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“A Diamond in the Rough” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Hotel Fontan Ixtapa

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Hotel Fontan Ixtapa
Ranked #12 of 23 Hotels in Ixtapa
Edmonton, Canada
Level Contributor
47 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
“A Diamond in the Rough”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 8, 2011

This was one of the few locations and resorts that accomodated a Christmas family vaction with travellers coming from Edmonton and Kamloops. After reading the reviews I was a bit concerned with staying at the Fontan; however, all my worries were gone within the first hours of being there.
We didn't go with high expectations but were pleasantly surprised. The grounds were well kept, we never had to wait in line for seating, food, a beach towel or drinks. The food selection was good and there were a variety of activities to participate in such as beach volleyball or soccer. We were even lucky enough to release day old turtles, which hatched right beside the beach chairs, into the ocean! Rooms are clean but a bit older with a touch of a 'never dried out feeling / smell' (as you can get with some sea-side locations) and the older members of the group complained that the beds were too hard. The New Year's celebration was the best I've ever attended at a resort (and I've been at top-end, five star resorts for New Years). There are many locals at the hotel, which enhance the atmosphere and allow you to practice your basic Spanish. The biggest negative was getting a chair. Rude vacationers would go early to hoard chairs down at the beach and up by the pools and they would never show up all day to use them. At times we moved a towel that was covering two chairs to one and we found that others were kind enough to give up a chair here and there when you asked.
The beach is unbelievable, the sunsets are amazing, and its easy to find the positives of this little hotel.

  • Stayed December 2010, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
5 Thank TravelOn9928
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (76)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Edmonton, Canada
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 6, 2011

Fontan Resort:
This is not a 3 star resort, but if all you are looking for is sun and a beautiful beach...they have it. The employees are very proud of their resort and the services that they provide to their guests. I do not wish to take that away from them as they are pleasant, hardworking and humble employees. Unfortunately, I found that the Fontan Hotel and Spa did not live up to their website.

When I go to any “ hotel or resort” I look for a number of things that I am prepared to pay for if they are in place. Location is an important one, amenities (beach access, pools, fitness gyms, spas, planned activities) as well as security, maintenance and cleanliness of my room and common areas, decor of the rooms and common furniture are second and general office desk, waitressing & housekeeping services following a close third.
The Fontan Hotel has an excellent location on the south end of the El Palmas Beach. After a reconnaissance of the beaches in the Zihatenejo/Ixtapa area, the El Palmas beach, on which the Fontan Hotel has a front row seat, is by far the nicest beach for its views of the ocean, low slope white sugar sand, 2-4 ft waves, and width & length of beach for walking. Although the beach does not have public restaurants to wander in to, there are lots of entrepreneurs selling their popsicles, handicrafts, massages, tattoo applications, hair braiding, fishing charters, parasail/banana boat rides, and jet ski rentals.
The Fontan Hotel is one of the oldest hotels on the beach and it unfortunately is in need of some upgrading. It has 3 pools, but none of them are jetted (Jacuzzi style) and unfortunately none of the pools are identified for adults only. There is no swim up bar, and the two bars that are available in the pool area do not even open until 11:00 am. You cannot even get a glass of water to drink. There is no fitness room or spa, but they do have plenty of poolside activities...water aerobics, water and beach volleyball and other games. There is no site map when you arrive to explain the amenities or the activities at the resort, so a lot of the information you need to acclimatize yourself to the resort is a-learn-as-you-go. We were well into the week’s stay before we found out we could order “a la carte” from a menu instead of partake of the customary burger and fries for lunch or that bacon could be had for breakfast...but you needed to ask for it (it was kept in a warming pan out of sight, beneath the steam table...).
We felt fortunate to get a room on the front of the building overlooking the swimming pools and the ocean. Again the location of the room was awesome but the furniture was made of painted plywood, the 19” colour TV only had one channel in English and there was no fridge, no coffee maker, no hair dryer, and no wall safe in the unit. There was only one electrical plug which had the TV plugged into it so recharging any electronic devices was difficult. Although the bed sheets were clean and changed regularly, the bed was hard and the pillows were very chunky and uncomfortable. The bathroom was clean but the toilet was cracked with a wobbly seat, and some of the bathroom tiles were covered in a tile grout residue, the GFI plug kept tripping out when used and the toilet would squeal uncontrollably every time it was flushed or when the air in the pipes happened to change pressure.

From my perspective the Fontan gets an “A” for Location/Landscaping/Beach and Cleanliness... but a “D” for building/room Maintenance and Decor.

When I go to an “All Inclusive resort” I look for two major things...quality and variety of food and beverage products. Variety of food groups and selection within those groups, and the quality/name brand of the beverages both alcoholic and other liquids, including pop, juice, and milk products.
The Fontan caters to Mexican families. The buffet food reflects that. The selection was Mexican with the occasional treat of Meat balls, Turkey for Christmas dinner and seafood for New Years Eve. Otherwise the selection was pretty standard Mexican fare chicken/pork, refried beans, and steamed vegetables and it varied little from one day to another. Breakfast lacked variety but the fruit and omelettes were plentiful. Luckily we were there for the Christmas week and experienced a special celebration for New Years Eve where the food selection was awesome. Once we discovered the “a-la-carte restaurant” for lunch our lunches improved dramatically. Water (which I consider a staple beverage) was hard to come by until the bars opened at 11:00 am so you had to purchase bottled water to keep hydrated. The alcohol was basic and the drink mixes were locally supplied fountain product. You could request a Coke or Pepsi but they were not always available.

From my perspective the Fontan gets an “D to C ” rating for food variety and selection and a “D” for beverage availability and selection of both alcohol and mixes.

On a more positive note...The New Years Eve Gala at the Fontan Hotel was Spectacular. It took the Fontan Hotel staff 4 days to prepare for it but the wait was worth it. Over the course of the 4 days they started moving the lounge chairs, tables and sun umbrellas from the pool deck to the beach. A performance stage was set up for the festivities and large tables and chairs filled the space along with festive lights, streamers and balloons. Our simple pool deck was transformed into a spectacular “outdoor party room”. The food was excellent, full of variety and epicurean delights. We were entertained by live performances, a spectacular fireworks display and festive music where party goers danced until the wee hours. The service was great and the event was expertly attended to by the staff. It truly was amazing. Once the festivities ended our outdoor party room was quickly transformed back to a sunbathing deck. The Fontan Hotel staff really put out for this New Year’s Eve celebration. Kudos to them all. I was glad to be a part of it.

I loved Ixtapa/Zihuatenejo area and will be back. As for the Fontan...with some renovations, better building maintenance and wider variety of food selection they could be a true 3 to 4 star facility.

  • Stayed December 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
6 Thank Lori_55Edmonton
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wichita, Kansas
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 31, 2010

The service was great at the hotel until I had my room broken into and my laptop, copy of my passport, and MP3 player stolen. Because of the location of my room and how the break-in occurred, it was agreed upon by the hotel security that it was an employee who had broken into the hotel.

When meeting with management they didn't even apologize! They simply said that it wasn't their fault and that under their policy they don't have to pay for stolen equipment. I told them that was understandable and let them know I only have a $500 deductible to pay on my stolen property. They wouldn't even pay that.

To make matters worse, they REFUSED to call the police (Ixtapa has a tourism department that handles things like this). I had to go to the US consulate. Overall, because the hotel management was fighting me on this issue, I ended up spending half of my trip dealing with the theft rather than enjoying my trip.

Use any of the other hotels in Ixtapa. This one simply isn't worth the hassle if something happens. The management WILL NOT HELP YOU.

  • Stayed July 2010, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Joelbor
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Blainville, Canada
Level Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 13, 2010

As you can read from my previous reviews this is my tenth time at the Fontan Hotel Ixtapa. The service is always 100%, they do everything in their power to make your stay memorable. Special thanks to Senior Daniel de la Pena D. (Gerente Division Cuartos) who is always there for you. Also thank you to Leslie Reyna who took good care of us. The hotel is situated right on Palmar Beach with beautiful weather. David, Marvila, Elizabeth Molina and Alexi Texta at the recepcion were also very helpful. At the Restaurant there is of course Heidi, Yvonne, Jesus, Yaneth and I can continue like this for ever. Leo is very good at the animacion. You can go shopping at the Mercado in front of the Hotel or just take the bus for Zihuatanejo with the Mexicans. These people in Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo are lovely people with a big heart.

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Lucie1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Victoria
Level Contributor
23 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 18, 2010

this hotel was one of are best vactions ever!! When we arrived the staff were great and they were very welcoming. when we got to are room we looked out the balcony and it was a fantasic view though the beds were just an inch bigger than a single and there was no way the 4 of us could fit in the beds but they were soft then we told them at the front desk that we couldn't stay in that room and they let us look at a room and the beds were a double which is the size we paid for and we got the room , but there is a plastic sheet at the bottom which is sticks to your sunburns. there are many pools and 2 for youger children. Real Palapa buffet is really nice they have nice food diplays and they have all kinds of food. they have a fruit and a salad bar but here is a tip "eat what you would normally eat".Miramar is the resturant in the back. its confussing but they give you menus and there is a price for each item on the menu if your all inclusive the food is free if you sign something you have to pay. If your a shrip lover they have shrimp and garlic which is to die for. the first time they peeled the shrip and they give you 7 big shrimp. On top of everythng they give you chips and salsa. if you want something from the menu you can go to the small buffet ( a salad bar ) you can get bugars and hot dogs and fries or chips insted of going to cafe del mar to get burgers or fries . If you love guacamole you can just ask for it when you order. the staff there is really nice .The shows at night are magical. The disney show is really good and there is also mexican night. The bars for drinks are great . Hotel Fontan is located right in front of all the stores and a market is less than a block down.Are stay at hotel fontan was really fun and we could have stayed there for ever. Lots of R&R. Also its very family frendily.

  • Stayed March 2010
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank ccrVictoria
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, ON
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 15, 2010

Keep in mind that this is a 3 * hotel. We didn't expect anything more than that for the price we paid. The hotel was built in the mid-70's and is in need of some repairs (which they are doing slowly) but it had to be one of the cleanest hotels I've ever stayed at. We were a party of 4 and have travelled all over Mexico but never been to Ixtapa-Zihuatenjo. What a pleasant surprise. This is truly one of the quaintest vacation areas that I've ever been to. The hotel is centrally located on an absolutely pristine beach with two pools, plenty of lawn chairs. The entire area was scrubbed down every night. The grounds were gorgeous. The buffet was good and the small beach a-la-carte restaurant served up excellent food in the afternoon. (The shrimp dinner was fantastic). We booked the main a-la-carte restaurant one evening but found the food at the beach a-la-carte to be as good and no reservations required.
\
The street behind the hotel offered various, bars, restaurants, small flea market and supermarket. We stopped in each evening at a little coffee bar for a cappucinno. There were plenty of places to walk, cheap cab rides approx. $5 to Zihuatenjo or bus 8 pesos each. (We found it safe to take the bus). All in all we enjoyed our stay. We were told that this hotel was a favourite with the Mexicans on weekends & holidays. All in all they were very well behaved especially the children.

Truly an amazing destination. Looking forward to returning to Ixtapa.

  • Stayed February 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank shootersclub
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Uxbridge, Canada
Level Contributor
28 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 7, 2010

I'm going to try to make this as an objective review as possible so people can make their own choices. We stayed at the Fontan in Ixtapa from February 26th to March 6th. The service from the staff in this hotel was excellent. There was nothing they wouldn't do when asked. Check in was easy, porters were terrific. Rooms: old, probably needed some updating, beds are hard as well as pillows (this is not an opinion, but a fact). Tip; Do not get a room in tower B facing the ocean. The reason: there is a refrigeration unit or generator just behind the buffet restaurant which goes on loudly often. So, if you like to leave your patio door open during the night, you WILL hear this. Also, buy a large container of water in town the first day there - there is no water in rooms except some, when you receive two bottles the first day. You have to buy any water you want/need. There is a convenience store in the hotel where you can buy a bottle of water. There is also a store just outside the hotel in the parking area which is more economical. The buffet restaurant is terrific......tip: you can also order off the menu at the beach restaurant, Miramar, (the one closest to the beach).....at no extra charge. The grilled shrimp is terrific. Other than the menu, they offer only burgers, fries and salad for lunch (2 hours). The beach bar does not open until 11:00 a.m. The lobby bar opens at 5:00. There is no coffee makers in the rooms and no coffee available on the resort until 7:00 a.m. The lobby had one night of entertainment which is karaoke. According to most of the staff, this hotel is supported by Mexicans coming from Moreles, etc for the beach. There are a lot of locals in the hotel on Fridays and Saturdays. In fact, the population of the hotel probably quadrupled on the weekends. During the week, very few people. Most people are there for long term stays. The beach is fabulous, smooth sand and clean. You can walk for a long way. We are recommending two places across the road: KALDHI coffee shop for hot chocolate in the afternoon (Oaxoacan (SP?) chocolate is best) and an italian place, something Del Mar? We've apparently lost the receipt with the name on it but it's economical and good food. Lots of fish and good appetizers. We did eat at the Red Huichanlanga (sp?) - it was good but expensive. There is a show in the square across the road Monday, Wednesday and Friday. It is quite good and a lot of people go. I believe it starts at 7:00. Buses go very often to Zihua which is about 15 minutes, take the buses that look like they're not going to make it - the ones with the back door flapping and music playing - they're fun. Zihua is crowded and hot. The pier is nice. We took the bus to Petatlan which was a great ride. There is a beautiful church there and markets.

Cab to Zihua 55 pesos for two, the bus is 8 peso each person. By the way if you see a Tripadvisor bag with a pair of prescription glasses and a digital camera and one of the last pictures on the digital camera is the fan palm outside of the hotel, give us a shout, please. The glasses were expensive. Dinner at the italian place was 350 pesos for two - we each had a drink, appetizer and dinner. Our friends stayed at the Hotel Irma - we are not reviewing it because we didn't stay there however there is a big hill and six flights of stairs to get to the hotel, just in case anyone has difficulty getting around.

The pools are clean but again, needs some repair, broken tiles, etc. For smokers, there are few ashtrays.

There are horse and carriages available - please stay away from the fellow with the white horse - there is a younger fellow with a reddish brown horse who takes much better care of it - if you have to do this, please take his. I'm not a fan however we did spend some time speaking to him and he seems to take good care.

We ate at the a la carte restaurant (hacienda)....the only reason we would go again is because they had spanish coffee......the food was plain - chicken or beef - it was ok but the food across the road at some of the restaurants would have been better.

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank brokebuttravelling
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Fontan Ixtapa

Property: Hotel Fontan Ixtapa
Address: Blvd Ixtapa S/N | Zona Hotelera, Ixtapa, Zihuatanejo 40880, Mexico
Location: Mexico > Pacific Coast > Guerrero > Zihuatanejo > Ixtapa
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#9 Top resorts Hotel in Ixtapa
#9 On the Beach Hotel in Ixtapa
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Hotel Fontan Ixtapa 3*
Number of rooms: 473
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Resort Fontan Ixtapa
Fontan Ixtapa Beach Resort

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