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“Great Holiday!”

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Occidental at Xcaret Destination
Ranked #72 of 209 Hotels in Playa del Carmen
Certificate of Excellence
kingston
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Great Holiday!”
Reviewed 10 April 2012

I travelled to the Occidental Grand for the week of March 30- April 6th. We were 4 girls travelling together. We arrived to a beautiful lobby around noon, check in wasnt until 3pm but we were given access to all the holet had to offer while we waited for our rooms. There was a mix up with our room but it was corrected right away and we were placed in building 15 and 16 (both great locations). Our first full day we spent relaxing by the pool and drinking amazing drinks made by Juan. We had our first a la carte at the meditarrian resturant and it was great! We didnt enjoy the seafood a la carte at all, the fish was very dry; however we ate twice at the steakhouse becasue it was great! The beach is small but I research the hotel so that was not a shock to me. I am not sure where all the timeshare people were but I wasn't asked once about taking part of any timeshare. The food at the buffet was good, some nights are better than others. We always ate breakfast at the beach buffet. The adult pool was very cool! great snorkelling! We took taxis to Playa del Carmen and Tulum. We felt safe at all times. For the price of the resort you get more than what you pay for! we had a great time and I would recommend this resort to anyone (anyone who wasnt looking for a big beautiful beach!)

  • Stayed March 2012, travelled with friends
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1 Thank gringoros
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Calgary
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 April 2012

We just returned from our week at the Xcaret and we had such a fantastic time! I'll start by saying that this resort is HUGE! Its great for people who like to walk and explore because there are lots of different paths to take and lots of different things to see. When we arrived we were told that there had been a mistake with our room... we all looked at eachother fearfully until he said, "no! its a good thing, you've been upgraded!" So we had a really good room in building 15 which was right between the quiet pool and the beach. We couldn't hear our neighbours or anything really as a few other guests have mentioned in their reviews... and we did have a few rowdy ones but we could only hear them from the balcony. The beds were firm but I prefer firm mattresses so I couldn't have been happier with that, and the housekeepers were fantastic. Our fridge was always filled, sometimes with a few extra beers and we had accidentally left some money out in the room that they easily could have "mistaken" for an extra large tip and they were honest and left it there. The food at the main buffet was just alright, there are lots of different choices and themes daily and many things to try but after a few days everything started to taste the same... Little did we know there's also a buffet down by the beach where the food was much fresher and better and there was never a line up to get in to it, its only open for breakfast and lunch but I definitely recommend that you skip the main one altogether for those... We sure wished that we would have known about that sooner! At around 9:00 and then again at around 1:00 the line ups to get into the main buffet were crazy, but never at the beach. There was also a snack bar at the main pool where we got really good burgers and the food there was all really good too. All of the staff that we encountered were really really friendly and helpful, Juan Gomez who drives the trolley was really friendly and funny, he always greeted us with an "HOLA" and a big wave even when we were just walking and not taking the tram. It's a good idea to get on and just ride it around on your first day so that you have an idea of the size of the resort and where everything is... like I said, its huge and you are likely to miss something if you don't! We spent most of our time during the days at the quiet pool and we enjoyed it more than the other pool or the beach. You have more space there to move the chairs around to follow the sun and the bar there was by far the best. Juan and Francisco made the best drinks and always greeted us with a smile. In the evening the best bar would be the lobby bar where the glasses are clean and the servers and bartenders are much more friendly than the bar near the stage. If there is one piece of advice that I can give to any travellers its BRING YOUR OWN CUP! The cups at the bars were really gross and we were glad that we brought our own. We picked up the large insulated type with a straw and they served us well. The beach was exactly as pictured, and if you are looking for a white sand sprawling beach, this is not the resort for you! The surf is way to dangerous to swim in outside of the enclosed area but in the beach area the water is calm and cool and there are lots of tropical fish swimming around there. Being a beach girl, I was slightly dissappointed, but that was something that we knew at the time that we booked it. We made a bit of a day trip into Playa Del Carmen and the public beach there was amazing. I did make a trip to the spa at the resort for a much needed 90 minute wayak massage... It was really relaxing and its too bad I forget the name of my therapist because she was fantastic (Friday at 10:00 AM). Book your spa treatments at the with the guy wandering around the pool for a discount, I paid $130 USD versus the $160 USD that they charge if you book at the spa. All in all I had no complaints about this resort, except that there was no in-room dining unless you upgrade to the royal club, but even then - one night our friend was quite sick and they did send us up some rice and chicken for her as a special favor which let me tell you was greatly appreciated! Some of the shows were kind of boring, but on our last night there they put on a fire and drum show that was great, and for the most part we watched the shows every night that we were on the resort. For a wicked party off the resort check out coco bongo! They put on a huge show and theres dancing and a good time. Get the wristband through the hotel though so that your drinks are included, if you don't it will be even more expensive... it cost $70 for the wristbands... I think thats it!

  • Stayed April 2012, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
4 Thank DosDosQuatros
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chester Basin
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 April 2012

My girlfriend and I spent a week at this resort, from March 21 to 29. Our room was fabulous... we had a King with a layer of foam on the mattress and it was very comfortable. We were in building 15, overlooking the "quiet" pool. We expected it to be very quiet in the evening.
The grounds were very clean and well kept. Jungle vegetation, singing birds and wildlife were abundant! The pools and beach were also very well kept.
Every staff member we came across smiled and said "OLA" or asked how we were doing.
The food was average, but we could always find something good to eat. We enjoyed the seafood restaurant the best. Breakfast was the best meal of the day...excellent.. the omelettes were perfect!
The drinks were fabulous. The waiter at the restaurant above the swim up bar was excellent and friendly!
The front desk personnel were friendly as well. Be prepared, however, to pay for internet useage when going online to book your seats on your return flight. The gentleman at the front desk was kind enough to allow me to use his laptop for this.
If you go shopping in town, expect to receive a lot of attention. A lot of the goods are the same in each shop, but you can find unique items if you take the time to look.
The resort was beautiful... we were a bit apprehensive about the man-made beach, but it was fabulous! It was extremely windy the first few days. If we had been on a stretch of beach, we would not have been able to swim or lay on the beach. However, our sheltered beach allowed us to do that. The fish were amazing. There were plenty of chair available, and if you want a swinging bed, which were so nice, you just have to go down to the beach by 6 a.m. and reserve one. No biggie!
There is a lot of walking... but we welcomed the exercise. Bring comfortable shoes/sandals for walking!
The only issue we had was the noise outside after the disco closed... There was a large number of students from Spain who basically took control of the resort and partied all night. We were woken at 2, 3 and 4 a.m. by students screaming and yelling along their path from the disco to the beach.
After our first two nights, I complained to guest services, and was told that these students were all checking out that day...problem solved! However, guest services neglected to inform us that another 300 students were checking in the following day!
We were moved to building 22 for our last two nights.. finally some sleep!
Building 15 and surrounding buildings are on the "route" from the disco to the beach...
If you want a good night sleep, ask for building 22, which overlooks the minitature golf course.
Had it not been for these students, who were extremely rude, cut in lines, threw cigarette butts at your feet, shouted without any respect for other guests, almost took chairs from right under you and were, basically ignorant, it would have been an incredible week.
Hint: before you book, make sure the resort does not have large groups of students booked for the same time.
Other than that, it was a fabulous vacation.

Room Tip: Around building 22 if you want a good night's sleep.
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  • Stayed March 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank Richard G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ashburn
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 April 2012

We just got back from a week vacation at the Occidental Grand Xcaret on Friday. We have 2 rooms, one for my Mom, and another junior suite room for our family with 10 and 7 years old kids. The resort has beautiful architecture, with the beach lagoon and the nice seafood restaurant overlook the beach open for breakfast and lunch. We have a great time at the lagoon, the pool and walking around the resort. The beach lagoon is great for snorkeling, and the adult beach area has beautiful view and great for pictures. We stayed in the building 19 facing the forest, and it was quiet and nice. Walking to the beach is about 5' for us, however, it is such a nice walk that we did not even feel that long.
The food at all the Buffet restaurants are standard (you can get chicken wings and chilly fries at the buffet by the pool but not other buffets), however, the food are good at the Seafood Restaurant, the Mediterranean, and the Oriental. The food at the Royal club is great, the Chef at the Royal club restaurant has made us the special dinner that had made my kids so happy.
The mix drinks are best at the beach lagoon and at the Le Buffet.
Shuttle bus is running none stop, and we were able to catch the shuttle bus many times, and let me tell you, that is such a relax ride for us. Juan, one of our bus drivers is great and friendly.
We had a few incidents happened to our kids, but the managers have handled the situation very well, especially the assitant manager, Javier, and the manager on duty, Alejandro, they are both professional, helpful and sincere. We have been to Mexico 3 times, and this is the hotel that we like best so far, and we will definitely stay here again next times.

Area for improvement: We like the little sweet shop that other resorts such as Dreams or Sandos have just for deserts, coffee, frappuchino, etc. during the snack time.

Room Tip: Ask for 3rd floor, away from the main pool. We stayed in the building 19, and it was nice.
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  • Stayed April 2012, travelled with family
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Helpful?
Thank bluepansee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Belfast
Level Contributor
11 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 April 2012

We stayed at the Occidental Grand Xcaret for 7 days from 1 April 2012. It was our first trip to Mexico and we picked this hotel as generally speaking it gets fairly good reviews. The hotel and grounds are just lovely and really well maintained by the staff who all seem to work very hard. We had a junior suite in block 21- I had emailed the hotel a week before we went and requested a quiet room and this is certainly what we got. We were very glad as it was apparent the other blocks close to the pools and bars could get a bit noisey at times. The suite was really nice and the maid service excellant. There were four main pools one of which accomodates the fun club staff - they organise all the events during the day and again seem to do a good job, we did however only use this pool once as we preferred the quieter pools and the beach area. I know it has been mentioned by other reviewers but there is a real problem with people reserving sun beds and if you don't reserve one yourself you find it impossible to get a bed after mid morning.

We found the standard of food very inconsistent and a bit disappointing at times. We ate in the Seafood and Sonara grill and thought them excellant - the other ones we used were the Meditterean and the Mexican and both were very average. Inside the main buffet it was very hot and loud - we really didn't like going there as it felt like a canteen. The food was plentiful but didn't seem to vary much on the nights we had to use it. We used the second Buffet at the beach for breakfast and lunch and much preferred it.

All the bar staff work hard and produced some wonderful cocktails - it was rare to have to wait for more than a couple of minutes to be served.

The hotel is an ideal location for a visit to Xcaret Park as it borders the park. The park is well worth a visit to experience the under ground rivers, beautiful beach and all the sea life and animals including a lovely butterfly farm. The park also puts on a spectacular show in the evenings - the cost for all day is 79 US dollars and worth it for all you can enjoy and see.

The beach at the hotel is beautiful but very small and crowded. For 120 peso you can take a taxi to Playa Del Carmen which has a very long expanse of excellant beach.

One thing that we didn't appreciate about Mexico was having to pay £45.00 each in sterling to leave the country -£135.00 in total for the 3 of us. This is a tax that the authority imposes on Tourists that visit that part of Mexico. It appears that these charges can vary depending on the airline that you use. We thought the amount to pay was much too high and felt sorry for others travelling with a few children as the charge was the same for both adults and children over 2 years. Maybe we were ignorant but we didn't realise we had to pay this until we arrived in Mexico.

  • Stayed April 2012, travelled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank DJBBelfast
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Toronto, Canada
2 reviews
Reviewed 9 April 2012

We just came back from Occidental Grand Xcaret, March 30th to April 6th, went with my husband and my 20 month son, we had amazing time, the grounds were beautiful the service was great the food was great. The a la carte restaurants were fab. The staff really catered to my son, I would definitly go back.

Room Tip: We were in Building 22, was a great location
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  • Stayed March 2012, travelled with family
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Helpful?
Thank Yvonne W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Nova Scotia
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 April 2012

We stayed at the Xcaret from Mar 23rd to Mar 30th , we had a wonderful vactaion . We both snorkle and enjoyed snorkling in front of the resort and the lagoon . The food was great. The only downfall at all was the time share that was pushed at us a few times .The other thing is the resort is huge so when leaving your room you had to think ahead for a few hours to plan what we took with us. towels , snorkle gear etc.
We enjoyed a few trips via taxi into Playa Del Carmen. Pushy salesmen very tiring but other than that enjoyed Playa. Had fun at Wha Wha's on sat night the ribs are excellent . Went shopping ....Do not go to the Walmart bathroom. the worse I've ever seen!! . I should contact Walmart head office.

  • Stayed March 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank HeatherBNovaScotia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Occidental at Xcaret Destination

Property: Occidental at Xcaret Destination
Address: Carretera Federal Chetumal Puerto Juarez Km. 282 | Solidaridad, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico (Formerly Occidental Grand Xcaret All Inclusive Resort)
Phone Number:
Region: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Playa del Carmen
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#40 Top resorts Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#45 Luxury Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#47 Spa Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#48 Family Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#53 On the Beach Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#77 Romantic Hotel in Playa del Carmen
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Occidental at Xcaret Destination 4.5*
Number of rooms: 764
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The 5-star Occidental at Xcaret Destination in Riviera Maya is a perfect combination in a natural setting with preserved cultural landmarks and an all-inclusive resort with a unique array of rooms, services, and state-of-the-art facilities. Choosing among the many possible activities is the most complicated part of a stay at this resort in Playa del Carmen. Swimming with dolphins, attending a Mayan Indian ceremony, enjoying all types of water sports at the beach club or sailing down the beautiful rivers and canals that surround the hotel are just a few highlights. The Xcaret eco-archeological park offers one of the most unique and exciting park, especially for families, by guaranteeing over 40 cultural attractions and expositions on art and traditions in Mexico. However, as people normally say at the hotel: "Do it all...or simply do nothing." Choose from a list of diverse activities such as strolling through the lush gardens at the resort, enjoying the sun while lying on a hammock, or taking a refreshing swim in one of the resort's five pools or private beach. Anti-stress remedies at the resort are endless. Regardless of how you plan each day at the resort, the hotel's choice of culinary selections is designed to satisfy the demands of every kind of guest. With 10 bars, including the one at the club, and 11 restaurants, guests have the freedom to choose a snack, an informal meal, a gourmet feast or a candlelight dinner, among many other options. The key to this resort is balancing between modern facilities and the marvelous Mexican rainforest that is filled with stunning local wildlife. Entertainment, relaxation and nature coexist at the Occidental at Xcaret Destination. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Occidental Grand Xcaret Hotel
Occidental Grand Flamenco Xcaret
Grand Flamenco Xcaret
Xcaret Grand Occidental
Occidental Xcaret
Hotel Xcaret
Xcaret Playa Del Carmen
Grand Xcaret Occidental
Xcaret Hotel
Grand Occidental Xcaret

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