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“Best Diving Instructor”
5 of 5 bubbles Review of Occidental Cozumel

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Occidental Cozumel
Ranked #22 of 51 Hotels in Cozumel
Portland, Oregon
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Best Diving Instructor”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 5, 2013

We wish to thank our dive instructor, Carla "Carlita" Guardiola, for her amazing introduction to the world of diving. She patiently guided us from knowing nothing to completing our PADI Open Water Diver Certification. She is as conscientious as she is friendly. Thank you, Carlita, for acquainting us with the wonders of diving.

The resort is excellent. But our experience with Carla made it superb.

Room Tip: Visit during the off season!
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank John_y_Chris_Kendall
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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4,388 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (1,110)
Date | Rating
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English first
Troy, New York
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 5, 2013

Great stay. This was a solo trip to get my open water diving certification. Carla was an excellent instructor and easy to learn from. REALLY enjoyed the diving portion of this trip. This resort is very laid back and not at all crowded. The people who try to stake out chairs at 6AM really need not do it here(But they still do), as there are MORE than enough chairs to go around unless your hanging by a pool and not at the ocean. I stayed on the top floor of the Royal Club buildings and it was very nice. AC was working the whole time. Housekeeping was wonderful and helped me with every need during my stay. Food was average, but I don't go to these places for the food. So just feed me edible things, and I am happy. I recommend trying the surf and turf at least once while you are here. The lobster tails are freaking HUGE!!!! The lunch buffet was good. All the sit down restaurants were good. All the room service was good. Even ordering off the room service menu was easy. All in all, a very positive stay. The ONLY negative I have is when I sat outside for breakfast at the Royal Club restaurant, the wildlife had made their mark under the table and all around the patio, so it smelled of Iguana poop. Not the most appetizing smell while trying to enjoy your morning coffee with a hangover from the trip down. Overall, a good trip and worth the extra cost to stay in the royal club. Make you reservations closer to the beach/royal club to avoid the noise from the night time shows.

Room Tip: No Ocean views here. Stay in the units closer to the beach to avoid the nighttime noise from the out...
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled solo
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Helpful?
3 Thank Taylori82
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Laval, Canada
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 4, 2013

hotel is clean and very well maintained- landcsape is gorgeous- everyone is eager to help and serve you-rooms are very big with big bathrooms and showers that can fit 3 people !
Food is good but only good-by week'send , you are treated to same stuff.
Great place for snorkeling and diving- they supply most of equipment
This was our second time and we enjoyed it again

Room Tip: try to get a room in odd numbered buildings- more light inside rooms during daytime
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank rickham
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Riverside, California
Level Contributor
14 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 4, 2013

My husband and I spent 8 days in Cozumel. We were in Bldg. 19 second floor, room was roomy and always clean. We did the Romance package, received two bottles of champagne and chocolate covered strawberries. Everyday the housekeeping left towel art on the bed, which was very nice. We had massages at the spa which were wonderful. The snorkeling was amazing. Most guests staying there at the time said it was the best dive resort to stay at. The resort is very clean and safe. Friendly staff. We would stay there again. When you are traveling to other countries, you have to remember that they are not as fortunate as people from the states with all of the simple luxuries that we take for granted. If you are looking to relax, enjoy swimming in the pool or Caribbean sea, dive or snorkel, I would recommend this resort. If you are looking to spending most of your time eating, then go on a cruise.

Room Tip: We prefer to stay in an upper floor so we don't have noise above us. We also asked to be in a bl...
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank scvrdll
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Texas
Level Contributor
10 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 4, 2013

I had planned a trip to Cozumel for Aug 26-30 back in July. I have stayed there 5 times in the past, so I felt confident in choosing it once again. However, after my trip was booked, I kept checking the reviews of the Occidental, just to see how the summer was going. Frankly, I was shocked at how many negative reviews were put out there. And alot of them were from first timers to the whole all-inclusive Cancun/Riviera Maya/Cozumel resorts. And I remember when I made my first trip down there..there were things that are just going to be the way they are going to be. Like the humidity, the smells, the heat, etc. But some of the reviews made me think something had gone seriously wrong with the Occidental. I sent them an email expressing my concerns with the bad reviews and that I hoped the critical issues had been resolved--like the a/c, etc., and was pleasantly surprised to get an answer within 2 days saying everything was in ship shape, was told my room would be near the beach, no problem. So I sent one more email back and to my delight, I was informed that I had been upgraded to the Royal Club. What a great trip this turned out to be because all I did was contact them. The food at all of the restaurants was very good. The breakfast buffet was awesome and the a/c was working so much, I could see the vents and the cold air was blasting out of them. Very nice. The place was spotless, the employees all very helpful, the drinks were top notch. I have no complaints. The weather was mild and beautiful and on one day it rained for just a bit. I will be back and if I come alone, I will definitely stay at the Occidental Grande.

Room Tip: Request the upgrade to the Royal Club. It was, for me, an extra $15 per night, the wi-fi is included...
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled solo
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Helpful?
6 Thank cozumelfan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Houston, TX
Level Contributor
43 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 3, 2013

The diving was great - very convinent to the resort with tons of wild life. Our boats were a little on the small size, but so were our groups, so that worked well.

Resort was OK. We went in off season, so several restaurants in the resort were closed. Taxis are available, but it's a pretty good trip, too far from San Miguel for a nightly commute.

It's an all inclusive resort, but if you want good service make sure to bring a stack of $5s and $1s for tips.

If you are coming over from the main land don't buy a round trip ferry ticket. There are two ferry companies that alternate trips each hour. If you buy a round trip ticket you could be stuck waiting an extra hour for your boat.

We would go back for the diving.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Anon148
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Grand Junction, Colorado, United States
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 3, 2013

We just got back from a 10 night 11 day trip to the Occidental Grand Cozumel. We were worried because we had read reviews from the past month or 2 that said that the air conditioning wasn’t working in any of the rooms or restaurants.

We had an awesome AC in our room though. It stayed cold the whole time.

The only other downfalls were that the food was just OK, not great, not horrible. And the time share sales pitch that they claim isn’t a time share. Upon arrival we sat at the check in desk and he gave us our room keys etc… Then the directed us to another desk where they told us about all of the good deals that they would give us. Then we just had to go talk to the people about the vacation club in the morning at breakfast. They will tell you that it isn’t a time share because they don’t have owner maintenance fees if you buy in, but there are still annual fees to keep your account activated or something like that so in my mind it’s the exact same thing. But the sales pitch wasn’t bad at all, and they weren’t doing one of those high pressure sales pitches either. After politely listening to them I told them that I couldn’t spend anywhere near that amount of money and they left it at that.

They did honor everything the guy told us he would give us too. We only paid $15 each for the snorkeling trip to 3 reefs. We went several times. The guy kept claiming that he wasn’t supposed to give us more than one thing, but he was super nice, and any time we wanted to book anything we would ask him and get it for nearly ½ price, if not more, so the sales pitch was well worth it in our opinion. But we were there for 11 days so we felt like giving them 2 hours one day wasn’t a big deal. If you’re only there for 3 days you might feel differently. We also rented a Jeep for only $20 for 24 hours. We went to the Stingray Beach in town for $35 per person instead of the $65 that it normally costs.

Our favorite thing was taking the boat to snorkel the reefs. We did the three reef tour twice with Dive Palancar. They are right there on the resort. They did an excellent job! The boat drivers were really good too. They knew how the current was flowing and dropped us at one side of the reef so that we could see the whole thing without having to swim against the current. If you go ask when Javier is going to be guiding a tour. He is an awesome guide. I saw way more with him that the first guide. I can’t remember his name. The forst one was really good. But Javier was excellent.

We also did a 3 reef tour with another company. They were either called Chak Chok or Chok Chak. We booked them through the guys at the desk that claims not to be a time share company but pretty much is. They picked us up at the dock and took us to the reef, but they seemed to miss the main part of each reef. We had already been there with Dive Palancar the day before and knew what all we should be seeing and they just didn’t really do a good job. They were also 45 minutes late to pick us up because the boat broke down on the way to get us.

So I would say just stick with Dive Palancar and you’ll be happy.

There is also AWESOME snorkeling right off fo the beach at the resort. Swim out and look for the false reefs that they put in. There are also a few places where there is sunker concrete blocks making a mini reef system.

We saw tons of stingrays, every kind of fish… tons of sergeant majors, trigger fish of every kind (our favorite was the queen trigger fish), angelfish, lion fish, pufferfish, trunkfish, eels, a HUGE baraccuda, an many many more…. All right there at the resort. I think the only things that we saw on the reef tours that we didn’t see at the resort were the sea turtles and groupers.

The night that we rented the Jeep we went to the far side of the island to see the ecological dept release a nest of baby sea turtles. It was a once in a lifetime experience.

We always felt safe here, not only on the resort, but all arount the island. I parked on the side of the road to go down to the beach to see the baby sea turtles and we had locals stopping to make sure that we weren’t broken down. I honestly felt safer here than a lot of places in the US.

We liked this resort because it was really mellow and there weren’t a bunch of kids everywhere. They did have a kids club, but this didn’t seem to be a resort that catered to kids and families, which we liked.

There was entertainment every night except for one. It was usually something like a fire show or a dance show. One night they had a Mexican rock band.

I would have given this resort 5 starts, but the lack of food choices was really the biggest downfall. The buffet at the beach was always the only lunch choice. The food was never great or horrible. It was just OK. But we always found something to eat. The buffet was usually a little bit better at dinner time. But we ate a the restaurants that require reservations more often that not. The Sonora Grill was a steakhouse type restaurant. I liked the rib eye so much that I had it three different times. Los Olivos is a Mediterranean restaurant that also requires reservations. They told us that we could have 3 reservations total for our stay, but the resort was slow and we got reservations every time we called. The only time that we didn’t was when the a la carte restaurants were closed. Sometimes the only dinner option was the beach buffet, which was disappointing.

We also got one reservation at the restaurant in the royal club because we booked the grand romance package. That one was nice as well.

Room Tip: We stayed in building 16 and liked it.
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Marc M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Occidental Cozumel

Property: Occidental Cozumel
Address: Km 16.6 Zona Hotelera Sur | Colonia El Cedral San Francisco Palancar, Cozumel 77600, Mexico (Formerly Occidental Grand Cozumel)
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Cozumel
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#8 Luxury Hotel in Cozumel
#12 Top resorts Hotel in Cozumel
#12 Spa Hotel in Cozumel
#14 On the Beach Hotel in Cozumel
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Occidental Cozumel 4*
Number of rooms: 247
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Only the Caribbean’s most famous reef system could match the beauty and splendor of the Occidental Grand Cozumel, which is exactly why the two exist side-by-side. Located on Cozumel’s gorgeous San Francisco beach, just above the bottomless blue paradise of the Palancar Reef system, you’ll find an authentic-style state that delivers all the luxuries of a private oceanside hacienda. Gourmet dining, bright and airy rooms, nightly music and entertainment, daily sports and beach activities and an on-site spa and salon make the Occidental grand Cozumel the jewel of any Caribbean experience. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Occidental Grand Cozumel Hotel Cozumel
Occidental Grand Hotel Cozumel
Grand Cozumel
Grand Occidental Cozumel

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