My wife and I stayed at Secrets Aura from July 9 – 16, 2013. This was our first visit to Secrets Aura, although we stayed at Aura when it was a Wyndham property; in fact, this was our 5th year in a row to stay at Aura. For the most part, my wife and I enjoyed our stay and were able to observe some of the changes that have occurred since Secrets took over the property. At the same time, there are a few minor aspects that deserve some attention. I should also point out that this is the first time we have stayed at a Secrets property, so unlike perhaps some others who have reviewed Secrets Aura, we have no basis of comparison other than before Aura became affiliated with Secrets.
Grounds and Facilities
In general, the property is well maintained and cared for. We observed a great number of groundskeepers and other workers. One evening after a very heavy downpour, there were workers out and about with squeegees to drain the water off of the walkways that were not covered. Reviewers on Tripadvisors have complained about bugs and bird noises. Of course, there are bugs such as mosquitoes. It’s a tropical island, so guests should be prepared for such things. My wife and I used Off, and I will say that this year we received many fewer bites. As for the birds, we have them at our home and, like in Cozumel, they sing their songs every morning, which were not so bad that they awakened us.
There are three swimming pools at Secrets Aura: one with water slides set back from the Sea (it used to be called Sabor in prior years), a small pool adjacent to the lobby area, and the main pool of the resort with swim-up suites adjacent to the pool from several different buildings. With regard to this latter pool, an area that does need some attention is the pool decking surrounding this pool. Some of the bottom parts of the edging around the decking are broken in many places. While this does nothing to diminish swimming, etc., it is noticeable and should be repaired. Also with regard to the main swimming pool, we noticed that this year as a Secrets property there were many more floats/tubes/etc. available and provided by Secrets as compared to prior years. I can’t say for sure, but it also seems as though this year, there were many more lounges available on the beach itself than in prior years. Towel boxes containing clean towels are adjacent to the main pool and other areas, and we found towels generally available. In the morning, staff also put towels on all lounges surrounding the pools. There is also a hot tub adjacent to the main pool, but to the best of my knowledge, it was not working during our stay. I observed several couples who approached it and left quickly.
The staff is to be commended. They are pleasant, very polite, anxious to please, and in good numbers to take care of guests. My wife and I remembered some of the staff from prior years, and it was nice to see that some of them remembered us as well. I can only think of positive things to say about the staff.
Food and Beverages
As reported by many reviewers, there are three main restaurants at Secrets: Windows, Oceana, and Bordeaux. The Secrets Aura website also lists the Barefoot Grill as a restaurant, but it is not a separate restaurant. Rather, it is adjacent/part of the bar area for Oceana. Bordeaux, which used to be called Mosaic before Secrets, is FINALLY air conditioned (the first time for this restaurant) and is much more pleasant as a result. Coco Café is not close to the beach area, so my wife and I did not visit it. In general for all of the main restaurants, the food quality is good; and we never left hungry. As some other reviewers have stated, however, the menus did not change while we were there, e.g., the dinner menu at Bordeaux never changed. This is similar to the other two restaurants as well. However, Windows and Bordeaux did offer dinner specials the nights we had dinner there. Guests should be aware, however, that one of the restaurants is closed on Friday nights, another on Saturday nights, and the third on Sunday nights. As for breakfast, the buffet at Windows each morning is outstanding. Made-to-order omelets, including egg whites only, fresh fruit and vegetable drinks made in a blender, smoked salmon, meats and cheeses, scrambled eggs, bacon, etc., etc. The buffet reminded me a lot of breakfasts in very nice European hotels.
In terms of availability of alcohol, premium alcohol, etc., we never experienced a shortage of alcohol at any time. We did notice, however, that at Bordeaux, and perhaps at Windows and Oceana, when we asked for a very dry red or white house wine by the glass, we were told that there was only one house red or white available; other wines by the bottle were available for purchase. This is a negative on our part as an all-inclusive resort should definitely offer a more inclusive availability of wines.
Our main purpose in returning to Cozumel each year is the diving. Dive Palancar is a dive shop that has a local shop at Secrets Aura. Luis was the principal staff member at this location, and he and his staff treated us very well. We had arranged ahead of time to have Luis take care of our gear which was done to our satisfaction. We dropped the gear off the day we arrived, and each day that we dived, the gear was taken to the end of the pier for us and taken back and rinsed/stored at the dive shop until the next dive.
Sunscape Sabor Cozumel and Entertainment
Adjacent to Secrets Aura is the Sunscape Sabor Cozumel resort. To the best of my knowledge, in prior years it too was affiliated with Wyndham. It was, and still is, a family-oriented resort whereas Secrets Aura is adults only. There are several restaurants at Sunscape Sabor Cozumel where guests at Secrets Aura can eat, but my wife and I did not try any of them. As for nightly entertainment at Secrets Aura, my wife and I did not avail ourselves of these opportunities (we dive early and want to retire early). One evening while dining, we did see some type of fire dancing on the beach, and another night while dining we “experienced” a rock band playing near the small pool adjacent to the lobby. Unfortunately, the band was so loud, we could not hear each other across our table, so we returned to our room. On another night, there was a classical guitarist playing at Windows. He was wonderful.
My wife and I continue to be very pleased with Aura and what it offers. As mentioned, the staff are most accommodating and outstanding in their efforts to please guests. A couple of suggestions related to food and beverages: 1) More than one red and white house wine should be offered by the glass; and 2) Consider varying the main dinner menus at Windows, Oceana, and Bordeaux.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- In a perfect blend of luxury and excitement, Secrets Aura Cozumel is the ultimate adults-only, all-suite resort located on the island of Cozumel. Sitting just 12 miles off the coast of Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula, Secrets Aura has it all. Bask in a world of Unlimited-Luxury® while staying in one of 266 contemporary, stylish non-smoking suites complete with private terraces or swim-up access, stunning views, 24-hour room service, daily refreshed minibar and more. For added luxury, guests can upgrade to the Preferred Club and enjoy additional amenities and inclusions. The experience continues with limitless gourmet dining at gourmet restaurants plus 24-hour dining options allow guests to devour late night bites at the Coco Cafe or stay in and order room service all without reservations and top-shelf spirits at three bars and lounges throughout the resort. Light up the night with live nightly entertainment and activities. Or enjoy land and water sports, three sparkling pools, live entertainment with pool and beach wait service throughout the day. Dive into the Caribbean at nearby world-renowned dive sites; explore the natural wonders of the second largest coral reef system in the world, the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System. Learn to dive deep with the help of the fullservice, on-site dive operator, Dive House. Indulge in specialty treatments at the Secrets Spa by Pevonia®, located right next door at Sunscape Sabor Cozumel, the most complete spa on the island, or simply spend time with the ones you love. Secrets Aura Cozumel – Light. Luxury. Love. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Aura Cozumel Grand Hotel Cozumel
- Wyndham Cozumel
- Cozumel Wyndham