Let me start first by saying that the airport in Huatulco is very small. We departed the plane by staircase and walked over to the airport/building. It was very hot and humid and while it was well ventilated the large fans were not plugged in. A fan might have helped those on our flight, standing in line at Immigration for entry for an HOUR, feel some relief.
Most everywhere we went in Huatulco was clean and tidy. Our comfortable air conditioned mega bus was waiting for us and had us to our resort in about 25 minutes. Upon arrival, we were led to a long table in front of 2 conference rooms where we stood in line for our room assignments.
We did not receive a welcome drink but did receive a wonderfully cool welcome washcloth. This was such a nice touch. While I stood in line, my husband went to the bar for drinks. The line moved quickly and we had our room number and key card in no time. As many had already reported, we did not have any wrist bands or towel cards to deal with. This was a huge plus, more than I had anticipated.
We went back to the luggage area and let the bellboy know our room number. If you can believe it, by the time we refilled our drinks and made it to our room, our luggage was already waiting for us. I was so glad we tipped him before we left or we would have missed him.
The rooms are exactly as pictured. They are very clean, modern, and have lost of space for our extra things (toiletries, sunglasses, shoes, and dive stuff). That really made it easy for us to stay organized. The bed was very comfortable and there is a variety of pillows for you to choose from to meet your specific needs. This was a nice touch too that would likely get overlooked but I tried out 3 of them before I found the one I liked the most. We had slippers and a very nice robe waiting for us as well as a fully stocked mini fridge.
We never found ice but learned that a quick call or request to any of the bar servers and it would have been brought up. Also, as the days progressed, we learned that we could request more of this and less of that in the fridge. Soon, they just remembered and had the fridge filled all the time with what we liked. It is worth noting, we were NEVER short on bottled water. It was literally all over the resort.
Another great thing about the room was the bathroom. It had a long double sink with a simple plant clipping growing in the corner for a splash of green and life. The center of the counter was always stocked with spa quality Shampoo/Conditioner, Shower Gel, Lotion, and the world’s very best SPF 15 Sunscreen (this stuff not only smelled terrific but it soaked into your skin so nicely and prevented a single burn). The initial set up also included a shower cap, shoe buff, mending kit, Q-Tips, face soap, and bar soap. There were 4 large towels, 2 hand towels, and 3 wash cloths. They followed the traditionally “save the planet” requests of replacing only that which was on the floor.
The shower had a rain showerhead was great but the hand held shower bar was fantastic. The pressure was terrific and perfect when you really just wanted to quickly rinse your feet. The only downside was that the water really did get all over the floor since the shower was only partially enclosed. Folks had reported this in the past and I concur. It seemed like a shame to use the towels to soak up all of the water that splashed out and impossible to avoid.
There was always something available to eat. They offered complementary room service too but I found that the quick walk to the many restaurants was the least I could do. I loved that they did not let you leave with food. This kept the grounds and pools very clean. However, the wait staff is so on the ball, they have your plates cleared and whisked away the moment you finish a blink.
I was really tickled by their response to my “Thank You” with “It is my pleasure”. It really added to the classy experience. While not always prominent, they have the best ice cream I’ve ever tasted. They have many flavors but my favorite was the coconut. I had it nearly every day and sometimes for both lunch and dinner. Soon, the staff would have it ready for me. Once, after dinner, the waiter brought over a bowl with 3 scoops drizzled in chocolate sauce and sitting a shot of Kahlua. That was fantastic.
The food was pretty good. We tried all of the restaurants and liked the Mexican the best. The Italian, while most formal, did not live up to my expectations. The fish was so fresh and regardless of how it was prepared, so delicious. Additionally, we had the ceviche and cocktail seafood daily. I would have liked to see guacamole more often. I only saw it in the Mexican restaurant but heard you need only ask and they will bring you some. I’ve always been a big breakfast person and this buffet had a ton of options including a wide variety of fresh juices.
I think it is worth noting that the drinks were very good and top shelf was readily available at each bar. I even brought them a mango and asked if they could blend it with some juices and Bacardi Blanco and they were more than happy to do so. It was the BEST. My friends we big fans of the Bailey’s cream on ice and just kept it coming. The waiters would bring you drinks while you were sitting at the pool and always had water handy. The service just could not have been better.
One time, friends of ours went on a fishing boat and one of them was very sea sick. He had been weak and dehydrated and locked himself in the room to recover. I asked one of the entertainment staff if there was any coconut water around because I knew it had a ton of electrolytes that would likely make him feel better. They said they would check for me and in 20 minutes, when I returned, I found a fresh coconut cut open with a straw, ice, and a cup waiting for me. My friend was very grateful and it worked. He felt much better. The folks here really go out of their way to make you feel special. I really appreciated it.
There is not a ton to do here during the day but if you are looking for it, you will find some activity. I played 3 games of BINGO 2 different times and won both times. It was fun during a lazy afternoon. I won some unpainted pottery that I could paint myself. Well, it took me 2 hours to paint the little turtle box with the detailed calla lilies drawn on its shell. I wanted to do a nice job since I was bringing it back for my Sister. This was a very sentimental gift and I put my heart into it. The pottery clerk had it glazed and ready for me to pick up the next morning. My Sister loved it. The other item I won was a turtle lying on his back. This one still took an hour to paint but was much easier. We have it sitting on our fish tank at home now.
The downside of the area is that there is no public bus system. They use taxi service for getting around and it can get a bit pricy. It was $4 to and from nearly every place we went. We went into Santa Cruz and La Crucita a few times for shopping. There is a small beach in Santa Cruz where I collected some small shells while my husband snorkeled around. The locals seem to really like it here. They have several covered food stands where you can grab a drink or meal that makes this place a great draw.
It is similar to La Entrega. However, this bay is a little farther away and cost about $10 to and from by taxi but the snorkeling is great. When we arrived, we were met by a restaurant owner, Lilo, who escorted us to a table (just about 50 feet from where we planted our beach towel) and assured us we could snorkel all we liked and could feel comfortable about leaving our things. I was nervous but trusted him with most of our stuff. We took turns snorkeling at first, guarding some of our things from our towel we left on the beach. Later, we left it all and snorkeled together. This is a great bay and while it was a little crowded, felt very safe around the locals.
We met a few folks who were from other areas in Mexico and got a sense that this was a popular vacation spot. Some really struggled with their English while many others didn’t speak it at all. Since my Spanish is the most basic, a simple smile and nod did the trick with being overall friendly. We ordered a coconut with rum and ice added to its natural water and had 2 crabs for an entrée at the restaurant. They smothered the little crabs with a red mole sauce that was very good but extremely messy. I actually looked like I had slaughter this poor thing. My husband was laughing at me saying “you have a little something on your face...”. Thank God no one took a picture of me eating this. I would have been so embarrassed. It was very good but a ton of work getting to the meat.
I really want to mention our experience with the jewelry stores of Maria Bonita in Santa Cruz on the marina side. We were given a card upon our arrival with Apple Vacations that allowed us free transportation to these shops. We were picked up at our hotel and brought to the shops. We were the only ones there so early in the day. We were offered water, soda, Corona, and Margaritas. I picked out several pieces of jewelry I liked from several stores while our driver/friend followed us with a tray to hold them.
We worked out some “special pricing” and headed over to their sister store in LaCrucita where we took up their offer for some Margaritas. They were delicious, the best we ever had. Overall, I was very pleased with my purchases and the exceptional quality of both design and workmanship. Each piece was boxed in a colored box with a tiny pretty bow. These stores are high end but offer something for everyone. It beats the crappy “silver” sold on the beaches. I discovered that the pretty dragonfly pendent I bought was only silver plated.
If the silver does not have “sterling”, “.925″, “925/1000″, or .999 (for bullion) it is probably not sterling silver and does not have value. Also, I've learned many pieces that are marked 925 are not actually sterling silver either. They are fraudulently marked. How can you tell? Easy! The old magnet tests works for those that aren't experts with using liquid acid tests. Sterling silver does not stick to a magnet. Ever! So if you are heading to the beach and want to buy some silver jewelry, bring a magnet.
We also bought some Pluma organic coffee beans and cooking chocolate as well as some Mescal Cream Liquor and dried grasshoppers coated in chile, salt, and lime (chapulines are regarded for their high content of protein, minerals and vitamins). We bought a beautiful wooden spiral cross and a Güiro (musical instrument).
We only went to the nightly show once. We arrived very late, just in time for my husband to be called up to the stage with 3 other suckers to sing the lyrics to “la cucaracha” while gargling some tequila. The winner was chosen by applause. While he did a fine job, my husband did not win. I really can’t say much else about the night time entertainment.
The beach was nice but the red flags were up most days. The waves were a bit rough and the snorkeling poor due to the churning up of the sand. There were a few good days though and my husband got some awesome pictures of an octopus trying to scare him away. As it turns out, we discovered there are many octopuses there now that the fishing rules have changed. We heard the lobster population is bouncing back too.
We took out a kayak the day before we left and paddled out pretty far. We had a great view of the resort as well as the neighboring ones (Barcelo and Secrets). The beach at Dreams appeared to be the largest. He got it in his head that he was going to fish from the Kayak so I had him drop me off. I was sitting around the pool just relaxing when he actually came back with a fish. I could hardly believe my eyes. He brought it into the restaurant and we asked to have it cooked. I thought they might die laughing but were so accommodating. It was a really delicious red snapper.
We discovered that our return transportation to the airport, just 25 minutes away, was scheduled to leave the resort 3hours and 15 minutes prior to our flight. That seemed a bit excessive so we arranged to have a minivan take us and 2 other couples to the airport an hour or so later. The checkout was just a bit longer than expected since it was a Saturday and there were many locals arriving to check in. However, we left the resort within our budgeted time frame and for just $13 per couple; we had a comfortable ride to the airport.
When we arrived, there was just 1 other couple in line for check-in. They were quick to ask if we had just come from the resort by way of taxi. He was not very happy to hear of how convenient that was for us and explained how he had waited for over an hour in the hot sun, last in line from the shuttle and had just finally check-in and we just really walked right up. This made the $13 taxi ride the very best deal of the trip, allowing us to celebrate all the way to the airport.
200 (quiet pool) and 400 (activity pool) level rooms are on the main level and very convenient to ev...
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC