The stuff (vegan) dreams are made of: Dreams Riviera Cancun

Last February, avoiding Montreal’s sub-zero temperatures, I spent my birthday basking in the sun alongside the crystal clear waters of Mexico. Some highlights involved snorkeling, “zip-biking” and hiking at Xel-Ha Aqua Adventure Park in Riviera Maya, golf-carting to the sea turtle farm on Isla Mujeres, and bonding with a spider-tailed monkey at Oscar & Lalos restaurant. As you can probably tell, I just love animals!

Lots of things to see and do near Dreams Riviera Cancun Photo credit- Jessica Percy Campbell

Lots of things to see and do near Dreams Riviera Cancun Photo credit- Jessica Percy Campbell

Our stay at Dreams Riviera Cancun Resort & Spa  was nothing short of magical. The beautiful property, first-class amenities and over-the-top service lived up to high expectations associated with the Dreams brand of resorts. I especially enjoyed the hot tub on our balcony (yes, even in the scorching heat, I am Canadian, after all). The swim-up pool bar ‘Manatees’ was the perfect place to cool off and enjoy a frozen cocktail to lively music in the afternoons. The sun was sizzling, the margaritas were flowing, and then there was the food.

Aerial view of the beautiful pools at Dreams Riviera Cancun Resort and Spa Photo Credit Dreams

Aerial view of the beautiful pools at Dreams Riviera Cancun Resort and Spa Photo Credit Dreams Resort

For one reason or another, all-inclusive resorts often have difficulty catering to alternative diets, but this is certainly not the case here. Upon hearing I was vegan, Dreams’ resident chef, the world-renowned chef Erik Villar insisted to meet up with me and ask me what my favourite dishes are. He wanted to make sure my vacation was an unforgettable food experience. It certainly was.

One of my biggest pet peeves about being vegan is the lack of alternative milks available for coffee in common places, but the Coco Café (which I always love and look for when staying at Dreams) had both almond and soy milk along with a slew of other options. This was very exciting for me, as I am a certified iced-latte fiend.

As for meals, every restaurant at the resort has a separate gluten-free/vegetarian menu on hand, simply ask the server upon arrival. This is little detail is awesome because it means those of us that simply can’t eat the usual seafood/steak/chicken options won’t have to get stuck with a boring old salad while on holiday.

Delicious vegan eggplant cannelloni at Oceana Credit Jessica Percy Campbell

Delicious vegan eggplant cannelloni at Oceana Credit Jessica Percy-Campbell

One thing I’ll never forget about this trip was the vegan eggplant cannelloni at Oceana. It was an artistic take on traditional stuffed cannelloni, I enjoyed the sweet tomato sauce and the perfect combo of slightly crunchy asparagus with ripe avocado.

Inventive vegan sushi at Dreams Riviera Cancun Credit Jessica Percy-Campbell

Inventive vegan sushi at Dreams Riviera Cancun Credit Jessica Percy-Campbell

Needless to say, I ate like a queen for the duration of my time at Dreams (French, Italian, and of course, Mexican), but my pick of the week would certainly have to be the Japanese Teppanyaki style themed-restaurant, Himitsu. Our cook was hilarious, he flipped veggies into our mouths (and into his hat) with a spatula as we sat around the flaming grill. A good stir fry is expected anywhere, but who knew you could get mouth-watering sushi in Mexico? The cucumber avocado sushi topped with sweet and juicy papaya dipped in spicy chili sauce was quite literally out of this world.

Infinity pool at Dreams Riviera Cancun Resort and Spa Credit Dreams

Sunset at the infinity pool at Dreams Riviera Cancun Resort and Spa Credit Dreams

But it wasn’t just about the sushi–all of the meals, the drinks, the sunset views, the beach, the entertainment and the wonderful staff all work together to make Dreams Riviera Cancun Resort & Spa, the stuff (vegan) dreams are actually made of.



Booking.com

For more vegan and vegetarian travel ideas by the Vegan Vacationista, check out these posts:

Aruba: Finding Vegan Heaven at Bucuti Resort in Aruba

Kauai: 3 Top Vegan Eats on Kauai



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Showing 9 comments
  • Faye
    Reply

    Looks awesome! And the food – THE FOOD – looks like I need to book our family a little getaway.

  • Kim
    Reply

    How nice to have the chef cater to your needs. More places should do this, don’t you think?

    • Jessica
      Reply

      I think the alternative menu is a great idea! Or at least when menus have a little GF for gluten-free or V for vegetarian or vegan next to items on the menu – it shows the are aware of alternative dietary needs and also that they care about having options!

  • Amanda Williams
    Reply

    Great post. The eggplant cannelloni looks amazing 🙂

  • Jen
    Reply

    It’s SO nice when places are so willing to cater to vegan (or any alternative diet), especially when it’ s not just pasta. It makes such a difference in the experience when the chef takes time to consider an inventive solution.

  • Beatríz Lopez
    Reply

    Is really nace when you travel and can eat int he same way as you do it at home!
    Really nice post!

  • Rebecca
    Reply

    I love this! Food is one of my favorite parts of traveling, but I’m also gluten-free and vegan which often makes it difficult. I love having options!

    • Jessica
      Reply

      Yeah it must be hard being GF as well! And at all inclusives you want to get your money’s worth too 🙂

  • Small Town Washington
    Reply

    Wonderful photos. This place looks amazing!! And, the food, wow.

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