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“Travelled with family...it's okay. Been to better resorts.”

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Catalonia Playa Maroma
Ranked #4 of 5 Hotels in Playa Maroma
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Travelled with family...it's okay. Been to better resorts.”
Reviewed April 17, 2013 via mobile

Hi everyone!
Well, here's my review....
I travelled with my 2 kids (5yrs and 3 yrs) and hubby.
We booked the privileged rooms.
Just to give a small background on myself, I've travelled the world,stayed at many resorts and hotels.

First off, the location from the airport is great!! About 35 mins from the cancun airport! Our transport was a minivan!!! Which was great!! No stopping at other resorts!!
We arrived at the hotel at 10:30am-room was not ready. Finally checked in at 3:30pm!! It was a little difficult with kids since they were up so early... They got a little tired from roaming the resort and playing in the ocean.

Ocean/beach: beautiful!! Soft, powdery white sand, turquoise waters, long beach to walk!! I was impressed!!!

Pools: nice! They slope in.. Easy for kids! The kids enjoyed it.

Hotel room: we booked the privilege room. The room was kind of updated... The bedroom portion was updated, but the bathroom room portion was not. The tiles and grout are cracking, dirty.
(Parents, there is no tub to bathe kids.. Only a small shower.)
The lighting in bathroom is dim... No pressure in shower or toilet.
Towels were always clean.
It would be nice to have updated bathrooms so you feel like your on a vacation and not using the public community pool washrooms.
That was my only problem with the rooms.
Beds were comfy... Never had a problem sleeping on it.
It's set in the jungle so lots of bugs and small tiny lizards seems to get it the rooms.
Bring string to use as a makeshift clothes line on balcony.
We stayed in building 4.

Staff: cleaning staff were sweet. Always left us towel animals. (We tipped)
The restaurant staff... Not friendly. Not mean... But not friendly. Just going through the motions of their job. (We always tipped no matter what).
The animation team... They did the best they could. Alice (from the UK) is really sweet. And Jesus was cute too. They work super hard!!! All day and night!!!
The guests are exactly what the other reviews state. They are Europeans, or French Canadians mostly.
We are Canadians as well from Toronto (we dont speak french) the overall vibe in the hotel was 'everyone kept to themselves'. I don't think the Europeans are snobby... I think they came to relax. Not to socialize.
If you are looking to meet new people and party it up... Don't come here.

Kids club: it was ok. They take a 3 hr break for lunch. You must pick up your child. The week we were there, there were not many kids in the kids club. Maybe 4-5 at most. Most of the kids did not speak English, but kids always managed to communicate somehow. The kids club team was nice, only 1 spoke English. The other ones only spoke French and Italian.
It's a basic set up... Nothing spectacular.
My 5 yr old son enjoyed it everyday and loved attending. So it was fine.

Food: I'm not a picky eater. So I found they had lots to offer. It tasted fine and I was full every meal.
The Italian a la carte was the best a al carte. I guess the cater to a lot of Italians, so they better get it right!
My kids enjoyed eating whatever I put on their plate. (I'm not a hot dog and hamburger mom) they ate everything fine. Lots of fresh fruits available.

TOWEL GAME IN FULL EFFECT!!
We had to get up at 5:30am to get sunbeds under a straw hut for shade!!!
Otherwise, if you don't care for shade get up whenever... Lots of sunbeds with no shade at any given time.
By 6:30am.. All the shaded sunbeds were gone!!!!!
Another thing that peeved me was.. NO ONE monitors the privilege side of the beach sunbeds!!!
Lots of NON privileged bracelets were on the privileged side of the beach!!! It bothered me because I've payed my price to upgrade and have exclusive beach side and sunbeds!! (Maybe I didn't have to get up at 5:30am to reserve my sunbed if the non privilege guests didn't take them all).

We were on a 10 day trip there, on day 5 they put a notice on our door that we could be have a 'complimentary upgraded' to a suite at the catalonia riviera maya hotel. (30 mins away)
I assume that they were overbooked and they needed the rooms.
Well, after 5 days at this resort... We decided to take it. (We have been to catalonia Rivera maya before, the beach is horrible there but I preferred the layout and vibe there) the high winds at playa maroma beach made it difficult to sit at the beach or enjoy water anyways with young children. We gladly took their offer.

Overall, this hotel is ok. I wish trip advisor allowed half stars ratings... Because I'd give a 3.5 rating. But I gave 4.
If you are a beach person... Definitely come here. If you're looking for an overall great vacation go elsewhere.
:)

  • Stayed April 2013
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Helpful?
4 Thank Travellingmomyyz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
Canyon, Texas
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed April 17, 2013

This was our third time staying at this GREAT resort and although we have always been very happy with the food , service and rooms, we noticed several improvements Loved all the new seating around the beach bar..I really dont understand all the negative comments in other reviews.The Catalonia is the perfect size, not too small but it does not take you 4 days to find your way around. The walk to the main buffet is not really very far. I have been to other resorts where you have to take a shuttle around. We stayed during a busy time and we never had to wait for more than 5 minutes to be seated at any of the restaurants. The Italian was our least favorite on previous stays but this time it was the best, including the service of the entire staff. Our waiter Victor was the best.... We stayed in priveledge superior and the air conditioning worked great. Drinks on the beach our served with a big smile by Enrique who works very hard. The animation team was the best ever. Alice and Brenda were very friendly and took time to sit and talk to us each day and they were both wonderful in the shows. I had one small issue with getting more water in the room and Pilar, of guest serices took care of it immediately and was very happy to help and was truly concerned about making sure we were taken care of. Thank you Pilar..... This is not an elegant, fancy resort. It is a beautiful tropical beach resort with beautiful landscaping and palms trees all around, including on the beach. Rooms are not perfect, but again, they are beach rooms. Pretty, Clean and Comfortable. Some suggestions to hotel-self serve coffee and water at buffet, better top shelf liquor available for an extra charge, a reception for returning guests. ( They had one in 2011 and we really enjoyed meeting with the staff and learning more about the resort.). GREAT RESORT,TRULY BEAUTIFUL BEACH, GREAT FOOD,GREAT STAFF, GREAT FUN AND GREAT VALUE. THANK YOU TO ALL. ESPECIALLY PILAR, ENRIQUE,ALICE,BRENDA,MARIA FROM HOUSEKEEPING. SEE YOU NEXT YEAR.....

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
7 Thank allybay54
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Stoughton, Massachusetts
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed April 14, 2013

My husband and I spent 5 days at the Catalonia Playa Maroma in the Privileged Section of the resort. From the moment we checked in, the staff was very attentive and easy to work with. The moment we saw the beach, we knew we would love it here! The beach bar is perfectly situated with some ample seating with comfortable couches and chairs to drink and enjoy the view. rooms are very nice with the same theme of authentic Mayan decor throughout the whole resort. There is everything available to you here - best beach in the Riviera Maya - great food - great service - nice shops with souveniers - fund Anamacion team. The percentage of English speaking guests was about 10% to 20%, and many of the staff do not speak English. The staff members who did speak English took great care to pay attention and spend time talking with us. One staff member named Brenda was so thoughtful every day spending time chatting and giving us information on the resort. All in all, I highly recommend this resort for families, couples, and anyone who loves a fabulous beach. You can walk for very long stretches on this beach back and forth. The drawbacks for some people might be that there is no swim up pool bar and the pool is good, not great. The resort is not new and not fancy, so if you want fancy, this isn't for you. There was a bit of a musty odor in the rooms, but it was not overpowering. I would recommend that if you are American, you would book the Privilege section - the best part is the spot you have at the beach. I will return to this resort, maybe get an oceanview room so I can look at the beach non stop! I look forward to returning to this resort again!

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank Ellenwell
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
california
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed April 9, 2013

I had my doubts about this hotel because of the bad reviews, Unfortunately (and come to think of it now fotunately) my vacation plans where to take place during high season and there weren't many options. I decided to go to CPM mainly because of the beach. Once we got there we where very surprised, the hotel was charming in every way, almost all the bad reviews where so wrong. First of all we received an amazing treatment by our concierge Ninna, she was amazing! we reserved a privilege superior room and it was so nice, we had an ocean and a swimming pool view from our balcony (Room 6222), not luxurious but it was so comfortable and lovely. The beach was incredible! no picture can capture the beauty you experience when you get there. The beach alone makes it worth it but there is so much more. The swimming pool is great, the bar at the beach was great also and served a delicious cappuccino. The other thing I just loved was the jungle corridor, I can't believe there are people who would complain about this! It might not be for you if you have disabilities or are very lazy because there is some walking but it is less than a 5 min walk. They are fixing the road up to the hotel so you will provably not experience the dirt road leading up to the hotel from the main highway, but if you do, it's no more than 5 min in a slightly bumpy road. There where some bad things though, but In perspective not such a big deal, food was so-so with some delicious exceptions, the bath area of the room was very dated, I hope they do remodel these bathrooms soon, that would have made my trip absolutely perfect, but still every thing else was amazing and I appreciate the hard work of everybody that works in this resort. Also, I liked their FB page and for that they gave us a T-shirt and a plate of fruit in our room which was so nice.
Basically I found that all those po-pooers are people who should not leave for vacation outside the US. If you want all the comforts of home please stay home and leave the wonderful Riviera Maya alone, it's in the jungle, it's in Mexico and it's the most amazing place to have an unforgettable adventure.

Room Tip: Did not get to see the standard rooms but I would suggest the Privilege Superior in building 6, it...
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
8 Thank mybelle03
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New Jersey
Level 3 Contributor
8 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
Reviewed April 8, 2013

The Catalonia Playa Maroma is a 2.5 star resort that might, ever sooooo slightly, squeak into a 3 Star area only because of Maroma's pristine beach, and the stunning clear water.

There are many reasons why this resort is not a 3 star or higher. In the rooms, the AC is very loud, the bathrooms are dated, there is no room service and there is a light on the balcony that's strangely on all night. It's a true challenge to close the curtains at night so the balcony light isn't shining in. After the second night I stood on a chair and unscrewed the bulb.

As for the resort, there is only one main buffet that is located in the lobby area, which is the only place to eat breakfast. For lunch there is the main buffet which is an inconvenient walk from the pool/beach. You can try The Tortuga Restaurant near the pool, which is buffet style but limited with mostly burgers, hotdogs, lunchmeats, salad and fries. There is also the Terrace Restaurant for Privileged Members which has a beautiful view that overlooks the beach. This is a sit down snack style restaurant with approx 8 tables that are outside. There are more tables inside, but most will wait to experience the view; we recommend the club sandwich. Dinner you have average la carte with limited days and the main buffet. When evaluating the Privileged upgrade list most should be standard at any resort. ie... safe in the room, ironing board

There is no swim up bar and only one bar for all at the beach or pool. The bar is very uninviting and it gets very crowded. Crowded means at least 4 + waiting to get numerous drinks for their entire party from one, maybe two bartenders that work very hard. Thank goodness for the dedicated waiters on the privileged beach that took great care of us (we tipped generously). There is a crepe and sundae restaurant near the pool bar that we never saw less than five people waiting.

We found the piped in music throughout the resort to be "corny". How about some Mexican music, because, we are in Mexico? The fake growling sounds from the "jungle" was just silly.

The chair game was in full effect for our first week because it was crowded, but seemed to dwindle our last 2 days. I had to set my alarm for 6 am and put towels on the chairs so we could get the beach spot we wanted.

Most flaws didn't bother us, but what really frustrated us was even after mentioning twice to proper personnel our toilet needed to be flushed numerous (8-10)times to be effective. Also the wifi was incredibly spotty, often losing service for 10-20 minutes at a time. It also required us to re-log onto the system many times daily after disconnecting us.

There are several positive aspects to this resort. First and foremost, the beach was absolutely spectacular. Furthermore, the overall service was very good. Also nice was the canopy bed and the fact that there were drawers in the room in which to put your clothes (which seems to be rare in AI resorts). The ala carte restaurants were ok with exceptional service. The animation team worked long hard hours and seemed very nice.There are many women wearing thongs and topless sunbathing. Being American we are not used to this, but I found some to be very enjoyable and added to a great beach day :0)

We have stayed at many Riviera Maya AI resorts. If you are new to AI resorts, have to travel on a budget or must stay on a perfect beach without paying high end prices and will accept the flaws the Catalonia is fine. Otherwise, I would spend the extra $150-$200 per person/ week to stay at the Iberostar Parasio Beach Resort or Iberostar's Tucan. These are solid 3 star resorts with more to offer.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank cheezdog
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed April 3, 2013

We have visited 13 different Mayan Riviera resorts over the last 12 years. For the first time we recently returned to a resort for a repeat visit. There is everything to like about the Catalonia Playa Maroma. The employees are very friendly and accommodating without being obsequious. The food was once again excellent. The a la carte restaurants have great menus. Activities are great and animators excellent. The beach was superb for swimming or walking. You can easily walk 2 or 3 kms in either direction. This time we stayed in the "Privileged" section of the resort which had many additional perks including its own beach area with ample lounges which meant no early morning chair claiming. ZERO COMPLAINTS!! LOTS OF POSITIVES!!

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
16 Thank TorontoThom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed April 1, 2013

The beaches are absolutely beautiful, the place is very clean, but wasn't the all inclusive I have experienced in the past. The food was ok, but breakfast and lunch we're the same everyday. Dinners, you are only allowed to go to the restaurants once. Entertainment, was ok. A very quiet resort. The staff was friendly, but very few english speaking people. They also make you wear bands which represent if you are priveledge or not. Never really figured out the difference except if you we're priveledge then you can eat at the Terrace restaurant or you get to sit on the left side of the beach, and you got robes and slippers in your room. However, because of the bands,if you left the resort, people in town knew what hotel you we're staying at and would try to scam you. Also, not a big fan of the monkeys or whatever they we're. We will not be returning.

Room Tip: We were in building four, which was half way to lobby, where breakfast is everyday, and halfway to t...
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • Location
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Helpful?
2 Thank Cynthia T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Catalonia Playa Maroma

Property: Catalonia Playa Maroma
Address: Carretera Federal 307 Chetumal- Puerto Juarez Km. 306+250, Playa Maroma, Playa del Carmen 77710, Mexico
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Playa del Carmen > Playa Maroma
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Green Hotel in Playa Maroma
#3 Family Hotel in Playa Maroma
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Playa Maroma
#4 Romantic Hotel in Playa Maroma
#4 Spa Hotel in Playa Maroma
#4 Top resorts Hotel in Playa Maroma
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Catalonia Playa Maroma 3.5*
Number of rooms: 404
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Catalonia Playa Maroma is situated in the Mayan Riviera, at only 35 kilometers south of Cancun and 20 kilometers north of Playa del Carmen. Regarding to the Travel Channel, Playa Maroma is one of the most beautiful beaches of the world. The typical Mexican decoration with its vibrant colors and palapa roofs surrounded by the native jungle make this resort the perfect place to spend a wonderful vacation. The Mayan World has to offer a lot to its visitors. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Catalonia Playa Maroma Hotel Playa Del Carmen
Catalonia Playa Maroma Del Carmen
Playa Maroma

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