This was our first time traveling to an all-inclusive resort and our first time traveling together as a new family of four. We stayed for week from February 14- 21st and experienced only sunshine and warm temperatures. We read many reviews on many different resorts before booking our stay at the GBP Akumal. We are SO HAPPY we did!! We had such a relaxing (as much as you can relax on vacation with a 5 month old and 2 year old) and memorable vacation thanks to so many factors. Let's break it down.
The beach was beautiful and the sand so soft! The water was so clear and there were many calm places to swim even when there was a red flag on the beach. Our 2 year old hated the sand so we spent most of the time poolside, however if we return again without the kids I am certain we would never leave this gorgeous beach. My husband and I have done a lot of traveling before kids and we must say this is the cleanest, most well manicured resort we have ever stayed at. It's huge but it's very easy to get around even with our double stroller and screaming kiddos. We ended up walking most places rather then use the trams because it was too much work to collapse the stroller and unload the kids to get on the "train bus" (what our 2 year old called them). She is still talking about the train buses and how much she loved them. The activity pool has a big kids pool attached but we found there wasn't enough shade and our lil ones were getting sunburned. We found a small kids section of the lobby pool beside the swim up bar. We spent most of the week at this perfect location. More shade and lots of children to play with our 2 year old. There is a kids club to watch your children but they do not accept kids free of charge till they are 4. If they are under 4 you will pay $10 an hour. We did not use their services. We explored all 3 resorts and found Akumal's pool to be our favorite. The other resorts were beautiful but we found it easier to stay near our room in case we needed an escape plan if there was a tantrum or melt-down. Anytime we went to Tulum resort we were devoured by mosquitoes for some reason. We didn't notice them at any other resort. There was a lot of wildlife to admire. Our daughter loved the "dinosaurs" (iguanas) everywhere and the monkey raccoon things (we still don't know what their called). The staff everywhere we went was amazing and hard working. We tipped them 20 pesos anytime we had good service anywhere we went. We were broke by the end of the trip because the service was excellent. The week we were there the resort was packed full of Canadians like us and British. There were a few from the Netherlands and also Argentina. It was nice to be surrounded by so many different cultures and languages. There was a show we went to one night about the Lion King, Disney Princesses and Kung Fu Panda. Our daughter went crazy for it!! She even got pictures taken with Cinderella and Ariel after the show. We loved the show too as parents.
We requested a crib, two beds and ground level room before we arrived. They gladly honoured all our requests. Our room was clean and perfectly in order thanks to our wonderful housekeeper Antonia. She made amazing towel art everyday for our kids to enjoy. We made sure we tipped her for her hard work. We had a small ant problem being on the ground level but as soon as we stopped bringing food into the room the problem was eliminated. Our mini bar was well stocked and we often left 20 pesos in it with notes requesting extra chips. We were always given what we asked for. We were placed in villa 50. Great location except at 10-11 at night when you could really hear the music from the bar. It surprisingly helped put our kids to sleep though.
We are not by any means an all-inclusive savvy bunch. We are rookies so we cannot compare this to any other one we've been to like many other reviewers. What we can say is the based on our own personal tastes and opinions; mine being different from my husbands. I am a vegetarian and so is our 2 year old daughter. There were tons of options for us everywhere we went. We ate at the Akumal buffet mainly for most meals. We ate a couple of times at Dolce Vita for breakfast and lunch. We also tried Coba buffet for breakfast once. I was a huge fan of the cook to order pasta bar. My daughter always loved the kid friendly options at the buffet. The fruit was always so fresh everywhere too. The snack bar always had crowd pleasers like french fries and nachos and guacamole (to die for good). We loved the food! My husband on the other hand seemed to grow tired of the food by the end of the trip and was craving things like apple pie and waffles and real cheese cake (not the kind at the resort). He disliked all the desserts except the ice cream machine. The desserts seemed to be all gelatine based or cream-filled. They all tasted the same as well. My husband doesn't drink so he did love their version of a virgin mojito. He also drank Sambrosa's (strawberry banana type smoothies). I was too busy nursing our baby constantly that I didn't get to indulge much in the alcoholic drinks either. If I drank at all that day it was a mini bar beer after the kiddos were sleeping. Love those Dos XX's beers though. I tried the red house wine at Le Gourmet and that was amazing! We booked our al a carte restaurants two weeks before we left by sending the hotel a list of our requests by email. We were so pleased they booked us in everywhere we had asked and got us in at an early 6:30 every night before the kids turned into pumpkins. We ate at Mikado, Le Gourmet and La Fruita Del Mar. Mikado we enjoyed a show table and the food was great. Le Gourmet was good as well. Our personal favorite was Fruita Del Mar. The appetizer buffet was amazing and the food was delicious. Al a carte restaurants are the way to go at this resort. Don't miss out on going to all 3 of your bookings. The best food we enjoyed on this trip were from the al a cartes. It was a nightmare having to sit there with our kids and try to keep them quiet the whole time, but well worth it when the food showed up at our table. There were always plenty of highchairs to go around and no one seemed to mind us bringing our stroller into the restaurants.
In conclusion, we would love to come back one day and enjoy this resort and its tons of amenities to the fullest without our children (so we can really relax). This is a great family friendly resort and we would recommend it to all you crazy parents out there like us who choose to travel with infants.