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“Absolutely beautiful!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Grand Bay Hotel

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Grand Bay Hotel
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Isla Navidad, Barra de Navidad, Mexico   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #2 of 15 Hotels in Barra de Navidad
Miami, Florida
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
“Absolutely beautiful!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 24, 2012

The property is beautiful, the service is great. The food at the different restaurants was delicious. The Water Taxi is a great & inexpensive way of moving to and from the island. Beautiful sunrises, sunsets, pools, and gardens. Will definitely be back!!!

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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102 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    59
    28
    9
    4
    2
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (18)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Toronto, Canada
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 28, 2012

I Just returned from one week at the Grand Bay. I had a great time. It is a beautiful resort in a picturesque location. If you are considering the Grand Bay, here are a few things to consider.

LOCATION
It is in the Grand Bay which is a short water taxi ride to Barra de Navidad (only 20 pesos round trip). The upside is that it is easy to visit a small Mexican village (it had good, authentic Mexican food). The downside is that you don't have an ocean view. It also means that the small beach is on a lagoon (very quiet but no drink service). That said, the pools are gorgeous and the poolside service is excellent.

STAFF
This is where the resort excels. We had great experience with the staff. They were friendly and worked really hard to ensure we had a nice stay.

RESTAURANTS
The resort is still transitioning from a five star hotel to an all-inclusive resort. This means that the service is very good, however, they are still working on many details. Many of our travelling companions had a difficult time getting reservations in the sit-down restaurants. We had two excellent meals at Antonio's (officially, the dress code is formal but they let people in in sandals and T-shirts). Unfortunately, we didn't have a very good experience at La Terraza (service was sub-standard and the food was just OK). We had breakfast at the buffets each morning and it was very good and had dinner twice and it was good (different food each time). The lunch grill was good, but it was pretty much the same food every day. If you stay here, I would recommend taking the short trip into town a couple of times to get some local flavour.

ROOM
The hotel is a beautiful place and the rooms are sizeable. We did have a mild mold smell in our room (we event switched a couple of times) which could be climate based. Like much of the hotel, it could use a bit of a touch-up (paint job) but the resort is well-maintained.

HOTEL GROUNDS
This is a beautiful place. I took long walks around the resort and saw beautiful wildlife. I'm not a golfer but the ones I spoke to raved about the course (beauty and quality of play).

SPA
We took the spa package (through Transat) and had three massages each. 2/3 massages were excellent and one was pretty good (can't complain!).

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lake Oswego, Oregon, United States
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed February 25, 2012

My wife and i have been to some of the most beautiful hotels in the world. Unfortunately, the "grand" bay hotel was not one of them. When you think of the term "grand" in connection with a hotel you think of the beautiful Grand Wailea resort in Maui or the amazing Grand Hyatt in Seoul, it is almost blasphemous that this hotel has the nerve to call itself "grand." The property itself is quite beautiful, the hotel is stunning, but that is where the grandness ends. The supporting staff is perhaps the only reason that the hotel operates in a somewhat adequate manner. The maids are nice and the bellboys helpful; however, the individuals that I like to call the "executive staff" (the concierges and the reception) are not at all helpful and when confronted with an issue they offer up a variety of excuses rather than accepting responsibility and doing something to change the status quo. They concierges were often condescending yet clueless. They claim to hold criticism in high regard, but it is evident that they are not trained in the art of customer service. 
Perhaps the biggest issue in this hotel is that it suffers from an identity crisis. It does not know who it is catering to. It contains a kids club and yet the activities available for kids are extremely limited and they do not accept children in either of the two restaurants that specialize in dinner. Yes, i know (as the concierge repeatedly defended) that the hotel offers room service and that the grand cafe offers dinner. But the room service is limited and the grand cafe is buffet style (have you ever tried to get through a buffet line with a toddler and a four year old?). By the way I thought it was hilarious that the first concierge told us that the restaurant "la terraza" absolutely did not allow children, the second concierge said that they did allow children but our toddler was not a child he was a baby (??WTF) and that the third concierge told us that la terraza absolutely did allow children but that they require reservations in advance and she did not have "anything on the books for this evening." (we had to explain to her that this colloquialism meant that they were completely available, not that they were completely booked.... If you don't speak the language that well DON'T USE COLLOQUIALISMS!!!)
They claim to be a luxury resort and yet the second day we got there 4 bus loads of touring retirees checked in as they were on a golf tour. The retirees seemed poorly guided and were often wandering the wrong side of the resort looking for a restaurant or spa service. The idea of having these tours seems like something better suited for a best western and not a luxury hotel. 
The staff does not speak English that well and yet when my wife and I spoke fluent Spanish to them (I am Mexican and my wife is Chilean) we were treated as second-class guests. We had to resort to speaking English and watching the staff struggle to communicate back to us in English in order to be treated as a first-class guest.
So which is it grand bay, are you catering to affluent families with children or budget retiree tours? Spanish speaking guests or English speaking guests? Regardless, you are failing to meet the needs of all of these groups.
As far as the amenities, the suite in room 203 was spacious and the air conditioning worked, just not very well. The room decor was old and outdated. On vacations my family and i like to stay in and watch on-demand movie rentals. No such luck here. The bed was hard and the walls were thin. Many of the halls to the rooms are semi-closed and echoey thus the sound travels very well. One night my wife and I awoke to the sounds of our neighbor urinating in his restroom followed by sounds of vomiting a few hours later. The gym was often muggy and the equipment was old and outdated. The pool was pretty, but cold and the music was often blaring. 
One last point, I understand that in hotel boutiques items are often over priced. But it is insulting to see shorts from old navy hanging in their non- air-conditioned boutique for $560 pesos (roughly $50 us). I mean are these the brands you hold in high regard, grand bay? Are you the old navy of hotels? My wife also spotted the beauty section and found that it was full of Mary Kay products? Mary Kay, seriously? That seemed to be the essence of grand bay. A cheap product that is overpriced and of poor quality.
All-in-all the Grand bay hotel was anything but grand.

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Flesherton, Canada
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 20, 2012

we visited this beautiful resort at hotel grand bay at barre de navidad. they allowed us to tour the property and we were made very welcome. a travel agent siad that air transat from canada has a terrific deal of an all inclusive holiday for under a thousand dollars.
you can take a small boat ride across the lagoon to a nifty little town called Barre de Navidad where there are restaurants and craft stores that are just beautiful. we loved our day.

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Stuart, Florida
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 16, 2012

We spent four nights at the Grand Bay Hotel over the Christmas holiday. The hotel surpassed my expectations, We had a lovely room, beautifully appointed and the service was excellent. The staff are friendly and very attentive. There are several restaurants in the hotel and we tried three of them. They were somewhat of a disappointment and I actually did not feel well after dinner. Except for the dining experiences, the hotel is fantastic. The pool is spectacular and the lagoon is a nice alternative. There are cute shops and excellent facilities for the mariner. Our boat had a nice stay too with a slip in the marina! I hope we can return next Christmas.

  • Stayed December 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 11, 2012 via mobile

Grand Bay is the perfect place to go if you are seeking rest and relaxation! The all inclusive option with Air Transat allowed us to completely unwind on our honeymoon! The staff are attentive and the location is great with Barra de Navidad just a quick water taxi ride across the lagoon. The food was good not fantastic but the location and the beautiful fortress like hotel more than makes up for it.

  • Stayed February 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vancouver
Top Contributor
63 reviews 63 reviews
22 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
43 helpful votes 43 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 29, 2012

From the moment we arrived till our sad departure day, we experienced paradise at it's best. The hotel is exquisite, the staff are super friendly, the entertainment (Trish & Gord) in the bar/lounge was incredible, the food was spectacular, the ambience was stunning ... everything was beyond our expectations! We are so thankful Air Transat created affordable packages so we could experience one of the most memorable all-inclusive holidays in our life time. Grand Bay appeals to a more sophisticated crowd who appreciates decadence and excellent service. If you plan to stay at Grand Bay, it is a good idea to bring lots of tip dollars as it certainly pays off in helping the well-deserved staff who work so hard to make your stay most comfortable. The three nine hole golf courses are really well maintained and our caddy "Hector" was delightful and really helpful. There is a turn down service provided at night and our mini bar was always supplied with water, beer and soda. The maintenance staff responded within minutes (not Mexican minutes) to fix our built-in hairdryer. The lobby bar provides phenominal entertainment and is the perfect venue for meeting other hotel guests and dancing. If you prefer a quiet drink with your partner or friends you can sit on the wrap around balcony and enjoy the spectactular view of the ocean and marina. There was plenty of food at the breakfast buffet and we especially enjoyed the outdoor pool side lunch buffet. The professional spa staff enhanced our stay without a doubt. The ala carte restaurants offered 5 star dining to compliment this 5 star hotel. We'll be back.

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Grand Bay Hotel

Address: Isla Navidad, Barra de Navidad, Mexico
Location: Mexico > Jalisco > Costalegre > Barra de Navidad
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 15 Hotels in Barra de Navidad
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Number of rooms: 200
Also Known As:
Grand Bay Resort
Hotel Grand Bay

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