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“Wonderful 1st Family Vacation!”

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Catalonia Riviera Maya
Ranked #8 of 17 Hotels in Puerto Aventuras
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
Reviewed 8 August 2014

I stayed at the Catalonia for a week-long vacation with my husband & 1 ½ year old. It is about an hour away from the airport. The resort does not have its own shuttle service so we reserved a private van with a carseat to pick us up from the airport. I was a little nervous traveling with a baby for the 1st time, but the resort is very family-friendly & we had a great time & would love to go back! In my opinion, this resort is very reasonable priced for what you get. It is definitely worth it to upgrade to “privileged” as I don’t think it would have been as enjoyable otherwise, mainly because of the suite that was perfect for a family. We stayed in 2nd floor Privileged Family Suite- #8411. We were in a quiet area close to the Algeria Spa & hibachi restaurant. The resort is large but not too overwhelming that you can’t find your way around easily. We were just a few minutes’ walk from the pools & beach. The suite was perfect for our needs with a baby & was very comfortable & modern. The king size bed was so comfy & we took advantage of the pillow menu. We had a living room & huge bathroom off the bedroom that were accessible through sliding pocket doors. This was ideal for our family because we put the baby to sleep in a pack-n-play in the living room & could close this area off while we could still stay up & enjoy the suite & balcony. The large balcony was the best part of the suite- we had a table and chairs to the left & a soaking tub to the right plus a garden view. We’d get drinks from the bar & bring them back to our room to enjoy while relaxing in the tub. The suite also had a mini-bar with beer, sodas & water restocked daily (and included!) The housekeeping staff was very friendly & accommodating. We really enjoyed coming back to the room in the late afternoons to see what they created out of towels & flowers (they even made a dinosaur once, I think for the baby!) My only complaint regarding the room is that the pack-n-play was not in the room when we arrived even though we requested it with our reservation & my husband called the day before to confirm again. It took a few hours to get it to the room & was made even worse with an over-tired baby just off a 4 hour flight. My husband had to go to the front desk after 2 additional calls to the desk from our room. Thankfully though, this was our only issue related to the room.
The privileged beach area is beautiful with beds on the beach, beanbags & lounge chairs. The Pure Chill Out Bar is on the privileged side & we enjoyed many delicious drinks here. There are rocks in the water, so bring water shoes if you don’t want to attempt to swim over them. We walked about 500 feet past this beach to the sister resort- Catalonia Yucatan to try out their beach. You can use the accommodations at either resort, regardless of which one you are staying at. The Yucatan beach does not have any rocks & you can walk right it. There was also great snorkeling here, with tropical fish all around you. We also really enjoyed the hammocks right on the beach. Great spot to read & enjoy the sea breeze! There are multiple pools around the resort, but we mainly stuck to the largest one behind the beach. There is a large kiddie pool attached (probably about 1 foot of water high). My son absolutely loved this area! There are multiple bars close by the pool to serve you all day long. We also enjoyed the smoothie bar that is close to the lagoon area. The lagoon is full of large fish you can feed or snorkel with. It’s also shallow, so a good area for young children to swim in. A few times during the week, vendors set up tables at the resort & we were able to buy some great souvenirs without having to leave the Catalonia. One night they also had a mariachi band, traditional Mexican games & a tequila tasting bar. It was a lot of fun to get to enjoy more of the Mexican culture.
We ate at the buffet for breakfast & lunch almost every day. They had a wide variety of food, but we got kind of bored after a few days. They’d offer a couple traditional Mexican items each day (empanadas, burritos) but mainly had typical lunch items like pizza, lunchmeat, pasta, etc. We ate at the Bamboleo snack bar for lunch a few times for some variety. They have more bar-type food like burgers & fries. Overall, I’d say the food was just average but I wasn’t expecting gourmet meals anyway, so it didn’t damper the vacation. We always found something we liked at each meal. We only drank bottled water although we saw some Americans drinking the water provided at the restaurants. We asked another guest about it & he informed us that the water is filtered into the resort. With a baby, I was still leery about this so didn’t risk drinking it. Unlike other resorts I’ve been to, you cannot make reservations for their specialty restaurants, so you risk waiting in line or the restaurant being full. I think the resort should allow reservations as it makes things more enjoyable for the guests to not have to worry about rushing to an early dinner to avoid crowds. We wound up eating right when the restaurants opened at 6pm every night. Once we were turned away around 6:15 because the restaurant was already full. Another time, we did get in but waited about 30 minutes in line. Privileged guests have access to some additional restaurants- Terrace Tapas Lounge & (I think) the hibachi restaurant, Mikado. The hibachi was our favorite food & it was fun to sit & watch the chef perform & cook the meal. The Tapas restaurant offers Spanish style tapas food & has a great view of the resort & beach. We also really liked the Mexican restaurant Los Alebrijes & the food & margaritas were very good! The outside Creperie had really delicious savory & sweet crepes & fruity smoothies. This is open earlier than the other restaurants & is more casual that the others. All of the restaurants offered kids’ menus & very clean high chairs which made things very convenient for us. We had an issue with extremely slow service at the Italian restaurant- Bellavista. Our waiter was really friendly but forgot about our table once the restaurant was full. Service was very slow & people who came in after us got dessert before us & left before us. We wound up leaving about 45 minutes after our entrees were done & no one came around for our dessert order even though we asked a few times & the waiter said he’d be over. I know vacation is supposed to be relaxing, but this was just extremely too slow!
I spent an afternoon at the resort’s Algeria Spa. The spa pool is so relaxing & beautiful- with lounge chairs built into the pool & a huge stone wall with water flowing down. You have access to the pool when you have a spa session as well as the sauna & vapor room. The massage and facial I got were so relaxing & the whole afternoon experience spent there was well worth the price! I highly recommend it. I also highly recommend taking a day trip to see Mayan ruins. We took a half-day trip to Tulum. We booked it through the resort at about $60 per person (the baby was free). This included shuttle service (with other pick-ups at nearby resorts) and a guide at the ruins. Tulum is breathtaking & the beach is out-of-this world!
Overall, we really had a wonderful time. We were pleasantly surprised with the quality of the accommodations at the resort as well as the friendliness and convenience towards families on vacation. We’d love to go back next year!

Room Tip: privileged rooms are worth the extra money
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  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled with family
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6  Thank Julia620
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 8 August 2014 via mobile

Had a great time at this resort. My family enjoyed our stay. The staff was nice and helpful. They had various restaurants for different tastes. They even had one open late for a late snack. Grounds were kept very clean. Not noisy at nights. Close to beach, water was great for snorkeling. Great deal for the price. Nightly performance was awesome we loved the comedy and nightmare shows the best.

Stayed: August 2014, travelled with family
1  Thank JUAN. C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 August 2014

We just got back from our Family vacation to Catalonia Riviera Maya. This is my second visit to this resort. Last time I was there almost 9 years ago. This is a very small and super family oriented resort that’s why we picked it. Not a lot of walking involved. This is not a really fancy resort and for the amount of money we paid it was perfect. The only complaint we had was the buffet food. Selection was very poor. We travel often to the Caribbean and we usually stay at bigger resorts where you have a lot of food options. We tried two specialty restaurants Mexican and Italian there where OK defiantly better then the buffet. We also upgraded to Privilege Sea view room and we got all the amenities with that upgrade.
Our room was 8021 and it was a perfect location for us. I traveled with my husband and a two year old so it was very important for us to be close to the beach and pool and this room location was awesome.
Service at this hotel is awesome everyone was friendly. You always get your drinks with a smile. Check in was little bit slow it took almost an hour that was kind of disappointing since my baby had a long day and was crying the whole time.
We picked this hotel because of the beach. We loved a little lagoon it was perfect for my 2 year old.
Yes you need the water shoes but ones you go over the rocks sea is amazing. Like mini Xelha we loved it.
I would definitely go back in the heart beat.
Also if you are traveling with the kids Catalonia Mini club is so nice. Employees there are awesome my son enjoyed the mini disco every night.
One more thing watch your towels at the pool. Ours got stolen on the 6th day while we were getting lunch. Completely ridicules, this never happened to us before. Staff at the receptions was very nice about it and gave us new towel cards and we didn't have to pay extra for the stolen towels.
That was really nice. Enjoy your vacation if you go there it’s paradise on earth. Go with the open mind and please tip for the good service. They deserve it.

  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
1  Thank Dzana
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 reviewResponded 7 August 2014

Dear Dzana

We are glad to know that your last stay at Catalonia Riviera Maya was a pleasant one and we really appreciate your comments about the hotel and staff, we work every day to give you our best service and make you feel comfortable.

We hope to have you back soon, it will be a pleasure for us to receive you again in the near future so we will have another opportunity to pamper you and exceed your expectations.

Best Regards

The Management

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 August 2014

Just returned about a week ago! I had so much fun it was a blast! All the staff were incredible and really friendly! There was so much to do!! The only problems were we had to switch rooms 3 times because of the air and shower not working! It took forever to check-in and it was so hot because the lobby is outside and no air conditioning- I wasn't in a good mood arriving! The pools were all warm and felt like bath water and they all close at 7Pm!!! The beach was beautiful although there were a lot of rocks as you get in! Still had a great time though!

Room Tip: I stayed in the regular rooms and met people who stayed in "privileged" and heard it wasn...
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  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
4  Thank Samantha S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 August 2014

A group of 8 of us visited this fantastic resort July 24 - 29 and could not have made a better choice! The staff was friendly and kept the grounds and rooms extremely clean. The restaurants were all clean and well stocked. The bar tenders were fun and took care of us! Maybe an adult only pool would be a plus, also more water machines and ice. But that did not hamper us from a great time! If you go tell Gerardo the bartender at the Tequila bar that Baltimore says hello! We will be back -with our boys!

Room Tip: all the rooms seemed fine - to each his own - all areas were kept private and people very respectfu...
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  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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2  Thank FamilyGuy21128
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 reviewResponded 6 August 2014

Dear FamilyGuy21118,

We would like to thank you for choosing Catalonia Riviera Maya!

We truly appreciate your nice comments about our services and staff .

We appreciate even more your suggestions. Keep in mind that we are going to evaluate every little detail and of course, we will put it into practice in the future.

Once again, we thank you for taking the time to give this positive feedback, and we really hope see you here in your next vacations and meet your sons .
Best regards,

General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 August 2014

Just returned from the Catalonia. Booked the honeymoon suite even though it was just a vacation and the upgrades were worth it! When you first check in they hand you a drink which is delicious. If you do have the privileged room, unfortunately they don't explain what perks you get. Instead of having to eat the buffet for breakfast and lunch, you can visit the privileged Bella Vista for an excellent meal! If you book the honeymoon suite, after check in sit down with the concierge and she'll book your couples massage and special dinner which alone is worth the extra money! The room is gorgeous with a fridge they restock every day. My advice is get the honeymoon suite!

As for the rest of the resort, everyone is super friendly, property is very clean and maintained, 5 different pools and a private beach area for the privileged guests with bean bag chairs and beds. Drinks were great especially the mango margaritas. We did tip everyone in US dollars, more during dinner. The only negative I had was the buffet... bland but still edible. Luckily we used the Bella Vista. The japanese steak house was great and don't forget to get dessert upstairs next to the Tapas restaurant!

I heard others from different resorts complain about spiders. We saw no bugs at all in our room or really at the beach. No bug spray needed. However do bring water shoes as there are sea urchins right along the beach/reef. And don't pay full price when the local vendors are there... We got them to drop their price by at least 50%.

Feel free to ask me any questions you have! We'll return again someday!

  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
3  Thank MsJenniferAnn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 August 2014

After the hour plus drive from the airport. We were greeted with a cool not cold drink. Then we got in line to check in. I had booked the "Superior Privileged Ocean View Room" so we listen to whole spill about the resort get our room key. Step away from the front desk to head to our room when the someone comes up to us and wants to sell us something. We told him no thanks and it had been a long day and we just wanted to get to our room. He just kept on and on. We ended up just walking off.
We get to our room and go to check the view of the ocean and all we saw was a building. We went back to the front desk to tell them that we was given the wrong room and that we had booked a Ocean View Room. We where told that they had no more Ocean View Rooms and to check back in the morning by 10 am and they would see what they could do. It took some doing but we did get a room with a ocean view the next day.
Now depending on what class room you book and your length of stay determines how many time you get to visit the Fine Dinning Restaurants. I think you get a choice of about five restaurants to choose from. With our package we got to visit three of them (Japanese, Italian and Spanish) the Japanese being the best of the three. The Italian was so-so but i would not waste my time on the Spanish restaurant. If you chose to visit one of the restaurants try to get there bye about 6:15 or you will be waiting in line up to a hour. Then you have the Buffet which Breakfast is the rather decent. Lunch and dinner is something else entirely (NOT REAL GOOD)
While we where there lots of kids. At any given time you could see more kids setting at the pool bar than adults (No ADULTS POOLS ON THIS RESORT).
The beach area is nice but if you want to get in the water you will need shoes lots of rocks. Bar service while your setting on the beach is little to none.
I cant speak for all the bars on the resort but the two pool bars and the one beach bar that I did visit during my stay did offer a good variety of drinks and for most part did a good job of making the drinks.
The SPA on the resort was great. My girlfriend got two 80 minute massages and loved them and I got one 80 minute massage which felt great. The Hydro massage area is nice too.
The resort does offer free WI-FI. Up near the front desk its ok but when you get out on the resort or in your room its iffy at best (GOOD LUCK GETTING CONNETED).
Understand this review was about our experience while at the resort. If I was to be asked if I would recommend this resort I would tell you to go to a different resort.

  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank Moondogie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Catalonia Riviera Maya

Address: Avenida Xcacel Lote 1 Plano 2 Manzana 18, Puerto Aventuras 77783, Mexico
Phone Number:
Region: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Puerto Aventuras
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 Top resorts Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#7 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#9 Business Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#10 Family Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#12 Romantic Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
Price Range: £141 - £385 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
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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