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“Good, but big” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Occidental at Xcaret Destination

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Occidental at Xcaret Destination
Ranked #69 of 212 Hotels in Playa del Carmen
Certificate of Excellence
A TripAdvisor Member
“Good, but big”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 16 February 2005

We spent four nights, from 2/10 to 2/14. Make no mistake; this is a very large hotel that caters to groups and conventions. However, the rooms were clean, the staff was generally friendly (kudos to Jorgé on the concierge desk), and the amenities were good.

The beach is a small inlet, man-made, but adequate for us. We never had a problem finding a couple of adjacent sunbeds, and the size was great for monitoring the activities of three active boys.

Xcaret was excellent. We spent a day and a half in the park. One day is included with your reservation, and when you book additional activities, you can get into the park two hours in advance and stay two hours after your activity. My wife and kids swam with the dolphins, pricey (USD$115 per person) but memorable. I snorkeled, cheap (USD$29) but forgettable. The restaurants in the park are expensive, but the quality of food was good (and better than the hotel).

We booked our package through FunJet - there are representatives on site, but I found them more of a hassle to deal with as opposed to my advocate through the hotel (hence my appreciation for the hotel's concierge desk). Meals were mostly buffets, although with our four night stay, we could book a la carte restaurants twice. Both times, the meals were mediocre.

The grounds and pools were nice. I found the pools too cold to swim in, but the kids could tolerate them. Every pool has a bar or two. Drinks were fine, and we had no problem with their strength.

7 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
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Winnipeg, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 16 February 2005

My husband and I visited the Occidental Grand Flamenco Resort from February 5th to 12th 2005. It was our fourth trip to Mexico but our first to the Mayan Riviera.
The resort was amazing! At first it seemed confusing, however in no time at all it is easy to get around. We stayed in building 20. It was a perfect location. It was right by a beautiful pool and close enough to the lobby and to the Beach.

Of course (as you can read in all the review) the beach was a bit of a disappointment. But we knew it was small and man made before coming. The ocean was still beautiful. However we ended up spending most of our relaxation time by the pool.

We ate breakfast and lunch at The Buffet. There were so many choices that we were never bored. When we were not eating dinner at the A la carte restaurants, we of course at the Buffet. The food was fabulous. They had options that would please any type of eater (they even had caviar one night!!)

Because we were there for one week we could eat at 4 A La carte restaurants. I read in one review that the reservations were difficult to get. However we had no problem getting the reservations.

Our favorite dinner restaurant was the Italian. The food and service were fabulous. For dessert my husband ordered Italian Coffee and the waiter even burned the alcohol off in front of us (doing a little show!)

Our next favorite restaurant was the Sea food restaurant. It was very romantic and peaceful eating by the ocean. We went there on our last night. It was the perfect end to a wonderful trip!

We also loved the Mexican restaurant. My only concern was with the Grill restaurant. The food was good, but our meals ended up coming out cold.

The entertainment was excellent. The Circus show and Latino dancing shows were incredible!

We also really enjoyed the lobby bar. Every night at 5pm they do a Mayan ceremony on the river. We also enjoyed trying all the unique Margarita flavors.

Though the resort was excellent, we did spend some time away from it. We went on a tour to Chichen Itza. We went on a tour in a van. Our guide was very knowledgeable. It was definitely a once in a life time experience to climb the great pyramid.

Of course we also spent a day at XCaret. We swam in the underground river, went on the sky tower, went on a boat ride and saw all of the wildlife. We came back in the evening for the show. I definitely recommend it.

The rooms were nice and were very clean.

If you want to stay in a beautiful resort and be pampered and relaxed, this is definitely for you!!

  • Stayed February 2005
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
18 Thank Taffy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 13 February 2005

Travelled with 5 and 8 year old kids. They found the unheated pools a bit too cold (they started to shiver). Other than that the resort was excellent.

1 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
alberta, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 February 2005

The last week of January was our second time at this resort and it was as wonderful as last March. This time we took our adult kids and their comment was"awesome".
The river was beautiful and nice to walk along. I found the staff very helpful and accommodating. We loved the A la Carte restaurants. My daughter and I painted pottery plates by the ocean. They were 'finished' and then fired and we picked them up the next morning.
We took tours to Chicken Itza; very interesting but a long day, jeep tour in Cozomel; a great way to see the island and a tour of Tulum; nice but not as interesting as Chicken Itza. If you like to snorkle, the best place is Xel- ha, there is lots to see and it is huge. Snorkel along the edges. That is where most of the fish is. I started in the middle of the lagoon and didn't
see too much .
There was a baby Gecko on our wall in our room. I only saw it in the evening. After the first few days, I had my son catch it and put it outside where it would be happier and safe from the next people. Then I missed it. Another coulple said they had one in their room and killed it. WHY!! It is harmless and eats bugs.
Would love to go back but I think I would like to try a different place next time.

7 Thank charmaine h
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 February 2005

I have written another review directly to the management and thought they would forward my compliments to this section. Since they did not, I will try and remember the excitement that I felt talking about our family vacation the day we came back. I know I going to forget to Thank someone or mention something. But I will do my best.

Were do I start???

We loved it!

We stayed at the Xcaret from Jan. 27 til the 31st.

I will begin with our ride on the coach to the resort from the airport.

"Mexican-Danny Divito"-First off: I miss you!!! I wrote the management a wonderful letter about you and your amazing ability to inform the "new arrivals", plus a ton of other compliments. My daughter and husband really loved the jungle /beach horseback riding excurtion you signed them up for. I really enjoyed just having you around. To joke with. You and your staff made our stay even more enjoyable. My only complaint about you Danny, is you were suppose to make my bus crash so it couldn't come and pick me up for the dreaded ride to the airport. Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha.
Just kidding. You know I have no complaints about anything!!

As far as the "Fun Club" staff: My compliments go out to the "main entertainer" - I never did catch his name, but he knew me as "Wisconsin"
and he said "Happy Birthday Chelsey" to our just turned 13 year daughter. Our daughter also enjoyed a game of water polo, which my husband & I had a blast watching and rooting for the "Red Team". We all loved the Bingo game and the life size Chess board too. Thanks! What a great time. Lots of wonderful memories of my alone pool time and the "fun" pool time.
He made "pool-time" enjoyable. And then, to turn around and perform at an evening show!!! WOW!!! Incredible. I can only imagine how difficult it is to entertain such a variety of nationalities. Great Job!!!! and that goes for the rest of the "Fun Club/Entertainment Staff" also. We really enjoyed the nightly shows and the costumes were outrageously wonderful!! Something for all ages to enjoy. Nice variety!

Next, the wait staff: All of the wait staff was outstanding. Everyone put a
110% in their job. We had our favorites, as people always do. To our hostess (the one with the curls by her bangs)-Thanks. We looked for you before we left to say "Thanks and Good By", however, we didn't find you.

The food: What can I say. It was awesome. Nothing compared to Cancun resorts!!! This was top of the line. The beef, pork, steaks, seafood, pasta, everything! Very, very good. And such a selection!! Holy cow.

The resort itself was amazing. I loved seeing the monkeys jumping from tree to tree and all the other animals!! How great!!
This resort had something to do if you wanted to, or it also offered a serene
environment for relaxing. You can do both.

The Xcaret park next door is also a wonderful memory. Our 7 hours there went so quickly. We saw alot!! Baby quals hatching, a sky ride, 2 hr. spectacular Mexican show, animals, birds, a river ride, swimming with dolphins and so much more. Plus all the stuff we didn't see or do. WOW!
I really suggest going there.

From the bell boys, check-in girl, and everyone else who made our trip so wonderful, thanks!!!

The Wasielewski Family-From "WISCONSIN"
Lynn, Chelsey and Bo


19 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 February 2005

I have been on 2 cruises, many island trips,etc... Grand Flamenco is awesome! Highly recommended. Food was excellent! The grounds were beautiful! You MUST do the day excusion to the Xcaret Park next door. We had a blast! My husband and I did the snorkle tour inside the park in the Cenotes, highly recommened! I am a chicken too, but it was very beautiful and relaxing! We went out on our own and took a taxi to Playa de Carmen. It is only around 6US to take the ferry to COZUMEL. GO GO GO! My husband and I rented scooters and toured pretty much the whole island by ourselves. We felt very safe and comfortable. We rented scooters once we got to Cozumel, walk a bit into town first (besides right at the ferry terminal) you will get a better deal on renting your scooter. There are many inhabited, pristine beaches with NO tourists, bring a backpack with beach towel and drinks. You have never seen such scenery! Rent a car on your own and go to the Mayan Ruins. You can tour them on your own for about 2US p/p. They want like 90US p/p from the rep on the resorts. 5 star experience, you won't be disappointed!
Michelle from Miramichi, New Brunswick, Canada

13 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 February 2005

We have just returned from grand flamenco afetr a fortnights stay - fantastic resort in a very natural, beautiful setting filled with animals such as peacocks, flamingoes, monkeys, deer, parrots, iguanas and lots more! Lots of variety with food and drinks, many restaurants and bars to choose from. In 2 weeks only went into local town (playa del carmen) twice and one of these was drinking excursion! so no need to leave hotel for entire stay and not get bored.
Rooms very nice and well kept - maid keeps drinks stocked in fridge every day and makes different animals out of towels and flowers on the beds.
Beach is small cove inlet but very pretty - plenty of sunbeds for everyone. Pools extremely well kept and many to choose from. never a problem getting sunbeds here either.
Hotel grounds very large so hotel best suited to mobile people, but there are little shuttle cars running all the time to take you from place to place. Resort was mainly filled with canadian and american people, but we made some english friends whilst we were there and every one very friendly.
Weather was mainly very warm, but does get cloudy some days at this time of year-still came back with good tan!
Xcaret park was beautiful but too much to see and do in one day. we swam underwater canals-no point in snorkelling here though as better snorkelling off beach/in coves. we did 'sea trek' -30 min walk under sea and was amazing. saw huge fish, loads of different kinds and a huge sea turtle!
This was our third holiday to mexico, have visited p.vallarta and cancun previously, however this was the best by far mainly due to this hotel.Will be going back ASAP!

27 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
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
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:
#39 Top resorts Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#44 Luxury Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#46 Spa Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#48 Family Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#50 On the Beach Hotel in Playa del Carmen
#77 Romantic Hotel in Playa del Carmen
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — Occidental at Xcaret Destination 4*
Number of rooms: 757
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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