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“Great Experience at CRT” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Catalonia Royal Tulum

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Catalonia Royal Tulum
4.0 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Carretera Cancun Chetumal Km. 264.5, Xpu-Ha 77790, Mexico   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #3 of 4 Hotels in Xpu-Ha
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Carson, California
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Great Experience at CRT”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 18, 2014

My husband and I stayed at this resort June 6 - 13. It was our second visit to the area, but our first to CRT. We prefer a smaller, intimate resort which is what we found at CRT. The Beach, by far, is the best thing the resort has to offer. It's white sandy beach and sparkling blue waters is incredible.

The sales persons did attempt several times for us to attend their "special" Breakfast, but I had no problem telling them "no, thank you."

The food is decent. I found that I have a delicate stomach, so I could not each too much of the fried and greasy foods offered at the resort. However, there are many food options, so I was okay.

The entertainment staff are fun, friendly and genuine. We had a great time at the Disco and on the beach/pool area participating in aqua gym, water polo and zumba! We saw the opening of the World Cup Ceremony and a couple of games in the Theater. It was a nice layout of snacks and drinks.

We truly enjoyed our stay at the resort. We met guests from different parts of the world. The entire staff caters to you with a smile and you can really tell they enjoy working at CRT. We will definitely return to this resort....

  • Stayed June 2014, 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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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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Stratford, Canada
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
54 helpful votes 54 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 18, 2014

This is how our vacation started. The three young men in front of us on the Sunwing Flight from Toronto ordered doubles throughout the flight and were flying higher than the plane. It is irritating enough to listen to drunks, even happy ones as in this instance, but my concern was that they were the emergency exit monitors. A safety concern not shared by the flight crew who, in my view showed a dangerous lack of judgement in continuing to serve them.

We arrived at the Catalonia Royal Tulum and were the only couple checking in. The desk clerk was abrupt and indifferent. We were then approached by a man who wanted to “give us an introduction to the hotel”. As we had about 3 hours sleep the night before to catch the 0620 flight and had been traveling for about nine hours, I told him all I wanted to do was go the beach for a snooze. He insisted, indicating it would take only a couple of minutes. It turned out that he was a time share sales rep who tried to convince us that the Catalonia’s “loyalty program” was not a “time share” despite the fact he couldn’t distinguish between the two. After about 10 minutes of this nonsense, I told him in no uncertain terms that we were not interested in the program no matter what he called it. He relented but wanted to show us to our room. He left us after pointing us down a path which led to the wrong building. Not an auspicious beginning.

The room was comfortable and well appointed. The pillow menu was a nice touch. The beach was one of the best we have visited in our 40 years of travel to southern climes. The food was good although uneven in quality. The staff, for the most part, were friendly and attentive, with the exception of the front desk, noted above, and a particularly surly bar tender at the Margarita Bar.

The hotel grounds were beautiful. A stone path winds through a dense forest/jungle. Unfortunately, the wonderful landscape makes the room very dark and is a perfect habitat for mosquitoes. This made sitting on the balcony of the room impossible. It also made eating at any of the outside restaurants very unpleasant unless you were covered with mosquito repellant. The mosquitoes were also a nuisance in the Margarita Bar which kept the windows and doors open.

As you might have noted by our long travel history we are in our mid sixties and looked forward to a “quiet and boring” vacation as described in many of the reviews we read prior to booking. I was somewhat surprised then to find the megawatt speakers at the pool blaring from noon to after 1800. If this is considered quiet by other guests, I must conclude that their hearing is worse than mine. It seems doubtful, however, as I estimate that the average age of the guests, when we were there, was under 30. There appeared to be much activity - volleyball, soccer, and dancing. If this is considered boring, I am amazed.

  • Stayed June 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 17, 2014

My wife and her girlfriend discovered the CRT 5 years ago and she's been wanting to return ever since. We finally got our opportunity and booked the flight and resort through JetBlue for a stay in June. This is a unique resort from most that you will find in Cancun. The resort is fairly small and you will be able to find your way around within a day. The resort is in the jungle. Your view will be of trees, not the ocean or bay. There will be lots of animal life to see, but also lots of insects to pester you. The walk from your room to the beach or restaurants can be a bit long, but the only time I noticed it was when I forgot something in my room and had to go back - like pool towels. I really wish they would just keep the towels down by the pool and not leave them in the room so we did not have to lug them and it would not be an issue of we forgot them (or if the maid forgot to give us new ones). The walk is when the mosquitoes will feast on you, but once you are at the beach / pool area, the wind kept them away. Unfortunately, the biggest pests are the timeshare sales guys. There were two of them and at least one will attack as soon as you arrive. Luckily, I had read about them here. When we arrived, I politely declined their offers and did not stop to talk with them. The one guy followed us all the way from the lobby to the pool area, but eventually gave up. The second salesman tried the catch me the next day, but I refused any breakfast. By the third morning, we were even offered $100 to go to the VIP breakfast and when we declined that, they finally gave up on us.

The beach - amazing. Few people and white powdery sand.

The room - we had a Jr. Suite. It had a slight musty smell that was only noticed when first walking in. It was very clean and had great A/C, comfortable bed, and a beautiful bathroom - however, we only had a shower and no bath. We did not spend a lot of time there. The balcony was large and had comfortable seating, but the insects kept us off for half the trip.

The insects - inside the room were a few the followed us in, but nothing bit us at night. Outside, the mosquitoes got worse as the week progressed. Of course, you are in the middle of a jungle, so it was not nearly as bad as I expected.

The food - this is so subjective, that I hate to review it. But overall, I would rate it as comparable to being on a moderate priced cruise ship - NCL, Princess or Celebrity. The buffets had plenty of choices and there was always fruit and vegetables - all very fresh. Slightly disappointing that they seldom had coconut or mango.

The Tapas restaurant was especially nice because we sat right next to the cenote it was beautiful. There also happened to be no mosquitoes that evening. The pool grill was probably the most disappointing restaurant in that the service was slow and the food was mediocre.

The bars - drinks were plentiful and they made anything we wanted, even if it was not on the menu. Drinks were strong and not watered down. Only 2 beers available - Corona Extra and Modelo - I only saw the Modelo draft pull at one place, but it was at all the bars I found out later. Unfortunately, the house wine selection is red or white. Really wished they had a variety of wines included, but if you wanted anything decent, it had to be purchased. We never had to wait for drinks, although it was much quicker to get them yourself rather than wait for someone to come to your beach / pool chair or your table. Definitely try some of the interesting margaritas - the cucumber was a favorite and the guava was great - but has seeds. The martini bar is also a favorite. And the beach juice bar, although lacking any alcohol, was amazing. I probably stopped there 3 or 4 times a day.

The pool area - wonderful and very comfortable chairs - better than the beach chairs. Their are two hot tubs - one really hot and one not heated at all. The best part is that they are both in the shade and offer a nice view of the beach and ocean. The only negative about the pool area, and sitting close to the pool on the beach is when there is an activity going on - usually around 2 or 3 till 5 - the music or DJ calling out the bingo numbers is very loud.

Nightly entertainment - we skipped this all together.

The staff - always working hard to please, even when it was obvious they were overworked.

Overall, I rated the resort very good and would definitely consider going back unless the timeshare thing changes the experience for us. What we most wanted from this trip was to sit by the beach and pool, have a few drinks, relax, and have some nice dinners. Had it not been for the timeshare salesmen, I would have rated this resort Excellent.

  • Stayed June 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 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 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Columbus, Ohio
Senior Contributor
48 reviews 48 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 17, 2014

I'm going to try to keep this review short, as there are many many long reviews and I would likely echo most of what has been said already. We stayed at this hotel from Jun 4-11, 2014. I had been reading reviews religiously for months so I was skeptical about food, smoking, etc., but really and truly, I have absolutely no complaints about this place. It was a terrific holiday at a really reasonable, some would even say cheap, price booked through Travelocity. We booked the junior suite which was the "priviledged" room and had many extras included with it. We got a 1/2 hour couples massage which was the best massage i've ever had! and we got access to the spa all week, as well as several days of extras in our room (fruit basket, cheese and wine, tequila and fruit) as well as a reserved bali bed for one day including a bottle of champagne and fruit. I think they were charging 35-45$ per day per person for this upgrade at the desk, but we had upgraded at booking, so it was only an extra $100 total for the week! Consider upgrading when you book for a better deal. I feel like this added to the quality of our vacation.
Our room was really nice, bed comfy, pillow menu, great stocked mini bar.
Everything was very clean and the housekeeping staff do a great job responding to requests.
Anytime we called to ask for anything, they were there within minutes.
We did agree to a travel club breakfast, and it took about 2 hours, but we declined and they left us be, after giving us the agreed upon incentive of 100USD in cash.
The staff were fantastic and all super nice and accommodating to any request. We became friends with Mel, who works on the Sales team. He was terrific, and a great source of information! (Thanks for a great vacation, Mel!)
I can't understand people who complain about the food at this resort. We were very pleased with the offerings. Yes, the food is not exactly the same as what you would have at home, but isn't that why you go on vacation? to experience new and different things? We found food that we enjoyed at every restaurant and delicious drinks as well (my favorite- Cucumber Margarita at the Margarita bar) we loved doing tequila tastings at the Margarita bar as well. They have a nice sampling of infused tequilas. And the best cappuccino, latte, and espresso this side of Europe! SOO good. I drank way too many cappuccinos! (Tip the staff, they deserve it! They work so hard!)
We also enjoyed playing cards in the evenings and listening to the live entertainment just off the lobby. Sometimes the entertainment was really good.
The beach was great, as everyone has said, but i have to say, that the week that we were there, the flags were always red or yellow. The waves were a bit much for me to feel comfortable snorkeling, although I saw brave souls out getting tossed around. We were able to swim out on one calm morning for about a half hour, and saw some pretty fish, but alas, no turtles.
Since the tropical storm was visiting this resort the week before we did, we were worried about rain, but we had none. Everything was beautiful! Loved this place and a week of peace!
Amazing value trip!!

Room Tip: We got a room on the second floor of the 4 building (Luna) in a corner room, which was a little larg...
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  • Stayed June 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Calgary, Canada
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 17, 2014

This was our tenth trip to the Mayan and although we usually choose one of our favorite three to stay at based on the excellent reviews we decided to try something new. We won't be back. Although some people prefer a smaller more intimate resort , we just found it plain boring. The beach is the best that you will find anywhere but the deserted spaces and beach campers made it kind of scary to wander away from the hotel at any time but during the middle of the day. It seemed also that no one used the pool and everyone crowded around the beach, so that space was a premium and I must say that Europeans have no sense of personal space.Many of them would pull their chairs right next to yours to share your tiny pallapa or right up to base of the chair so that your feet were practically in their hair or theirs in yours. This is one of the few beaches that has service on the beach and that was a nice touch. The place seems also a bit run down and could use some updating. The rooms were a little rough, although very clean, pathways through the jungle could use some TLC.The coatis were a nuisance too. Although very cute you couldn't walk down the pathways with anything resembling food in your hands or they would attack in droves. Some were quite brave and we saw more than one person get clawed and scratched. The food in the a la cartes was average although the service was excellent but in the buffet it was always cold. We tried going for breakfast at various times, early , late ,middle and could never find a time when the food was hot, it was always just barely warm. We aren't disco people so there wasn't much to do at night. There is very little entertainment in the lobby and very few places to sit. We ended up spending a lot of time in the room playing cards or reading... as there is not much to see except jungle, lobby and beach. Not my usual Mexican vacation. Maybe it is a personal choice but I prefer more entertainment around me than the cheesy shows and there was a bit but not much. The staff of course are lovely and try their best . Definitely not the place to be entertained. If you are looking for a dead quiet place to relax and prefer the pool to the beach, this may be for you. We won't be back however.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
Middle Village, New York
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 17, 2014

This was our second time back at CRT. To be honest, we went back because we got a really good deal on our trip. With that being said, we were pleasantly surprised and pleased. As always, the beach is their strong point. The water and sand make up for a lot of their shortcomings. There is no shortage of food and drink, so it is what it is. Maybe its just us, but as far as the travel club goes, my wife and I put them in their place right away, letting them know we weren't interested, and then they pretty much avoided us. Room was clean and AC worked fine, not even a musty smell, like our first stay. Overall, we were pleased, and would proboably go back, for the right price....

Room Tip: try to stay in the 3 or 4 block, 2nd. or 3rd. floors, centrally located.
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  • Stayed May 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sacramento, California
1 review
32 helpful votes 32 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed June 15, 2014

We just returned from our second trip to this resort. Unfortunately, we were unaware of the new exclusive travel club sales push currently going on. After an exhausting day of flights, a guy in a white shirt started talking to us right after we checked in. He was very friendly and asked if it was our first time at the resort. I mistook him as a hotel staff member. We said no, it was our second stay, and he invited us to a breakfast to reward loyal, repeat customers. I asked him if he was selling anything, and he said no, it was just a breakfast for loyal customers. He totally lied. We decided to attend the breakfast and say no if they tried to sell us anything. Since I disliked the food at this resort the year before, I thought we might actually get better food at this "special" breakfast. The next morning, we got a call at 8:00 am confirming that we would attend the breakfast. I was quite irritated that they called our room. We went to the breakfast, and the food was just as lousy as the breakfast buffet. Then they started in on us about this non-timeshare/timeshare program. My husband and I said no. They responded with, "Well, here is what we can do for you to make it work." They did that over and over again. I felt like we were being held hostage by these relentless sales people. My husband and I were very upset and angry that they were wasting our first day of our vacation with this crap. I had to get firm and angry before they "let" us out of there. It really put us in a bad mood on the first day of our vacation. DO NOT GO TO BREAKFAST WITH THESE PEOPLE. THEY WILL LIE AND TELL YOU ANYTHING TO GET YOU THERE.

The rest of the week, we had to deal with seeing the sales people around the resort. They always wanted to talk to us. There was one guy, Manuel, who wouldn't stop talking to us, even when he had nothing to say. He nearly drove me to a nervous breakdown. I dreaded seeing him around the resort, which happened constantly. Our whole vacation experience was tarnished by dealing with these people.

I cannot imagine that the resort is not going to lose business, as it should, by pushing this traveler's club. It was a shock after we had been there the year before without any such hassle. I wouldn't think of going back unless they get rid of this program.

While the travel club experience was the worst part of the vacation, there were a couple other reasons that were off-putting. One of the activity facilitators at the pool is a young man (wearing the white shirt and red shorts.) He approached me as I was sitting by the pool reading and relaxing. He took his index finger and touched me on my leg - FOUR TIMES! I have naturally very fair skin, so I douse myself in SPF 50. He touched my pale leg, and then pointed at his bronzed skin, and said, "You want to change?" I think he meant, didn't I wish my pale legs looked like his brown arms? Well, no, Carcinoma Joe, I'll keep my pale, healthy skin, thank you. I wanted to knock his lights out for touching me. I still can't believe this little turd.

Another huge problem we had was the food. For health reasons, I avoid oily and fried foods in my daily life. However, I loosen my standards for vacations. I also don't have high expectations from an AI resort. But this food was just terrible. As much as I could, I lived off the salad bar and fresh fruit, all of which I got tired of. We tried every restaurant except the Tapas place, and the food was oily, bland, and often cold or tepid. If I am going to splurge and eat a greasy meal, it better have some flavor! I was excited to see some steamed spinach at the lunch buffet (easy on my stomach), only to realize that is was bathed in margarine. There is no real butter used at the resort. My stomach was upset after many of the meals. I won't return to this resort unless I read that they have improved the food.

I am also tired of booking a king-sized bed, and then being told at the front desk that they don't have any rooms left with a king bed. What is up with that? Why do they even let you book a king-sized bed, when they have no intention of fulfilling your request? On top of everything else, that completely turned me away from this place.

Last year, my memories were of the stunning beach, soft sand and incredibly beautiful ocean. Also, the staff are very hardworking and pleasant, which they were on this trip as well. I knew the food was lousy, but it seemed worse this time, maybe because my overall experience wasn't so good.

  • Stayed June 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 32
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Catalonia Royal Tulum

Address: Carretera Cancun Chetumal Km. 264.5, Xpu-Ha 77790, Mexico
Location: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Xpu-Ha
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 4 Hotels in Xpu-Ha
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Catalonia Royal Tulum 4*
Number of rooms: 288
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Adults only all-inclusive resort, located in Xpu-Ha, Riviera Maya, on the Caribbean coastline. It is surrounded by native jungle trees, local plants, mangroves and cenotes - water springs where a diverse variety of flora and fauna can be found in an unspoiled habitat. It is just 25km from Playa del Carmen and Tulum's archaeological site, and 85 km south of Cancun International airport, in Quintana Roo State, Mexico. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Catalonia Royal Tulum Xpuha
Riviera Maya Copacabana
Copacabana Riviera Maya
Catalonia Royal Tulum Riviera Maya, Mexico - Xpu-Ha

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