I prefer the bullet point reviews so here goes...
Grounds - I agree with everyone, the grounds are very well maintained, no complaints here. Not right on the beach, but I wasn't expecting that. Only minor issue was the "grey water" others have spoke of. Im guessing some kind of minimally filtered sewage water. One of the staff joked to watch out for "stinky bullets" coming out of the sprinklers; smell was pretty bad, but again this was only really near the entrance to the hotel and didn't affect our stay.
Room - We stayed in a garden deluxe I believe, no king, but two doubles (we asked for a king room but werent any available). No biggie though. The room was very clean, large. Seperate standup shower/tub. Safe in room worked fine. Only complaint was AC/Minifridge could have been colder, but we were never uncomfortable.
Staff/service - Great, no complaints everyone was super nice. I think it helps if you try to speak their language a bit/treat them like humans/tip well, which I felt a lot of people did not.
Food - This (along with drinks) is why I give the OG 2 stars. I am a self admitted foodie from Boston, however, I was not expecting four star cuisine. Simply put a lot of the food I just would not have eaten. The quality/freshness at the buffets was very poor. We tried the pizza place and literally left after our first bite to get some tacos from a local dive in town. I guess they are trying to cater to Americans, but I was hoping (maybe foolishly) for some MEXICAN food. About the only safe bet was two eggs over easy from the egg station during breakfast. (Coffee was acually good).
Drinks - Read a lot about the "heavy pour" at the OG. Not sure what these people are talking about. Im admittedly a bit of a drinker, but even when tipping well, and asking for higher grade booze, it felt like way too much effort to get a buzz while laying in the sun. It wouldnt surprise me if they actually watered down the gin/vodka. Tip: bring a large insulated travel thingy for your drinks, otherwise you get maybe ~10oz plasitc cafeteria cups.
Beach - Beach is very nice, the snorkeling here though is only OK. We went to several beaches on the east side of the island and for snorkeling Dzul-Ha is by far the best. It's not on many maps, but coming from town take the exit for the El Presidente resort (on your right, not too far from OG). Theres a place to rent mask/fins if you need it, and a great beach bar, the Money Bar. TONS of awesome fish/marine life. Did a 3 hr snorkel tour with Blu Palancar and OG, which was great, well worth the 41/per.
Girlfriend and I booked booked a week's vacation at the OG thinking the all inclusive aspect would save us money (free drinks and food!), but they were both so poor we ended up spending all our time off the resort. Since we got a good deal it didnt end up being too much of a bummer, but if we had paid more and had to pay for meals/drinks at outside spots that would have sucked.
If you like sitting by the pool and reading for a week, maybe you'd enjoy this place, but my personal recommendation is to get a room/condo close to town, which is much less expensive, and you can walk to all the local spots that have good yucatan cuisine. I would also highly recommend renting a car, its cheap (100 for a week) and gives you the freedom to explore the island. Other thoughts... Nightlife is Cozumel is kind of non-existent, everything shuts down at dark, so dont expect spring break type atmosphere. East side of Island is beautiful, beaches look amazing, def worth the drive, as is Cocounuts bar. PAY in PESOs, otherwise you are getting ripped off as they can convert however they like into usd.
Hope this was helpful!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Only the Caribbean’s most famous reef system could match the beauty and splendor of the Occidental Grand Cozumel, which is exactly why the two exist side-by-side. Located on Cozumel’s gorgeous San Francisco beach, just above the bottomless blue paradise of the Palancar Reef system, you’ll find an authentic-style state that delivers all the luxuries of a private oceanside hacienda. Gourmet dining, bright and airy rooms, nightly music and entertainment, daily sports and beach activities and an on-site spa and salon make the Occidental grand Cozumel the jewel of any Caribbean experience. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Occidental Grand Cozumel Hotel Cozumel
- Occidental Grand Hotel Cozumel
- Grand Cozumel
- Grand Occidental Cozumel