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“Would not stay again”
2 of 5 bubbles Review of Decameron Aquarium

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Decameron Aquarium
Ranked #8 of 42 Hotels in San Andres Island
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
17 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“Would not stay again”
Reviewed July 29, 2011

I arrived at the Decameron Aquarium in the morning. They have a long and dis organised process for check in, where everyone goes into one room where paperwork and passport information is taken and they advise you to go and have lunch and come back at 2pm to receive your key to your room as check in is not until 3pm, our room was not ready until 4.30pm. (Be sure to pack your swimmers so at least you can then sit on the deck and sunbake while you wait) I had booked a room with a king bed for myself and my partner and was given a room with twin beds. I could not change rooms until the morning. Both rooms smelt of mould and were average and noisey, hardly any amenities and the bathroom is tiny. With the all inclusive if you prefer to eat the restaurants rather than the buffett you must go in person to reception and make a reservation between 8.30 and 11am as they will not accept calls from your room. I found the service poor and found that I had to follow the staff up for the changing of rooms. I would not stay here again!

Room Tip: If you do decide to stay make sure it's on the highest level and not ground floor otherwise you...
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  • Stayed July 2011, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank RoseAustralia73
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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2,980 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 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (51)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Essex, England
Level Contributor
8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed May 21, 2011

Stayed 8 days at the Aquarium in May. Great location, a short distance from the airport, town centre, and the main beach. Pool area very nice, but lacks shade.
The hotel consists of 14 3-story towers, build over the sea, and most rooms have excellent sea views. Bedrooms are reasonable sized with a balcony, however bathrooms are tiny. Air conditioning is effective but a bit noisy. Unfortunately a mobile phone went missing from the room - USE THE SAFETY DEPOSIT BOXES which come at a charge.
Food was generally fair/average, and on several nights some of the al a carte restaurants were closed, but we were able to make reservations at restaurants at the other Decamerons.
Evening entertainment was pretty good, but in Spanish only while I was there (guests mainly from S America). There is a disco after 11pm.
From what I saw, its one of the better hotels on the island, but the rooms are definitely tired and need refurbishment.
TIP - don't pay for wifi, walk out of the hotel, turn left, and 500m away is a really nice coffee shop "COFFEE BREAK" where wifi is free and the coffee/cakes are excellent. Also next door is a really nice restaurant if you want a change from the hotel buffet.

  • Stayed May 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
3 Thank PECurt
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Seattle, Washington
Level Contributor
6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed January 2, 2011

The Aquarium was the best choice for us out of all of the Decameron hotels on the island. I couldn't believe how cheap it was for an all inclusive and to have all of the great amenities! It is right in town so you can easily eat elsewhere if you choose. The food at the Aquarium (and at the other Decamerons) was great and the staff were super fun and friendly. Make sure to get an ocean view room!!

It was so fun renting a golf cart and driving around the island and stopping at all of the hotels. Be sure to stop at the Orange Hill school for kids with special needs to donate school supplies.
*We stayed here in March 2008 and I have been meaning to add this review! What reminded me to do it now is that we just got back from a different hotel and it didn't compare to the Aquarium at all!

  • Stayed February 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank sabbysara
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gatineau, Canada
Level Contributor
11 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed December 16, 2010

San Andres is the most beautiful Island I have visited. Coffe, food and people are great :)

  • Stayed February 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Fafrance
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
13 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed December 13, 2010

The hotel itself is great. Make sure you request a room with ocean views or you will only be disappointed. Pay the extra its worth it.
The property is large and spacious with good options for activities and restaurants. As it is all inclusive it makes it very tempting to have everything in the hotel. Make sure you venture out and try the local restaurants. They are great too.
I wouldn't recommend this resort for solo travellers however. Reason being this is the resort you come to to hang out here. Lots of family and friends. Not alot of single travellers so it's a little hard to mingle.

  • Stayed December 2010, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank sandra1984
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Montreal, Canada
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed December 3, 2010

As another review said, I regret some folks seemed to have had a bad experience at this hotel and on this island. You have to consider where you are going and accept that if you travel in a typically rainy season : you're getting wet. Whether it's the rain, or the sea. Just accept it. In any case, you're in a bathing suit all week anyways. And, if you are asking a venue to provide services that is not their specialty - you may be disappointed despite the hotel's best efforts. Just like home : don't order a fancy fish at a burger joint. ;)

I personally found the hotel staff to be very helpful and friendly. While I preferred to transact in Spanish, they did have staff capable of assisting customers in English, and even in French. The cleaning staff was efficient, my room was always well-kept, and the food at the buffet was good - ok, it is a buffet and you won't have your favourite meal every night - but .. but... the hotel is so close to some really awesome restaurants in the village that you can always go eat off-site at the last menu if you decide to do so. You can also make a reservation in one of the resort's specialty restaurants. I particularly enjoyed La Bruja (seafood and fish).

Over tours, associated with the hotel, were also very efficient and helpful in organizing day trips and visits. I highly recommend the semi-submarine, Evening cruise on Morgan's "Volero", a trip to Johnny Cay & Acuario is also a must. Next time, I'll go to Providencia and Cayo Bolivar which I could not do this time because of the weather - just one of those things, again, that you have to keep in mind when you travel in iffy seasons: maybe you can do everything you want, or maybe you can't. I can't complain : every day we had some cloud, some rain, and some sun and totally enjoyed the hotel, the public beach, the tours I hoped on, and walking through the streets of the village - it really is a few minutes walk away from the Aquarium.

As a solo traveler, I felt very comfortable here. both at the hotel and on the island. Of course, you do have to be logical and follow some basic safety precautions : but wouldn't you do that at home anyways? (well, I do.)

Apart from the hotel : I also enjoyed the restaurant at Casablanca hotel on the Via peatonal, and Niko's seafood restaurant. Niko's has a coconut breaded fish that is to die for and tartar sauce that is actually edible.

  • Stayed November 2010, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank mtl_luna
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed November 14, 2010

..i feel sorry for the guests who had bad experiences at this hotel. but my own stay was very pleasant, starting with the location of my room to the last drop of alcohol before my departure back to nyc.
the hotel is not a 5 stars hotel, but for the value of the stay i think it is more than worth it.
at my arrival earlier before check in time 3pm..front desk lady says to me wait till 3 pm and we will have your room ready. at 3 pm showed up in front of a crowd of al least 60 people. i said there is goes the best rooms. so prepare to fight for a prime room there i was in from of that lady. she hands me the keys and as i say the first words. sorry, but i would like a room with...... she says NO WORRIES here is your key. shocked she didnt let me finish my introduction to my well prepared argument , i headed out to check my room. i have to say this room WAS JUST MAGICAL !!! ocean view 3rd floor nothing in front of it but just clean clear ocean water. from there on everything was just more than i asked for. my fiance was as surprised as i was we both had an amazing time.
taxi drivers always will rip you off even here in new york. so yes i was ripped off twice. nothing to do with the hotel though. avoid taking taxis if you can.
japanese food avoid it. it is chinese with bad sushi. the chinese side of it was good though !!!
locals told me just afew days before our arrival. the island was suffering with bad days of rain. 2 weeks straight. during my stay 5 days) only 15 minutes of rain. humidity ZERO due to some lovely breeze (wind) that kept the island warm but enjoyable. 85 degrees sunnydays 0 humidity. beautiful !!!
would i go back?? i dont know since there are so many place i would love to visit. but of course i would recomend it to anybody.
a bad experience is not the hotels fault, it is the employee's fault. but i dont let that ruin my vacations.

  • Stayed November 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank SANDSOL
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Decameron Aquarium

Property: Decameron Aquarium
Address: Avenida Colombia 1-19, San Andres Island, Colombia
Location: Colombia > San Andres and Providencia Department > San Andres Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Spa Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#2 Top resorts Hotel in San Andres Island
#3 Spa Hotel in San Andres Island
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Decameron Aquarium 3.5*
Number of rooms: 297
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
In the midst of an Antillean environment, this resort has an exceptional architecture with circular towers overlooking the sea at ‘Punta Hansa’ – at the northern end of the Island of San Andres – which allow for wonderful panoramic views of the Caribbean Sea. These buildings are alongside a long wooden dock that leads to a natural pool in the sea and with an aquatic platform ideal for snorkeling and other water sports. The Decameron Aquarium is located approximately 10 minutes from the airport and is a well sought out location for tourists since the longest and most beautiful beach of the island is located only a few blocks away, surrounded by a boardwalk, parallel to a commercial area with restaurants, discos and the most exclusive bars. You will enjoy an enchanting paradise that can be explored completely on foot and where a cultural mixture of English, Spanish, Pirates and Corsairs can be explored. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Royal Decameron Aquarium Hotel San Andres Island

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