My new husband and I just stayed at the Occidental Grand in Cozumel July 6th - 13th for our honeymoon. We had a fabulous time and enjoyed just about everything the Occidental had to offer.
I had lowered my expectations for this vacation - based on all of the negative reviews I had read prior. Personally, I wonder if those people went to the same resort? The food was great! The buffets offered plenty of choices and it was good food! There are 2 fine dining restaurants. We loved the steakhouse and the Azteca soup is fabulous as was the other soup choice. My favorite dish is the ribeye - yummy! I did not care for the food in the Mediterranean Restaurant or the Mural that I feel is child inappropriate. I hope to visit again with my children so I would not eat again at the Mediterranean Restaurant. I would not say the food there was bad it just did not suit my tastes.
Our reception was amazing. We were received in the Royal Club since our vacation was booked as an Apple Vacation. We were offered champagne. The reception was quick, kind and informative. We were told to call any time. Although we did not upgrade to a Royal Club package. We called the royal club many times and they always responded quickly and respectfully and were helpful. We were given a complimentary honeymoon which included fruit and a bottle of champagne. We also learned it is a good idea to tip your housekeeper. We learned this the one day we forgot. It's just nicer when you tip.
We then enjoyed room service as we were exhausted and did not feel like going anywhere. I was so thankful for room service as I have done a Mexican all inclusive before and do not remember the option of included room service. Room service food was great! We just learned to get dishes out quickly or else you will get tiny ants. I am sure this is just the nature of the tropical environment. Food gone - ants gone. They were happy to come clean or spray but we opted for the natural envrioment and learned to remove food quickly and all was fine.
Okay - we loved the beach and the main pool. The lunch buffet was so nice right by the beach and the food was always good. Chips and dips were homemade and tasty. There were plenty of options so again you could eat different every day at all the buffets.
By the way our room was beautiful. We asked for a 3rd floor to avoid any mold smells which are common at Mexico resorts. We loved our room - plenty of air condition and incrediby clean. We loved the tile, colors, and decor. We also loved the tropical environment off of our balcony. We'd sit out and listen to the birds, etc....
The Occidental in all aspects was way nicer than we expected. Probably my favorite part of the vacation was the kind treatment of the entire staff at the Occidental. In fact it was only when we left the resort we were dissapointed. The staff was always kind, helpful, and full of smiles. Ironically enough we were not hounded by the timshare people. We consulted our Apple rep quite a bit and were dissapointed with a scuba reccomendation so we actually sought out the hotel people. We did do the timeshare tour and did enjoy the 3 reef snorkel tour as a result. Time share a little too epensive for our taste as we are just simple people and find the common rooms and parts of the resort plenty for our tastes as it is just such a nice place! The hard close was a bit uncomfortable but I would expect nothing less since the goal is to sell it right then and there.
Okay back to the beach and activities. There is enough to do for free that we didn't even do everything. We booked a scuba trip off of the resort and were very dissappointed. We let our Apple rep know we think it is a bad idea to send beginners away from the resort to save money. We felt the extra money spent at the dive shop would have been a much better experience for a little extra money. And quite frankly, much better to prepare a beginner for the world of scuba diving. The people at the dive shop were amazing. They were so helpful and when we return we will book all our scuba diving and courses through them. I trust them and they were willing to work with us after our not so great excursion off of the resort. Furthermore the experienced divers seemed to book everything through the dive shop and off our pier. Everyone we spoke with were pleased.
They did a great job with pool activities. We enjoyed beach volleyball and played a ton while we were there! We also enjoyed water polo and noticed the activity instructor even successfully got guys doing aerobics.
We really appreciated the quality of the other vacationers at the resort. They were very respectful. We also checked out the kids club program and would bring our children back to this resort and think it's a great program. For these reasons we are comfortable with the security and other people at the resort to come back with our kids.
The beach is beautiful. If you want a good Cozumel Beach - this is the one. The walk to the beach is very nice as the resort is beautiful. The Occidental has a responsibility to take care of the ecosystem. There is no beach front lodging at this resort which is just fine with me as I had to work off all that food and I really enjoyed the privacy and serenity of our balcony as well as the beauty,comfort and cleanliness of our room. We stayed in building 17 floor 3 and thought it was a perfect location and great for exercise. We were right in the middle of the resort with plenty of privacy. In fact the resort is very spacious and you would never find yourself on top of people. Some back ups at the pool bar but that is such a frivalous detail in my opinion.
So once again I loved everything about the Occidental - we went next door and checked out the Allegro and found the Occidental far more appealing even for when we return with children. In reading other reviews we found it helpful to stay on a higher floor room. We wish we would have listened to other reviewers and stuck with the on site dive shop from the start especially for beginners. In our opinion there really is no reason to even leave the resort and probably one of the best beaches, best rooms, best grounds, and best service in Cozumel is at the Occidental Grand. I almost forgot there is great entertainment every night at the Occidental. Our personal favorite was the fire show which was way beyond our expectations and any fire show we have ever seen.
We also really like the quaint and low key environment that Cozumel has to offer and we will go back to Cozumel and the Occidental Grand.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Only the Caribbean’s most famous reef system could match the beauty and splendor of the Occidental Grand Cozumel, which is exactly why the two exist side-by-side. Located on Cozumel’s gorgeous San Francisco beach, just above the bottomless blue paradise of the Palancar Reef system, you’ll find an authentic-style state that delivers all the luxuries of a private oceanside hacienda. Gourmet dining, bright and airy rooms, nightly music and entertainment, daily sports and beach activities and an on-site spa and salon make the Occidental grand Cozumel the jewel of any Caribbean experience. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Occidental Grand Cozumel Hotel Cozumel
- Occidental Grand Hotel Cozumel
- Occidental Cozumel
- Grand Cozumel
- Grand Occidental Cozumel