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“Short review from an experienced traveller”

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Luxury Bahia Principe Sian Ka'an Don Pablo Collection
Ranked #5 of 22 Hotels in Akumal
Reviewed March 5, 2012

Short review here! I have been vacationing in the Riviera Maya for 10 years now and have tried different resorts each time. This was by far the best experience for the following reasons: The food is EXCELLENT, there is less choice but the quality makes up for it. The service is EXCELLENT, if you have a problem they will see to it within 30 minutes (unheard of in the Mexican Riviera). Our room was the size of a condo with a beautiful terrace and hot tub on the roof, yes the beds are a little hard but you quickly become accustomed to it. It is quiet! If you want more action, stay at one of the other GBP properties but be prepared for inferior quality food . The private beach is great, we never had a problem finding shade, you will need water shoes for the first 5 meters and please people, don't bring your garbage into the water!! And yes, the beach is a 5 minute mini-train ride from the hotel....but we found that we never waited more than 5 minutes! NO TOWEL CARDS!! You don't have to worry about bringing your towel with you everywhere. Finished on the beach? Leave your towel there! This was a great aspect of the vacation.
All in all a great vacation! Like I said, if you like ACTION, stay at one of the other GBP properties! If a quiet vacation is to your liking, by all means stay here!
Cheers!!

  • Stayed: March 2012, traveled with friends
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5  Thank briang62
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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4,797 - 4,803 of 7,471 reviews

Reviewed March 4, 2012

I feel like we had great value and experience except for two big things out of my control:
Every day they fumigated the resort at 5pm +\- with no warning. Obvious questions would be - is it safe, why not during wee hours and to not tell us when the pool is full of kids, my pregnant wife and others... We asked about and the chemicals used. We were blown off 3 times.
My second issue is not the resorts fault. Not everyone is the same, but one French family fed the stereotype of being rude, snobbish, etc. signs everywhere say you cannot reserve seats around the pool or beach. Many people attempt to dO so with a generic hotel towel. How do I know if it was left behind or if you are really coming back. We sat at two seats and in 10 minutes we were yelled at and after I relented to a French woman, she kicked our belongings because 3 hours earlier she had placed a towel on a chair to claim it. No reservation sign everywhere...

  • Stayed: March 2012
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8  Thank Ominc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 4, 2012

We had reserved 3 rooms, we got the villas in the 29 section which are the ones close to the jet pools and sushi bar. The rooms were on the third floor meaning 40 steps of stairs, it was tiresome for some in our group so consider a lower room if you have knee issues or dont want to climb all those steps every time. Each of the three rooms had a bottle of champagne and fruit plate when we came back from our dinner on our first day there, it was a nice and unexpected gesture, perhaps because we had stayed in other GPB in other country?. The room was really spacious with a living area that had two chairs and coffee table. The bed was on the firm side with lots of pillows. The balcony was ample with chairs and a small table overlooking the top of the trees as far as you can see; it was great to see all the green. We had reservations for both restaurants, Alux and Maiko, I was very pleased with both of them. From Alux I still remember the caramelized foie gras and from Maiko de duck, both of them excellent. The beach portion of Sian Ka’an was somehow disappointing; it was rocky and with lots of seaweed and the addition of man made whales seemed so unnatural that there was no way for us to get into the waters, but that didn’t seem to bother most of the people around because most of them were sunbathing and not going into the water. I was told that the Akumal portion of the beach was way better but we learned that too late when we had already walked to the opposite side (GPB Tulum portion of the Beach). Fortunately we didn’t went to the GPB because of the beaches. That said it was somehow easy to find an available chair after 10am but not in the Sian Kan portion. We ended up going back to the hotel and went into the jet pools, which were not crowded, but we noticed that every time we go there no matter which time of the day most of the chairs were “reserved”, meaning chairs had a towel, or a magazine. All in all it was a great resort, and with many things to do outside (Chichen Itza, Tulum town & ruins, Catholic Church). Finally the hotel employees were very attentive and hard workers some of them earning about $6usd a week so a tip I think is appreciated although I never felt pressured to provide it.

Room Tip: If you have a room in the third floor it will be 40 steps to get there every-time which doesnt seem...
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  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled with family
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4  Thank silarem
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 2, 2012

So.. we just returned from the most fantastic week. I was anxious to write a review because I was desperately checking out Trip Advisor reviews prior to our trip from people who traveled with kids but there were hardly any. The resort is new and because so many reviews talked about the potential for it being adult-only, I thought I would make a contribution for families looking to stay here.
First of all, we have been to GBP Tulum and GBP Punta Cana and although they are also wonderful, this one is better. I wanted to sincerely thank Claudia, who is top notch in customer service. We emailed her a week before we left and she responded right away. She was able to meet our room requests, our a la carte choices & times and my husbands tee-times for golf. We were overly impressed!
We traveled with a three year old and a 12 year old. Air Transat was awesome!
ROOM:
We stayed in a rooftop room with a private jacuzzi. TOTALLY WORTH THE UPGRADE! It was unreal..For us, the beauty of this room is that you can put the kids to bed at night and hang out up on the patio and listen to music ( that you can hear from the lobby) and have a couple of drinks. The room was the nicest room!! Very simple and modern. Housekeeping was awesome. Fridge stocked each day even with chips and mini chocolate bars too. We left little treats for housekeeping every day with a few dollars.

STAFF:
The staff is the best-- I mean, you cannot get better. Seriously. The gardeners, the front desk, housekeeping, bar tenders, servers, waiters , trolley drivers. We appreciated the smiles and "Holas" so much. They made our kids feel so special. They work so incredibly hard to please the guests. We tipped a few dollars at all of the restaurants and bars. You should bring lots of one dollar bills because a dollar here an there is so much appreciated by the staff. They truly deserve it ( and think of how much we tip in Canada at undeserving waiters/waitresses)

RESORT - the resort has several pools with a very calm atmosphere. It has a 24 hour snack bar right beside the pools. You can always find a chair and the towel system is great. ( no cards required) Not lots of palm trees but you see plenty of those at the beach. Not too much for entertainment by the pools except water aerobics, Bingo and ping pong tournaments.. but it was still fun. The do have some tubes and pool noodles for the kids to use, which was great!

RESTAURANTS: Thanks to Claudia, we booked THE Alux, Maiko, Don Pablo ( at Tulum), Le Gourmet (Coba) They were all incredible.! We enjoyed them all. Our family loves to get dressed up to go for dinner each night- we booked our reservations for 6 00 each night because our three year old didnt stay up much past 8., so it worked out perfectly. The other three nights we had the buffet at Sian kaan, then tried Akumel and Cobas buffet. The other buffets were waaay bigger but not as good as Sian Kaan's. Everything is so fresh at Sian Kaans buffet and its never crowded. You ll be so impressed with the food. Our kids thought it was awesome. We loved all of the choices. If you complain, there is something wrong!

KIDS: There were several families at the resort. There is a great little pool for toddlers to play. The pools are pretty quiet ( lots of readers) but it was most definitely kid friendly. On the side of one pool, they had a sand area , which was perfect for our son to play. ( Bring buckets , shovels and little toys) Also, dont forget to pack a beach bag if you're traveling with kids to lug toys and extra clothes back and forth to the beach. It was very helpful.. and of course ..bring loads of sunscreen.

TRAMS- Very efficient. We enjoyed the rides. The breeze felt refreshing.. it was fun! We got in a routine of asking the driver where the tram was going ( Coba, Akumel, Beach, Tulum) and they are always so helpful. the tram for the Sian kaan beach is there every 5 minutes. The was a great system.

BEACH: The beach was gorgeous. Great to have drink service at the beach. This was a first for us. It was nice to relax and have drinks refilled.Unfortunately, The Sian Kaan beach was not the best swimming place for our kids. For adults, its great but It was a little rocky.. .We walked less than 5 minutes to the right to Akumel beach( in between the two docks) and it was a perfect shallow and calm and not rocky area for the kids to swim. This area is where all of the fish are! Worth the short walk..! .. what a great experience for the kids to be in knee level water and see so many beautiful , friendly fish. Great place to snorkel if you bring your gear. You wont find a chair in this area of the beach unless you are there by 8am or just go later in the afternoon. Its definitely worth the walk down... but The sian kaan beach , you ll always find a chairs and the good service and the good drinks :)

We would certainly return to this resort and really liked being able to stay in our peacful resort at Sian Kaan and when we felt like we wanted a little more entertainment, we could go to Coba! ( Fun outside the Coba lobby after supper) ( or akumel or Tulum)

Mucho Gracious to the staff at Gran Bahia Principe Sian Kann for providing our family with the very best family vacation!!!!! :)

Room Tip: Upgrade to the penthouse suite.. You ll be glad you did!! However, the rooftop patio is not a great...
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  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled with family
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18  Thank jaydentan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 1, 2012

Our travel party consisted of my wife and I, in our late forties and my brother (fifties) and my father 86. My wife and I have stayed on property at the Tulum section twice before.I will try to give some of the highlights and tips not given in some of the other reports.

The staff at the resort was great! Thanks Claudia, Luis, Mariana and the rest I have not mentioned.

Check-in and out was fast and efficient. Front desk had all the answers to any of our questions. To save you a trip back to the room if you are exchanging US to Pesos at the front desk remember to bring a picture ID with you as they will not exchange money without it. We exchanged enough cash to Pesos for the Collectivo's.

While we were there they did build a wheel chair ramp on the backside of the lobby to the path which leads to rooms. Management also stated to me that more ramps to rooms will be built. At the time of our stay the ground floor rooms had a step up and not a ramp.

We were assigned building 5 by Claudia, upon our request to be close to the lobby etc. so my dad didn't have to walk to far. That worked out fine for us. I would have to warn that you can hear the music playing on the patio until they are done at 2245. It didnt bother us, but if you are one to go to bed early and are a light sleeper that might be an issue.

If you book an ala'carte at one of the other three GBP resorts, the tram service from the front lobby does go to all those or will get you pretty close and wont just drop you off at the lobby of the other properties unless it is close to the lobby.

My dad found WIFI very hard to get in the room. The patio outside the front lobby was ok and the best reception was by pool next to the snack bar.

As far as the rest food, rooms and value we were very happy with them all.

  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled with family
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8  Thank fyrfyter215
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 1, 2012

I had some doubts if to rank the hotel as 5 or 4 stars but I went for 5, main reason - the balance of value & quality/price.
I agree with most reviewers - it is an excellent hotel and we had a great vacation.
Service - outstanding not only about what they do on regular basis but about the way they dealt with several issues. We had minor problems with the AC and the safe deposit box - resolved in 10-15 mins, very efficient. The employees do whatever possible to accommodate tourists; there is service at the beach; they even pick up weeds in the water (not only on the sand); very polite and smiling.
Check in and out - fast.
Food - I never had such variety and presentation at any All Inclusive. We didn't like the Alux restaurant but enjoyed the Japanese one (even repeated). After trying the food at the other Bahia Principe at lunch (not wanting to go back to our hotel), we decided that venturing out of our hotel for a restaurant wasn't recommendable :)
Beach - usual for the area with some rocks, better have water shoes for your comfort.
Rooms - I can be only a bit more negative about this... I found the room to be too small to be considered a suit and very simple - a bit too zen to my liking. I loved modern concept but I couldn't defeat the feeling that I was on a business trip instead in the Carribean. It is all white and brown, with no decoration whatsoever. I think it needs a bit of a warmer touch, at least curtains instead of the office type blinds or few plants. The noise isolation could be better. All this said, it is very clean and the bathroom is great and spacious. The daily cleaning was impeccable.
Pools - very clean and nice. You can go to the quiet pool for more relaxing time.
Bars - great selection of drinks and cocktails, you can get whatever you might think of. I should say it is not a place for loud partying and entertainment is limited.
We went for half a day to Playa del Carmen - very easily reachable and for a snorkeling trip. If you enjoy snorkeling, the Mayan adventure was great experience, including snorkeling in the sea, cenote and caves.
To sum up, if you look for an affordable but luxurious and relaxing vacation, this is the place.

Room Tip: Higher floor, further from the lobby bar
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  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank victoria082
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 1, 2012

Beautifull hotel, modern , new and very elegant! Service is great. We had wonderfull time there.

  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank Anna G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Luxury Bahia Principe Sian Ka'an Don Pablo Collection

Address: Carretera Chetumal - Cancun Km 250, Mexico | Cancun Km 250, Akumal 77760, Mexico
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Akumal
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Casino Hotel in Akumal
#2 Family Hotel in Akumal
#2 Romantic Hotel in Akumal
#5 Spa Hotel in Akumal
#5 Luxury Hotel in Akumal
Price Range: $185 - $448 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Luxury Bahia Principe Sian Ka'an Don Pablo Collection 4*
Number of rooms: 420
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Facilities and services 4 outdoor pools (1 with Jacuzzi) Sun terrace with loungers and sun umbrellas BAHIA SPA (additional charge) Transfer to the beach and other facilities on the complex (at set times) Water activity centre, Beach Club with exclusive bar (at the Grand Principe Tulum) Motorised water sports (additional charge) WiFi access in the lobby and in rooms (free of charge) 1 international buffet restaurant 2 speciality restaurants 4 Bars 1 snack-bar Riviera Maya Golf Club: 18 long holes and 9 executive holes with lakes, natural wells and Mayan forest. Hacienda Dona Isabel: karaoke bars, shows, live music and disco. Rooms 420 rooms including 4 types: Junior Suite, Deluxe Junior Suite, Deluxe Garden Junior Suite, Deluxe Penthouse Junior Suite. Deluxe Garden Junior Suites and Deluxe Penthouse Junior Suites are larger than the Junior Suites and the Deluxe Junior Suites. Room facilities: King size bed or 2 full size beds Air conditioning Ceiling fan Direct phone line (additional charge for external calls) Sitting area with sofa-bed and armchairs Balcony or terrace Bathroom with shower, hair dryer and magnifying mirror Bathroom amenities Bathrobe and slippers Don Pablo Collection amenities Alarm clock with iPod docking station Flat screen TV Coffee-making facilities Mini-bar Safe Iron and ironing board 24 hour room service Butler service in rooms Private Jacuzzi Wifi (free of charge) Pillow menu Aroma menu Other services Medical service (additional charge) Pharmacy (additional charge) Specialised service for organising weddings and anniversaries, as well as corporate incentive trips and conventions Casino ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Gran Bahia Principe Sian Ka`An Golf Resort And Spa
Gran Bahia Principe Sian Ka`An Golf Hotel Akumal
Luxury Bahia Principe Sian Ka'An Don Pablo Collection Riviera Maya/Akumal, Mexico

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