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“Great-but with reservations”

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Grand Bahia Principe Coba
Ranked #12 of 23 Hotels in Akumal
Certificate of Excellence
Durango, Colorado
Level 5 Contributor
42 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 79 helpful votes
“Great-but with reservations”
Reviewed 15 December 2010

This was a return trip to this resort. We had been to the Coba 2 years ago and loved it so we decided to return.
Check in was smooth and quickly taken to our room. I had requested 3rd floor overlooking the quiet pool. Villa 26A, perfect location. Thank you Mr. Valle. We had traveled all day and went to the buffet for dinner. It lacked a lot. The beef was very tough and most things were not restocked. Even so we managed to get full, just seemed to be an off night. I guess I will stay on the food, it is so subjective from person to person so my take on this is service and restocking of food that is out. Service was very spotty, the waiters seemed to take care of large groups only, my husband and I waited most nights just to get water, then waited to get refills of just water. It seemed that when a dish was empty they had to wait a certain amount of time before they would refill it. Seemed odd. We then started going over to the Tulum buffet and the Akumal buffet and they both were so much better than the Coba's buffet. We ate at these the rest of our stay. Wait staff still not much better though. We did tip even for the bad service at first, then I stopped unless I got service. Our stay 2 yrs ago we had excellent service tip or no tip, not this trip. That applied to all services not just restuarants.
Our room was as expected, we experienced what others are saying, some days towels, some days not. I tried to hang on to a face towel but they got it and didn't get another one for 3-4 days. Always left a tip except for 1 day (doubled next day) they didn't do hardly anything, no coffee, no towels, moved the bedspread and hard time finding it. They should take the mini fridges out, 1 beer per room, I believe I paid per person that would make it 2 people per room, but 1 beer. Had to tip to get that 1 beer also. I don't mind tipping but it makes me mad that now it is expected and they don't really have to do anything if you don't pay up. I tip for service, not to buy that service.
Towel game in full swing, what do you do! Go to Akumal or Tulum sections, they had chairs till noon, we spent our time there.
By the sound of this review you would think we really didn't like it all that much. Well, we had a wonderful time and we would definately go back. I just wanted to point out some things that management needs to pay attention to. Seems like they are slacking off and need to tighten things up. All and all these are very minor problems. I had to talk to the front desk and they were always very helpful and extremely nice. Its a beautiful resort and so much to do.

  • Stayed November 2010, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank Kryn H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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alberta
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 December 2010

great resort,very well kept, has an awesome golf course. green fees included but the cart is 65$usper person.has some very good resterants. the staff was pretty accomadating. safe locks are 5$per day.

  • Stayed December 2010, travelled with friends
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1 Thank flatlanderAlberta
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Vancouver, Canada
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 December 2010

My partner and our 4 yr old son went to the Mayan Riviera for a holiday last week. My partner had stayed at this exact hotel 2 years ago and he raved about the service, the resort amenities and said he had some of the best meals ever. Sadly, this resort has gone downhill since then and he was left very disappointed. I definitely would never return to the Bahia Principe.

To start, we were dropped off with all our luggage at the wrong lobby. Apparently since we had booked the "golden" package we had a VIP lobby. So now 50 people get off a bus and have 2 hotel check in clerks at the VIP lobby check us all in. This took nearly an hour, which after a long flight with a small child was unacceptable for "VIP" service. The main lobby was not busy so why not provide some service??

Our room looked nice upon arrival. I was impressed with the bathroom - jetted jacuzzi tub, spacious and clean. The room smelled a bit but that's not unusual in tropical places. Unfortunately we were soon visited by our friends: huge cockroaches and ants... everywhere. You can accept a few bugs when you go to hot humid places, but our room was teeming with them. You could hear them rustling around while you were sleeping and they were very brave to be scurrying all over our room in the light. One morning we put 3 large cockroaches in a bottle and brought it to the front desk to ask for a new room. They said, "well you're in the jungle" and then laughed and talked to each other in spanish with us standing there. They said we had to speak to a manager and redirected us to the main lobby (why do they have 2 lobbies anyway if they just bounce you between them whenever you need something?!). We went there and the manager said there was one other room we could have but it was not going to be free until tonight and that it was booked for the following night. He offered to poison our room, which doesn't sound appealing when you have a 4-yr old with you, but our alternative was to have cockroaches crawling all over everything so we said fine. After the fumigation to our room we only saw the ants and just a few more resilient cockroaches. I have NEVER encountered such an infestation in a hotel room in any other tropical place so I will not accept that as the excuse for lack of preparation or sanitation.

The food.... oh where to begin.... the buffets: same food every day, if you were lucky enough to get it before it ran out. Things were not replaced quickly and most of the food was of very poor quality. Service in the buffets were not bad, at least they offered you a drink. Despite eating supper at 4 a la carte's, we could not stand the buffet any longer and finally went to Playa Del Carmen for our meals on our last day. The a la carte restaurants were mediocre at best. Le Gourmet was the better of the 4 we ate at. Stay away from Il Pescador... disgusting. Service staff in the a la cartes were very nice and finally made you feel special at this resort.

Bar staff could not have cared less about you. Took forever to get a drink and tipping made zero difference on the quality of service or beverage. Tipping the maid or bell boy or anybody else was useless too - what a waste of money hoping that $5 here and there might actually increase your experience.

Pools: COLD! They were virtually empty except for one afternoon that was hotter than the other days. Then, people were in for a quick dip and then back out again. Our 4-yr old came out of the pool shivering and stopped wanting to swim in it at all. Too bad because they pools themselves were beautiful and looked clean and inviting.

Beds - HARD. Minibar - what's the point if it only contains 2 beer and a pop? Entertainment - the shows were nothing more than you'd find at a highschool. Lipsyncing and broadway shows were just not of the calibre of entertainment that I've had at other mexican resorts, or anywhere else in the caribbean.

Overall, it was very disappointing because this hotel has SO much potential and obviously used to be wonderful. Not sure what changed, but this was easily the worst all-inclusive resort I've ever been to. It just seemed like nobody there cared. The staff seem very unhappy and the level of quality is nothing more than a 3 star for room and food.

There is so much to see and do in the Mayan Riviera, but if we return we will steer clear of this resort and would not recommend it to anybody.

  • Stayed December 2010, travelled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank sunshineseeker604
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Grimsby , ontario, canada
Level 3 Contributor
17 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 December 2010

My wife and I have travelled to many all inclusive resorts, a total of 12 times in the last few years. Nothing compares to this resort. Don't listen to the negative reports as these people probably complain about everything in life in general. This place has it all, Great food, buffets were always pleasing . Alacartes, we went to Mikado, great sitting at the show table, food excellent. Next resturant was La Tortuga, different meat served on swords, eat what you can lots and lots of cuts available, we found this the best. Last was the Don Pablo, international, good selection. # resorts in one takes a bit of getting used too. If you travel to Coba beach insure you walk about 1/2 km to Private beach west of coba beach, see these beaches on TV and snorkling among all the fish in the reef is unbelievable. You must remember this resort is about 1 hour from airport with a few stops on the way. Wife and I went by cab to Akumal for Lobster to La Buenna Vida, Dinner for both with beer $60 US, Huge rock lobster. Scenery on the beach sand floors at mexican local bar

  • Stayed December 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank vwguy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Richmond, Virginia
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 December 2010

About us:
Travelled as couple from USA. First time to Mayan Riviera.

PROS:
- Clean, neat, carefully maintained properties
- Beach amazing (Coba is great but with a rocky floor, Tulum side beach is also rocky but there is an area of about 3-4 football fields which is the best beach Ive ever seen, you can probably walk 200-300 meters into the water with minimal surf)
- Architecture beautiful
- Golf course is great. I dont play golf but thats a plus if you play golf
- Staff very friendly and helpful
- If you are a nature lover and like to visit the various ecological parks then this place is one of the best locations you can have as a base camp and to plan your trips. Tulum Ruins is a must see, very close (20 kms) and $5 entry ticket.
- Playa del Carmen is only 30 kms. 5th avenue is interesting and you can find good deals of souvenirs and may find great restaurants there. Also, there is a branch of Coco Bongo in Playa
- We travelled in December. The beach water temperature is very tolerable (you should not have any issues going into the sea). However pools are cold
- Very good family resort. We are thinking of bringing our son next time we are there
- A L Cartes are great (especially Le Gourmet the French restaurant and Makado the Japanese one).
- You can eat at all 3 properties.
- Big resort, shuttles running to and fro from all 3 different properties almost every 10-15 mins.

CONS
- Buffet food is ok (we compared the buffet with Riu Caribe where we stayed last time).
- Kind of far from Cancun area especially if you are interested in night life
- Entertainment is ok (again we compared it with Riu Caribe shows which were great and they had a great entertainment staff).
- 3 huge properties (Coba: costs less, 10 min walk to beach and the other 2 are, Tulum & Akumal: which are on the beach and bit more expensive) so lots of walking (which we didnt mind) but may be a hassle for some
- Internet only in lobby not in rooms

TIPS
- Rent a car. Made our life so much better. You control your own schedule and are not dependent on the tour buses. Rental car is not a big deal and driving is a piece of cake in Cancun and Riviera Maya area (other people may disagree). So I recommend rental car.

  • Stayed December 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
4 Thank Totalbliss145
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 December 2010

My wife and kids stayed Dec 5th to 12th. We checked in at the principe golden lobby. Orlando and his co-workers behind the desk were not really that accommodating, also I understand alittle Spanish and they were being somewhat obnoxious. Not a great way to start off!! Room was on ground level, old t.v. for a 5 star resort, dim lighting in the room, the maid
Chose weather to leave water or coffee or beer. Honestly, that may not mean much but it's he little things that count. Wifi wasn't working all the time, and since we were on ground level, the staff go in and out of a storage door multiple times which left a loud BANG!! Woke the kids up sometimes. Everything else was lovely, pool, beach, bar. Annoyed At the frot desk staff still lol. Next time we go to Mexico time to try a new resort.

  • Stayed December 2010
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank Niceguy11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Wasaga Beach
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 December 2010

My fiancee and I traveled with our 6 kids. Got in 4 hours early, check in is at 3, they don't give you the room early. They had our bags so we could not change. We dragged around
in the heat with tired, hungry and cranky kids with our winter gear until the room was ready. Oh i forgt to mention the ONE HOUR AND A HALF bus ride there. Check in was a long and un-organized. Beautiful grounds and buildings. Room was ok, better in the pictures. Be prepared to walk A LOT, it is huge. People put their towels on the pool and beach chairs in the morning and leave, and don't touch them because someone will yell at you even though there are signs not to reserve seats. The beach is topless, beware for your kids.Room service was a joke, it took 75 minutes to get nachos that they said would take 15. Cleaning staff was great, they don't speak english. There were cockroaches in the rooms and they said it was part of being in Mexico. the wait staff was great, except for the Medeteranio, where the waiters thought that we didn't know spanish and decided to rate my older daughters on their looks right beside me. They were very
attentive when I loudly gave my 3 year old a spanish lesson at the table. Jokes on them
I told their boss. Shows were entertaining. Bring bug repelant. Nasty mosquitos and
sand fleas. No screens. Air conditioning is almost non exsistant. Called every day to fix
they never did. They don't care for complaints. Brush everything off. The food was great
lots of choices that the kids enjoyed. My advice is watch out for the timeshare people at the airport, they pretend they are employees to help you with your hotel, they herd you away from your bus, BEWARE. The Mexican festa sucked, don't waste the money.
They also say tips included in the package but they do expect to be tipped. They will do more for you if you do. Also the rooms were very damp, it made the beds and clothes
wet and smelly. The worst thing was wearing a plastic wrist band all week, it was uncomfortable and tacky.

  • Stayed December 2010, travelled with family
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank 1968BABYDOLL
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Grand Bahia Principe Coba

Property: Grand Bahia Principe Coba
Address: Carretera Chetumal - Cancun Km 250, Akumal 77760, Mexico
Phone Number:
Region: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Akumal
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#7 Family Hotel in Akumal
#8 Romantic Hotel in Akumal
#9 Top resorts Hotel in Akumal
#10 On the Beach Hotel in Akumal
#10 Spa Hotel in Akumal
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Grand Bahia Principe Coba 3.5*
Number of rooms: 1080
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Facilities and services 2 lake-style pools 3 Jacuzzis Large sun terrace and gardens with sun umbrellas and loungers Pool and beach towel service BAHIA SPA (additional charge) Sports facilities: gym, 5 tennis courts, basketball court, bicycles Motorised sports (additional charge) Water activity centre Entertainment amphitheatre WiFi access in the lobby (1h per day free of charge) Buffet restaurant 4 a la carte restaurants 8 Bars 2 Snack bar Riviera Maya Golf Club: 18 long holes and 9 executive holes with lakes, natural wells and Mayan forest. Hacienda Dona Isabel: karaoke bars, shows, live music and disco Rooms 1080 rooms including 4 types: Superior Junior Suite, Club Golden Junior Suite, Family Junior Suite and Master Family Suite. Room facilities: Two full size beds or a king size bed Sitting area with sofa Fully-equipped bathroom with hydromassage bath tub, shower, wash basin, magnifying mirror and hair dryer Bathroom amenities Balcony or terrace Air conditioning Ceiling fan Telephone Radio alarm clock Flat screen satellite TV Mini-bar Coffee-making facilities Safe (additional charge) Ironing set Terrace Wifi Family Junior Suites and Master Family Suites the perfect choice for families, including: All the facilities and services of a Junior Suite Bathrobes and slippers for all the family for use during your stay Children's bath kit Welcome basket with sweets Mini-bar with juices, shakes, milk and soft drinks for children Two fully independent connecting rooms (Master Family Suites) Club Golden Junior Suites Children Bahia Scouts Children can enjoy a range of specially-tailored facilities: Children's pool Mini Club with daytime activities Evening Mini Disco Bahia Scouts Water Park Teen's Club (11 - 16 years) Baby Station Other services On-site miniature railway providing access to all facilities Medical service (additional charge) Pharmacy (additional charge) Personalised diet option for celiacs and diabetics Cash point Specialised service for organising weddings, events and anniversaries Casino ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Gran Bahia Principe Coba Akumal
Hotel Gran Bahia Principe
Bahia Principe Coba Mexico
Gran Bahia Coba
Gran Bahia Principe Resort Coba
Gran Bahia Principe Coba Hotel
Gran Principe
Gran Bahia Principe Mexico
Bahia Coba
Grand Bahia Principe Coba Riviera Maya, Mexico - Akumal

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