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Hotel Julamis
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Reviews (736)
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Reviewed 10 May 2014

We arrived on Mon, 28 April and departed Fri, 2 May 2014 and stayed for 4 nights. We arrived in Cancun and didn’t make the departure time from the airport directly to the bus station at Fiesta Americana (Merida). We had to take a transfer bus to downtown Cancun bus station. We choose the ADO Platinum bus from downtown to Merida, MX (Fiesta Americana) as recommend by Alex. Alex will email you assisting you with your travel routes. The ride was $550Peso per person.

When we arrived at the bus station in Merida. The folks at the bus station even waved down a taxi for us. I gave the driver the cross streets of the hotel and it was a quick 5 minute ride. The ride cost $60Peso with tip.

Alex greeted us at the hotel when we arrived around 8pm. He had a map and highlighted all the attractions around us. We pretty much walked everywhere, as we like to explore the neighborhood by foot on our travels. Alex mentioned that the people of Merida are very engaging, nice, friendly and helpful. It was all true everyone we encountered wanted to help.

Alex checked us in even though we had a balance on our account I asked Alex if he wanted to settle. He said, “No, you’ve been traveling all day. We’ll settle up later. Go relax.” He gave us a quick tour of the hotel and showed us where breakfast would be served in the morning. Showed us the upstairs patio where happy hour would start in the evening.

We got into our room (Room Corazon) and started to unpack. Our room had air conditioning and no ceiling fan. As hot, as it had been the last couple of days in Merida it took a little while for the room to cool down. After the first initial day, it kept up just fine. This room was awesome, very nice, and the entire hotel was quite. Even though there is a street right outside the room, the walls are thick enough but even street traffic was light. We had a private patio, which was nice. We didn’t use it at all as it was really hot during the day and we crashed at night after exploring all day. If you went with a group of friends, I would highly recommend this room, as you would have your own private gathering spot.

Breakfast was unbelievable; I’m not much of a breakfast person except when we go on vacations. Presentation was neat, simple and the food was tasty. Alex will ask what you like and don’t like. Tell him your likes and dislikes so he can customize your breakfast for you. If you’re lucky enough he will treat you to some of his homemade sausage links for breakfast. He found out I was a sausage carnivore and the game was on!

It was unusually and extremely hot about 115 – 118 during the first couple of days during our stay before the temperature finally dropped down to around mid 90s. Alex took us swimming which was a nice break from the weather.

The only bad experience we had was the day tour Alex booked for us. Cost was $550Peso per person to be picked up at the hotel and transported to swim in a cenote. He arranged for pickup at the hotel. The driver took us to a National Park where we had to pay another $220Peso to enter the park and take a dip in the cenote. I asked the driver if there was a changing room at the park so my wife could change into her swimming suit. He advised no, but when we arrived at the park, there was a nice restroom where she could have changed. Instead she left her swimming suit in the van. We spent about 30 minutes touring the park and hour in the cenote.

The second portion of the trip included a ride to Progresso, which was not in our plans at all. To be fair, I was glad we went to Progresso just to see what it was like. It’s a beach town set up for the cruise ships that come there twice a week. It’s not on the top of our list to ever return.

When we returned Alex asked about the trip. He said you don’t sound too happy. He called the driver and pretty much asked him “What happened?” Alex immediately offered to pay for our trip the next day to go swim in a cenote. We decided to do other things, but it was certainly a nice gesture on his part.

Overall our trip and experience in Merida was fantastic. We will certainly be returning and staying at Hotel Julamis again. It is all within a 5 – 8 city blocks of everything you wanted to explore from Cathedrals, shopping, food, city market, museums, cultural events and festivities. Every night in Merida there was some type of cultural activity. We walked to all of the restaurants except for seafood one night, which Alex gave us a 5-minute ride to. And the owners brought us HOME! That’s how friendly Merida really is.

One thing I’ve learned with all of our travels outside of the US. The bank ATM’s always for us give the best rates. There are plenty of banks near the hotel. However at Scotiabank there is a $3000Peso daily limit. So for dollar cost average if you are spending any amount of time, I would withdrawl a larger amount since you will be paying an ATM fee and International fee. (All the fees included its still the best rate. We average 12.5 – 12.9 conversion per $1USD).

We can’t wait to return to Merida and Hotel Julamis again. Thank you for everything Alex. Good times, great memories and full belly!

Room Tip: We selected Room Corazon with a private patio! You're not going to go wrong with any room! Our home away from home!
  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank ThaiTank
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 May 2014

This hotel is fantastic - the rooms are lovely and the building itself is beautiful - particularly the courtyard where breakfast is served and the roof terrace. Breakfast was delicious and made fresh by Alex each day.

Alex is a fantastic host - welcoming, helpful with directions and great at giving advice. We liked Alex's honesty and preferred this to the blandness you can get in other hotels. It really felt like a B&B with the opportunities to chat and meet other guests.

The location is good - just a short walk to the centre of Merida but easy to get to by car, peaceful, and easy to park.

It was extremely hot when we were there (41 degrees) and the air conditioning in our room did struggle a bit.

  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank GDshortbreaker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 May 2014

A week in Merida and luckily we found Hotel Julamis and Alex & Mary's amazing personal attention in a romantically charming setting - just what we were looking for! Can't say enough about the surprising and wonderful two-course breakfasts every morning, the tequila tastings on the rooftop deck at sunset, and the lovely way the hotel is decorated. Can't wait to return to Merida and stay again at Julamis in the historical Colonia Centro area. Alex wants to know how he can guide you to the best offerings in Merida, whatever you're interested in. We miss Julamis already! Volveramos....

Room Tip: A dipping tub on the roofdeck welcomes - don't need a big ole swimming pool up there.... We especially enjoyed our Private Patio off the Corazon room.
  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank DebbieLeavitt
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 April 2014

Hotel Julamis has pretty nice rooms and is in a pretty good (not great) location, not in the absolute heart of the best part of the colonial zone but within a 5-minute walk. Tripadvisor correctly has it listed as a hotel rather than a B&B, as it definitely has the feel and layout of a small hotel in addition to having a very good breakfast served by Chef Alex.

Chef Alex, the current owner, is a big man with a bigger personality, a Russian chef who formerly traveled with the circus. He is quite amusing initially, but if you stay long and know Mexico, he can become quite overbearing and ultimately be a detriment to your stay. For example, he has extremely strong opinions about the various restaurants in Merida and does not hesitate to talk extremely negatively about those that are not his favorites. Hundreds of people may have made that restaurant the top rated one on Tripadvisor, but Chef Alex thinks they all are tasteless. Similarly, he disparages any other number of destinations that are not his beloved Merida, making the uninitiated think they are unlikely to make it out alive if they go to, say, Cancun. If you are not a seasoned traveler or not used to dealing with people like this, you may think you were lucky to find such guidance. If you know better, it greatly dampens what would be a nice stay. I'd have had a better experience if I'd just ignored the bloke and minimized interaction from the start.

A couple of people have mentioned the apartment next door, and I can confirm that it is a vast step down in quality. My friends stay there for their last night, and it was not well maintained and was dirty. For this, they had the honor of paying extra.

I would not return to Hotel Julamis, as I tend to prefer a more homey, B&B experience in places like Merida. If you prefer small hotels, then you may enjoy the facility, but I'd recommend waiting until the next change in ownership. It's important to note that many of the reviews here are from when the hotel had different ownership, which can render them invalid with small hotels or B&Bs.

  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled with friends
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6  Thank TheContinentHoppers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 April 2014 via mobile

Alex has created the ideal environment to base your travels in Merida and the Yucatan. The hospitality, communication, tips and assistance that Alex provides before and during your stay is invaluable. The breakfasts are amazing, I can't recommend highly enough. Thank you Alex

Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
Thank LisaABeijing
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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