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“Slice of Paradise!”
Review of Ventanas al Mar

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Ventanas al Mar
Ranked #22 of 52 Hotels in Cozumel
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 25 January 2014

We found this place on a day trip to the island from Playa Del Carmen back in 2008. We always vowed that we would stay there someday. Someday took way too long, but well worth the wait! Like other reviewers before, I am hesitant to let the ‘cat out of the bag’ about this hotel, but it is just too good to not share (we will just have to be sure and book WELL in advance!)

The staff is extremely friendly and does everything they can to make your stay pleasant. Julio has recently been brought on board and he is a great host. He truly cares about each and every guest. George is a super bellman/waiter, but definitely be prepared with some Spanish, he is still learning English. Coco, the groundskeeper, is always around, making you feel welcome with his smile and warm greeting. And the housekeeping staff did a wonderful job, our room was always clean and well made.

The hotel does not have AC, so we left the balcony doors open to the sea - and what a view from our balcony! breathtaking and wonderful. The colors are so vivid and sounds so close. At night, I am sure a few loud crashes woke us from our sleep! The hotel is dated, but they are adding a pool in front, and they are updating a few rooms with new windows/patio doors.

Since the hotel is on the uninhabited side of the island, there is no electricity. The hotel runs on a combination between solar and generator power. One night we were there, the power was off from 11PM till 6AM, but who needs power when you are sleeping? We did come with a small LED flashlight, but cellphone light would have worked fine too. There is free wifi in the lobby and dining area, handy to download that next e-book in the series you are in the middle of. Or you could check emails too for that matter.

We requested a refrigerator, which was $10 extra per day, but well worth it. We shopped at the MEGA store and got bottled water, Coke Lite and a few other food and drink items, and it was good to have the fridge to keep them cold.

If you are looking for the high-end, all inclusive, castle style resort, this place is not for you. If you are looking for a quiet, solitary, even romantic place with excellent views (did I mention all rooms are ocean front???), great breakfast and wonderful, friendly staff, this is it!

The hotel offers food for breakfast, and it is made to order, and fantastic. Highly recommend the Huevos Rancheros! A great way to start the day. for lunch, we wandered up the steps to Coconuts. food is good, drinks are ok, both a little pricey, but the view is amazing! Supper is offered again at the hotel, with arrangements being made at breakfast. There is a charge but it is nominal, especially compared to the quality of the food. They also offer wine, again for a nominal charge. And if you have a request for a particular wine, Julio will be sure to accommodate!

To sum it up, it is one little amazing gem of a hotel. We hope you never go there and take our room the times we want to go. Every other week, please flock and fill it up, as this place is awesome! =)

Room Tip: All rooms are ocean front. both levels are great!
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  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank littlewood42
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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144 - 150 of 258 reviews

Reviewed 29 December 2013

Let me start by saying that they are undergoing a renovation currently. Ricardo, the owner, emailed me directly to advise me of such and offered to refund my money if I wanted to move properties. I told him that while I appreciated it, there was no way we were going to miss the chance to stay at Ventanas al Mar.

My partner and I stayed here a few years ago and loved it. We love the remote location, the unbelievable (but not over solicitous) customer service, the stars, the wind, the dinners and breakfasts. Located on the "wild side" of the island, there is no power to that side of the island. Ricardo keeps a "green" philosophy with solar and wind, but does need to rely on generators (you can't hear them..) at times to supplement. This is the ONLY hotel on this side of the island and with no other light pollution, the stars are incredible at night. The beach is always empty and completely private... you will never fight crowds here.

I will say that this is not a property for all travelers. I'm in the travel industry and a bit of a travel snob, but that doesn't mean that I don't appreciate all different environments and cultures while traveling. If your idea of heaven is a mega resort with a pristine and generic environment, this is not the place for you. The fixtures here are not perfect, and some areas are showing their age, but it's part of the absolute charm of this place. No A/C, no TV, no phones... if you need to connect, they have wireless in the outdoor living area. We spent our nights there after dinner enjoying the music, breeze, having wine and cigars.

Someone remarked that the place was dirty....that couldn't be further from the truth. They housekeeping staff is working day/night to keep the place impeccable.

Sleeping with the doors open to the ocean with the waves crashing on the rocks, wind blowing through keeping you more than cool all night.

The food was all made to order. Fresh fish both nights for dinner..perfectly prepared. Breakfast when we were ready and delicious.

The pool was almost completed and they are starting on a small private bar as well which will only enhance this property.

If you want to unplug and enjoy a truly unforgettable and unique experience....stay here. The people and surroundings make for some amazing memories.

Thank you to Ricardo, Coco, Becky and Marie for perfect stay.

  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled as a couple
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11  Thank DivaGirl100
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 August 2013 via mobile

We came because we liked the solitary location. The price realy doesn't worth it (they askec for 100$, after we said that we saw it online for 65$ they agreed to 65$ without breakfast and said that brkfst will be 5$ each...)
The room was realy dirty, especially the bethroom and tge sink.
no A/C so we haven't slept much.

Maybe if there was an A/C we would have deal with the dirty room issue, but it was realy hot..

  • Stayed: August 2013
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3  Thank Rona L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ventanas A, Gerente at Ventanas al Mar, responded to this reviewResponded 4 February 2014

Dear Guest

We thankful for the opinion in your stay, this help us to improve all service, we´re sorry that your stay was not all satisfactory.

We apologize for any inconvenient in the hotel, we will work to improve all you mentioned.

We look forward the opportunities to serve you again

Regards

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 August 2013

This is a tough one to write as our stay was perhaps not as enjoyable as it could have been due to the tropical storm that hit right on cue for our 2 night stay.

The hotel is definitely nothing fancy but that is reflected in the price which is incredibly reasonable ($110 USD per night including breakfast). It is located on a lonely stretch of road with a wild coastline and that is somewhat the charm of this place. Coconuts is right next door, however, which is only open until 7pm so not a dinner option (if you check out their 'family album' you can get a taste for what a typical crazy day at Coconuts is... but thankfully it was pretty quiet when we were there and not a topless drunken girl in sight - but whatever floats your boat). Only options availabe for dinner are back in town so a car is definitely required.

The rooms are really big and sparsely decorated but nice enough. The bathroom is tiny and the water temperature erratic so took a bit of patience to get the shower going without being scalded or frozen. Pressure was lacking but didn't expect it to be otherwise to be honest.

Breakfast was good - the omelettes are delicious and there was plenty of refilling of juice, coffee etc.

So onto the bad stuff; as we had the misfortune of a couple of days of stormy weather we discovered that the rooms are not waterproofed for such conditions. Our room was flooded. The balcony doors are of a poor design that mean water poured in. Above the doors are grates for ventilation but these are fixed open so that the rain was coming straight through and onto us in bed. They did move us to another room which wasn't quite as flooded but we had to keep on requesting towels to try and prevent it becoming a swimming pool.

As I said, this is a tough one to write as the manager Joel is lovely as are his staff, and the hotel, whilst very basic, has the makings of a really nice place to stay if one is wanting to get away from it all. It was just unfortunate that we couldn't get to enjoy it as much as we wanted to.

  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Naomi K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 June 2013

We returned to Ventanas al Mar after more than a year because we were so taken with the wild beauty and solitude of the place, and this visit was even better than last time. The hotel has tweaked some details without altering the essence of the place. The electricity is 24 hours now, which is a big help for charging phones and for use of fans (no AC - open air cooling), and WIFI is available as needed in the lobby, which is quite useful in light of the isolation of the place. Joel and Rosalbo were delightful and made us feel like family. In fact, one evening the staff was celebrating a birthday dinner and shared their delicious meal with us gratis.It was among the best meals we had during our vacation. We will definitely be back.

Room Tip: Room 21 has great cross ventilation and overlooks the ocean
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  • Stayed: May 2013, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank DebsterBaby
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 May 2013

I must say I was a little leery when I booked this hotel. After arriving in Cozumel and driving across the island to Ventanas I was pleasantly surprised. I had booked the hotel after seeing it on trip advisor. I wanted something a bit out of the ordinary, not the textbook All inclusive. The rooms are very clean and spacious. The bed was hard but very comfortable. The bathroom was a bit small and we did have a problem with the shower not draining, but the issues were minor. You have to realize that you are in a place running on solar power and a generator. There is no air-conditioning but of the three nights we stayed only one was a bit too warm and humid for a great night's sleep. The sound of the surf is so comforting and it's quiet so we had no issues sleeping. Make sure to step outside at night as well because the view of the stars from here is amazing. Seeing as there is no power on the eastern side of the island the view is not obstructed by articial light.

Coconuts is right next door. What a great time! The food is OK, nothing to write home about and the drinks are pricey but well worth a visit.

Mezcalito's is right down the road too but I would not recommend it for food.

A rental car is the way to go if staying here(I suggest ISIS). You have the freedom to visit the San Gervasio ruins and Punta Sur or go downtown everyday if you'd like. I also suggest bringing a cooler with water/drinks/beer and snacks for your stay. I requested a fridge in our room and it was there when we checked in.

Lastly, we did take advantage of the dinner service on our last night and wished(after the fact) that we had every night. The grouper with garlic sauce was out of this world! We would stay here again. For us 3 nights was enough. I think if we were with another couple it would be a bit more fun but if you are looking to get away from it all, look no further. Note, that there is no swimming at the hotel as the surf is WAY to rough. You can swim at the beach at Punta Sur and right down the road at Chen Rio(very crowded on Sundays).

  • Stayed: May 2013, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank Bourgo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 May 2013

If you're looking to unwind in a stress free environment this piece of solitude is for you. The staff treated us like royalty. We stayed seven nights and sometimes we felt as though we were the only guests at this private (total getaway) hotel.
We did have WiFi access the entire time. I kind of wish we hadn't because it was a distraction we didn't need. Breakfast and dinner meals were individually prepared. Healthy choices of fresh fruit and seafood abound. Like the reviews before me I hesitate to uncover this jewel because it's so small I might not get a reservation the next time I plan to go.
Warning: If you're looking for parties and loud music this is not the place for you. If you can't live without air conditioning for a few days this is not the place for you.

Room Tip: Room 26 for the starry night sky, the suites are two story with spiral staircases
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  • Stayed: May 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank DMONeal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Ventanas al Mar

Address: Carretera Costera Oriente 43. 5, Cozumel 77600, Mexico
Region: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Cozumel
Amenities:
Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#16 On the Beach Hotel in Cozumel
Price Range: £105 - £177 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Ventanas al Mar 3*
Number of rooms: 14
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Ecofriendly Ventanas al Mar Hotel creates a relaxed atmosphere for guests who want a unique Caribbean experience. The oceanfront hotel is located on the east, windward side of Cozumel Island where there is always a breeze. The delicious homemade produce breakfasts is included in our rates. The great sandy beaches of the East coast, the sound of the ocean waves crashing on the rocks and the silence of the nature far away from the city offer a wealth of opportunities for visitors wanting to GET AWAY FROM IT ALL. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Ventanas Al Mar Cozumel

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