If you base your choice of resort on luxury and grand size, keep looking. Grand Coco Bay is an intimate 210-room hotel located in Playa del Carmen where everything is within a three minute walk from your room - spa, restaurants, beach, pool, bars, water sports, gym . . . We were a group of six women in our 30s-50s who love to walk, but on the beach, not all over a resort.
The staff were very helpful with varying levels of fluency with English, and as always any attempt on the guests' parts to speak Spanish is welcomed with grace. Thanks to Victor and Zoila at the bell station and front desk. Our rooms were spacious and spotless and located on the top floor above the restaurants. We only asked for maid service every other day, and were always kept supplied with plenty of clean towels and amenities.
A huge plus in our thinking was the waiter service near the pool and on the beach. Our favorite server for the week was Orbelín, whose smile and genuineness were a delight. It is good that the drinks are not made too strong, but they are hardly watered-down as some reviewers complain. Gilberto at the pool bar says he has seen some tourists rendered almost catatonic if he makes the drinks to the customers' demanded strength, as they believe that to get their all-inclusive money's worth, they need to imbibe from opening until closing time. We were pleased that they used more environmentally sound rigid, washable plastic glasses around the pool and not disposable ones as some resorts have turned to.
The beach itself was great but the prime real estate claimed by the rarely-used volleyball court front and centre seemed strange. There could easily be many more loungers and palapas placed there, and the court maybe off to the side somewhere. We were never bothered by the anchored boats. The water was clear and warm and the most azure coloured of any Caribbean destination we've visited. It had an almost luminous quality which could be attributed to the brilliant white Mayan sand, and was very safe for swimming. A ten-minute walk to the south brought you to the pier in Playa where a short walk up one street brought you to the fun and shopping of colourful Avenida Quinta and its cheaper, less-touristy side streets. A must-do!
Food choices were amazing considering the small size of the Grand Coco Bay. Make a connection with Máximo and his helpers at the snack bar, and you will enjoy some fine chicken, salad, pizza, and other fast-food. In the buffet, our group of Atlantic Canadians were delighted at the freshness and daily availability of lovely firm grouper, roughy and other firm-fleshed white fish, grilled or in various seasoned sauces which did not overpower. There were always two soup selections with lunches and dinners, and on the buffet itself everyday, some form of chicken, beef, pork, sausage, and vegetables, plus salads. Theme nights were delightful, especially the Asian evening, with sushi, shrimp and calamari teppanyaki, spring rolls and tempura that melted in your mouth! We like the Mexican a la carte enough to go there twice. The presentation rivals some fine dining restaurants we have frequented around the world. I recommend the Mexican sampler appetizer, the GCB salad, the seven chili soup, and the coconut shrimp. We loved the ambience of the Italian a la carte, and the food was fine, but not stellar. We ordered wine as the house wines were not at all palatable. We were more than impressed with all of the food here.
Side trips were made to Isla Mujeres, Tulum and Ya-Kul, cenotes, etc.
I can recommend personally the services at the Ya-Ax Spa on the resort, where Bety was so professional. I chose the combination relaxation/Shiatsu/aromatherapy massage and paid 80 dollars (plus tip) for an hour.
We just loved the small, friendly Grand Coco Bay and will be returning next year, maybe twice.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Located just 30 miles south of Cancun, The Reef Cococbeach is the perfect compliment to the white sandy beaches and turquoise waters of this world renowned tropical paradise. Just a short walk from the picturesque town of Playa del Carmen, you will enjoy our personalized service, the privacy you desire in a resort destination and the entertainment of one of the best night life's the Mayan Riviera has to offer.Our location provides easy access to the many attractions the Mayan Riviera has to offer such as Playa del Carmen's famous 5th avenue, Playacar's Bird Sanctuary, Playacar Golf Club, Xcaret, Xel-Ha, Tulum and much, much more.The hotel offers 196 comfortable rooms Caribbean style, our pleasant rooms consist of one king size bed or two double beds, terrace or balcony, air conditioning, ceiling fan, mini fridge, TV,hair dryer, vanity mirror, telephone and bath room with bahttub and shower combination. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Grand Coco Bay Mexico
- Grand Coco Bay Playa Del Carmen
- Grand Coco Bay Hotel Playa Del Carmen
- Grand Coco Bay Riviera Maya
- The Reef Coco Beach Riviera Maya/Playa Del Carmen, Mexico