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Catalonia Playa Maroma
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Reviews (8,440)
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Reviewed 3 July 2010

I hope you find this review fair and honest. I have been to all inclusives in Mexico and Dominican Republic, so I feel I should be able to provide some decent insight.

Check In:
The front desk people are not the friendliest, they arent nasty, but they arent as friendly as other resorts I have been to. I had a privelege room reserved and got it, but you need to be on top of them. They did try to move us to Catalonia Royal Tulum, but I didnt want to go, so I kept my original reservation. I checked in right at 3, but waited around an hour or so. The person who I originally spoke to said he would call me over in 15 minutes for my room, a half hour later I go up to the desk to see whats going on, and he is gone for the day, so someone else helped me. That isnt cool if you ask me. But I did get what I reserved, but only because I stayed on top of them.

Resort Appearance and Room:
My privelege room was nice and seemed updated, no major complaints. The AC could be a little colder, but I think by now Ive come to realize that AC in a tropical place is definitely 5-10 degrees higher than what I get at home. Room cleaning was done nicely. A little more lighting in the bathroom sink area would be nice. The resort itself is clean and the grounds are kept nice. Nothing extremely fancy, but again, I cant complain on that.

Food:
The Ala Carte restaurants are all good quality but at La Tortuga ( snack bar during day and "steakhouse" at night) no matter what steak you order, its the same piece of meat. The italian place was suprisingly good. The main buffet is ok, breakfast wasnt great but it could be worse. Lunch was good enough. I feel other resorts do a little better job with the snacks, fresh fruit throughout the day and smoothies available at breakfast. The main buffet was always too hot, they need more fans or need to enclose it.

Staff/Entertainment:
The mexican staff was very friendly, but as you have probably read, there is a european presence at this resort, well there is a huge one actually. All of the European staff at the front desk arent helpful, they just try to deflect any questions to someone else, or say they dont understand you. Every other resort I have been to in a Spanish speaking country, they understand spanish and english first and foremost....Here english is not well understood and I sensed a little anti- americanism. I confirmed this with some other ameicans I saw there and they said they felt the same way. You may absolutely have a differing opinion. The activity and entertainment staff was just ok. They are a bunch of young kids from around the world, unlike other hotels that have a local staff that work together for a long time and are pretty much professional at what they do. The entertainment staff was friendly, but basically spoke no english. Each event, they spoke spanish, then translated into italian, then french, and sometimes german and english.
To me, the place is catered more towards Europeans, because I just felt like an outsider, as I confirmed with other americans.

Beach:
Water is beautiful, pretty much anywhere on the riviera maya you shouldnt have any complaints. The water was a little rougher due to some Tropical storm alex remnants. But the sand is nice and the water is colorful.

All in all a decent experience, not my top so far. The only thing I would say is that its a good place, but for someone that speaks English only and wants to participate in the activities a lot, the language barrier and hints of American resentment should steer you to another resort.

Enjoy your trip!

  • Stayed: June 2010, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank pt109s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 July 2010

We are currently at CPM with a family of 12. The greeting was terrific, we have had great service. I had a birthday cake delivered at the end of one of our dinners which was wonderful. The entertainment crew is energetic and always greeting you with a smile. Edwardo, Roberto, and Evonne have been very helpful and accommodating. I would definitely recommend CPM for families.

  • Stayed: June 2010, travelled with family
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1  Thank Hodi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 July 2010

my wife and i stayed at Catalonia Playa Maroma in May 2010 for our anniversary. i had emailed the hotel twice prior to our arrival to confirm our reservation in a "privilege" room.

when we arrived (around noon), we were told they did not have our room, and they offerred to put us in their other location about 1/2 hour away. after an hour, they said our room was ready but when we got to the room it clearly was NOT a privilege room... it did not come close to the photos on the website -- smaller room, no balcony to speak of, no poster bed, etc. back at the front desk / check-in, they were adamant that we had a "privilege" room. we didn't believe them and after insisting and speaking to the manager, they agreed to change our room the next day.

well, next day around 2pm we got a new room and it was, in fact, the correct room... poster bed, patio with table and chairs, larger room, etc.

the rest of our stay was really nice... staff, food, drinks, restaurants were all great. the grounds are pretty and well done, too.

if was a horrible, horrible check-in experience -- one that threatened to ruin our anniversary travel. i can understand how a resort can become overbooked. but the staff handled it so unprofessionally. they SHOULD have said "we're sorry, we don't have your room for tonight, but we WILL have it for you tomorrow. Please accept a nice dinner on us for the inconvenience." that is the RIGHT way to handle your customers. but instead, they lied to our faces by insisting we had the right room. our original room and the subsequent one were like day and night, and certainly confirmed our assertion that the room they tried to pawn off on us was NOT the room we paid for.

YOU might get lucky here when you check in, but is it worth the possibility of losing one day of your vacation like what happened to us?

My suggestion: don't take the chance; pick another place.

  • Stayed: May 2010, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank bobd60067
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 June 2010

We stayed at Catalonia Playa Maroma June 20-27th and loved it. I am so happy to be able to write a favorable review after reading so many negative ones from May. Our experience was exactly what we were hoping for when we booked this resort. It is a smaller, quieter resort but has everything you could need or want for a relaxing get away.
We found the food to be very good everywhere we ate, even better tasting and variety than other larger resorts.
We found our room to be excellent. We had a privilidged room in the 1000 block on the third floor. The air conditioning was okay at the beginning of the week and we had one night when it did get hot in the room. The next day we told the front desk about it and when we got back from a day in town the room was cold and stayed that way for the rest of the week. I even had to sleep with a blanket.
The bathroom was completely redone with beautiful tiling and our large shower had two shower heads- a large rainwater type and a handheld shower head.
As many other reviews have stated, the beach is great, the pool is great, the animation staff is alot of fun and very personable. When we went to Playa del Carmen for the day we ran into some off the staff hanging out in town on their day off. They recognized us and told me next time they would take me in with them and show me the places they like that aren't tourist traps.
I read TA to help me decide if I should book certain resorts and use my hard earned dollars on my vacation time. I can honestly say this is a good resort and worth the price and then some. We got a great deal through FunJet and were concerned we were going to end up at a Motel 8 type establishment in a mosquito swarm. Not so at all. IF you are looking for plush tanning beds, stained glass ceiling lobbies, your own personal staff to anticipate your next move, go somewhere else. We went to the Royal's lobby in Playa to see what it looked like and it is at the other end of the spectrum from CPM. We came back to an unairconditioned thatched roof lobby that had all the charm and fun loving warmth we could have wanted. As a matter of fact the second part of our stay was with Tropical Storm Alex and it was delightful to sit in the lobby area bar listening to the band play and the rain coming down. There was a refreshing breeze and cooler temps that made us appreciate the surroundings all that much more.
The only negative things I would comment on are that when the temps are up the buffet and lobby do get hot. I wouldn't suggest being there in the hottest part of the summer. The breeze on the beach and the pool is great though and the dinner restaurants are air conditioned so that wasn't a problem.
The second thing is alot of people smoke at this resort. Maybe alot of people smoke everywhere but I did notice that people all around, on a lounger, in the pool, on the beach, in the ocean, in the buffet restaurant, the lobby, the bars...always smoke. It wasn't just the predominate European guests either. I don't know if resorts advertise themselves as smoking establishments or not but if smoking really bothers you be advised that it is not discouraged here.
All in all CPM is a nice place. I would have no problem recommending it. Read the negative reviews with a grain of salt. Alot of times people write negative reviews because they felt hasselled or lied to or some other personal affront. The resort is solid and the staff was more than accomodating and kind to us and everyone we talked with. Enjoy your time whereever you go!

  • Stayed: June 2010, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank cappajeano
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 June 2010

Let me start by saying that even though this is my first TA review, I have been to three other all inclusive resorts in Jamaica and Dominican Rep. First time to Mexico.

Check In: Arrived around 3:00pm after using USA transfers(would use them again). Very helpful front desk people. Check in went very quickly.

Room: We booked a standard room and decided not to upgrade. If I went back I would upgrade. The room was ok, just tired looking. Glad we were on the first floor (always cooler on lower floors). Air conditioning was O.K. We ran the ceiling fan as much as we could, but sometimes it would short out and we had to jiggle the knob. The 3000 block does back up to the Secrets resort and at night you could hear the loud music from the disco, but it didn't keep us up. Looked like they were remodeling some of the rooms in 3000 block.

Food: Buffet very good. We are not picky eaters. I had read previous reviews stating this but was still pleasantly surprised. Previous AI buffets I had been to were so so. Went to three of the ala carte restaurant they were very nice.

Beach: Great beach. Two days we got spots under the trellis, the other times we pulled our chairs under the palm trees in back. The resort was not very crowded, so in the high season finding shade could be a problem. I still took my portabella travel beach umbrella, but we didn't need it. They do have sporadic bar service on the beach, but we were fine with walking to the bar for our drinks. We did tip when remembered to take a few dollars with us. Remember to take travel mugs to keep drinks colder, I forgot ours. To the left of the bar are self serve water and juice machines.

Drinks: I didn't think the mixed drinks were very good. They had Dos Equis on tap so I fine with that. House wines were good, in fact the best I has had at an AI.

Activities: We didn't participate in any. I just want to sit, read, and relax. Did go see a show one night and it was pretty much what I expected. It was fun, but not anything show stopping.

Peolple: Great. On resort and off resort. Remember this is their country. It never fails when we travel abroad that we don't see some people with disgusting, condensing, arrogant behavior and manners. They would rather complain and throw a fit about every little thing that doesn't go their way. What a waste of vacation.

Misc: We did take the shuttle into Playa. That was fun. ( Bought a few things, but to tell the truth I thought the selection at the resort shops and the airport shops was just as good.) We went on day Mexico beat France in the World Cup. A lot of good natured partying in the street. Police were there, but nothing got out of control or even felt unsafe. The shuttle pick up spot was blocked by the celebration, so one of the bus drivers came and walked us to where the buses were. They made an effort to collect everyone, but I am sure some people got left behind. Used ATM across from Bus Station on Fifth Avenue. No problems. Got exchange rate of 12 pesos to 1us and the atm charge was only 2.75 us. Tulum only takes pesos. Rented a car from the car rental in the lobby and went to Tulum and Akumal. Driving was very easy, well marked roads. Ordered maps from mapchick before we went. Be sure to read forums for advice on driving in Mexico, don't speed, watch for topes (wicked speed bumps)and pay the extra money to get the zero deductible coverage on the rental car.

Bottom line: Would go back if price is right with an upgraded room. I think I would like to stay in Akumal or Playa at a regular hotel or condo. Plenty of eating places and grocery stores. Prices seemed very reasonable.

  • Stayed: June 2010, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Roamaround29
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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