From Ottawa, we took a one week (Jan. 29 - Feb. 5) Nolitours package at the Catalonia Yucatan in a privileged room.
Bottom line: Very good value for the $.
Air travel: Resign yourself, it’s an ordeal. Canjet did not do itself any favours by being late on both legs and having a broken dvd player on one of them.
Transfer to hotel: It’s efficient. Just exit the terminal and there are people to tell you which bus # to go to. Our bus guide had a nice side business going as immediately on leaving the airport, the bus stopped and a cooler of beer was onloaded for sale at $3 each. The trip is ~1 hour.
Check-in: Nolitours claims a privileged check-in area as the Yucatan Catalonia lobby is apparently exclusive to them. Check-in was an unnecessarily lengthy and exasperating ordeal as the hotel demanded all kinds of extraneous info that Nolitours already had. Be prepared with a change of clothes as your room will likely not be available til 3pm.
Clientele: Appeared to be mostly Canadian with some British. Lots of French Canadians such that sometimes announcements were made only in French. Several wheelchair/walker older folks as the resort is reasonably accommodating for those who are mobility impaired.
Privileged room: Our location was nice and we really liked having a stocked fridge, safe and robes. We’d recommend the upgrade. To be fair we did not see inside a standard room, but strolling about the resort we saw numerous highly undesirable rooms shoe-horned into small high-traffic areas.
Grounds: Very pretty and clean. Lots of maintenance staff grooming, gardening, cleaning and painting. We liked the relatively compact set-up that allowed us to easily walk anywhere without having to take a shuttle as we have had to elsewhere.
Beach: We just wanted to be under a shady palapa on the beach and away from the noise of the pools. While the towel game is in full force, we were successful. The dry side of the beach has nice sand. The water side is quite rocky - bring water shoes. The Chill Out bar has a nice large sheltered patio.
Buffet restaurants: It was what was expected - a decent selection of ok, occasionally excellent dishes. La Brisas, the larger restaurant, has more variety. Bamboleo, the daytime snack bar, has nice burgs and salads for a quick bite.
À la carte restaurants: The Mikado (Asian) was a nice fun experience. It’s worth arriving ~20-30 minutes early to ensure getting seated. The Mexican and Italian restaurants were just ok. Dining at the Tapas restaurant came included with the “privileged” room. The food was ok, but dining outside on the terrace overlooking the ocean was REALLY nice. We did not try the steak restaurant as our past experience is that the Caribbean version of steak is pretty pathetic. There is a Nolitours beach BBQ on Tuesdays which we lucked into as it is not announced.
Bars: Never a problem getting served promptly.
- Also Known As:
- Catalonia Yucatan Beach Hotel Puerto Aventuras
- Catalonia Yucatan Beach Hotel
- Catalonia Yucatan Beach Puerto Aventuras
- Catalonia Yucatan Beach Riviera Maya/Puerto Aventuras, Mexico
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The 4 star Catalonia Yucatan Beach Resort & Spa is located in the heart of the Riviera Maya, on the private estate of Puerto Aventuras. Located on the beautiful Mexican Caribbean coast, this resort is directly on the beach and offers a comfortable and peaceful atmosphere, perfect for a relaxing break. This mystical area boasts many Mayan archaeological ruins that include Chichen Itza, Tulum and Tikal as well as the natural attractions of Xel-Ha, Cozumel and Xcaret. ... more less
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