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“Great Beach & Snorkeling” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Luxury Bahia Principe Akumal

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Luxury Bahia Principe Akumal
3.5 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Carretera Tulum-Cancun, Akumal 77760, Mexico   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #3 of 20 Hotels in Akumal
Calgary, Canada
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
“Great Beach & Snorkeling”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 29, 2011

My husband and I stayed at this resort form Oct 14 until October 21st 2011. Granted the trip from the airport to the resort is long, about an hour and a half, almost two hours. My husband downloaded movies on his phone, so we just watched a movie. 8 )

Weather:
The first two days it rained pretty good, but hey, it's rainy season right? I was disappointed that the swim up bar was unattended when it was raining. All the activities move inside. We did find the jacuzzi bar staffed though. It would be nice if the jacuzzis were heated.

Complex:
The complex is huge! You have access to Tulum and Coba through the little trams that come quite frequently. We never had to wait long. You also have access to the hacienda, which is a place with shops. It is also where you go to rent bikes and where the disco opens at 12am? That's a little too late to go so far from my room. I know there are trams but if I'm going to drink to the point of dancing and having a good time, I'd like the disco to open earlier. you wake up early, out in the sun all day, drinking all day, it's hard to stay up until 12am. The complex is well manicured. Very beautiful. We liked the beach the best and the swing bar! We also frequented the quiet royal lobby's at Akumal and coba. Try a Mexican guiness shot at the Coba royal lobby bar. Amaretto with pina colada on top.

Wildlife:
There were iguanas, anoles, swifts, tree frogs, raccoons, kudamundis and bats. The kudamundi's are adorable. I wasn't feeding them, but others were. If you decide to feed them, please realize that they become dependent on people and you can get bit.That's just what we seen around the resort. The snorkeling right on the beach at the complex was also incredible. We've paid for worse in the past.We did have our own equipment. I just use goggles myself. We seen lots of Sargent Majors, wrasses,little puffer fish, gars, tangs, even a mimic tang! Lots of urchin's so watch where you put your feet. I felt safer with water shoes. There was also fire coral. Again just watch where you are going. We seen sand anemones, brain maze coral, gargonians and lots more my husband would know the names of. I just wish it was the right time of year to see a turtle. We were told that you can go to the hacienda, catch the public bus to Akumal beach and pay for some snorkeling with a guide.

Food:
The buffet was typical. Tulum was the worst in our opinion. I'd recommend eating at the snack bar for lunch. It has the same stuff the buffet has.We did book our a la cart restaurants online before our trip, which was great until the last one, which ended up being closed. We went to the Japanese "mikada" which was good. Had similar in Cuba. The Arlequin gourmet was pretty good also. We had decent fillet mignon. I also enjoyed the welcome drink, tequila, champagne and sprite. Yummy dessert too, tiramissu and creme burle. Our favorite restaurant was the Brazilian. It was quite good. We've been to rodizzios in town that cost $30 a person, this was slightly better. The one that was closed was Italian. It wasn't fun trying to find it at another complex, just to find out it was closed. Dressed up for the buffet. For us, it wasn't a huge deal.

Excursion:
We did do one trip to the Mayan ruins of Coba. It was amazing. We asked for the half day so it was just going there and back without the commercialized visit to the village...
It was just us with one other couple. Our Guide xavier was so passionate and informative. The climb itself is a little scary, don't look down. My only complaint is that I felt rushed to climb with a time limit as we opted to walk the 2.5 miles instead of pay for a "limo" which is a guy with a bike/bench for you to ride. Be respectful and go with an open mind. Mayans are still here today.

Room:
We had a mattress topper. View was ok. Spacious. Liked having the couch and table. Smoking on the deck only. Tv wasn't great, but someone else must have complained, as they did come to repair it and it was much better. We don't go away to watch tv though. Our biggest complaint with the room was that the coffee wasn't replenished everyday, and we tipped $1 us or 20 pesos everyday with a small gift. We had ok towel art and the towels were replenished when we indicated them to be. ( n the floor vs on the rack)

Air Transat:
We have taken fishing rods through checked luggage in a tube to Puerto Vallarta and Costa Rica in the past without incident. This time, the rods never made it. We filed a complaint. There were a few other people we seen missing their bags, one of which was a girl that came to get married! She had her dress in carry on and I think her bag was found a few days later. In our case, still no rods. In order to get our $250 reimbursed we have to jump through a few hoops and aren't even being credited towards our next trip. Guess we will use West Jet or Air Canada. Actually the trip to Puerto Vallarta was West Jet and it was very nice. Highly recommend, which is strange cause domestically I might hesitate to recommend. The day of the welcome info session, the desk will be lined up. Keep that in mind.

All in all we had a nice, relaxing vacation. I'd like to go to Cancun again but I wouldn't stay at this resort again. I'd opt for more luxury in a slightly smaller setting. The employees at this complex deserve a kudos as they were all friendly, helpful and work hard. English is their second language but they really do try.

Room Tip: The royal only gets you an extra a la cart and is a bit far from everything.
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  • Stayed October 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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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
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (990)
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English first
Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
40 helpful votes 40 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 29, 2011

We stayed as a couple for 2 weeks 2nd-16th Septmeber 2011 and had a great time.

After a scary flight with some serious turbulance we were happy to touch down in Cancun after a long 10 hour flight!! . .., Got through baggage + immigration quickly however on our way out got hit by the RED light, not to worry bags searched by very pleasent staff and all done quite fast..We were met by our Thomson rep and they took us to our private transfer which I would highly recommend as it was our second time in Mexico we were aware of the long bus journey so opted for a private shuttle, on our way our driver stopped off for some colds bottles of Corona which went down very nicely. happy days on our way now and off we go....1 hour + 20 mins later we were at Gran Bahia, WOW!

Our first impression was how huge the place was (after a few days walking around its not as big as you first thought just nicely spread out) Our bags were taken away and a few mins later we were taken by the golf buggy to Akumal lobby as we were in Golden and I had emailed the hotel a few weeks earlier to request a Sea View building and booked all our Al a cartes so checking in was done in 5 mins.... We were in Building 65,on the 2nd floor right on the beach, fab views and and next to the snack bar and Golden lobby and Akumal pool...excellent location for us.....

Our room was very clean, it did have a musty smell as previous guests have mentioned but you did get used to it and after a few days (after all your in the jungle) throughout our whole stay our maid Aida left us left lovely towels arts and the fridge was always full of drinks and snacks. So thank you to Aida and whoever topped the fridge up ..

We spent most of our time at Akumal beach as this was nice and quite (you could carry your beds into the water and relax in the water ) and a lovely breeze coming in too, (We found it too hot around the pool with no breeze and never any beds !!) The beach had a lovely little bar, special thanks go to Jesus + Lorenzo who made us fabulous cocktails and chatted to us every day, Was nice chatting to people in between getting drinks , Good luck with your wedding in December Jesus.!)

We ate at several Al la cartes and our Favourites were Don Pablo absolutley fab Fillet Mignon followed by Le Gourmet and Arlequin, all had a lovely atmosphere and nice and cool, did not enjoy Gran Tortuga, meat was fatty and food was cold.....enjoyed Mikado Japanese show table and Frutos del mar had fab fish not a lover of fish but was pleasently surprised....Seabass was fab, Tequila and Dolce Vita were ok !

We spent most of our time in Akumal bars and met some lovely people, We found Coba + Tulum lobbies were full of mossies, dont get me wrong we did get bitten in Akumal even spraying ourself with OFF every day and night (they did not seem as fierce in Akumal).... We saw loads of people covered in bites and even with swollen legs so I suppose there is no way of getting away from then little blighters... ! Take loads of spray!!

We ate at Tulum buffet on our second night due to Portafino being closed (no mention of this when we checked in and our tickets were being printed off ! ) we had the pleasure of meeting Felix and he was apologetic and offered us a different a la carte ,Cheers Felix.

Gran Bahia has a great food selection we never got bored with the food in any of the buffets, the only negative thing I can say about this resort is the hassle from Privelege club (who pass themselves off as the Conceirge ) and really do bug you on your way into the buffett, they should really look into this... (we were invited to the meeting but never showed up and just walked past them for the rest of our stay)

Overall we loved this resort great little buggies to carry you all around the 3 resorts entertainment team worked there socks off every day, and the Gardeners keep the resort beautiful, Praise to you all who work at Gran Bahia.......,

Christian our Thomson rep was very helpful and we done some great trips, Xel Ha is a must and take a collectivo to Akumal beach absolutley beautiful beach and great snorkelling...Paradise!!

Go to this hotel you will have the time of your life, been to Mexico twice now and would go back in a heartbeat.

Leave a little tip each time you feel like you have had good service it really does help the staff as they work very, very hard for us all! .

Room Tip: Book Villa 65,66,67,68 for a sea view .
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  • Stayed September 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 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 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Edmonton, Canada
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 26, 2011

For our first ever visit to Riviera Maya, we were quite content and happy with this resort. Had upgraded to the Royal Golden and was worth it. Directly on the beach, 30 second walk over to snack bar, private lounge and front desk staff. The resort is huge and we tended to walk everywhere even to the other two resorts Coba & Tulum. Only got the train if it happened by. Beach was great with lots of lounge chairs available. Loved our beach bartender, Ricky. Had dinner at Don Pablo which was fabulous. Never did go to any other restaraunts and tended to eat the the buffets as they had a huge selection.
Did the COBA tour with zip-lining, rappelling and lunch at an authentic village. Would highly recommend going with Alltournative Off Road Adventures. We also took the Colectivo (highway bus van) from the resort into Playa Del Carmen and back. $2 US per person each way. We met some great locals on the bus who offered many tips.
Cannot wait to go back as there is so much we didn't do or experience.

Room Tip: Upgrade to Royal Golden as there are 3 buildings directly on the beach.
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  • Stayed December 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 25, 2011

stayed at this resort in may and loved it.
it is very clean and well maintained. the rooms are spacious, and bathrooms are great!
it is a very large resort, so it depends what you make of it...we loved it as there were so many more choices. others feel overwhelmed by the size of it.
the food was amazing. even for people with allergies - I have a shellfish allergy and am GF and still had great choices and felt comfortable eating. they even have a healthy corner where you can grab egg white omlettes, boiled chicken and that kinda stuff.
service at the Akumal buffet was a bit of a letdown, yet the service at Coba totally made up for it. even though we stayed at Akumal, we chose to dine at Coba. cannot comment on the a la carte restuarants as we didn;'t book, the buffet food was great.

beach - great. even for kids as it is somewhat protected by huge rocks that break the waves.

service overall was great.
entertainement - we were quite impressed. also got tickets for their fiesta night. we really enjoyed the show.
pools - numerous, and most of them warm. i liked this but others not so much.
nightlife: not very exciting, more of a couples/family resort. very happy about it.
the grounds are amazing! so well kept and lots of lizards and other cute little animals around. even a cat would make an appearance at dinnertime.
there are the little buses that bring you wvweywhere if you don;t want to walk (go for the walk, you'll enjoy it)
we did one of the tours and went to coba and xel-ha - would recommend.

i have stayed at GBP before and got what i expected. a great resort and experience.

enjoy your stay if you book this.

  • Stayed May 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Letchworth, United Kingdom
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 25, 2011

Returned 4 days ago from GBP Akumal. Beautiful hotels, spotlessly clean, pools, beach, rooms all great. Buffet at Akumal good, Coba-the best, Tulum-not so good. We went to Brazilian, Akumal Italian, Mikado and Tulum Gormet. Loved Brazilian, Italian, Mexican and Mikado. Although food at Gormet was good, the portions were much too small for our men and not once did we get a smile from our waiter. Would certainly recommend the other 4 tho. Our only gripe with this place is that the bars close at 11! We were sitting in the piano bar, akumal at 11.15 finishing our drinks and the staff turned the lights out! We were in complete blackness and lucky none of us fell trying to find the door! Why do they finish so early? I know there is the 24 hour snack bar - but that is all it is - no music - nothing. I have never been to a resort where we were all tucked up in bed by mid-night! I know there is the disco but we were a group of mainly 60+ and the disco was a way bit too noisy for us. We had 4 days of torrential rain (i now that this was just bad luck) but the main lobby bar was full and when we tried to get into the piano bar (we needed to sit at a table to play cards) they would not let us in as it doesn't open until 6!! Why couldn't the management just use their common sense and open the bar up in such bad weather - everyone was stuck inside for 4 days! Otherwise we had a great time, and the hotel is good but it would have been nice for someone to have put some thought into the weather we were having and maybe put on some entertainment or at least open the bars up instead of all cramming into the lobby bar. I dont think we would return again as it is too big (you never see the same people twice), it is a bit too far out from any local towns to visit and the entertainment stops too early.

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 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.
Zurich, Switzerland
Top Contributor
57 reviews 57 reviews
50 hotel reviews
Reviews in 50 cities Reviews in 50 cities
164 helpful votes 164 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 24, 2011

Arrived at the hotel somehow exhausted and instead of relaxing had to search for the travel agent (not related to the hotel) to confirm return transfer. He should have been at the sister hotel "Tulum" but was not there and also left out two consecutive appointments. This meant however to get used to the shuttle service within the enormous three-hotel complex. After this discouraging start the excellent buffet rewarded us with really amazing choice of good food. Room in Villa 50 was good and well equipped with coffee maker and ironing board. View not spectacular, but room quiet even if located near the main building. The sea-side is partially inaccessible due to rocks, and after an artificial sandy beach where water is about 1 m deep, certainly not a highlight, it was said that a natural beach is adjacent (Tulum part of the Hotel). At Tulum part there is a daily dolphin show. Otherwise, there are swimming pools with animation i.e. loud music etc. at the Akumal, as well as a beautiful swimming pool without animation, we only discovered after four days. There is a "Hacienda de Dona Isabel" within the complex, a replica of a Mexican town centre, all rather expensive souvenir shops and restaurants, also some apparently genuine artefacts for sale. There are shows at the Hacienda every evening, including a Fiesta Mexicana once per week (we missed). At the Akumal there is also a daily show in the evening with some professional artists, the most guests, as they were always addressed by the show master, came from Spain, UK, Canada, Mexico, Portugal and few from US. Be aware if you don't like to be on stage, as they always pulled participants out of the audience to "act" on stage, but they respect if you refuse. Back to the hotel ground. The shuttles circulate quite frequently and they are flexible and helpful to bring you to the place you want to go. There are snack bars where you can eat and drink (I believe) 24 h per day. Even though we didn't spot anyone exaggerating. While we always took the buffet option in the main building, we did not choose the speciality restaurants, but others said they were very good. When walking on the grounds you may also meet Geckos, or was it a Leguana? For nearby excursions, the monuments of Tulum (with a surprising beach) and Xel-Ha may be recommended.

Room Tip: No elevators,
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  • Stayed October 2011, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
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London, Canada
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 24, 2011

Just returned from our 1st trip to Bahia Akumal...... My Mother is 81 and uses a walker we were aware that there were trains to take us to the other 2 resorts but were not aware that we would have to take them within our own resort although the bus drivers were exceptional in looking after us. We were in the Golden we had requested and also e-mailed for a ground floor room....we were given a 3rd floor room!!!!!!! impossible for my Mother. Luckly for us other travellers swaped their ground floor for our 3rd floor. Some of the restaurants did not have ramps we had had to walk around the pool to get to one so we could go through it to get to the other
Many other things but surfice to say we would not recommend this resort to you if
1...you are older
2...the fact that you have to pay for safe key
3...time share (Bahai) sharks in main lobby you had to pass to get to the buffet every day
4...so big you feel that you have just been dumped and left to find your own way
That all said the actual resort...the grounds were lovely rooms were clean buffet not so great. I have stayed at many all inclusive resorts and this one fell to the bottom of our list make sure you research this resort before you go...........

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Luxury Bahia Principe Akumal

Address: Carretera Tulum-Cancun, Akumal 77760, Mexico
Location: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Akumal
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Business Hotel in Akumal
#2 On the Beach Hotel in Akumal
#2 Top resorts Hotel in Akumal
#3 Romantic Hotel in Akumal
#3 Spa Hotel in Akumal
#4 Family Hotel in Akumal
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Luxury Bahia Principe Akumal 3.5*
Number of rooms: 450
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Also Known As:
Gran Bahia Principe Akumal
Bahia Principle
Bahia Principe Mexico
Gran Bahia Principe Hotel Akumal
Mexico Bahia Principe
Bahia Principe Tulum
Grand Bahia Principe Akumal
Bahia Principe Riviera Maya
Bahia Mexico Principe
Akumal Gran Bahia Principe

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