New Dining in Cancún's Hotel Zone
Updated: Feb 24
Despite the large number of all-inclusive resorts in the Hotel Zone, I'm happy to report that the "quality" dining options continue to rise with a steady stream of cool restaurants opening, or existing ones reinventing themselves. With more openings comes competition, and there are benefits to that. What's more, the newer ones try to outdo each other with their own entertainment concept integrated into the dining experience. Here's a recap of the what's going on, and some you can recommend to your clients visiting Cancún.
Replacing the popular Italian Cenacolo (now moved further down the strip into an office-like building on the lagoon) is the ultra-hip TABOO, featuring iconic healthy Mediterranean cuisine with dishes you'd expect to see in Greece and coastal Italy. The food is well-prepared and the decor is as trendy as the resident DJ who provides a really good vibe. What really stands out is the nightly pyrotechnical display that they unleash around 10pm. Whether you're expecting the show or not it's a really nice and unique spectacle that left me utterly convinced the palapa (straw-like) roof was going to catch fire and we would have to leap into the lagoon for our lives. For the record, it's completely safe.
Additional newcomers are DOBLE B and BUENA BARRA (two great venues sitting one on top of the other). While the menu is somewhat limited the food is very good with entree choices including Rib Eye, Striped Bass and Blue Fin Tuna Tataki. Their nightly performances engage the crowd and include a talented violinist, look-a-like performances, and a few other unique characters that ignite the fiesta atmosphere.
After experiencing a lot of success in Mexico City, ROSA NEGRA has quickly become a Cancún hot-spot with dishes originating from Peru, Chile, and Argentina. The restauranteurs claim their Kobe Beef has a "marbling score" of 10-12, and are very proud to serve carefully cultivated New Zealand King Salmon and Nigerian Tiger Shrimp. Add to the great quality of food, fabulous lagoon views, and their Vegas-style show and it's why Rosa Negra is currently one of the most sought-after dining venues of the Hotel Zone.
Although I'm giving the newer options the shout-out, the not so new but completely reliable options that remain consistent are TORA (Asian), CAMBALACHE (Steak), LIMONCELLO (Italian), FRED'S (Seafood/Raw Bar), HARRY'S (steak and seafood), PUERTO MADERO (Argentinean fish & steak), and PORFIRIO'S (contemporary Mexican). Buen Provecho!