Have you ever seen the episode of Golden Girls where the ladies go on what is supposed to be a dream vacation on a tropical island but turns out to be a complete nightmare? They are staying in hotel that is nothing like what is promised in the brochure, but in order to try to make the best of things they decide to try out the “vibrating” bed. They put quarters in the bed only to have one of the rude staff members burst into their room and begin shaking the bed with his foot while singing Guantanamera.
Welcome to the El Cozumeleno!
Where do I begin? We stayed all of last week and I have never been so happy for my vacation to be over. My list of complaints is never-ending; but I have decided to try to keep it as concise as possible by categorizing the experience below:
The décor of the hotel is completely outdated which you could live with if everything else was great (everything else was NOT great). There is no a/c in the lobby, therefore it is very hot inside. The associates at the front desk manage to muster a smile, though they all must be some kin to Kristen Stewart as it seems more difficult for them than passing a stone, yet they are not very accommodating and sometimes just flat out rude.
This resort is NOT non-smoking; therefore there is no lack of smoke, ashtrays, cigarette butts and ashes anywhere on the resort and the beach. People are smoking by the pool, IN the pool, on the beach, everywhere!
The WIFI in the lobby is completely intermittent and you will be lucky if you can get on at all.
I never saw the night club, pool table, lounge or arcade/game room that they advertise on their website.
They have recently updated their website, but previously they were advertising a karaoke bar and a sports bar which plain just DO NOT exist.
The rooms smelled really bad, like a nasty cleaning solution of some sort, every day.
There is not a bed sheet in the place that is not stained or does not have holes.
The view from our “ocean view” room was completely obstructed by a palm tree.
Lord! We left there a couple of days ago and all of our stomachs are still all bound up and displaced.
All of the food is disgusting! I repeat, disgusting! It is almost inedible.
This is NOT a fine dining establishment.
Also, you have to make reservations to dine in this restaurant, but they only fill the restaurant halfway, it is NEVER full. Never once did I see this restaurant full at dinner time. They take only enough reservations to fill the restaurant halfway then they start telling people that there are no more reservations, that way they can pay only enough staff to accommodate half the restaurant and thereby save themselves money on food and labor. The resort is all inclusive; therefore you have already paid for this food and service so they could care less if they only fill the restaurant halfway. This really upset me because it is a scam, plain and simple! You pay for a fine dining restaurant but they turn you away half the time because there are “no more” reservations.
They try to “change up” the menu every couple of days but the food is really all the same in both restaurants, they just change the placement on the plate or include slight variances.
Every time I ordered a salad the lettuce was wilted and there was a ton of water at the bottom of the bowl. The food was NEVER hot (in fact, nothing that was supposed to be hot was ever hot and nothing that was supposed be cold was ever cold) and almost always tasteless, if you were lucky. Usually, they had different kinds of cakes for dessert but they all looked to be made the same exact way (layered cake with cake and cream) just with different flavorings.
During breakfast and lunch they keep the beach doors open in this restaurant so that they don’t have to turn on the a/c (I don’t know if they are trying to save money or the air just doesn’t work properly), therefore it is usually very warm. The breakfast bar that they have with the pastries, fruit, etc is overrun with flies and ants and what they have on the hot breakfast buffet is pretty much the same thing that is on the menu. The pancakes are tasteless and the French toast is chewy and I am sure it comes from a box. The coffee is awful and so is the iced tea.
Also, there is a dress code for this place which is laughable, all things considered.
We ate in this restaurant one or two times when we first arrived and after that made sure to eat at La Veranda for the rest of our meals.
This restaurant is hot and there are birds, flies and ants everywhere. Gross!
Bananas snack bar
The snack bar consists of hotdogs, these super flat “hamburger” patties, popcorn and tortilla chips with this movie theater machine queso, which is a great snack bar unless you are over the age of 8.
We ordered room service exactly one time. We ordered nachos which came to us on a dirty plate with tortilla chips, movie theater machine queso and jalapenos…we threw it out and remained hungry for the rest of the evening.
There are 4 bars, two by the pools, the swim up bar and the one in the lobby.
The alcohol selection is laughable at best, they have about 5-8 bottles of name brand liquors at each bar which they display, however if you ask for a rum and coke, they are not going to turn around and give you Bacardi, they are going to reach down and use some off brand, well liquor. They don’t ask you what kind of liquor you want, YOU have to specify.
All of the drinks are served in these old, dingy plastic cups that probably only get rinsed after each use.
There are two pools and while both of the pools are very nice, I spent most of my time at the smaller more quiet pool. While the other pool is nicer, it tends to get a little raunchy in the afternoon. Don’t get me wrong, I understand that we are on vacation at an all-inclusive resort and you want to get your money’s worth but it just seems like this resort has more completely over the top, loud, drunk people than their fair share per capita.
The water is absolutely beautiful and the snorkeling is great, but there is not much sand on the beach and you have to go out a little ways in order to get by all of the rocks that are there when you first enter the water.
I could go on for days, but needless to say, I was so glad when the last day of my stay came and I could get the heck out of that place. Some of the staff tried, but this place just needs to be completely renovated and all of the staff and employees completely retrained under new management and ownership. The more we talked to the staff, we discovered that this place was owned by one person which makes complete sense as resorts are very expensive to run and are usually owned by several people and/or businesses and it is obvious that this guy (as long as the money is coming in) just does not care about his resort. The place is completely run down, his employees are completely unhappy and it shows. Overall, it was a terrible experience in a crappy resort with subpar customer service all the way around and I will NEVER return.
I have read several of the reviews and people say that because this hotel is such a “great value” it is a little lower class than other resorts, but I don’t know what great value they are referring to as this place while it was not the most expensive resort on the island was not cheap by any stretch of the imagination and I have stayed at other resorts in Mexico for a similar price that were excellent.
Don’t waste your time or money on this place. You would have a better time at home.
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Travelocity, Booking.com, Expedia, BookIt.com, Priceline, Caribbean Online Mgt Corp., Hotels.com, Orbitz, TravelClick, TripOnline SA, Odigeo, Otel, Agoda and Low Cost Holidays so you can book your El Cozumeleno Beach Resort reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
- Also Known As:
- El Cozumeleno Beach Hotel Cozumel
- El Cozumeleno Beach Cozumel
- El Cozumeleno Cozumel