Had a great stay at this resort Feb 17-24, 2013
This was my first visit to Mexico and first time at an all-inclusive. Trip was booked through NoliTours, via AirTransat.
When you arrive at Cancun airport there are vendors trying to sell you cold beers for $6,50 each outside in the waiting area (for your bus to the resort) try and restrain yourself from buying those. Once you are on the bus and the bus leaves the airport property it stops and the guide grabs a cooler and brings it on board and will sell you Corona's for $3.00 each.
The bus to the resort took a while as it stopped at 2 resorts then finally the Catolina Yucatan. We boarded the bus at 10:40am and arrived at the hotel at 12:15pm so be prepared for this.
We had already pre-booked Privileged rooms with our booking agent (having read reviews about standard rooms) however once at the hotel we booked up to a suite having seen the Privileged room. It was very nice, but for an extra $140.00 for the 7 nights it was very nice to have the additional room in the suite. We had unit 8116, which had a huge tiled tub on the balcony which was very private. The outdoor tub and full marbled indoor washroom were the easy selling points to book the suite. With the privileged rooms and suite you get a few extra perks, free use of the in-room safe and a stocked mini-bar, along with robes and slippers. I have attached a number of pictures of the room. Oh and you also get 1 extra (dinner for 2) coupon for the on-resort restaurants. More on those below.. The front desk experience was excellent, check was a breeze and our room was ready early. NoliTours mentions that there is exclusive check-in for those who booked with them, but that person was not at the desk when we arrived.
The hotel grounds are immaculate, try and find garbage or an empty glass on the main hotel grounds, you won't find it. You trip over staff who are either tending to the landscape or housekeeping staff. It's very well maintained. There is a full activities board near the Margarita swim-up bar that lists the entire week of things to do, and there is no lack of activities to take part in on the resort grounds. We did the bike riding tour on Wednesday, it was about an hour event and made several stops in the immediate area, it was well worth it, and free! The activities staff will canvass the guests at pool-side to take part in afternoon events, though we didn't do any, they really want you to participate.
All the on-resort restaurants are excellent, varied menu's and themes, and for those liking crepes, milkshakes and banana-splits there is The Crepiere located above La Brisa's. They close on Sunday but between 5pm and 11pm the rest of the week they are dishing up delicious desserts. Say hi to Marcellino, he is amazing.
The Mikado seems to be the most popular of the a la carte restaurants, they open at 6pm, but you want to be there about 5;20pm and wait inside, the door is open. Since they only take 12 people per section your wait can be 2 hours if you don't arrive early, they do not take reservations. None of the eateries do, btw.
We did not experience a bad meal the entire week, each restaurant was well staffed, the menu's are easy to read, follow and order from, and if you do have to wait, so what.... have a few drinks.
For breakfast I would recommend being ready to eat about 8;30am each day, and I would also recommend El Mercado. It seemed that the majority of the guests went to La Brisa's, which is equally as good, but the line up is huge. Walk around to El Mercado and walk right in, the breakfast items are generally the same, but you won't have to wait. If you do go to breakfast after 9am it seemed they didn't replenish the supply of items that ran low. We found out a couple times that this was the case, items were totally gone and weren't replenished. But you can't beat the selection of items and juices, and vodka too, if you so desire.
About the lounge chairs, chaises around the pool, beach and palapa's, the towel game is in full force. You will want to place the blue towels across the chaise you want early in the morning. I was out each day around 7:45am and was able to have pretty much any chaise I wanted. If you are later than that you may not get the spot you want. We were there for 7 days, each day I chose a different area to experience the full use of the resort.
If you want a quieter area to read or snooze you will not want to place your towel around the pool area by Bambeleo Snack Bar, that is the area that most of the pool events take place. The staff use loud music and microphone/speaker to run the events, so it's noisy. Any other area and the beach are much quieter.
There is a nice cove area where they rent the sea-doo's just down from Bambeleo it gets full sun and the beach area is less rocky. Generally the beach areas are somewhat rocky, you will find sand and the water is crystal clear. The weather can be anything, we had a couple cloudy days, and 5-6 rain showers, otherwise it's sun all the way.
We took in a theatre show on Thursday night, it was entertaining and something different to do on the resort. It's not Vegas, but it was entertaining.
If you want souvenirs you are in luck, 5 of the nights we were there they had street vendors selling wares in the walk-ways. Various items are for sale and they hang out till 10pm on the nights they are there. Barter with them, do not pay asking, on everything we bought we talked them down, mention your price and walk away, they will stop you and barter.
All in all it was a great trip, the housekeeping staff, in fact all the staff have permanent smiles and are extremely friendly. You will enjoy the towel designs each morning after housekeeping cleans your room. Tips in our case were included, but I tipped additionally, they are very appreciative.
Enjoy your trip there, I wish I was back there and I only left yesterday!
- 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
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Otel and TripOnline SA so you can book your Catalonia Yucatan Beach 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:
- Catalonia Yucatan Beach Hotel Puerto Aventuras
- Catalonia Yucatan Beach Puerto Aventuras
- Catalonia Yucatan Beach Riviera Maya/Puerto Aventuras, Mexico