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“Great, but not without flaws”

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Catalonia Riviera Maya
Ranked #8 of 17 Hotels in Puerto Aventuras
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
Houston, Texas
Level 3 Contributor
18 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Great, but not without flaws”
Reviewed 25 December 2013

The resort is very good! The food on the most part is good, and the rooms are comfortable. You receive 3-4 tickets to the formal restaurants, based on the length of your stay. Use them wisely! The Italian restaurant's food is over cooked, and is too salty, I won't recommend it. The steakhouse is good, remember to specify how you want the meat to be cooked Also, beware of restaurant closings. Check the hotel newsletter to make sure your restaurant of choice is open. It was because of this we weren't able to use our last restaurant pass.

The beach is small and is rather rocky, watch where you step. Your allowed to visit the beach of a neighboring hotel, which is nice. The hotel is about an hour away from cancun airport, so you should arrange transportation. However, it's very close to the Xcaret and Xplor parks, about 15 minutes away.

The staff is friendly, especially the waiters at the restaurant. They are willing to help you with pretty much anything. The housekeepers make towel "sculptures" every day.

One last thing, the wifi in the guest rooms are horrible. I recommend going into the lobby for anything more than viewing a Wikipedia page. Overall, a great resort, just watch out for closed restaurants!!

  • Stayed December 2013
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Helpful?
3 Thank PiPie314
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Littleton, Massachusetts
Level 3 Contributor
20 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 December 2013

We had three couples booking three separate rooms. Two booked regular rooms & didn't "upgrade" initially - the 3rd paid more to "upgrade" to a pool/ocean view when booking. When we arrived, we had them show Couple 1 & 2 the "privileged" rooms (we both up-graded for the extra cost). Couple 3 thought they had "up-graded" but ended up with an older room & equipment. Bottom line, we arrived early enough that privileged rooms were available ... glad we didn't spend the money up front without knowing what we'd be getting!

The staff was mostly friendly, food was good, restaurants were nice (check schedule for days each closes), stayed on the compound except for a fishing trip near by!

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank Lookin-out-4-ya
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lake Worth, Florida
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 25 December 2013

The resort is beautiful and perfect for families. Our only complaint is getting the all inclusive restaurants thing right. The buffet has no problems. It is the additional restaurants which need management help.
Upon check in we were given two coupons to use at the other restaurants of our choice. The resort was busy and using the coupons proved to be a challenge. We tried for three nights to go to the Japanese restaurant, on Saturday they we closed ( I don't understand that) and on Monday and Tuesday it was a two hour wait and they didn't take reservations.
One night we ate at the Mexican restaurant, after waiting 45 minutes to be seated and food was the worst Mexican I ever had. You would think being in Mexico at least that would have been good.
The last night we ate the Tapas restaurant. The food was good, however, they were extremely busy and we had to wait.
The Resort itself was run nicely. Our room was nice and the staff was helpful. If they could get the food right this place would be perfect.

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank Sheri G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Fargo, North Dakota
Level 5 Contributor
48 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 December 2013

We recently stayed at the Catalonia and I was a little concerned after reading all the reviews here. However, one needs to take resort reviews with a grain of salt as there are companies hired just to write bad reviews for competitors. We paid only $1900 for two of us through cheapcarribean.com and that was a great price as it included airfare out of our small hometown (probably over half the total cost went towards this). It also included our roundtrip airport transfers. We booked one day of full of adventure with Edventures (review on their own page), and I would highly recommend looking into this local, small company. We were the only ones on our day and were treated like VIPs!

I'll break this down.

Privileged Suite: we didn't stay in the honeymoon or regular privilege rooms - but our suite was gorgeous and spacious. You could stay here with kids or with another couple if your are close as the sitting room can be doored off from the bedroom and bath has 2 entrances. We stayed in building 11 which was close to the lobby bar - handy for us. We enjoyed our plunge pool on a couple nights were we found ourselves a bit chilly and the soak was nice. Our 2 beers a day came in handy for travels/hangovers/getting ready for the night/etc. But the bars were always willing to give us traveling drinks. The sodas were a nice touch. As service goes - our coffee maker didn't have the right size outlet, but they fixed right away when the maid noticed. It's true if you leave just an iPhone laying outside the safe, they will not clean the room. It's probably a good policy in the big picture. But Angela did a great job for us and cute towel art every day! :)

Beach: While you can get snorkel gear at the resort for an hour each day - I'd say bring your own as you can hop in anywhere and see some awesome stuff. Even with rocky weather at night, we were able to see octopus and cool colored fishes of all sorts. This is a good resort to snorkel. If you want to swim for workout you have to go out pretty far where the waves get bigger. We brought water socks like everyone recommends and never had a problem getting in or out. With our privileged package, we had a private beach area (and no kids were there - it seemed) with it's own bar and beach service. There were comfy bean bag chairs on the beach and comfy seating in the clear roofed bar. It's true you need to wake up early if you'd like spots under an umbrella - but we never had a problem as the sun was up early and we like to day party more than disco at night. But people do move throughout the day so not a huge deal in my book either way. But know the sun is out early and is down early this time of year so take advantage. Towel service was endless - especially on rainy days it was nice to change in whenever. Remember the beach spreads out over both resorts so take a walk if you aren't happy with the first place you pick. I feel like that is part of the negative reviews here - it seems like people didn't actually explore the entire resort grounds.

Drinks: We tipped on average $50 pesos for 10-15 drinks and had great service. We also saw plenty of people not tipping and they still got good service. If you don't think your drink is strong enough you can ask them to top it off. We did bring our own insulated mugs which they filled. This was nice as it kept things cold longer. Two swim up bar options. We spent most our time at the quieter pool (Yucatan side). But my man played in some crazy games at the larger pool and had fun with those. Of course the house wine is uber sweet as your in MX. We didn't try any others. We met lots of people from all over at different bars throughout the resort and had fun. Bring a deck of cards for rainy days - you'll meet people real fast! :)

Food: Like you'd expect. Breakfast and lunch are buffets so -duh - it's food they can serve on buffets. But they had omelets to order, fresh fruit, crepes, and sandwich materials everyday. During lunch they would cook whatever seafood or meat you chose right in front of you. I've read reviews that they undercook. I never saw a problem and they were so friendly that if you thought so - you could just ask them to keep cooking and it wouldn't be an issue. As the a la carte places go we liked the Hibachi grill (American way), Italian place, Grill/Seafood in that order. The tapas place was lackluster and not really tapas. We skipped the Mexican based on reviews here. There are plenty of bars near each restaurant so as soon as you put your name in - you move to a bar and have a few. If you're going to a resort because of the food - I can't recommend this resort as the best, but it's pretty average. Food wasn't our main priority though - other than to stave off an early drunkenness or bad hangover. :)

Activities: A brief walk to the marina is a neat sight for something to do - see the manatees and dolphins for free. You can rent bikes from the front of the hotel. If you plan on leaving the resort at all - don't buy things from the vendors at the hotel at night unless you haggle down a decent price. Volleyball, archery and water sports were scheduled throughout the day. If it rained there was Bingo, cooking classes, etc.

Service: Always smiling, helpful, and clean. Those who weren't totally upbeat are the same as those in the positions you'd expect to be so (at least at most similarly priced places in US) such as front desk, head chefs, etc. The pool is not swimmable between 7pm and 8am. It would be nice to have a place after 7, but not the end of the world.

All in all - for what we paid, we had a great trip and would return. The only reason we might not return would be to try a different resort.

Room Tip: Privileged - even if only for private beach. We stayed in a Suite in building 11 on the first floor...
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  • Stayed December 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Brianna-B-There
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 December 2013

Just spent 6 nights there. As with most some ups and downs. Having just been there I am surprised about the people who have recommended buying into the Privileged program. For us it was $20 per person per night. That is $360-480 (We had an infant, not sure if they charge for her for this calculation although she as listed as a guest). All the Privileged program buys you is access to a small portion of the beach which is no nicer than the rest of the beach (accept it has bean bags), a fridge with beer and sodas in it (no liquor),a nicer bed, and most impressively a nicer , modern shower/bathroom. We saw the privileged rooms and they were actually slightly smaller than our normal room. Now I do have some significant complaints about our room, so maybe for these reasons the privileged rooms may be worth it, but I really think we were unlucky with our specific room, and the other standard rooms would be more than adequate. I honestly think it is absurd to consider the upgrade given the cost

So I will start with the Cons:
-Our room leaked,... partly from rain and partly from the air conditioner in the ceiling. The hotel offered us another room but we had so much stuff with our baby being there it would have taken too much effort to move
-Room was very humid and musty
-Elevators dont work adequately, and we were on 4th floor
-The beach is OK, but i didnt like the rocky bottom. Overall is small and you cant walk anywhere
-The water in the room stopped several times, including mid-shower
- was about 55 minutes from cancun airport

Pros:
-Resort area is very beautiful, clean, well taken care of.
-The food was decent, at buffets and ala carte restaurants. We received 4 nights at ala carte for 6 night stay. I thought this was generous
-99% of the people were very nice
-free wifi, although spotty, our room wasn't covered

Overall I would recommend the resort if the price is right. I wont go back, but not because it was a bad resort, just prefer variety.

Room Tip: Closer to the beach the better. Would not recommend privileged upgrade
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  • Stayed December 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
3 Thank Scottdkuhn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Saint Louis, Missouri
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 December 2013

I just returned from an 8 day stay at this resort. I am amazed that so many people have left negative feedback about this place. My party was immediately greeted with a drink at arrival from the hotel staff. I did choose to upgrade to the privileged room, I would highly suggest upgrading just for the meal at Tapas. IT was AMAZING. The rooms were very cozy and updated. The hotel grounds were exceptionally clean. If I had to point out any Cons I it would have to be the food at the buffets, The food selection rarely changed, but it was decent for buffet food. The staff went above and beyond to make me feel at home. I would recommend this hotel to anyone, please do not let bad reviews deter you from this resort!

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank jhgebel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Wirral, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 21 December 2013

Me and my partner have just returned from a two week stay at this hotel. Upon arrival we weren't offered anything to drink although many people before us were, when arriving at our room we were extremely disappointed the floor doors and walls were really dirty the mattress on the bed was yellow, we had no fridge although we did stay in a standard room you would at least expect a fridge. Later that night we went to the buffet el mercado the food was cold and in the other buffet there was wild cats and birds walking around your tables whilst you ate. Our air conditioning broke all the time and in the end they installed a new machine but this took many complaints, our water went off for hours at a time on many occasions we couldn't even have a shower or flush our toilet also at night they turn the water off until 5am which is ridiculous. We found all the staff extremely unhelpful. We had to wait ages for a drink in el mercado and when i complained the waitress started mumbling things to herself in they're language, i went to the omelette station and was shocked to see that they did not clean any of their utensils after each customer i ordered a plain omelette which was full of onion from the persons omelette before me. The privileged area of the hotel is advertised everywhere and we constantly felt discriminated against because we were only in a standard room bare in mind that already cost us £2000. Other people we got talking to received complementary bottles of tequila in their room on arrival in the same standard rooms we received nothing. We had a meal in the Mexican restaurant where we had stale chewy nachos to start with and left the Japanese after 45 minutes of waiting only to have received a drink. All in all this is the worst hotel i have ever stayed in we will never return here or recommend this hotel to anyone else we've never been so happy to leave a hotel but this is honestly ridiculous, if you've already booked a holiday here then i'm sure you'll make the most of it but it you haven't yet booked it then please don't you'll be extremely disappointed i'm not fussy and never write reviews but after leaving this hotel and wasting £2000 on it i would like to warn others.

  • Stayed December 2013
    • Value
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Helpful?
5 Thank shjh2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
catrivieramaya1, Director General at Catalonia Riviera Maya, responded to this review, 26 February 2015
Dear shjh2013,

Thank you very much for your feedback. We deeply apologize if your stay with us was not a perfect experience

Starting with myself and all my colleagues and managers, we are disappointed to have not met your expectations during your stay with us.

I hear all your comments, and certainly we will take seriously your feedback and see possibilities to improve and make sure your next visit will exceed your expectations.

Yours sincerely,

Hotel Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Catalonia Riviera Maya

Property: Catalonia Riviera Maya
Address: Avenida Xcacel Lote 1 Plano 2 Manzana 18 | Solidaridad, Puerto Aventuras 77783, Mexico
Phone Number:
Region: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Puerto Aventuras
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 Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#7 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#7 Top resorts Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#9 Business Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#11 Family Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#12 Romantic Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Catalonia Riviera Maya 3.5*
Number of rooms: 423
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Caribbean Sea's turquoise waters can be seen from this hotel-paradise. Come and get ready to spend some unforgettable days in the heart of the Mayan Riviera, surrounded by marvelous landscapes and seductive, white sand beaches. The hotel is located in the wonderful Puerto Aventuras development. This is a tourist development which boasts a marina for yachts, a golf course, restaurants and dolphin tanks, all within easy reach of the main Mayan Riviera attractions. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Catalonia Riviera Maya Puerto Aventuras
Catalonia Hotel Mexico
Catalonia Rivera Maya
Riviera Maya Catalonia
Hotel Catalonia Riviera Maya
Catalonia Riveria Maya
Catalonia Riviera Maya Resort
Catalonia Riviera Maya All Inclusive
Catalonia Mexico
Catalonia Riviera Maya Mexico - Puerto Aventuras

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