When I made a reservation for a 1 bedroom suite in this hotel at VacationStoreMiami.com I repeatedly asked to make sure we'll get a room with ocean view. 3 days before departure I called the hotel and a very well English-speaking girl at the front desk assured me that all rooms like one I've reserved are ocean view rooms. As you've already guessed, when we arrived to the hotel at 11pm we were told that there are no vacant ocean view rooms - our reservation did not have a note about our request. They put us in a room with a king-size bed (305), where my wife and our son slept this night, and also gave me another small room (204 B) so I could sleep too. On the next day they gave us an ocean view room (205)- even 2 bedroom room instead of 1 bedroom that I've reserved. Every room (I think) has a Jacuzzi on the balcony - very nice, but ... don't expect these things to work as the Jacuzzi you know. The hotel is obviously dated, air conditioning barely worked in the bedroom where I slept with my wife, no a/c in the lobby, where wireless internet (free) and a billiard table are, and hardly a/c in the restaurant. Also, our bed was strangely short: I am barely 6 feet tall, but my feet were sticking out from the mattress. Mattresses and the pillows are very hard, but surprisingly speapable - we spelt pretty good on them. The building is very beautifully painted, it is very authentic - all beds and shelves are from concrete, the staff is incredibly helpful and do anything in their powers to make guests happy. The hotel is at least twice closer to the beach than other giant hotels on the strip. Since the hotel is small, the staff knows by face pretty much all the guests, which makes you feel at home. Any problem you report is getting attended immediately. Almost all the stuff speaks pretty sufficient English..
When we arrived to the Cancun airport at 10pm tired after 2 flights and super-tight customs procedure, some people in the uniforms literally jumped on us offering us a taxi and a breakfast ... We asked a few times "is it a time-share presentation?" and every time they (Juan Jose - very much looking like Jet Li, and his manager) told us "No, there won't be any presentation". However, they offered along with a taxi and this free breakfast discounted tickets to any popular attraction there. We told we are planning to go to Chichen Itza - they showed us a brochure offering Chichen Itza tours for $110 per person and told us they can reserve this tour for us 3 for only $40 - some kind of government tax. Well, this looked exactly like time-share presentation which we once swore not to go to anymore, but this time, we've decided to take their offer, especially because J.J. swore that there won't be any presentation. Of course, it was that presentation. But ... the hotel (Villa del Palmar) looked so beautiful, and we had nothing much to do, we've decided to take a tour and listen to the presentation - not to buy, but to look at it even closer. Our sales guy, Andres, was incredible - perfect English, nice personality. very interesting man. Yes, there was usual pressure - not from Andres, but from his manager (an American lady, I forgot her name) and than from her manager (Raul), but my wife was strong :) Even though while we were in that room with other people listening to our guides, at least 5 times there were applauds signifying that people bought time-share.
After my wife saw this brand new luxury hotel, she could hardly be in our Avalon Baccara.
There is a restaurant in Avalon Baccara, but also less than half-a-mile walk to the left of the hotel is very nice La Isla plaza with many shops and restaurants, and 300 feet to the right side from the hotel - Outback SteakHouse and Bubba Gump.
The famous Market 28 is not worth all that fuss - a bunch of little souvenir shops in a very dumpy surroundings. The Walmart on the other hand - is great! It has some souvenirs too, and, of course, cheaper than in any souvenir store we saw. The Applebees right in front of the Walmart is great: we ordered juices - they made them from the fresh fruits, with a little pulp, cold - in the hoot noon it was fantastic! Especially in comparison to the Italliani's at La Isla plaza, where all the drinks are from the cans and bottles: no beer on tap, no coke from kegs, no freshly brewed ice tea.
Now, the tour to Chichen Itza. You can easily get this tour at $40 per person, and even 2-3 bucks cheaper if you negotiate hard enough. However, 2 hour ride on not the best bus to "cenote" (the whole with water), than very mediocre lunch, than 30 minutes ride to the Chichen Itza itself, a short (30 minutes) fast spoken lecture from the tired guide under 90-95 Fahrenheit sun, than they leave you for 2 hours for the vultures - people who literally walk after you trying to force you to buy their stuff, including little kids, 2-5 years - awful ... There is the main pyramid, the field for their ball game with 2 rings on top of the walls, a couple of other smaller buildings and a "cenote" - water hole in the ground. 12 hours - the whole day for this ... I am not sure at all that this was worth it: not the money - the time and the sweat and the humiliation from the solicitors.
We were staying in Zona Hotelera - a strange place: as you drive or walk along the beach, beautiful hotels are neighboring with uninhabited buildings or with complete ruins. Very different from what we used to see in Myrtle Beach and in Atlantic Beach. EVERYBODY wants tips and not shy to ask for them. Solicitors are everywhere (outside of Zona Hotelera) - on the streets in the city, in every tourist place like Chichen Itza or Xel-Ha.
The beach is nice (I mean - the sand), but the water is very dirty, full of weeds, and the waves are so strong that not every time we could stand them.
Bottom line - I do not think I will come to Cancun ever again.
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- Also Known As:
- Avalon Baccara Cancun Hotel Cancun
- Avalon Baccara Hotel Cancun
- Avalon Baccara Resort Cancun