting our lock off Thank you

  • Vinny Scire

    We are coming down on Nov 8th. Two couples. We are interested in a private day excursion to remote swiming and snorkeling areas. Due you have any surggestions.

  • James Carlson

    1. Is the Meeting Point Restaurant still open in Terminal 3?

    2. I have pre-registered a guest for week 49. She will arrive more than an hour before me at the Royal Caribbean. Do I still need to give her a letter addressed to the front desk of the Caribbean so she can get into our villa?

  • Reg Beene

    Hi Joanna,

    Are there any storage lockers we can rent, in which to leave our “Cancun Gear” so we don’t have to drag it back and forth each year?

  • Reg Beene

    Hi Joanna,

    Are there any storage lockers we can rent, in which to leave our “Cancun Gear” so we don’t have to drag it back and forth each year.

  • Russell Shofner

    I will be at Royal Haciendas from Oct 4-11. Are there any turtle nests in that area and what are the chances of witnessing a release?

  • Diane Powell

    Hi Joanna….I’ll be heading to Royal Cancun in November (5 of us)…wondering if we can save …with booking excursions through our resort….looking at the Xplor Tour (specifically zip lining)….possibly Chichen Itza Classic visit….and possibly Horseback riding on the beach. Ive been going for over 30 years and anxious to get back. just wondering if going through Cancun Adventure might be less. With 5 of us adults….Id like to save where I can. Thank you for your input.
    Diane Powell and family

  • Don

    I will be staying at the RH for 5 weeks beginning Nov. 1st. I am interested in renting a car for most of my stay. I understand that Adocar has been replaced by Alamo ? Are you able to provide me with the name of the agent who is assigned to the RH lobby location along with his/her email address ?
    Thank you.

  • Susan grant

    We own week 15 at the Islander but have extended our trip for the past four years to try out the Sands and the Haciendas. They each offer something different and wonderful. Last year we toured the residences and they are amazing! It would be a dream to be able to own there but at home responsibilities don’t make that possible for now. When we spent the day touring The Residences, we were told we would be getting two years free membership to the club that let’s you trade for different vacation spots. (I am sorry but I can’t remember the name) I was told a package to be signed would be mailed. That was five months ago. Please let me know who I can speak to about this. It is almost time to start thinking about our vacation…yea! So happy to own!
    Thank you
    Susan grant
    Amesbury, ma

  • Kathleen Suhs

    Joanna, we’re members at the Royal Cancun & have a ground floor villa by the children’s pool. Do you know if there are any plans to add railings on both sides of the pool’s shallow end steps? Over the years we’ve seen many slips & several falls. Elderly guests as well as children. All the other RR pools have railings; why not this particular spot…particularly since it is designated as “children’s pool”? Who do you recommend we contact regarding this potential dangerous problem? Thank you.

  • David Gordon

    Thank you….I straightened it out with Interval and I am preregistered.

  • John Lynne Hemenway

    Hi again Joanna — Is is possible to send me the current taxi shuttle service schedule and cost – to & from the Haciendas & Playa? Last year, I believe the cost was $3.00 per person each way, but there were some late evening times that were gratis. Thank you

  • Robert Kennedy

    I left a question but don’t see my message on your blog any more. The question was about If I had access to the Royal Sands for the gym, happy hour and restaurants. I am an owner of two weeks which I am using this year.. but the third week I am at a non Royal Resort.. So because I am a member can I pay cash and still visit the Sands for dinner the gym and happy hour..


  • Joanna Green

    Hi Shelley:
    Thank you for writing to Royal Resorts News. The dress code for the restaurants is casual. No swimsuits or bare feet, tank tops or flip flops. Men must wear t-shirts with sleeves or shirts.
    For more formal restaurants such as Los Murales and El Conquistador, the code is “casual smart,” dresses, tops and skirts or trousers for women and shirts and trousers or bermudas for men.
    I hope that this helps. Please let me know if you have additional questions.

  • Shelley

    Do you know what the dress code is in most of the sit down restaurants at the Royal Resorts? I have two 13 old, and an 11 year old boy. Will they have to wear pants and closed toe shoes? Are tennis shoes OK?

  • Jennifer


    Thanks much for the informative and prompt response.


  • Joanna Green

    Hi Jennifer:
    Thank you for writing to Royal Resorts News.
    Right now there are 193 turtle nests with 22,204 eggs in the corrals at The Royal Sands and The Royal Caribbean in Cancun. Turtles are still coming ashore to lay their eggs in the sand and as the incubation period is 45 to 60 days, I’d say that you might be lucky enough to see some baby turtles in October. It all depends on whether the eggs in some of the nests hatch during your stay.
    The baby turtles are set free the day they hatch and the releases take place on the beach at 8 p.m. when sea birds such as gulls and frigate birds that might prey on the tiny creatures have gone to roost. I recommend that you tell your Concierge that you are interested in witnessing a turtle release, you can also ask the Guest Services Manager/Front Desk to let you know when a turtle release is going to take place. The staff in the Activity Centers are also a good source of information. I hope that this helps and that you see some baby turtles.

  • Joanna Green

    Dear David:
    Thank you for writing to Royal Resorts News. I am sorry that you were unable to preregister and for the delay in getting back to you. I have forwarded your post to the Guest Services Manager for follow up. Sometimes website maintenance is carried out and for short periods some online services may be unavailable, perhaps this was the case last week.
    I hope that this helps. Please let me know if you have any further questions in the lead up to your vacation.

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