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“An honest review from a seasoned traveler”

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Holiday Inn Resort Ixtapa
Ranked #16 of 23 Hotels in Ixtapa
Reviewed March 10, 2011

A bit about me...I am a Canadian travel agent and travel on average, 4 times per year to All Inclusive style resorts.

We stayed at the Presidente Intercontinental Ixtapa March 2-9, 2011. We booked with Nolitours and flew with Air Transat. The flight and transfers were fine..no complaints. The airport in Zihuatanejo is small but modern, with shopping and duty free available.

The Presidente is not a new hotel, but very well kept for it's age. I would call it a perfect size for the area. Everything is within easy walking distance to rooms and comon areas. The grounds are well kept and staff is always tending to them. I cannot speak highly enough about the staff at this hotel...they really are an amazing bunch of people who obviously like their employer and work environment. I am not talking about staff that have been trained to always smile, and give the appearence that they are happy...these people clearly love their jobs. Some of them have worked there since the hotel was built, over 30 years ago. I have not encountered this, to this degree at any other resort I have visited.

Check in was quick. We were on an afternoon flight so our room was ready when we arrived. We were booked into their lowest catagory room, garden view with the Nolitours Cameleon Club inclusions. Our room faced the back of the property, onto a very nice tranquil garden in the low rise villa area. Very pretty and very quiet. We had requested king bed with balcony, and that is exactly what we got. The room was very clean, no bad smells. The bathrooms are up to date with tile walls and modern bath and sink. When we walked around, we noticed that there were ocean front rooms with amazing views. We decided to enquire about moving to one of them...absolutely nothing wrong with our room, we just thought that we would ask. The price to upgrade was not very much so we decided to change rooms on the second day. The room was pretty much identical to our first room except it included a stocked mini fridge and an amazing view. The sunsets are breathtaking every night! There is a hotel style tower beside the lobby and villa area, which was used for locals on the weekend. We were told that they are beginning renovations to it soon. On the outside, it appears to need this.

During the week, the hotel was at about 40% capacity and on the weekends, it rises to about 75% with locals and their families. The hotel staff ramped up for this raise in occupancy and we did not notice any change in our service. The locals that came were very nice polite families, with a couple of weddings as well.

Due to the capacity of the hotel, the a la carte restaurants were speratically open. Because of this, most of the buffet nights had themes which matched one of their a la carte options, Italian, sushi or french. There was of course a typical Mexican fiesta night on the Saturday and a wonderful beach barbeque on the Friday night...don't miss this, they really go all out! They have a snack bar by the pool that serves hot dogs, hamburgers, french fries etc at lunch time or you can have the lunch buffet. The snackbar serves pizza and snack foods 11pm until 6am. Although breakfast and lunch buffets were small, the food was very good. There was always a fresh fish option for lunch and dinner, very tasty and their soups were especially good. If there was something you didn't see, you just had to ask and they would do their best to get it for you. Overall, the food was good...better than some 5 star resorts I've been to. The staff is capable of converting the entry courtyard or beach into an amazing dining area in no time, complete with decorations and cooking stations.

The beach is beautiful. It is cleaned and raked every evening and chairs and palapas are plentiful. There are people selling their wares on the beach, but not nearly as many as other Mexican resort areas...a smile and nod or "no thankyou" and they do not bother you. The hotel beach towels are especially nice...better than most resorts. There is drink service around the pool area as well as on the beach...a little tip goes a long way...Be sure to tell the bar staff your name, they will remember it and they will remember your favorite beverage! Alcohol choices are good with many international brands. The house red wine was suprisingly nice...

The pool is large and very warm. It has a small children's area and then a separate, deeper quiet area. It was cleaned and tended to every evening. There is a little bit of pool activities each day. Pool volleyball, pool arobics and things like that, but not very much. They work hard to keep it layed back and relaxing. We walked by the kids program area and it looked well equipped and friendly. There is a salon and spa, but we did no use them.

There is a Timeshare or "vacation club" present at this hotel. They will approach you at some point. We found them not pushy and once you told them you were not interested, they did not bother you. They offer a coupon towards any excursion you would like, in exchange for attending their 90 minute session...again, they are not very pushy, so if you don't mind spending the time, its a good way to get a free or discounted excursion.

We went across the street to the Ixtapa area for 2 dinners and some shopping. This is a very safe area. We were there very late at night and at no time, did we feel in any type of danger. Friendly helpful vendors and inviting restaurants. I highly recommend The Blue Shrimp which we were told is owned by a Canadian woman. Read my review of this restaurant.

I could go on and on about this property, but you get the picture. If you are looking for a large resort, with lots of entertainment and a party atmosphere, this is not it. But if you are looking for a nice family resort, with staff that will do everything possible to make you feel you are at home, then this is the place. We met people with have stayed at this resort more than 10 times. feel free to contact me if you would like any specific information.

  • Stayed: March 2011, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank xofirol
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed March 9, 2011

Just returned on March 2nd from a 2 week stay at the Presidente. We had a great time and we loved Ixtapa. The hotel is rated a 4 star and that is pretty accurate. We stayed in one of the villa’s and can’t complain about the room. Water pressure was amazing. Room did have a musty smell but we have experienced that many times when we have traveled down south. There is a safe and it was big enough to hold our camera which was great. Beds were a little hard but there is nothing like your own bed.

There were numerous restaurants on site but most were not open at the same time. We were told that the hotel was not at capacity which was the reason for only one restaurant being open at a time. The food was good but lacked variety most days. An example would be the snack bar. The food consisted of hamburgers, hotdogs, fries and nachos. That is it and it never changed. We did however very much enjoy dinner on the beach and in the courtyard. We did eat at the French restaurant a few times and at the Italian restaurant once. The food was excellent at the Italian restaurant but it was a shame that it was only open once in the 2 weeks we stayed at the resort.

During the week the hotel was empty but on the weekend it was very busy with mostly locals.

The staff was amazing. Everyone was very helpful and friendly. We couldn’t believe how hard everyone worked setting up the beach and courtyard for dinner. We also enjoyed the activities at the hotel including volleyball, bingo, bike riding, water aerobics etc.

The beach was clean and we enjoyed going for walks. We saw dolphins swimming in the bay and stingrays, mantras and various other sea life. The kids loved collecting shells. Although the water was a little rough at times we purchased a boogie board and had fun on the waves.

We went Parasailing one day and that was fun. It is relatively cheap at $20.00 U.S.

We did see a few shows at the resort but most nights there was not much going on in terms of enterainment. There is no game room either.

Ixtapa is very safe and you can walk around outside the resort in the evening without having to worry. There is tons of shopping right outside the hotel so if you forget anything you can easily buy whatever you need.

If you are coming from Canada don’t bother bringing U.S. Funds. Most establishments do not want it. Apparently there is counterfit money going around.

Finally if you decide to do a trip do not use any vendors or go thru the hotel. We went to Ixtapa island on our own. Took a bus which costs .80 cents Canadian. We then took a water taxi again another $4.00. You can then cross over the island and do your own snorkeling.

One thing that we did find particularily annoying was the sales people that came at you from all angles. Just tell them you are not interested and they leave you alone.

I don’t know if I would stay at this hotel again as we like to try different locations but we enjoyed our stay and would recommend it.

  • Stayed: February 2011, traveled with family
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1  Thank tammyintoronto
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 3, 2011

Just got back from a visit to Ixtapa, we had the cameleon club rate on our rooms and had two ground floor rooms that were right off the pool area. Perfect location. You could hear the waves crashing at night on the beach. Our rooms included robes, slippers and an in room safe (very handy). The hotel changed money for you and this was a great service. The entire staff were friendly and helpful. We were there when one of our family had a birthday and they served a little cake to the room (very nicely decorated) . Just a short walk down the drive and you are across the street from great shopping areas and some fun bars. Our teenagers loved the beach. They didn't seem to mind that there were no evening activites at the resort. This is an older hotel and not huge but to us that is part of its charm. We met many couples that have returned on a regular basis. Totally enjoyed our stay.

  • Stayed: February 2011, traveled with family
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1  Thank luvtosea
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 2, 2011

I went from February 22nd to march 1st. The trip was excellent! We had to change rooms two twice just cause we weren't happy with the rooms cleanliness. When you go ask for a New renovated room!!!!! You'll thank me later! Service from the staff was excellent! Always friendly and helpful. The beach by far makes this trip worth it! It's amazing! The food selection wasnt the greatest and you have to ASK them for dishes such as bacon... But on Fridays they have dinner on the beach and the food was awesome!!!! On Saturday's they have a Mexican fiesta dinner and it rocks!

My only complaints are:
- poor rooms (unless you ask for a Renovated one)
- the resort is occupied by 75% local Mexicans! Which is terrible if you are trying to use the pool or etc. Most people are ok with that but it gets annoying after a while... I swear they just come to the hotel during the day and use the facilities.

- don't go for ocean view or garden view... Go for poolside: rooms are renovated!

Everything else is perfect! I would go back to Ixtapa in general... Just maybe another resort!

  • Stayed: February 2011
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1  Thank Albertatraveller2011
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Presidente_Ixtapa, General Manager at Holiday Inn Resort Ixtapa, responded to this reviewResponded March 7, 2011

Dear Guest,

Thank you for taking the time to post your feedback of your stay at the Presidente Intercontinental Ixtapa on TripAdvisor.

I am very pleased to learn that you enjoy our staff and service. Our location is very privileged first because we have the largest sea front and second because Playa del Palmar is classified “One of the cleanest beach in Mexico.

In reference of the room, all the rooms of el “Pueblo” were renovated last year including garden view, pool view o ocean front, so I am a little bit surprise with your comment. And as I comment, we are in Mexico and it is totally normal to have Mexicans in the Hotel, as we have Americans and Canadians.

Once again thank you for sharing your experience and I look forward to an opportunity to welcome your return to Presidente Intercontinental Ixtapa in the near future.


Sincerely,

Stephan Coudon
General Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 28, 2011

Spent 1 week at this resort from Feb 16 - 23 and had a wonderful time. The resort is in an ideal location with the most beautiful ocean view and sunsets I've ever seen. The resort itself is clean and very well maintained. The staff couldn't have been nicer and were always so eager to please. The beach is so nice to walk along and wasn't very crowded at all. The waves did get pretty rough some days and the danger flags were raised to warn travellers. However it wasn't always that way and people were out having fun in the water. The pool at the resort was spotless and accessible from everywhere around the resort. The food was very good and there was plenty to choose from. We had a buffet dinner on the beach twice during our stay and it was so beautiful. The only real issue I had was that there wasn't much in the way of nightly entertainment except for music and/or karoke that was played at the sports bar every night. It was so loud and went on until midnight and could be heard from inside our poolview room. I got to just waiting it out on the balcony every night because there was no way to sleep through it. However, it did get quiet right after midnight. It's great to have the shopping area right across the street and to have easy access to buses and taxis to travel around the area a bit. Over all, a really nice experience and we enjoyed it.

  • Stayed: February 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank wentso
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 26, 2011

Travelled on a girls only week to Ixtapa, stayed at the Presidente. We were so pleased with the level of service from every staff member at the hotel!! We were treated like family by every single staff member and we loved it! The room was spacious and very clean and the amenities were excellent. Highly recommended.

  • Stayed: February 2011, traveled with friends
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1  Thank Bianca2376
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 25, 2011

We have been frequent travellers to Mexico for many years. My wife says, for me "Mexico is the other woman". Hence 3 times a year for two weeks each is the norm.
If you want gleaming marble,elegant lobby with matching furnishings and fine dinning this is not it!
If you want a very Mexican vacation,fantastic staff, clean surroundings and a great setting this is it !
This was our first trip to Ixtapa , we love the Pacific Coast and have been to Rincon de Guayabitos, Riviera Nayarit, Puerto Vallarta ,Manzanillo and Huatulco. Also a few trips to the gleaming hotels of the Mayan. We always resisted Ixtapa due to the unattractive brochure photos of the hotels.
Presidente makes us wish we had come before, great clean pools , largest beach area in Ixtapa and well equiped, super clean rooms.
The food was not over the top but what they do they do well. Special dinners presented at the Mexican Fiesta ,Beach BBQ,International and a pool side dinner were amazing.
The Mexican and the International are held in the Zocolo in front of the lobby. It is a very pretty area and the presentation was very festive.. Of course the BBQ was on the beach and many guests of other hotels looked on in envy.
It did not take long to learn that the Presidente has many long term employees, some have been there 33 years, since the hotel was new. They all love their jobs and have many smiles for their guests.
Some standouts are Carmen (lobby bar),Ernesto (pool bar),Victor (many bars) and Beatriz (served us many great breakfasts and lunches). On the beach there is Carlos a great source of enjoyment andservice, also Erik ,a student that that has great plans for his future. Gracias Amiigas y Amigos !
Jorge the Conciege is always willing to address concerns of guest (we had one and it was adressed ).
Other concerns, my wife and other women cannot believe the lack of another mirror other than the bathroom in the king rooms. Also it is hard to believe there in no Guacamole at the hotel, kind of like a Chineese resturant without rice .
Just as we were about to head to the airport we mentioned the Guacamole to Jorge and he said "you have to ask for it".
We love the area, best walking beach we have experienced, Zihuatanejo is also a fantastic place. It is not a fishing village as you may think, 150,000 people live there. (according to our taxi driver). The people of Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo are typical West Coast Mexicans, gracious, proud, friendly and full fo humour and love for their families..

At the hotel we did have great difficulty with the smokers that make sure the smoke does not drift toward their table during dinning. We all agree it was the worst we have encountered during our trips.
Dangling the cig out to the side so it drifts toward others. This could be alleviated if the Presidente would prohibit smoking during dinning, inside and out. We usually say something but we were out numbered. Most of the offenders were fellow Canadians.

Also many lounges are on need of replacement. They are very saggy and a day of lounging at the beach or pool can be tough on the back. Frequent comment for guests we met as well.

We will return to the Presidente for many reasons. The guests were mainly middle aged, I joked about this and said if there was a bar fight it would only last a minute ,everyone would be too tired. We love the staff ,the well equiped clean rooms,the special dinners,the clean pools, the great walking beach , and the promise from Jorge "you can ask for Guacamole".

A couple of special thanks, Wilber the representive for Westjet is a great person and very willing to share his personality and knowkedge. Westjet is fortunate to have Wilber as their representitive at the Presidente. Gracias Wilber from the four of us ! Enjoyed the taxi !

Also a thanks to the Dinosaur loving family for the Tuna !

  • Stayed: February 2011, traveled with friends
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1  Thank mexalberta
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Holiday Inn Resort Ixtapa

Address: Boulevard Ixtapa S/N | Lote 2, Ixtapa, Zihuatanejo 40880, Mexico (Formerly InterContinental Presidente)
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Pacific Coast > Guerrero > Zihuatanejo > Ixtapa
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 Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#11 On the Beach Hotel in Ixtapa
#12 Top resorts Hotel in Ixtapa
Price Range: $146 - $379 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Holiday Inn Resort Ixtapa 3.5*
Number of rooms: 431
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Also Known As:
Intercontinental Presidente Ixtapa Hotel Ixtapa
Presidente Intercontinental Ixtapa
Intercontinental Ixtapa
Ixtapa Presidente
Presidente Hotel Ixtapa
Presidente Ixtapa

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