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“Mostly good, but some things to beware of...”

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Luxury Bahia Principe Sian Ka'an Don Pablo Collection
Ranked #5 of 22 Hotels in Akumal
Reviewed August 8, 2014

Firstly, before comments about the actual hotel, I must flag up a warning: please check and double check that your safe works and that you use it every single time you leave the room. Day 1, all my UK banknotes were taken from inside a purse in the safe, which admittedly, I had forgotten to lock. However, this does not absolve dishonesty. Also, if you're on the ground floor, check you have completely closed the French doors. Guest relations and security took details, riffled through my belongings to check I hadn't "mislaid" the money, and sent us a bottle of local fizz, but I guess there wasn't much else they could do.

Secondly, the hotel owned Dolphinarius is just downright wrong and I will be contacting animal welfare organisations too. 4 dolphins kept in a former swimming pool... It may have been deepened but nonetheless it is scandalous.

Ok, the hotel itself: nice lobby and grounds, good sized buffet restaurant with a lot of choice, which is a good thing as the food didn't really vary over the 10 days we were there. Our ground floor room was near reception, bar and restaurant, and very close to one of the 3 pools. It was ok for 3 adults sharing, but didn't have sufficient storage and wasn't perfectly clean - a sticky mark on the floor remained there throughout our stay. We received the turn down service just twice and the fridge restocking was a bit hit and miss. Not exactly a 5 star, closer to a 4 star.

Nice pools and we never had a problem finding a lounger by the quietest pool. Service throughout the hotel was ok, but noticeably better if you tip. This was particularly true in the bar. After being stolen from, I was reluctant to tip, esp housekeeping, and would comment that the pool waiter trainee (Isabel) was the only member of staff whose service was consistently good, irrespective of tipping. Sadly, he wasn't around for our last couple of days, so missed his end of stay tip.

Other restaurants: Alux was great, and I'll be doing a separate review. Maiko and Frutos de Mar were so-so.

Location: other side of main road from the beach and the other 3 hotels in the complex. 10 minute lobby train journey to the tiny beach area, but plenty of public beach too. The other hotels are family focused (Sian Ka'an is adults only) so is noisier and busier.

All in all, we had a great holiday, and took many trips, but I wouldn't go back to the Sian Ka'an. Theft leaves an unpleasant flavour.

Room Tip: 1st and top floor rooms may be safer.
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  • Stayed: July 2014, traveled with family
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
9  Thank Sarah M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RRPPSIANKAAN, Public Relations at Luxury Bahia Principe Sian Ka'an Don Pablo Collection, responded to this reviewResponded August 10, 2014

Dear Sarah,

Thank you for taking time to write about your recent stay at our hotel. We are glad that you enjoyed our facilities and service.

We are sorrry for the inconviniences you mentionned; regarding the problem with your safe , we want you to know that we keep strict control of all incidents reported and in this particular case, we can assure you that we have implemented all the security protocols established by the company. Also, please note that we spend all possible means within our reach to take extra security measures to avoid such situations.

Regarding the dolphinarium, we truly understand your point of view and appreciate the opinion , however, we would like to inform you that this attraction is in hands of a professional organization, as an enterprise with experience in the building of a controlled habitat in specially created aquariums. The operation consists in a state-of-the-art life support system that changes the water in the pools every two hours and the dolphins are supervised, trained and taken care of by professional biologists. The dolphins have never known the open seas experience as they are born in captivity which is not an excuse or explanation to defend this activity, but information we want to give to our concerned customers.

In the hope to be your host again in the future, we send you warm regards,

Lizeth Arratia
Luxury Bahia Principe Sian Ka’an Don Pablo Collection

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3,130 - 3,136 of 7,541 reviews

Reviewed August 7, 2014

We stayed at this resort in January of 2013. We were a small group of 6. The food was great (I still get cravings for the small chocolate cakes they had!), the rooms were clean and well laid out. Never an issue with room service, room cleaning, or front desk. My only issue with the resort is that it is located off the ocean, but considering you get a world class golf course in your backyard, I would say its a fair trade off. The commute to the other Bahia Principe resorts on the ocean was quick, we never had to wait more than 10 minutes for a cart to drive us over. Drinks were fast and consistent. Shout out to Carlos! His "Carlos Special" was fantastic and kept us all going back for more. It rained a fair bit on our trip, and with the resorts lack of indoor activities we certainly drank our moneys worth haha. I will certainly be returning!

  • Stayed: September 2013, traveled with friends
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank Jen S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RRPPSIANKAAN, Public Relations at Luxury Bahia Principe Sian Ka'an Don Pablo Collection, responded to this reviewResponded August 10, 2014

Dear Jen,

On behalf of our staff, especially Carlos; we would like to thank you for trusting in our hotel and for taking time to write about the fantastic stayed you had on 2013!

Looking forward to host you during your future vacations,

Kind Regards,

Lizeth Arratia
Luxury Bahia Principe Sian Ka’an Don Pablo Collection

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 7, 2014

This was by far the most amazing place, ever. Even though it wasnt by the beach, it was only a 5 minute ride on the golf carts to it. One person i want to point out that had amazing service with us was Jonathan from the buffet in Sian Kaan. He was so attentative. Thee best guest service I have ever had. He was wonderful. Another person that was up there was the luggage bus boy Easu (I hope thats how u spell it). He was great and whenever wasnt busy would talk to us and even take us privately to our destination. This was an amazing vacation for my honeymoon. Would definetely go back. Only one bad thing, the humidity, but once you embrace it everything is awesome.

  • Stayed: July 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank Eliana S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 7, 2014

Got back from this hotel yesterday after a fabulous weeks stay. Whole experience was great and this was definitely the best all inclusive place we have ever stayed ( we haven't been anywhere else in Mexico but compared to resorts in canaries). Atmosphere is peaceful and place looks immaculate. The most noticeable thing after a few days is how lovely all of the staff are - and it's not down to tips. They seem genuinely to care that you are enjoying yourself and nothing is too much trouble. Food quality is fantastic - not like an all inclusive at all. Alux is the restaurant on site which you have to book at and the food presentation and quality is so good - just make sure you take one nice outfit - you can go in casual but quite a few people are dressed for the evening - nothing fancy needed but denim shorts probably don't really suit the place. Gents have to wear trousers anyway.
Transport system to and from beach is great - as with most resorts it helps to get there early but beds are still available up until ten in morning so it's not the mad rush for beds like it is in Europe. Pools are quiet and we never had a problem getting a bed at anytime of the day.
Quality of drinks is also very good - both alcoholic and non alcoholic. As a big tea drinker the fact they served twinnings English breakfast was the icing on the cake for me!!
I still can't believe what a great holiday we had for the money we paid - would definitely recommend this hotel and will be likely to return in the future.

  • Stayed: August 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
9  Thank Robert B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RRPPSIANKAAN, Public Relations at Luxury Bahia Principe Sian Ka'an Don Pablo Collection, responded to this reviewResponded August 10, 2014

Dear Robert,

We would like to thank you for choosing our hotel to spend your holidays.We are really happy to know that our hotel is the best all inclusive you have stayed in.

We really appreciate that you have taken the time to give us your feedback and that you enjoyed the food, drinks, atmosphere, the transport system and the service of our staff.

We would be delighted to welcome you again at the Riviera Maya!

Kindest Regards,

Lizeth Arratia
Luxury Bahia Principe Sian Ka’an Don Pablo Collection

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 6, 2014

This was out third stay at Adults Only Luxury Sian Ka’an and 17th time at the Gran Bahia Principe Riviera Maya Complex. We obviously like the resort and the complex.

I apologize up front this is a long BUT HONEST Review. If you have read any of my past reviews you will know my wife and I are in our 50’s (her) and 60’s (me). We are accustomed to a more relaxed vacation experience, but not just sleeping by the pool. We do close the bar every night. We are not picky about the little things that may go wrong on a vacation we just don’t have the time to worry about them.

This is a review of Luxury Sian Ka’an NOT a review of our entire vacation. There are too many reviews for this hotel and others where the hotel is given a lower rating for a problem or issue outside of their control. Knocking this hotel because it is not on the beach is not their fault it is your travel agents fault for not advising you, you did use a travel agent, right? It is not their fault that the hotel is about 90 minutes from the airport, again your travel agent should have told you. Don’t be surprised that you are in the midst of a jungle. Your travel agent should have told you. (Sensing a theme??)

For the record, we booked with Transat Holidays. We booked our own private transportation to from the hotel with Lomas Travel.

Following are the “PROS”

Checkin

Flawless! We were greeted by an “old Friend” Eric the Bell Captain. Always a smile and a helping hand. I had contacted the hotel in advance and requested a particular class of room and some restaurant reservation. All our requests were met by Gracy Manzo.

We were off to our room, drink in hand in less 10 minutes.

Lobby

Modern styling, somewhat contemporary. There is a nice bar with “top shelf” liquor. We like it.

There is free wifi throughout the resort. You do have to login everyday, big deal, do it over coffee while sitting in your rooftop patio.

Room

We had a Penthouse Junior Suite with a rooftop patio, and hot tub. Well worth the extra money, approx. CAD$80 per person. The room is very large and really is two rooms, a sitting area with sofa, table and chair as well as an eating are with another table and two chairs, a wet bar with a fridge then the bedroom with a King Size bed. There is a set of stairs leading to the rooftop patio.

There are no chest with drawers. There are would be best described as large closets with some shelves for storing close, hangers and a safe. We have NEVER had an issue with closet space our being able to “store” our luggage in the closet area!

The bed is firm but came with a mattress topper. I slept every night!!

Bathroom is large and tiled with a shower only which is out preference. Nice amenities.

We did not have any issue with insects or other creatures.

Housekeeping

Excellent! Room was cleaned each and every day. We got the usual towel animals to greet us on our return.

Pools

We like them. Never had an issue getting two lounge chairs with shade. There is also waiter service to bring you your drink of choice, can it get any better? Pools were well maintained and inspected regularly.

Beach

Let me start by saying if you are accustomed to the beaches of Varadero Cuba or Punta Cana D.R. and that is your standard then you will be disappointed. The Yucatan Peninsula is one huge piece of lime stone so you will find rocks and stones in the water. Wear water shoes and it is not an issue.

Sian Ka’an has its own Private Beach with bar and waiter service. There are plenty of palapas and again we have never had an issue getting a shady spot.

A real nice touch is the Iced tea served by the waiters at around 10AM each day.

Restaurants

There are two at Sian Ka’an, Alux and Maiko. Both are what I would call upscale (my standards!). Alux has excellent steaks and is often called gourmet cuisine. Maiko is Japanese cuisine. Both are excellent. The buffet is very good with plenty of selection. In fact when we return to Sian Ka’an in October of this year we will likely only eat onsite at Sian Ka’an.

Entertainment

Let me start by saying each time we have stayed at Sian Ka’an the entertainment venue has improved from a temporary shelter to now a more permanent stage. There is a band each night except Thursday (Mexican Fiesta night at the complex). The Animation Team works very hard to keep the guest entertained and amused. They must work very long hours.

There are also more formal shows at the other resorts on the complex with acts ranging from a Michael Jackson tribute to a Circus. Each resort also has a coupld bars. There iis a small casino in the Coba section. You would have to work at getting bored as there is always something going on.

“CONS”

Honestly, we had nothing to complain about. As past guests of this hotel and the complex we know our way around. We know which restaurants are not to our tastes. We know which hotel best suites our needs and lifestyle. We know to wear water shoes to the beach.

There are two very minor disappointments, not complaints.

First, the tipping situation, not from the staff but from fellow guests. I cannot believe people will sit in a restaurant, have an excellent meal with exceptional service and walk out without tipping! I saw people go to the bar, order five fancy drinks, repeatedly and never once leave as much as one dollar! Really!? Would you do that at home? Our standard is as follows, you can set your own, A La Carte - $10, Buffet Breakfast/Lunch $2-3, Bar/waiter service $1 a round, Bell Boy $2-3 per bag, housekeeping $5 per day, Mini Bar $2 per day. Grated if the service is bad or the waiter rude, then nothing.

Second, as a repeat guest of the complex we have become accustomed to a couple little things that we always appreciated or enjoyed. The Repeat Guest dinner or Breakfast with a few prizes was always fun, didn’t happen this time. In the past we have received a personal “Welcome” letter from the Hotel Manager (sometimes with hats or t-shirts). This time no Welcome letter or “perks”, we just didn’t feel appreaciated.

Bottom Line

We will be returning in October and again in late February. We wouldn’t spend this much money going somewhere that was not good value. We have stayed at other Riviera Maya Resorts, paid a LOT more money and had nowhere near the pleasant experience, we have always enjoyed at Sian Ka’an and the other resorts in the complex.

If you want a relaxing Adults Only vacation with access to numerous restaurants, shows and bars, we highly recommend Sian Ka’an.

If you are a family with young children then I would suggest the Coba section.

If you are a family with older children and a young couple wanting a little more action (noise) then I would suggest Akumal Club Golden.

If you have any questions please contact me and I will be happy to assist in any way I can.

Room Tip: Penthouse is worth every cent!
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  • Stayed: July 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
29  Thank alrosenberg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RRPPSIANKAAN, Public Relations at Luxury Bahia Principe Sian Ka'an Don Pablo Collection, responded to this reviewResponded August 7, 2014

Dear Al,

Thank you so much for your loyalty by choosing our section for the third time and for your honest review regarding your recent stay at our hotel facilities.

Thank you for mentioning that you enjoyed the grounds, the room, food, drinks, the beach and the service of our staff. We really appreciate all the comments that you have sent and we are really happy that you recommend us and write about the things you liked the most of our hotel and chain.

We are looking forward to welcome you back in October!

Sending our kindest regards from Mexico.

Lizeth Arratia
Luxury Bahia Principe Sian Ka’an Don Pablo Collection

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Reviewed August 5, 2014

Our family went to Sian Ka'an last month and we were overwhelmed by the kindness and hospitality displayed by the staff members. Special recognition goes to Rigelio, the food manager, who greeted us and made us feel very welcomed since day one. He constantly came to check up on us on and see how we were doing.

Also, thank you Liseth for arranging our accommodations and allowing us to have a pleasant and memorable stay at Sian Kaan! This was our first time coming to a resort and you have exceeded our expectations. We will definitely recommend this resort to all our friends and we hope to come back again in the near future.

Dear staff, you know what it means to show good customer service. You have taught me what it means to serve and appreciate others. God bless you.

Gracias!

  • Stayed: July 2014, traveled with family
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
4  Thank YS C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RRPPSIANKAAN, Public Relations at Luxury Bahia Principe Sian Ka'an Don Pablo Collection, responded to this reviewResponded August 7, 2014

Dear Guest,

For all our team, especially for me it was real pleasure to be at your service. Thank you so much to taking time to share your experience.

It is great to read that I helped to make your stay pleasant and memorable. I will share your nice comments with all my colleagues!

We will be delighted to welcome you back in the future.

Kind Regards,

Lizeth Arratia
Luxury Bahia Principe Sian Ka’an Don Pablo Collection

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 5, 2014

We spent 4 nights here in April, and it was fantastic. It's great for couples who don't have or want kids around. It was all inclusive. The buffet was large and very good. There are other resturaunts within the complex that require reservations in case you get tired of the buffet. The beach is a short shuttle or car ride away, and the water is gorgeous and decent for snorkeling. If you get there late, you might have trouble finding a place to sit, however. It's about a 2 1/2 hour car ride to Chichen Itza, 40 minutes to Coba, and about 20 minutes to Tulum. The staff was very friendly and helpful. Our room was very large and clean, and we had access to the roof which had a hot tub. There are a few pools within the complex as well. It's about an hour and a half south of Cancun. Very easy to get to.

  • Stayed: April 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
4  Thank JoePMV
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RRPPSIANKAAN, Public Relations at Luxury Bahia Principe Sian Ka'an Don Pablo Collection, responded to this reviewResponded August 7, 2014

Dear Joe,

Thank you for choosing our hotel for your vacation last April and for sharing how your experience was with us.

We are grateful to read that you enjoyed the buffet, the only adults concept, the food, the grounds, the rooms and the the service of our friendly staff.

We hope you visit us again in the near future at Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts.

Warm Regards,

Lizeth Arratia
Luxury Bahia Principe Sian Ka’an Don Pablo Collection

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative 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 Romantic Hotel in Akumal
#5 Spa Hotel in Akumal
#5 Luxury Hotel in Akumal
Price Range: $204 - $442 (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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